Biblical Insights Into Legal Ethics

Biblical Insights Into Legal Ethics

Author by Dr. Dorcas Odunaike

Language: English


Professional ethics concerns the moral issues that arise because of the specialist knowledge that professionals attain, and how the use of this knowledge should be governed when providing a service to the public. Most professions have internally enforced codes of practice that members of the profession must follow, to prevent exploitation of the client and preserve the integrity of the profession. This is not only to the benefit of the client but to the benefit of those belonging to the profession. An example of such a profession is the Legal profession. The history of Legal ethics dates back to the years when the incompetent, unscrupulous, and dishonest legal practitioners charged exorbitant fees, failed to perform as promised, engaged in delaying and obstructive tactics in the tribunals before which they appeared. Thus, Lawyers were tagged ‘liars’ and were seen as the brain behind every act of lawlessness. To prevent such abuses the right to practice law came to be limited to those who met prescribed qualifications. Expulsion from practice and criminal penalties were introduced for various types of misconduct. These measures did more than correct abuses. A consciousness developed within the profession of the need for standards of conduct. This became the core of legal or professional ethics and this pattern has continued till date. The need for a link between biblical principles and professional demands has necessitated this writing. This paper seeks to examine the details of this interplay and to examine the rules of professional ethics in Law through the eye of the Bible with the view of highlighting the role that the Christian faith can play in assisting a legal practitioner to strictly abide by these rules.

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