Statesboro, GA, USA
What I believe the Bible is and can do will dictate the way I live my life. Those beliefs give me absolutely no right at all, however, to dictate how others will live theirs.
Ron, your personal Christian responsibility and the responsiblity of Government are two different things, yes. But you fail to admit that the Bible portrays the role of Government as an upholder of what is "right". You still haven't answered how you interpret Romans 13. Far from being a theonomist myself, I still recognize that such scriptures must have some measure of public application, or they are meaningless. What does Romans 13 mean to you? You constantly negate, but never offer a postive Christian view on such scriptures. I would still like to hear one.
If God wants people to have free will and make their own choices, I will (quite literally, I believe) be damned if I'll try to mandate for them what those choices should be.
Relax Ron, you're not a legislator. I never asked you to mandate anything. To uphold something in principle and support is a different matter.
Our role should be to teach, mostly through example, and never to force.
I totally agree. Aren't you confusing the Church with those in Governmental power again? There is a very different role for both, in scripture. One is a legislator and enforcer of law ... the other is a prophetic advisor. The separation of Church and State was never supposed to be so total that the State can't hear and submit to the word of God, was it?
Coercion, either through law or social pressure, makes a mockery of Christianity and exposes our trust in God to be nothing but a lie.
Agreed. You're blurring the distinction between Governent and the Church again.
If you are going to advocate even a single law based solely on Christian teachings, Stephen, you might just as well go all the way.
...a non sequitur.
Do you really want to pass a law that everyone must read the Bible, pray for salvation, and go to church on Sunday?
No Ron, I don't.
Can you honestly think that would ever bring anyone closer to God? Do you really believe that's what He wants?
Well, I don't trust much in what you or I "think" he wants ... especially when he has revealed much of what he does want. I really think, rather than trying to constantly prove me wrong here, you ought to consider a couple of ideas from scripture that may at least modify (not totally overthrow) what you believe on these issues. Because as always, I see truth coming from both sides. And believe it or not, I consider things you say and don't dump them without scouring them for truth. As someone has said before, this may be a case where you and I are "right in what we affirm and wrong in what we deny".
think about these scriptures ...
"The Law is a schoolmaster to bring us to Christ ..." (Galatians 3:24)
"We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious; for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for udulterers and perverts, for slave traders and liars and perjurers- and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine that conforms to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which he entrusted to me." (1 Timothy 1:8-11)
Where's Jim? ... I know he could quote me some Luther on the functions of, and the differences and similarities between Moral and Civil law.