Jeremiah 9:6

"'You live in the midst of deception; in thier deceit they refuse to acknowledge me', Declares the Lord."

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Separation of Church and State

Jefferson’s Letter
This topic one of the most misunderstood topics in America today, so be prepared to hear this in a way you may have never heard it before. Today, separation of church and state is an argument that is used by the ACLU to outlaw Christian idea’s and symbols from anything associated with government. The actual phrase was coined from a letter written by Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptist Association in 1802. The story goes like this; the Danbury Baptist Association was concerned that in their state, religious rights were not recognized as “Inalienable Rights” but as “Privileges” granted by the government. In response, Jefferson wrote a letter that basically says that he thinks government should have as little to do with enforcing religion as possible. Here is what he said.

…"Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man & his god, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, thus building a wall of separation between church and state”…

Did you catch that? Sure the phrase is in there, “wall of separation between church and state”. But what about the context? It says that legislature should make no law prohibiting the free exercise of religion. That’s exactly what the ACLU is trying to do. It appears that those who use this phrase are severely taking it out of context to fit their anti-Christian agenda.

The First Amendment

Anyone who has heard the phrase “separation of church and state” will have probably heard of the first amendment of the constitution, (even if they didn't know what it was). In fact, most people associate separation of church and state directly with the first amendment.

“The Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

When I read this, my suspicions were confirmed. Separation of church and state, as it has become today, is unconstitutional. By writing the first amendment, our founding fathers weren’t making our government religiously neutral, (which is in fact, an impossible task) they were making sure that the government didn’t control our religion. As Jefferson’s letter says, “legitimate powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions”.

“Offending Someone”
Today the ACLU is pressuring our government to reach further than actions. Already it is illegal to pray in schools, wear Christian T-shirts in schools, display the Ten Commandments in courthouses and soon, “in God we trust” may be removed from our currency. Why? Because it might “offend someone”. For this same reason I’ve heard that a library is Colorado is refusing to fly our nation’s flag! Strangely enough, the same people who are pushing Christianity out of our country, (with separation of church and state), have no problem with Muslim prayers, songs about Hanukkah, and homosexual awareness days in schools. I heard that a school near where I live was actually studying the Muslim “steps to heaven” or something like that. I have nothing against Muslims, (except the extremists who want to kill me), but it cannot be right to Give them the freedoms that Christians are loosing. The American constitution supports freedom of religion, not freedom from religion. So anyone who is offended by the ten commandments needs to, (pardon the expression) suck it up and deal with it. Nowhere will freedom ever be complete while offending someone is considered a crime.


Hannah Maria said...

Wow! I just spent a few minutes catching up on your blog posts that I hadn't read yet. Your blog is AWESOME! Keep up the good work, bro!

Sean said...

You are entirely right when you say that "separation of church and state" does not appear in the constitution. However, government institutions have to be careful about religion because if they recognize certain religions by official means they have to recognize ALL religions.
We'll take the case of the Hudson School calender where your letter first caught my eye. There is nothing wrong with having Easter and Good Friday on the calendar, but you then have to include the Jewish holidays, Muslim holidays, Hindu holidays, Shinto holidays, African tribal holidays, Wiccan holidays, and Pagan holidays just to name a few. By not including these religions in government documents, like a public school calendar, you are in effect establishing a religion; something prohibited by the constitution. If you wish to add in your religious holidays onto your calendar you are more than welcome. If you wish to pray in school, you are more than welcome. If you, as an individual wish to have a copy of the ten commandments next to you when you take a test go right ahead. But, as a government institution, you have to think of ALL the religions, not just Christianity.

Elijah said...

I totally agree with everything you said. And I don’t want a country where it is illegal not to be a Christian. Though our founding fathers based our country on Christian values and ideas, they also recognized the importance of an individual’s right to decide for themselves what they will believe. However, as I said in my post, the rights of Christians are being neglected by the government. So in the end, Yes we want to exercise our religion freely, but we have no problem with other religions, (with the exception of violent, and openly immoral religions) being affiliated with our government.

Sean said...

That I can agree with.


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