From Jim O'Brien
March 25, 2017

Hi Friend,

One Law

The Bible is a big book so it's easy to read certain passages that have profound implications without grasping the depth of meaning. For some of us it takes several readings for the meaning to sink in. For all of us it takes experience.

So it was the first few times I read God's instruction to Israel in chapter twelve of Exodus. "One law shall be for the native-born and for the stranger who dwells among you." (Exodus 12:48) This occurs just after His instruction for observing Passover only a short while after Israel had escaped from slavery to the Egyptians. It is reasonable that God knew Israel would have trouble with self-government so He gave them laws that were superior to those of any other culture.

In their infancy they were so naïve they had no idea that strangers would come in among them and change their laws. Furthermore, they knew nothing about making laws-they lacked experience. So God became their king and made good laws, which, if kept, would lead to a civilized nation of peaceful inhabitants.

But peace and prosperity depended on ALL citizens submitting to "one" set of laws. The value of ONE Law for all citizens is one of the great characteristics of civilized behavior.

When driving on an expressway it is common to see a speed sign for trucks that is lower than the posted speed for cars. But if the same expressway posted a different speed for men than for women there would be outrage.

We don't believe there should be one set of laws for people over six feet tall and another set of laws for those under six feet. It is fundamental to our system of values that no one is above the law-in other words, politicians are subject to the same laws as citizens. In fact, the United States was born from the idea that the King of England was bound by the same laws as his subjects. It's a concept American citizens learned from the Bible and the Magna Carta-and we fought a war to preserve the principle.

None of this is to suggest that we don't believe there is a difference between men and women. Nor does it imply we don't believe in cultural diversity.

It means we are equal UNDER the law but equality means we must be under the same law.

When God made the first humans He created them male and female. God made us with differences. He created the different races understanding their unique characteristics. He intended that men and women would think differently and He intended cultural differences. But it was God who directed Israel to have one law for the entire nation.

Diversity of thought was expected but oneness of values was demanded.

A crisis is now brewing in England and has also started in the U.S. In January 2014, the chief inspector of the police forces in England and Wales, Sir Tom Winsor, told the London Times that "some parts of Britain have their own form of justice." He added, "There are some communities born under other skies who will not involve the police at all...there are communities from other cultures who would prefer to police themselves. There are cities in the Midlands where the police never go because they are never called."

An undercover documentary, Secrets of Britain's Sharia Courts, was filmed by the BBC which showed there are 85 Sharia law courts operating in mosques and houses across Britain. These courts routinely issue rulings according to Sharia law that are at odds with British law.

A new phrase has cropped up in both England and France. It is "no-go zones" meaning no one can go there except Muslims. In January 2008, Michael Nazir-Ali, then one of the Church of England's most senior bishops, warned that Islamic extremists had created "no-go" areas across Britain where it is too dangerous for non-Muslims to enter. It has become a country within a country.

In 2011 the magazine Standpoint published the first-hand account of a British clergyman's wife who had just returned to London after living in Birmingham. She wrote, "For four years, we lived in inner-city Birmingham, in what has been a police no-go area for 20 years. Many of our inner cities have been abandoned by our key workers: our doctors and nurses drive in from afar, the police have shut down their stations and never venture in-they and ambulance crews have been known to be attacked."

The world seems to be on the verge of the loss of civilization. There is an anti-law sentiment that is sweeping the world, whether it is in Paris, London, Cologne or Ferguson. It's a force that hates law. It seeks to impose chaos on all of us.

America was founded as a nation "under God" meaning we were under His law. But leaders decided that the Law of God was not necessary. They reasoned that other laws and other cultures were just as good. Never mind that there is no empirical evidence to support such a claim.

The Prophet Isaiah dealt with a people very much like ours. His advice to the leaders was, "Come now, let us reason together." (Isaiah 1:18) In other words, where is the culture that is superior to that which has been given to us by our God? Where is there a nation with more justice? Where is the nation that has been blessed with greater blessings than the nations that recognize the God of the Holy Bible?

Our challenge to the leaders of nations that once embraced the Christian ethic: before you abandon the laws of God "come, let us reason together." We will not shrink from looking at the evidence objectively. Show us an example of a better world than we have been given. Where is the god that has blessed his nation more than our God has blessed us?

Come, let us reason together!

Until next time,

Jim O'Brien