Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Review: Mars Hill Monograph - Is there a Natural Law?

Mars Hill has a new Monograph pamphlet out. It contains a ten page excerpt from the writings of third generation reformer Francis Turretin with the title Is There A Natural Law?, a short essay by Kenneth A. Myers entitled On Not Being Ashamed of Natural Law, and an annotated bibliography on Protestant Advocacy of Natural Law by Rev. David F. Coffin, Jr.

This new monograph is the best single source I have seen on a Biblical understanding of Natural Law. Everyone interested in Christianity and human law should read it and share it with friends.

Turretin was the second successor to Calvin in Geneva. Like John Calvin he believed in general revelation and Natural Law as important elements of legal and political theory and practice while remaining orthodox on human sin, rebellion etc. Turretin understood God’s own nature as the source of objective standards of good. Turretin knew the value of understanding the difference between the positive laws of God and man, and God’s objective standard of what is unchangeably good. Myers does an excellent job of highlighting the importance of the Biblical Natural Law position outlined by Turretin.

For too long Protestants have been under the false impression that Natural Law is a “Roman Catholic thing” when it is really a belief of continuous Christian faith throughout the centuries, including the reformers. As I have said before, Natural Law and general revelation are more in accord with protestant teaching than Roman Catholic teaching because they explain how humans are accountable to God for the truths revealed in scripture without needing a Pope to give an authoritative interpretation of the scripture.

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