Laws are rules for society that can not be broken without punishment or consequences. Laws are based on: 1) What the authorities in power deemed acceptable; 2) The high integrity of what is right; 3) What society agreed to in mass; 4) What most individuals believe; and 5) What is generally unquestioned throughout the span of time. The order of these varies on the priorities of the country. A Law has power because it turns from a designation to a permanent boundary to be aware of. Laws are legally documented many places to verify their existence and permanence.
Example: Almost all countries have Do Not Kill Laws that make it a punishable crime to kill another. The punishment can be incarceration or death itself, based on the seriousness of the crime. Punishment conveys that those who violate Do Not Kill Laws will be hung up many years into the future, so that they will learn the value of freedom. They will not want to be tied up for more of the future than they have to be, and will act responsibly in all other cases. If they are scheduled for death itself, they will learn the fear and peace of dying.
Laws are meant to be boundaries to wrong behavior. We can avoid conflict by following Laws. Society is peaceful when the major Laws are followed. Most people can relax knowing that the average person would not kill anyone. This is called civilization, or the trust we all agreed to live by. Civilization sends people away from violence to more productive ways of living. We have work. We have homes and families. We have places to go for entertainment. We have friends, coaches and counselors.
Laws create the need for and require frameworks of publishing, enforcement, and legal courts to determine consequences when Laws are broken. The degree of functionality of these frameworks determines the permanent strength of the Laws. A Law = a rule + approval + no question + publication + enforcement + legal system backing.