I have no doubt that his legacy will find him to have been a Justice which believed in an “originalist” and “textualist” theory of the Constitution. In other words, Justice Scalia believed that judges should decide cases according to the “public meaning” of the words in the Constitution (or its Amendments) as understood by the American people in their state constitutional ratifying conventions. He was even quoted as saying, "The only good Constitution is a dead Constitution", meaning that he didn't believe in the concept of a "living" or "evolving" document. As Bruce Allen Murphy, a writer for The New York Times, stated, "For [Scalia], the Constitution was static, unchanging and enduring, and should only be changed by the voters through the amendment process."
And that brings me to a comparison of our nation's current situation and the history of the Judges of Israel. There is a whole book in the Bible devoted to the Judges of the nation of Israel, so that tells me it is a pretty important topic to God. There is a 400-year gap in the history of the Bible that tells the story of the Judges. This gap covers the time period between the conquest of Canaan and the establishment of the Hebrew monarchy. Just before the conquest of Canaan, God had commanded Israel to completely destroy the inhabitants of the Land and to avoid serving other gods and adopting pagan customs (Deuteronomy 20:16-18). Israel failed to accomplish this command and the people were given into captivity. The Book of Joshua records the exploits, battles, and success of Joshua, and his obedience to God; and there followed a pattern of disobedience, repentance, deliverance, and more disobedience -- even though Joshua reminded them of all that God had done in blessing their nation.
But the generations that came after Joshua did not remember the things that God had done for Israel. They inherited the land, but chose to compromise and be influenced by those which God had commanded them to destroy. They were infected with paganism which led them even further away from God and His blessings. The sins of the father had taken root, and rebellion against God was the outcome. Even though God chose to discipline them at the hands of their enemies, He would not break covenant with them, and "raised up judges who delivered them out of the hand of those who plundered them" (Judges 2:16).
I see that pattern in our own nation. I believe in my heart and spirit that God established this nation for His glory. But like the Israelites we have engaged in cycles of disobedience and repentance, only to be given reprieves by God's grace and mercy. But we have grown up generations who have forgotten from Whom our blessings have flowed. And that is why the Judges that God raised up for Israel impacted their history -- and the Judges we have been given by His Divine Hand are so important to the future of our country. And it is quite apparent that there is going to be a huge battle over who will replace Justice Scalia.
The balance of our current Supreme Court is in jeopardy. The Justices appointed in my lifetime have tipped this nation towards Godlessness and apostasy; at least towards the abandonment of any consideration of God's will in the decisions regarding public prayer, abortion, and same-sex marriage, just to name a view. The next Supreme Court Judge appointed to the bench will determine if the laws of this land honor God, or if they serve our human desires. Will Judge Scalia's death mark the end of our Second Amendment rights? Will it mean the end of restraint on the Executive Branch? How will his death affect the attacks on our free speech; freedom of religion; right to assemble? And finally, does the death of Antonin Scalia herald the end of the Constitution, itself?
Because you see, I strongly believe that our Supreme Court Judges are the ministers of God's will for this nation. Remember that Romans 13:1 says that there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Therefore, good Judges, who administer justice according to God's will, are under Divine direction; and bad ones, who disobey His will and commands, are under Divine restraint. That being said, if there is no repentance by our nation, and we continue down the road of disobedience and rebellion towards Him, I believe that God will remove His hand of restraint, He will hand us over to our wicked ways, and we will get the Supreme Court Justice we deserve.
As the historic theologian Matthew Henry wrote, The authority of God is to be submitted to, in those governors whom his providence [or will] places over us. But when justice is turned from what is right, no good can be expected. The evil actions of public persons [cause public harm].
So, how will our leaders respond? Will they appoint a Judge who will decide cases according to God's will and the Constitution? Or will we get a Judge that is God's discipline upon a disobedient nation? If that is the case, it is hard to imagine that our descent away from God will not be rapid and final. Yet, if His remnant continues to pray and repent, we can hope that we have a few years left to return this nation to one that honors and glorifies our merciful Lord .... and that some brilliant young lawyer, who has been influenced by Judge Antonin Scalia's judicial opinions will emerge to replace another of our aging Supreme Court justices. Only God knows His plan ... and we will have to trust in His justice and righteousness, and hope it pervades our land.
Judges 2:18 "Whenever the Lord raised up a judge for the Israelites, the Lord was with him and saved the people from the power of their enemies while the judge was still alive. The Lord was moved to pity whenever they groaned because of those who were oppressing and afflicting them."