Kim Davis spent six days in jail for refusing to submit to a federal judge’s unconstitutional ruling ordering her to issue wedding licenses to same-sex couples.
Despite the constant bleating from the left about the “rule of law,” Kim Davis did not break any “law” whatsoever. A court “ruling” is not a “law.” It is, in the word found at the top of every Supreme Court decision, an “opinion.” The Supreme Court can issue an “opinion,” but only Congress can make a “law.”
Kim Davis’ critics flounder and flail every time they are asked the simple question: what law did Kim Davis break? When asked to cite the law that would justify her being handcuffed and locked up in a jail cell, opponents mumble and stumble and look at the floor. They have no answer because there is no answer.
What Mrs. Davis did was uphold the law. The Constitution itself is silent about marriage, which means the issue, according to the 10th Amendment, is left to the states. And Kentucky law is abundantly clear: only the union of one man and one woman is a constitutionally recognized marriage. Kentuckians put that definition in their state constitution with 75% of the vote.
Kim Davis went to jail for keeping the law, not for breaking it. The one violating the Constitution and the law here is the federal judge, David Bunning, who sent her to the slammer for keeping her oath of office.
Bunning transgressed Article VI of the Founders’ Constitution along the way. Article VI flatly prohibits the federal government from using a “religious test” as a condition for holding office. (The Founders permitted the states to use any kind of religious test they wanted, a topic for another day).
Judge Bunning, as a representative of the federal government, imposed a blatantly religious test on Kim Davis. He said, in essence, if you hold to a religious doctrine that homosexual marriage is contrary to God’s design, you cannot hold public office anytime, anywhere, in the United States of America. That is as flagrant a violation of the Constitution as is possible to imagine.
The upshot of all this is that if anyone is going to get punished in this whole affair, it should be the federal judge. According to the Founders’ Constitution, he is only allowed to hold office “during good behavior.” Well, shredding the very Constitution he took an oath to uphold is not only bad behavior, it is very bad behavior. There is every ground for removing him from office altogether.
Unfortunately, many well-meaning Christians have joined the chorus of those calling for Kim Davis to be punished for violating their utterly mistaken view of the “law.” And what these Christians, some of them even prominent leaders in the evangelical community, seem to forget is that biblical figures such as Esther and Daniel are treated as heroes of the faith today despite the fact that they broke explicit law. In point of fact, they are regarded as heroes because they broke the law, out of their higher obligation to follow the law of God.
Queen Esther approached the king on behalf of the Jewish people without an invitation despite the fact that, in her own words, “[I]f any man or woman goes to the king inside the inner court without being called, there is but one law--to be put to death” (Esther 4:11).
She broke the law by approaching the king without an invitation, and yet she is lionized by Christians everywhere for following a higher standard than the law of man. The Jews today still observe an annual feast in her honor.
And Daniel was incarcerated with man-eating lions for breaking an explicit and widely publicized law. An empire-wide edict was issued that no one was to pray to anyone but the king for 30 days. It was issued “according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be revoked” (Daniel 6:8). Even the king was bound by this law and threw Daniel to the lions though it tore him up to do so.
God came to Esther’s side and to Daniel’s. Both are regarded by Christ-followers everywhere in the world as champions of the faith, because they broke the law of man in order to obey the higher law of God.
Bottom line: if we honor Esther and Daniel for breaking the law, we should without question honor Kim Davis for keeping it.