Lex Rex Ph

Literal Interpretation

When Samson (his long hair cut by Delilah) was captured, the procurator placed an iron rod burning white-hot two or three inches away from in front of Samson’s eyes. This blinded the man. Upon hearing of what had happened to her beloved, Delilah was beside herself with anger, and fuming with righteous fury, accused the procurator of reneging on his word. The procurator calmly replied: “Did any blade touch his skin? Did any blood flow from his veins?” The procurator was clearly relying on the letter, not the spirit of the agreement. Hence, the legal maxim: “We must interpret not by the letter that killeth, but by the spirit that giveth life.” – (Cayetano vs. Monsod)

“Idolatrous reverence” for the letter of the law sacrifices the human being. The spirit of the law ensures man’s survival and ennobles him. In the words of Shakespeare, “the letter of the law killeth; its spirit giveth life.” – FLORESCA VS PHILEX MINING (1985)

Technicalities must be an aid to justice, not its enemy. – Gan vs Reyes

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