Mitchell and I engaged in the comments section of a blog post by Andrew Perriman. In this excerpt I’m recalling my prior reference to Jesus’ interaction with the woman caught in adultery (John 8).
I’m merely trying to imitate Jesus, who distinguished between political and spiritual ways of addressing sin. Of course, the main issue in adapting His example to our current context is that democracy expects its citizens to be more vocal about the laws they want than did the governements under which Jesus found Himself.
As for the Bible, while it does record for us the will of God I believe it also makes clear that the Mosaic Law was for an ANE context, not the age to come, in which we live. Thus today the Bible speaks to our consciences in spiritual terms, and it is to the truth of God in our consciences that we must be true. Not every person has read the Bible, and none of us completely understands it – but everyone has a conscience. Adherence to conscience is not a guarantee of being right, but disregard of conscience is a guarantee of being wrong. For this reason the word of God – and not merely that which is confined to print – is invaluable for the continual calibration of our consciences.