Paraphrased from On the Absurdity of Authoritative Toleration of Gross Heresy, Blasphemy or Idolatry by John Brown of Haddington.
Objection #3: To allow magistrates such power of judging, and of making and executing laws about religious matters, is to render Christians the servants of men, contrary to 1 Cor 7:23
- If magistrates, in executing justice in matters of religion, render Christians servants of men, then it would follow that Christ Himself rendered His redeemed favourites “servants of men” under the Old Testament.
- If executing civil justice makes Christians the “servants of men”, then it would follow that church rulers (who are appointed by Christ Himself), in executing rule in the Church, also render Christians “servants of men”. Indeed, rulers of families would make their subjects “servants of men”.
- Judging and ruling over men in order to comply with vain fancies, humours, sinful lusts or laws of men, particularly in religion, is to be the servants of men in the sense of this text; but to comply with scriptural restraints, censures, or punishments of wickedness, is to act as servants of Christ and His Father and Spirit.