Puritan Board Junior
The law on punishing adultery is fulfilled
(a) Ecclesiastically when in the New Covenant Israel church sanctions are applied by the congregation under the authority of the elders to adulterers.
(b) Eschatalogically when adulterers are excluded from God's kingdom; that is adultery is not a good sign that someone has true saving faith.
(c) In the civil realm by general equity the wronged party should be able to take the adulterer to the cleaners.
I’m interested in the civil realm, since that’s the context of the question.
You mention “general equity,” so is your (c) derived from Scripture, or is this a natural law argument? And are you saying that the civil magistrate may not impose some other punishment, e.g., capital punishment, in the case of adultery.
This isn’t about theonomy per se, so I won’t address your characterizations.
---------- Post added at 06:15 PM ---------- Previous post was at 06:05 PM ----------
Death was the appropriate punishment for adultery under Sinai because God ordained. Leviticus 20:10.
But outside of the Church there is no longer Theocracy (although some Muslim Countries particularly Islam - as xiite - have an Allahcracy which is a form, under a false revelation, of theocracy) .
And since we have Democracy, and the Legislator is made up of 2 chambers (here in the Us, in most European countries there is only 1 parliament)of elected representative Congressmen, is it reasonable to expect from men with different opinions and even different religions and beliefs to be complying with the Mosaic Law for legislation?
On the other hand notice that Paul addresses a case of sexual immorality in the Church in Corinth.
He rather tells the Corinthians to exercise Church discipline.
Every state is a theocracy of some form. Arguments to the contrary are fictions.
Therefore, death may still be an appropriate form of civil punishment for the crime of adultery. Paul is not addressing that issue in 1 Corinthians, although he does seem to address it in Romans 1:28-32. The Church is not the state and does not bear the sword of civil justice. Church discipline is not appropriate for the civil magistrate. The two complement one another.