ChinaAid recounts Rule of Law training with speaker/lecturer Lawyer Zhang Peihong



Sunday, January 24, 2021

Law books.
 (Photo/Flickr)

(ChinaAid —Jan. 24, 2021) During the second zoom training* held January 5–7, Lawyer Zhang Peihong, the speaker for all three sessions of the Rule of Law training, quoted several scriptures to illustrate the importance of law in the bible. 

Rule of Law Training Sessions 

  • What is the law?
  • What is the relationship and distinction between:
    • Eternal Law,
    • Natural Law, and
    • World Law?

Lecturers included Zhang Peihong, Li Guisheng, and several other Christian lawyers.

January 5: Subjects addressed at the lecture included:

  • The system of court instances originated from scripture, such as the adjudication, the Court of First Instance to the Second Instances, and Final Instances.
  • The difference between biblical sin and crime under secular law. The lecturer explained that biblical sin points both to action and intention, however, the secular crime only points to action because it is challenging to determine an individual’s inward intentions from their actions accurately. Only the Lord can examine/weigh a person’s heart.
  •  The world’s law and morals and the higher and deeper origin behind thrm. Lecturer’s answer: The final origin of any law and moral comes from God.

January 6: Discussion addressed the theme, "The origin of the legal systems”:

The comparative analysis of the different characteristics and origin of the world’s current most important legal systems—Civil Law and Common Law trace back to the Mosaic Law and the Hammurabi’s code. The lecture also introduced the biblical origin of the Common Law and the tension between law and religion. Lastly, it dissected several vital nodes in humanity’s legal history,

Questions presented:

1. The Civil Law’s origin traces back to the Code of Hammurabi or even earlier to the Sumerian laws. From the perspective of church history, after Roman emperor Constantine the Great became a Christian, did Christianity influence and therefore revise the Roman law that came after him? Can it be understood that Civil Law, influenced by Christianity in ancient Roman, should not be regarded as “the branch of Cain and Lamech?”

2. Currently in China, classical education is highly advocated. Christian classical education emphasizes the tension between Athens and Jerusalem and the tension between history and modernity. Lawyer Zhang, could you briefly talk about whether this kind of debate between history and modernity existed with the development of law?

3. People determine fairness as punishment is given when wrong is done; if someone can get away with it, then one will take things into their own hands to revenge. How does a lawyer judge fairness? Is there absolute fairness? In today’s circumstance, when an individual meets and is oppressed by bad law, knowing the uselessness and helplessness of protecting/defending rights, is there still a need to continue doing that?

4. Since the fundamental difference of law is the foundation of religion and culture, then before the country realizes the so-called real Rule of Law, there can only be the reversal of religion and culture. It can be said that this is almost impossible in this generation, even far into the future; so as lawyers, when practicing law as a career, what are you all persevering for, and what are you pursuing? Or in other words, what is supporting you all till now? Why do you all persist in fighting this battle with seemingly little chance of victory? [Speaker said: "Of course, when I asked these questions, it is not to say that the other option is to surrender, accept and ignore. Mainly, I wanted to know if Lawyer Zhang can share a little bit of encouragement."]

5. Regarding the case of Peking University’s former model student murdering his mother. The media reports state that Wu Xieyu’s uncle and his mother’s friends all pleaded for him. According to God’s law, it should have been a death sentence, but is there a possibility of not giving him the death sentence because of people’s pleas and the public’s partiality toward the elite members of our society? If it is not the death sentence or life imprisonment, will that significantly affect society, indirectly contributing to more crimes? After all, if murdering your mother does not end up in the death penalty, then what crime can be greater than this? Is the death penalty abolished in disguise? 

 

6. What are your thoughts regarding Stephen Tong’s belief in “If it is not God’s will then do not be a lawyer?” What influences do you think being a lawyer have on the sanctification of that believer? 

 

7. On the third night (Jan. 7), the lecturer addressed, “We have offended God: the church under atheistic ruling” and included the history of atheistic beliefs. Lawyer Zhang also touched on the religious oppression toward the church and other religions under Marx, Lenin, Stalin, and other Communist atheistic beliefs, and how Christians responded to it. He summarized:

 

1) The law and regulations of humanity came from religion, 

2) therefore, all judicial activities such as trials either imitate judgment on the final day or encroach on the judgment on the last day.

Excerpts of questions:


1. Our local Three-Self Churches are under the regulation of the Religious Affairs bureau; as Christians, what should our choice be? Is it to remain and continue worship at Three-Self Churches, or should we leave? What if individuals already belong to a house church, should they attend the Three-Self Church? How do house churches protect themselves in an environment where it has become increasingly different to survive. For example, what should and shouldn’t they say while interacting with authorities?

2. Is it lawful for the Religious Affairs bureau and state security to conduct house searches/investigations and take pictures? Please advise and suggest to Christians on ways to protect their rights and how to handle unlawful detainment and imprisonment.

3. The conflict between atheism and theism has gradually evolved into a conflict between atheism and Christianity. Is it related to Christianity’s denial of other religions and the belief that other gods are false gods? How do you view the Chinese government’s differential treatment toward Christianity, Buddhism, and Taoism in the context of the so-called Rule of Law?

4. One sister, currently teaching in a college, first joined the party during her studies, but then after hearing the gospel, became a believer. Two years ago, she applied to the relevant agency to withdraw from the party, and was then interviewed by the secretary and privately advised against that decision. Her request to quit the party was rejected. After that, the problem was immediate. "During this period," she said, "I have reluctantly gone to meetings and sometimes have been asked to write all kinds of realizations and experiences. This has caused a lack of peace in my heart. What should I do? My family will not support the resignation, and I am quite weak-hearted."


More than 500 individuals participated in the second rule of law training sessions [on Zoom].


*1st rule of law training: November 28, 2020, by human rights lawyer Deng Guolin with approximately 500 people participating on Zoom.


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The law of the Lord is perfect, 
converting the soul;
The testimony of the Lord is sure, 
making wise the simple;

                         ~ Psalm 19:7 (NKJV)




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