Monotheism and the Death Penalty: Towards a Homogenous Exegesis for Abolition

Yorke, Jon and Nazir, Amna (2018) Monotheism and the Death Penalty: Towards a Homogenous Exegesis for Abolition. In: Handbook of the Interdisciplinary Study of Law and Religion. Routledge, Abingdon, pp. 1-30. (Submitted)

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Abstract

Judaism, Christianity and Islam, have a sanguinary relationship with the death penalty and each religion can present interpretations of their sacred texts to reveal transcendent affirmations for the administration of the punishment. God willed the death of certain persons as acceptable purgatory governance for the cleansing of the religious faithful, and identifiable epochs of history maintain the ultimate punishment within the Torah, Mishna and Talmud, the New Testament and writings of the Church Fathers, and within the Qur’an and Hadith’s compilation of Sharia law and interpretation provided within the fiqh. However, placing the wrath of God as capital punishment alongside an interpretive methodology of the principle of grace and mercy, an exegesis can be identified which ameliorates the necessity for the theocratic thanatos. It is a methodology for the interpretation of the Old and New Testaments, which has seen the evaporation of the religious claims within Judaism and Christianity, for the maintenance of the death penalty as a sacred ordination. It is also a hermeneutics of the religious texts which has been promoted by the United Nations’ Special Procedures promoting freedom of religion globally. This chapter argues that a likewise emphasis on grace and mercy within Islam, will neutralise the current powerful purchase of the punishment within Sharia law. We are witnessing a level of homogeneity between the transition towards a rejection of the death penalty as a principle of monotheism and the solidification of the rejection of the death penalty as a manifestation of the human right to freedom of religion.

Item Type: Book Section
Subjects: M100 Law by area
Divisions: Faculty of Business, Law and Social Sciences > School of Law
Depositing User: Jon Yorke
Date Deposited: 05 Dec 2018 16:26
Last Modified: 05 Dec 2018 16:26
URI: http://www.open-access.bcu.ac.uk/id/eprint/6698

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