"I went to Jerusalem to become acquainted (Gk. istoria) with Cephas" - Paul's words from Galatians 1:18.

Miley Cyrus, Cyrus the Great and Natural Law

Miley Cyrus gave an interview in 2015 to Paper magazine where she revealed disdain for people who view life differently than she.  Though raised in a Southern Baptist home and baptized in a Southern Baptist church, Miley Cyrus now rejects her parents' beliefs.

According to the magazine, Miley calls herself "the least judgmental person ever.” However, she maintains a "particular contempt" for Christians.  Those people," meaning those she feels are more judgmental than she, "shouldn’t get to make our laws."

The 22-year-old singer went on to slam anyone who believes that Noah and the flood is a true story. “That’s f***ing insane,” she told the magazine. “We’ve outgrown that fairy tale, like we’ve outgrown f***ing Santa and the tooth fairy.” The former Disney Channel star also criticized her parent’s political views, calling them “conservative-ass mother-f***ers.” Cyrus revealed that she views her gender identity as “fluid,” and told her mother that she was attracted to women when she was just 14 years old.

In the course of the interview, one sentence from Miss Cyrus struck me:
"Those people shouldn't get to make our laws."
Miss Cyrus, it seems, has at least a limited understanding of government.  She refers to laws. She understands people "make laws." She may even know the formal definition of law.
"The system of rules that a particular country or community recognize as regulating the action of its members and may enforce by the imposition of penalties."
In an Islamic country ruled by Sharia Law, Miss Cyrus would be whipped, stoned or beheaded for her violations of Sharia Law, In reading through Sharia Law myself, I'm confident Miss Cyrus is guilty of capital offenses.

In a monarchy (e.g. "a country ruled by a king or queen"), the laws change according to the character of the monarch. For example, one of the greatest kings of all time, a Persian monarch named Cyrus the Great (600 - 529 B.C.), a man referenced by the prophets of the Bible as "God's anointed one" (Isaiah 45:1), allowed the captive Jews to return to Jerusalem and worship and live as they please under Persian rule. The Babylonian king that Cyrus conquered in 539 B.C. was a wicked king named Belshazzar. The laws of Cyrus were good. The laws of Belshazzar were bad. In a land ruled by kings, the character of the laws reflect the character of the king.

In a land of anarchy, there is no law. The very word anarchy means lawlessness. Though Miss Cyrus seems to think that the people who "make laws" should be her kind of people - people who are non-judgmental - it seems to me she hasn't reflected well on the end result of anarchy. It seems she's advocated a country of "no laws" and no "penalties" for personal behavior.

But should someone be allowed to steal Miss Cyrus recordings without paying royalties? Should someone be allowed to enter Miss Cyrus' home and kidnap and torture her? Should someone be allowed to cut off her head because she is refusing to pray to Allah?

Of course not.

So what kind of laws do we need in the United States to protect people like Miss Cyrus and others?

Answer: Natural Law. Natural Law is the foundation of the United States Constitution and the basis for all laws of the United States. Natural Law as a term of politics and jurisprudence may be defined as:
A knit body of rules of action prescribed by an authority superior to the state. These are rules from Nature and Nature's God that govern the operation of the universe, including everything and everyone.
Natural Law is not exclusively Christian or Jewish or any other religion. C.S. Lewis in his classic work The Abolition of Man traces Natural Law throughout history, in all civilized nations. For a great read, go to the Appendix in The Abolition of Man called Illustrations of the Tao and read Lewis' description of the eight points of Natural Law.  They are as follows:

1. The Law of General Beneficence (eg. kindness)
2. The Law of Special Beneficence (eg. kindness)
3. Duties to Parents, Elders, Ancestors
4. Duties to Children and Posterity
5. The Law of Justice
6. The Law of Good Faith and Veracity
7. The Law of Mercy
8. The Law of Magnanimity

If you wish to learn a shorter description of Natural Law, memorize these seventeen word from Richard Maybury:
 "Do all you have agreed to do and do not encroach on other persons or their property."
Killing another person is encroaching. Stealing from another person is encroaching. Forcing another person to worship the Creator in a prescribed way is encroaching. Laws that violate Natural Law are not Divine.

Cyrus the Great was not a Jew, and obviously not a Christian. He was a Persian magistrate. Yet, the Creator called him, "My anointed one" (Isaiah 45:1). Anyone who lives by Natural Law and leads others to live by it is "anointed." Miss Cyrus, any country in which we live must have laws, or we will descend into anarchy. Natural Law is good for government. Without it
"They shall take who have the power, And they shall keep who can."
Russell Kirk writes that Natural Law only works in a country where individuals - regardless of their religion, race or creed are individually governed by it. He writes:
Permit me, ladies and gentlemen, to repeat here that the natural law is more than a guide for statesmen and jurists. It is meant primarily for the governance of persons -- for you and me, that we may restrain will and appetite in our ordinary walks of life. Natural law is not a harsh code that we thrust upon other people: rather, it is an ethical knowledge, innate perhaps, but made more clearly known to us through the operation of right reason. And the more imagination with which a person is endowed, the more will he apprehend the essence of the natural law, and understand its necessity. If such a one, despite his power of imagination, offends against the natural law, the greater must be his suffering. So I have discovered in the course of a peregrine life. And over a good many decades I have found that most contemners of the natural law are dull dogs, afflicted by a paucity of imagination. As Adam Mickiewicz instructs us:
"Your soul deserves the place to which it came, If having entered Hell, you feel no flame."
Miss Cyrus, your interview with Paper magazine violates Natural Law. This has nothing to do with Christianity or religion, and everything to do with right reason, imagination, and honor.

Raymond English has written:
Natural law cannot be understood except through the elements of poetry and imagination in the soul. The poetic and the moral imagination are parts of human reason. For the man who does not feel himself in some sense a child of God, who is not possessed by the "desire and pursuit of the whole," and for whom words like honor are meaningless, the notion of natural law must be a Mumbojumbo, a bogle to make children behave tolerably well, a fantasy from the adolescence or the childhood of the race. Poets, James Elroy Flecker says, are those who swear that Beauty lives although lilies die; and the natural law is the poetry of political science, the assurance that Justice lives though states are imperfect and ephemeral. Justice is to politics what beauty is to art; indeed, beauty and justice become almost identical at the highest levels of human aspiration.
It seems a generation of Americans, epitomized by Miss Cyrus, have lost what it means to be individuals of dignity, honor and magnanimity.

We need less the spirit of Miley Cyrus and more the spirit of Cyrus the Great.

26 comments:

Doug said...

I see the words "Miley Cyrus said . . . " and just quit reading as general rule.

But good post to reflect on how laws come to be and what they mean to us.

Paula Nevius said...

Love your history lessons and this one is needed at such a time ......Thank you. We always learn from you.

ScottShaver said...

What kind of history, government, ethics does a Hollywood-tutored child actually learn?

RRR said...

From reading your quotes from her, she seems to be a very foolish young lady and functioning totally subservient to a higher power, but not The Highest Power. When anyone speaks from such a basis I simply feel sad. Too bad there are those other foolish young people who are actually influenced by such agents.

Anonymous said...

Not sure I'd agree with your statement about anarchy having no rule or law. Possibly true when people are run over by governments and seek to over throw them...that would be a knee jerk reaction to govt. Obviously, people freeing themselves from such govt would have to adopt some sense of law or rule, but most anarachist are against rulers (not rules) that rob and killy "legally" or "lawfully".

For example: skip to the 28:35 mark https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0z3PKq6ftpo

Just thinking out loud.

Wayne

Christiane said...

"Natural law is not a harsh code that we thrust upon other people: rather, it is an ethical knowledge, innate perhaps, but made more clearly known to us through the operation of right reason."

much to like in this definiton, Wade

I think that 'innate' is likely true in view of the Scriptures where God promises to write 'His laws' on our hearts . . . as a moral guide where most human persons know instinctively what is right from what is wrong, yes

In my Church, we call this innate moral guide 'conscience'.

As far as the still young Miley Cyrus goes, I imagine she may be rejecting what she perceives as hateful judgement of others, but I don't think she is rejecting EVERYTHING she has learned in Christianity, no.

As I grow ever older, I myself have come to believe that we Christians all belong to a ‘tribe’ of people who can forgive almost anything but unkindness to others, the abandonment of a sense of ‘kindred’ recognition of our own humanity being connected up to how we encountered and treated one another, especially those who are fragile and therefore in need of kindness most.

Young Miley likely has retained much of her compassion for people that she learned as a child raised in the Church. Perhaps she is rejecting that which she thinks is not 'of Christ' in the ways that some in the Church have turned on those who are different from themselves. I say give her time to work it all out. If she has been nurtured on the Word as a little one, it is now still a part of who she is and will so remain with her and not abandon her.

Rex Ray said...

RRR,

Yes, it makes us sad.

I clicked on your name and saw your favorite movie was “Shane”.

Reminded me the last time I spoke to Wade’s father, Paul Burleson, who led a revival at our church. In order to catch a plane, he told us he would leave when the ‘dismissal’ prayer started.

I followed and in the parking lot, I yelled: “Come back Shane…we love you Shane”.

John C. Stam said...

And for his belief in Natural Law, Robert Bork was "borked" by the Senate judicial committee led by Ted Kennedy in 1981 and rejected for a position on the US Supreme Court. I'm sure Miss Cyrus would have been pleased with the work of Mr. Kennedy and his committee.

Dave Panzera said...

Liberal Progressivism struggles with Natural Law and for that matter republicanism. If it in any way shape or for requires a personal responsibility of them they reject it.Such is the case here with Miss. Cyrus. Whatever her parents raised her as she utterly rejected but then again I would want my kids to reject most of her fathers way of life too. Like many anti-Christians she only seems to get visceral at Christianity, not much else seems to pop up on her radar. You can liken her to a hammer that sees everything remotely christian as a nail.

Anonymous said...

Since MC was baptized into an SBC church, was she subjected to church discipline? (In the SBC? ha ha ha. I am a former SBC.)
Anarchy does not necessarily mean lawlessness. It also means no rulers, i.e., no government. It is impossible not to have law. The law may be only social custom, tradition, or family rules; but it is still law. "Because that's the way we have always done it" is very powerful. It is the unspoken rule in many churches. Formal codification is not required to have law. Since you are an arrant advocate for natural law, you can tell us what are the weaknesses of natural law. "Every man did that which is right in his own eyes" comes to mind. The theonomists ask "If not God's law, what?" Is the Sermon on the Mount natural law?

RRR said...

Rex Ray, you had to bring that up. I haven't watched it in awhile and now you have stirred my craving and I'll have to deal with my dopamines by watching "Shane" again, for maybe the 1,000th time! But one never tires of true "classics".

I bet if Miley had had the opportunity to have been raised in your care with all of those amazing yard rides she would be one happy young lady today. That's what's tragic.

Christiane said...

Mr. Panzera writes:
"Liberal Progressivism struggles with Natural Law and for that matter republicanism."

I would not associate the Natural Law with 'republicanism', no.

Currently, 'republicanism' is under the microscope for a renewed examination and observation to determine if it has already had at its core the seeds of the birth of Donald Trump's alt-right buddies into power.

We must now see what unfolds, and determine from the consequences a new definition for what it means to be 'Republican'.

The Natural Law is not something people with agendas CAN manipulate. It transcends all agendas and provides something more basic to all creation: a recognition that God has created out of nothing a universe that follows order instead of chaos. And yes, it is impacted with grace from the Creator in the most merciful of ways:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nneJKJSdrkU

Tom Ross said...

Perhaps a question people should be asking themselves is, "Who is responsible for their Governance?"

Many will not understand the significance of this question or where the responsibility lies.

Shalom

Dave Panzera said...

Christine, republicanism is NOT the republican party it is the republic form of government.

RRR said...



"It has already been defined. Anyone sincerely living their lives
based on what is “right” and “wrong” knows the Moral Code. It is
nothing new. It does not change with the winds of what is socially
correct or incorrect. It is not a “religion”, although all religions
include aspects of it. The Moral Code is at the deepest core of each
person. It is that aspect of someone that inhibits their breaking
it. It is the standard to which all people know they should reach."
(from "When I Am President")

Perhaps another description of what is being referred to as "natural law".

Rex Ray said...

RRR,

I believe the “Moral Code” you mentioned hit the real nail on the head because it is easier to understand than “Natural Law”.


CHRISTIANE,

You said: “…God has created out of nothing a universe…”

Most of my life and most Christians would agree. The rule of science at one time was: “Matter cannot be created or destroyed”.

But they found when the atom was split a great amount of energy was released and thus the atomic bomb.

In other words when matter was destroyed energy was released.

The opposite: ‘energy can make matter.’

I believe God created the universe with his energy.

“On the seventh day God had finished his work of creation, so he rested from all his work.” (Genesis 2:2 NLT)

Christiane said...

'Morning, REX RAY

I think we could say that the Holy Trinity IS 'Being itself', because we are told that when God was asked about this, He said simply,

"I am Who am"

I do see the Holy Trinity as the Creative Force, yes.
But 'ex nihilo' traditionally has meant that, if all Creation were to disappear, God would not be diminished within Himself.

REX, I would leave this in the realm to 'mystery' and I love that you see God as the generator of energy .... I do agree with you in one way, though: God is love, and I believe that ALL love comes from God, circulates through all Creation, and in the end returns to Him Who IS love itself.

I leave this to 'mystery' and am at peace with doing so. :)

An old saying: "Si comprendis, non est Deus", which means 'if you completely understand God, it isn't God you are understanding';
ignoring this truth has led many men into the wilderness to build their own versions of the golden calf (usually made resembling themselves). There are simply some thing we may not now know.

Christiane said...

Hi REX RAY,

another thought: when I come across the verse of sacred Scripture that declares:

"I am Who am"

I think of the prayer:
"Son of God, Giver of Life, all the world glorifies Thee"

the most powerful force in all of Creation is 'love' and in my Church we believe that God created out of love

Rex Ray said...

CHRISTIANE,

You beautiful person you!

Yes, it’s been said, “Love makes the world go around.” Maybe that’s because the world was made from love within God.

Anonymous said...

"If you wish to learn a shorter description of Natural Law, memorize these seventeen word from Richard Maybury:
"Do all you have agreed to do and do not encroach on other persons or their property."
Killing another person is encroaching. Stealing from another person is encroaching. Forcing another person to worship the Creator in a prescribed way is encroaching. Laws that violate Natural Law are not Divine."

Absolutely!

Yet, Justice Thomas was raked over the coals for his belief in Natual Law during his confirmation hearings.

Lydia

Anonymous said...

"Perhaps a question people should be asking themselves is, "Who is responsible for their Governance?"

Excellent question!

Anonymous said...

"And for his belief in Natural Law, Robert Bork was "borked" by the Senate judicial committee led by Ted Kennedy in 1981 and rejected for a position on the US Supreme Court. I'm sure Miss Cyrus would have been pleased with the work of Mr. Kennedy and his committee."

I forgot about Bork!. There is a large contingent that believes most adults cannot govern themselves. And our educational institutions are geared toward that view.

Lydia

Anonymous said...

"So what kind of laws do we need in the United States to protect people like Miss Cyrus and others?...Natural law."

I agree, but to think that by "voting" we'll reverse the tide is, imo, rather foolish.

Very succinctly explained here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdKmkg6GVDU

Wayne

Anonymous said...

The parallels to church "authority" in "disciplining" you is scary:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KQ9w1HHRMQw

We've been brainwashed into thinking we can transform either the church or state systems.

Wayne

Rex Ray said...

Wade,

I wrote this several days ago but decided not to print it until now.

The worst ‘revolt’ against parents is suicide.

It’s been said the best gift you can give your children is to love their mother/father.

The person was a beautiful 16 year old girl with a younger sister of divorced parents. Their father had remarried. At first they lived with their father, then with their mother.

Woods had been searched and researched. After six days it was decided she had run away; even though her note ended, “I know God will take care of me.”

Buzzards found her at the end of a rope.

Wade Burleson said...

Rex,

Ouch.

Tough, tough story.

I agree that the worst revolt against parents is suicide. Ughh.