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Providence, conscience of liberty and benevolence – the implications of Luther’s and Calvin’s views on natural law for fundamental rights

DOI: 10.4102/ids.v41i3.313

Keywords: Human Rights , Justice , Luther Martin , Natural Law

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Abstract:

Prof. Johan van der Vyver recently identified a need for a Scriptural foundation of human rights. In this article it is argued that together with their evangelical perspectives, Luther’s and Calvin’s Ciceronian re-interpretation of Thomism produced very important perspectives for establishing the moral context of a Scriptural basis for fundamental rights and duties. The impli- cations of the views of both Luther and Calvin on fundamental duties and justice presuppose a moral context from which is- sues related to human rights can be approached. In that regard the views of Luther and Calvin still have much to contribute towards developing an evangelical approach to human rights.

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