Lubbock Christian University
April 16, 2013
BUA 4301 Business Law
With millions of civil cases filed yearly involving everything from hot spilled coffee to arguments among neighbors, lawsuits have become a common occurrence in today's society. America has often been referred to as the “litigious society”—and rightly so. Our nation has placed an overwhelming amount of reliance on the litigation system to resolve any and all kinds of disputes. According to Michael Lewis in an article on Money Crashers online, “there is a new lawsuit filed every two seconds in America” (Lewis, 2008). At this rate, one has to question if the collateral transgressions supporting these lawsuits is something of material value or simply a hopeful shot in the dark. In a survey conducted by Harris Interactive, “most Americans surveyed (55 percent) strongly agreed (and another 32 percent somewhat agreed) that the justice system is used by many as a lottery, to start a lawsuit and see just how much benefits and compensation they can win” (www.SixWise.com, 2003). If one desires to gain worldly compensation at the personal expense of another, especially when the intent of the lawsuit is not material or substantial, one begins to wonder where the moral decency ended and the selfish ambitions began. According to an extensive survey directed by the Pew Forum, the U.S. Religious Landscape Survey finds that “78.4 percent of all American adults consider themselves to be a Christian” (Lugo, 2009). Contradictory isn’t it?
We live in a world with hidden evil threaded inside its roots; therefore, it is not reasonable to expect perfect relations in such a fallen society. However, over three fourths of our country claims to have committed themselves to follow a higher calling and live a life set apart from this downfall. How can we be a people full of demands and accusations and a people called to love and forgive? Currently, public claims are not only brought to courts by the unreligious, but also by Christians as well. Is this biblical? Is this the proper manner in which to handle disputes? Rationally thinking, believers will commit wrongs against other believers sometime within their lifetime. Still, there is a different methodology to undergo when a Christian feels they have been victimized other than using the tactless litigation system. Based off of recent changes in the legal system and readings from scripture, I will further develop the position that: Christians should not take disputes to secular courts in order to receive worldly compensation when they feel they have been wronged.
Many believers may make the argument that the United States judicial system originated on Christian values, and therefore can serve as a beneficial means of settling conflicts between Christians. While that may have been true when the United States judicial system was young, that argument is no longer valid. Following are a few examples in which Christian roots are being challenged on the basis of separation of church and state. In the case of Elk Grove Unified School District v. Newdow, a parent filed a lawsuit against the school simply because their daughter recited the words “one nation under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance. In the case of Glassroth v. Moore, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) attempted to remove a monument out of an Alabama Judicial Building because it was inscribed with the Ten Commandments. In the case of McCreary County v. American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the United States of America Supreme Court actually struck down monuments inscribed with the Ten Commandments due to the fact that the display “bespeaks a religious object unless the message is integrated with a secular message” ("Mccreary county, kentucky,," 2005). These actions displayed by the American legal system provide us in the Judeo-Christian community a reason for repelling this humanistic judicial progression. The actions of the