Category Archives: Law

RANDOM THOUGHTS ON CAPITAL PUNISHMENT

PMW 2018-032 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

As Christ’s kingdom advances to greater fulfillment in the world, it will establish a full world and life view. Thus, it will impact the laws of men and nations. One aspect of this advancing endorsement of law is the principle of capital punishment. Though capital punishment is rejected in most European nations and only partly maintained in America, it is important that the Christian understand the obligation to a Bible-based criminal justice system.

In Genesis 9:6 God establishes his covenant with Noah as he disembarks the Ark to repopulate the world. One of the principles he establishes in this covenant is that of capital punishment. Genesis 9:6 reads: “Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man his blood shall be shed, For in the image of God He made man.” Thus we have here a justification for one man taking the life of another: because man is in the “image of God” he may therefore act for God on just occasion. Continue reading

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PASSING OF HEAVEN AND EARTH IN MATT. 5:17

PMW 2018-029 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

A reader has written to ask me about the implications of Matt. 5:17 for new creation theology. I thought our interaction might be helpful to PostmillennialWorldview readers.

Reader’s question

“I have a question for you that has bothered me off and on. As a partial preterist, I defend the interpretation of “New heavens and Earth” as the figurative establishment of the New Covenant and the passing away of the old heavens and earth as the passing of the Old Covenant. But as a reluctant theonomist, this puts pressure on my understanding of Matt 5:17 (Jesus saying that the Law will not pass away until the heavens and earth pass away). Because that would seem to indicate then that the binding authority of the Mosaic Law DOES pass away with the Old Covenant if we maintain a consistent interpretation of the ‘heavens and earth’ metaphor as covenants. See what I mean? How do you understand this conundrum?”

Continue reading

THE 10 COMMANDMENTS AND DEUTERONOMY

PMT 2018-026 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

A casual reading of Deuteronomy after Deut. 5 appears to present a random collection of laws. Yet a general scholarly consensus discerns a basic organizing principle: these laws follow the order of the ten commandments.

In this, the largest section of Deuteronomy, Moses provides the commandments’ broader implications by offering practical applications (cf. Deut. 1:5). Though the outline is not overtly presented by Moses, given Moses’s orderly mind and compositional skills, along with the outline’s general fit, it is strongly suggested. Continue reading

THOU SHALT NOT STEAL

PMW 2017-071 by Chris Hume (originally posted at Reformed Hope)

[Gentry note: Postmillennialism expects the conversion of the vast majority of men and nations before Christ returns. Conversion by God’s free grace necessarily leads to a desire to obey and serve God. Serving God involves obedience to his law which is a transcript of his holy character. God is holy, just and good, therefore “the Law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good” (Rom. 7:12). Therefore, his law is to be promoted to men and nations (Rom. 3:19, 31), not as a means of justification, but as an instrument of sanctification. Chris Hume’s article is helpful for our better understanding the significance of God’s commandment against theft.]

The Ten Commandments and the Moral Law of God

Whenever we begin to discuss the commandments of God, we would do well to ask ourselves the following question: Who is required to obey said laws? Continue reading

THE 10 COMMANDMENTS AND GOD’S KINGDOM

PMW 2017-064 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

Introduction

Postmillennialism expects a day when “the earth will open up and salvation [will] bear fruit, and righteousness [will] spring up with it” (Isa 45:8). It expects the discipling of the nations to teach all the things Christ taught his disciples (Matt. 28:19), which included the continuing relevance of God’s law (Matt. 5:17–19; cp. Rom. 3:19, 31). This is because the law reflects God’s character which is “holy and righteous and good” (Rom. 7:12). Because of this, postmillennialists would do well to learn God’s law and its practical applications.

Learning Deuteronomy well is a good place to start. And the structure of Deuteronomy is helpful for reinforcing and expanding the application of God’s law. Let me explain. Continue reading

THE “BONDAGE” OF THE CIVIL LAW?

PMW 2017-062 by Chris Hume (Reformed Hope)

[Gentry note: Postmillennialism is committed to a God-defined righteousness as characterizing the advance of God-established kingdom in a God-created world. Thus, we are interested in how God’s law impacts ethics. Chris provides us with a helpful article in this regard.]

A common view is that the civil law of Moses was a bondage to Old Testament saints. This understanding leads people to view passages which speak of freedom from the law as meaning that saints are now “free” from the “bondage” of the civil laws of the Old Testament. In my opinion, this view is erroneous. Whatever you may believe about the civil laws of the Old Testament, you cannot biblically defend the view that the civil laws were a burden. You may attempt to make arguments against applying the general equity of the civil laws to societies today, but you cannot cogently use any argument that implies said laws were a form of bondage to Old Testament saints. Please allow me to explain. Continue reading