Natural law and Romans 1

Radical 2Kers argue that natural law – God’s moral law published in Creation and written on the human heart – can be a basis for national and international law. Romans 1 seems to refute this soundly:

The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

28 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.

Here, the Bible explains that men know they need to worship God but instead worship Creation. Consequently, God gives them over to “shameful lusts” including unnatural relations with members of the same sex and also general disobedience to the moral law published at Creation and summarized the the 10 Commandments. If God is giving man over to ignorance of and disobedience to the moral law published at Creation, how can it be used as a basis for natural law? It can’t. Rather, these unnatural and immoral acts coming from the worship of Creation become national law. We see this in almost every human civilization that’s not based on the Bible, and in ancient Hebrew civilization as it exchanged worship of God for worship of Ba’al and Ashteroth and the pantheon of Canaanite gods. Vishal Mangalwadi confirms this is still going on today, which is why so many believers in the Global South want their societies to be governed by Biblical principles, just as the Reformers did. It’s simply awful to live in a society where everyone is violating even natural law because God has given them over to ignorance of it and suppression of it. The Reformers knew this. They even lived in merciless, wicked societies filled with Biblical ignorance, which was bad for everyone. These are the societies Third Worlders are fleeing when they come to the West. Why do you think they’re so desperate to get here?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *