The principle of legality

[ 1 ] The principle of legacy is the principle that the ruler can not rule and judge arbitrary but the exercise of authority must be predictable. To put it simply, the King, that is the State, may arrest and imprison a man if he commits a crime, that is if he has done something which violates a statutory provision. But the King can not arrest and imprison a man because the King does not like him. The man, therefore, can not be arrested and detained as a criminal. What the King thinks about him should be completely irrelevant when the King exercises authority towards him.
[ 2 ] Like that it has not always been. Justitia, the Roman goddess of justice, was pictured blind first in the 15th century. And also today there are states in the world where the principle of legacy is not maintained. In the Christian world, the routine today is that arrest and detention always is grounded in law. But what is law? It is timely to ask the question since laws might be passed requiring civil servants to act against citizens by virtue of their discretion. Insane people in Norway, for example, should, according to the law, be dealt with in power of psychiatrist’s judgment. Is that allowed? What is then preventing treatment of critics of the regime as insane? This practice on behalf of the King is an obvious violation of the principle of legacy.
[ 3 ] Compliance with the principle of legacy is vital to the rule of law. In western civilizations we have been assured that the principle of legality has been followed since the states have been Christian. Legality was instituted in pagan people through faith in Christ. But today faith in Christ is about to disappear. And faith in Mammon in no way ensures that the principle of legacy is upheld.
[ 4 ] Legality is a principle. It is not a rule. It is not the rule that the State’s authority must be grounded in law. Reducing the principle of legacy to a rule is foolish and dangerous since such a reduction does not require a certain formulation of the law and since the legislator by that rule is free to adopt a statute of whatever is. The principle of legacy is, by being a principle, reasoning without limits. In the following, I will seek to limit the reasoning and briefly explain what the principle of legacy is.
[ 5 ] Let us recognize the fact we are two kinds of people in the world. One kind does not understand the point of the principle of legacy, and will reduce the principle of legacy to be a rule as mentioned above. The other kind will maintain the principle of legality at any cost. Legality is instituted to protect the last kind from arbitrary exercise of authority from the first kind and to give everyone a predictable rule.
[ 6 ] To say we are two kinds of people in the world is controversial. But so it is. We became one of two by the fall. By the fall, we did something conflicting with God's expectations to us. We committed a sin. And we were clearly made aware of the fact we had committed a sin by our conscience. For most people, the fall took place in youth. As children we are innocent, but in youth the need to covet is awakened, and by satisfying that desire we committed a sin. The way we dealt with it afterwards decided if we became the one or the other kind in the world. The Christian will immediately repent after the fall. The Christian will curse himself and seek God in sincere despair, and God will forgive him and give him peace. He will thus be responsible and reliable. The other kind, the loser, will not repent. The person will not really curse himself but will talk away what he did or try to embellish the case. So he remains in his sin. He claims it is natural for him to sin and he will expect everyone else to be like he is, that is to be incorrigible sinners. The loser will blame nature or culture and thus excuse himself. He is a slave to sin by that sin has gained power over him - he needs to explain sin as something natural or normal. He has become a loser there by.
[ 7 ] The fall of mankind took place by Adam. And in Genesis we read that two nations walked out of the fall, namely the woman's family and the serpent's family. And, it says, the two are each other's enemies.
[ 8 ] Persons in the woman's family, which came to be the Christians, will be responsible and reliable after the fall. Those who belong to the family will regret their sin and make sure they never again end up in the situation they are condemned by God. They will go for the Son in all their work and reject any allegation they are really sinners. They will be fair. Persons in the serpent’s family, on the other hand, which are the losers, will become simple after the fall. Those who belong to the family will excuse themselves by a psychological explanation and they will make all sorts of theories about how people really are wretched and petty and unable to be sinless. They will create a theory saying man is basically both good and evil, that is simultaneously driven by a motive to do good and a motive to do evil, and they will claim that they by reason alone are able to do good deeds. From time to time, that is. They will argue all people have some evil in their nature. They can not curse themselves after the fall.
[ 9 ] To the Christian, it is natural to do well. The person is like a branch of the tree which is The Son and in the power of his soul he will always be responsible and reliable. The loser, on the other hand, will offer good deeds. It's really inappropriate for him to do well and he will sacrifice good deeds at some altar by virtue of his conscience. He believes man is basically both good and bad but satisfies God and obtains eternal life by choosing the good over the evil. He is actually a hypocrite or a fool. The prophets of the Old Testament constantly castigated Israel for this reason, saying God abhorred such sacrifices. And that God in no way is satisfied with indulgences and good works as offerings was also the main message of Martin Luther during the Reformation. God demands a certain constitution.
[ 10 ] When the loser is in power, he is dangerous. He will judge all others as he sees himself, and as he thinks it as impermissible to give himself freedom he will think it is impermissible to give other people freedom. For if people are given freedom, he says, they will pursue their desires. Legality is instituted to give everyone freedom. If the principle of legacy applies the loser cannot threaten people to fool. What he thinks about people and how they should be is completely uninteresting, since what counts is the actual actions of people.
[ 11 ] The treatment of the insane is the typical example. The loser thinks the mentally ill, by his inability to cope, is unable to control himself. And if he is not able to control himself he has the freedom to pursue his desires. There is nothing stopping him, the loser thinks, from acting evil. And thus the insane must be forced. The loser will establish a power which controls his freedom and the loser will dull him, mechanically or with drugs, to eliminate his natural impetus. The Christian, on the other hand, will condemn any such authority. Every one should be free to follow their nature. Legality ensures this. The Christian strongly denies he must control himself and he strongly rejects any loser’s need to control him.
[ 12 ] The treatment of the insane is the typical example. But also in the treatment of ordinary citizens the loser in a power position will act as a master and demand not only acceptance of the laws but abeyance of his judgement. He will do so by virtue of his expertise, for him and for other losers proving his ability in general to master. And thus he will not just tell people what to do but also tell them how they should be. The principle of legacy is the institutionalised obstacle to such authority.
[ 13 ] The loser will establish in life the control he believes he has of himself. The principle of legacy prevents this from happening.
[ 14 ] Let us take a different perspective on the principle of legality.
[ 15 ] In the past, a long time ago, we were afraid of the ruler's view upon us. The ruler could exercise arbitrary power. He could detain and imprison without trial. He could acquire property and equipment as he pleased. He could requisite labour and men for military service as he wanted. It was important therefore to be on good terms with the king or emperor. It was important to be on good terms with the king's henchmen. People were expected to ingratiate.
[ 16 ] That changed by Christ. In Christ we care very little about what the king thinks about us, what matters is that we are law-abiding. If we are, we will live peacefully.
[ 17 ] We distinguish between person and business. Christ castigated the Pharisees and the scribes for saying that if you swore at the altar, it meant nothing. But if you swore at the offering on the altar, the Pharisees and the scribes said, you are bound to keep your oath. In other words: The scribes and the Pharisees believed that if you swore your devotion to the person, that is, to the altar, it meant nothing. But if you swore your devotion to the business, which is to the offering on the altar, you were bound. By this the Pharisees in fact said they could be fools to the ruler without consequences. They believed themselves to be committed only if they swore to the business. Jesus called them fools and blind men. And Jesus said, if you swear by the altar, you agree to the altar and all that is on it. In other words: Do you swear your devotion to the person, you are bound to that person and to every business of him.
[ 18 ] The fact it is so has consequences. It means we are afraid to fool. We are afraid to commit to a person, because if we do, we adhere to that person and to all that person's work. Thus, this is the rationale behind this principle of legality. We are not meant to fool the king, because if we do, we loose ourselves. We should be independent. Charity is what God wants, not sacrifice. Being fools, we will sacrifice our deeds and act economically. Like that God will not have us.
[ 19 ] But one thing is how the people rationalize. Another thing is how the power, that is the king, sees it. Also as a legal rule we owe legality to Jesus.
[ 20 ] Jesus was brought before Pontius Pilate by the elders and the priests who had Jesus delivered to them by Judas. Pilate tried to interrogate Jesus. And he was afraid of him.
[ 21 ] Pilate said he was able to exercise arbitrary power over Jesus. He could let him be crucified and he could let him go free. And he marvelled at Jesus, who would not ingratiate. He wondered why Jesus would not be a servant to his eyes. Jesus let him understand, however, that Pilate had no power unless it was given him from above. Pilate was set in a position, given him to take care of. Pilate was equal to every other person in that respect. And therefore, he that delivered Jesus to Pilate had greater guilt than Pilate, because he made the position intolerable. The Jews declared that Pilate was in conflict with the emperor's laws if he did not let Jesus be crucified. But if he let Jesus be crucified, he would emerge as a despot. The position was so intolerable that Pilate washed his hands when he sent Jesus to the cross. And by that, the principle of legality was in reality instituted. The fact the chief washed his hands would have been perceived as impermissible under any other circumstance. But Pilate showed with it he was under authority. He was a man like any other. His position was dependent on support. And being dependent on support a king cannot exercise arbitrary power. He must be to deal with.
[ 22 ] Legality was instituted by Jesus. The principle is the principle that we should not relate to what the king thinks of us but only relate to the rights and duties adopted by the king as the rule of the king. We will not be eye servants. Charity is what God wants, not sacrifice.
[ 23 ] Justitia is blind. She is the symbol of the principle of legality. Justitia blind appeared not before the 1400s , but it is Jesus' Christ's merit Justitia is blind. Justitia was blinded by conversion of the Apostle Paul, who before his conversion was a court servant of Israel. He persecuted Christians and had them imprisoned and killed by virtue of the view that Christianity was hostile to the nation. On a trip he took in this his service, he was blinded by God and given a vision. The fact he was blinded told him he should stop interpreting people's behaviour.
[ 24 ] The fact Justitia is blind tells us Justitia is unaffected by fools. She is blind to all power and to all glory and judges solely by understanding what has actually happened. The authority given to her is to judge whether people comply with their rights and obligations under the law, and she has been prevented from judging person. In this way, the power is to deal with. People are not afraid of what the power thinks of their person, and people relate to power provisions which they either comply or not comply with. Justitia does not exercise arbitrary power.
[ 25 ] This is the principle of legality. It is the principle upon which Christian nations build governance. Authoritative opinion shall be either yes or no. People should only relate to the rights and obligations they have under the law and not relate to what the King thinks about them. People should not have to be eye servants. Power shall be predictable and understandable. People should be independent. This means the authorities can not intervene in people's freedom and property rights without legal authority. This means that no one should be imprisoned without trial. And this means laws can not provide arbitrary power to any officer.