The Reality of the Law


Lewis’ essay here is a brief one. But though it is brief, it is packed.

Lewis sets out to further unpack this idea of a Law of Human Nature. He wants to make a point that there is indeed an outside governing law that influences us in our daily lives. An outside law that we choose not to follow. I like how he draws the distinction between the laws of nature (such as gravity) as nature simply fulfilling the limits of what it is able to do. Rocks are not the wrong shape, merely not the right shape for our project. The tree is not too small, merely too small for us. The rock and the tree did not choose to alter their growth patterns because it was inconvenient for them to follow those patterns. They just did not follow the patterns we would have liked them to follow. But there is a difference between a man who merely slips into a seat before someone else and one who intentionally removes a bag saving a seat while Lewis gets up for a moment. Or a man who accidentally trips Lewis and one who intends to do so. There is very real right and very clear wrong, and there are people who choose to ignore these guides. Right and wrong are not based upon what is convenient for us, but on a higher standard.

Lewis also makes a great point when he tackles the issue of people who would argue that we are cordial and “nice” only because we see that society needs us to be so in order to function smoothly. He paints a fun line of questioning that leads right back to the original question of “why should I be unselfish?” repeatedly. We are not unselfish because society dictates we be so. If hat were true, there would be no hunger, greed, millionaires or poor. No one would break into cars and steal a  year-old CD player from my dashboard. No one would willingly poison the air around them with cigarette smoke, or take a person’s money and dignity by getting them addicted to drugs. We are not unselfish period. We merely rebel against the Law of Human Nature that was written for us by God Himself.

The Law exists. We prove it by ignoring it and doing what is best for us.

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