Vanderbilt Law Review

First Page



This paper is concerned with the general topic of the Christian lawyer as a public servant. The paper attempts to describe very briefly the lawyer in his practice of law and in his relation to the legal and political systems, and the relevance of the Church to the law in each of these areas. The topic is a difficult one, for the writer would suggest that the lawyer by his very trade is "a Pharisee" and rarely a Christian.

Yet the lawyer is one of the most important and influential groups in this country. From the days of the pioneer it has often been the lawyer with his volume of Blackstone who has carried with him the bare minimum of the common law. To him has traditionally been delegated the position of representative, administrator, arbitrator and community leader. To him the community has brought its small and large problems. Because of this peculiar position of trust it is important to analyze what difference it makes if a lawyer is a Christian.

The first question then is: What are the characteristics which the lawyer brings from his profession and which affect his efforts as a public servant. What type of professional personality and methodology does he bring to his tasks and what effect do these have on his public work?