Assimilation: Lawsuits and Church Courts

This is part of a series of posts on the sin of Assimilation. Click here to see the entire series.

The Law of Lawsuits

Deuteronomy 19: 15-21 describes the procedures to be followed in making a damage claim against another person. Assimilated Christians dismiss the passage as being a part of the Old Testament and, therefore, attributed to that God that does not exist anymore. Notwithstanding their dismissal, God has not changed and His conditions for lawsuit administration still remain and will serve as the standard by which He judges all men. In the course of explaining the principles of jurisprudence in lawsuit administration God says this, “And the judges shall investigate thoroughly; and if the witness is a false witness and he has accused his brother falsely, then you shall do to him just as he had intended to do to his brother. Thus you shall purge the evil from among you.”

The application of this one principle alone would eliminate almost every problem with the legal system of the United States. Today under US law a person may file a lawsuit with no risk whatsoever. God says that if a man files a lawsuit and it is shown to be in error, then the plaintiff becomes subject to the penal sanctions that would have applied to the defendant. In other words, if I claim that you have somehow caused me harm and I seek a specific dollar amount in damages and I am unable to prove my case, then I owe you the amount I was seeking to receive from you. This would bring to an immediate end a huge percentage of all lawsuits that are filed in this country today.

When Christians become party to lawsuits without realizing that they should be at risk, they are doing little more than playing the litigation lottery. Under the biblical system, unless it is abundantly clear that a person has been harmed, very few lawsuits would be brought before the judges.

Rather than seeking to become lawyers, believers should be calling the legal profession to repentance for their many violations of the law of God. The sinful notion that the legal system can be improved if we just have more Christian lawyers needs to be abandoned. Any Christian attorney who litigates because he knows that his client is not in any way at risk has been fully assimilated to the cultural law of the land.

Church Courts

Perhaps the most egregious assimilation to the secular humanist law has been with respect to the church courts. Just mentioning the concept of a church court will once again be met with blank stares by evangelical Christians. They have no idea what God has to say about conflict resolution through the church court. I Corinthians 6 speaks specifically to the issue. It is interesting to note that evangelical Marcionites are unable to dismiss this passage of Scripture because it is found in the New Testament. It is therefore, in their view, the product of the loving New Testament god. Being in the New Testament it is also something that must be practiced. In reality, it is universally ignored by assimilated Christians. I Corinthians 6: 1-6 says,

Does any of you, when he has a case against his neighbor, dare to go to law before the unrighteous, and not before the saints? Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is judged by you, are you not competent to constitute the smallest law courts? Do you not know that we shall judge angels? How much more, matters of this life? If then you have law courts dealing with matters of this life, do you appoint them as judges who are of no account in the church? I say this to your shame. Is it so, that there is not among you one wise man who will be able to decide between his brethren, but brother goes to law with brother, and that before unbelievers?

Simply put, no Christian should ever go to a pagan court to settle a dispute with another Christian. The mere idea that Christians would go to the church court to resolve a conflict is so foreign to most believers that it sounds positively evil. Christians have been so assimilated to secular humanist law that they are unable to even conceive of the propriety of church courts. Paul did not have that problem. He was incredulous that Christians would not utilize the church courts! He could not believe that any Christian would ever go to civil court in order to resolve a dispute between believers.

Just like the era in which we live, the courts of Paul’s time ignored biblical law. Paul believed that the least qualified elder in the church, who is versed in biblical law, is eminently more qualified that the most qualified pagan judge in civil court who rejects biblical law. It is a shameful thing, according to Paul, that the church courts were not doing their job and believers were going into civil court to resolve their disputes. Why are Christians so proud when one of them becomes a lawyer in the civil realm? Why is the office of elder/judge in the church deemed to be so insignificant? Because the church has been totally assimilated to the idea of humanist law and the primacy of the civil realm over the church. Paul so strongly believes in the primacy of the church courts that he argues that it would be better to bring no charge at all, than to bring a charge before the pagan, civil courts (vs 7). If individual believers today were being renewed in the spirit of their minds by the Word of God rather than being assimilated to the culture of the United States, we would not find Paul’s injunctions so strange.

I have argued that evangelicals worship a false god because of the blinding affects of misguided patriotism. I have shown that the United States is diametrically opposed to the God of the Bible and all of His commandments. I have shown that believers have wholeheartedly adopted a secular humanist system of law and rejected the clear revelation of the law of God in the Bible. I have shown how the Church has adopted the State’s definition of what constitutes a sin (smoking, drinking, and gambling). Before moving on to an examination of the state of the Church it is worth considering one last item where the assimilation of the Church has taken place.

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