Sunday, March 7, 2010

Separation of Church and State

On the question of how do I feel about the separation of the church and state from my Brother Keith, I will respond in this manner.

I never have quite held a favorable opinion of a state run church and that is one of the things I love about America. In recorded history, many countries have used the church, and the operative word here is “used”, to acquire control of the people within those countries. Personally, I believe this way of doing things leads the church into headlong corruption and government tampering with spiritual matters. Such as, is it right for a Christian to bear arms against his fellow man? The state would have the church to say yes, it the rightful duty of every citizen including Christian’s to bear arms against his fellow man as it did in the case of Henry the Eighth of England and every other European country on the planet.

On the other hand, our LORD, stated in the Bible, “... Then saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's.” (Matthew 22:21)

So, I feel that everyone owes to the state that which is required of him or her, but not on a volunteer basis. We have to remember, we are the children of the LORD and we are here to propagate the Kingdom of God and not the government and its belief system. We as Christians in America get all too caught up in patriotism to be of any good for the cause of Christ and His Gospel. You will find out that you cannot serve two masters, for you will love one and hate the other. I have always felt that if a Christian tried to straddle the fence on the state and church, they would soon weary of the tedium of balance. The truth is, there is no balance between the state and the church and there never will be. Sooner than later, one will over ride the other and a compromise will ensue. It is a hard lesson to learn that God doesn’t care a thing about compromise, in fact, He abhors it. This is the lesson most Christians will fail with God in their walk with the LORD.
What is your opinion?


  1. This is Keith. I signed in as anonymous, because I don't have a Google account. The term "Separation of Church and State" is not used in the Constitution. It was used by Jefferson in a letter to the Danbury Baptists in Virginia in the early 1800's. The First Amendment to the Constitution says that the government shall make no law respecting an established religion. This is how I believe. I think the the courts have distorted this amendment to read that government cannot have anything to do with religion. Clearly that is not the case. My own feeling comes from the recent battles here in Forsyth County, NC where the ASLU has sued the County because the allowed persons to pray "in the name of Jesus." Prior to the recent ruling of the judge who said that any prayer was unconstitutional, the County Commissioners had a rotation list of local ministers of every denomination and religion from baptist to Muslim. They were invited to pray before every commission meeting. I felt that the commission was in compliance with the Constitution prior to the ruling. Now, the fundamentalist have come up in arms and raised money to defend "their right" to pray in "Jesus' name." That I have no problem with. But I am wondering if we have not hurt our cause by being so "antagonistic" for lack of a better term. I don't know....I can sometimes see both arguments.

  2. Hello, this is Michael. I also do not have a google account. While, as Keith pointed out, "The First Amendment to the Constitution says that the government shall make no law respecting an established religion", it seems to me that in some ways the government has at least blurred the line of separation. What I mean by that is looking at the rules established for the 501(c)(3) tax exempt status for religious organizations. According to the rules, the tax exmept status can be revoked if
    a certain politician or party is endorsed or is presented in a bad light to influence voting for a particular candidate or hot political issue. I completely understand the prohibition about making financial contributions from a religious organization...but the prohibition on verbal support or opposition seems to be stifling free speech. My opinion is that the threat of losing money is causing some in leadership positions in the church to compromise or even turn a blind eye to some of the things that are going on in our society that should be addressed by the church. Below is a specific excerpt from the IRS concerning the prohibitions under 501(c)(3).

    "Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are absolutely prohibited from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. Contributions to political campaign funds or public statements of position (verbal or written) made on behalf of the organization in favor of or in opposition to any candidate for public office clearly violate the prohibition against political campaign activity. Violating this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes.

    "Certain activities or expenditures may not be prohibited depending on the facts and circumstances. For example, certain voter education activities (including presenting public forums and publishing voter education guides) conducted in a non-partisan manner do not constitute prohibited political campaign activity. In addition, other activities intended to encourage people to participate in the electoral process, such as voter registration and get-out-the-vote drives, would not be prohibited political campaign activity if conducted in a non-partisan manner.

    "On the other hand, voter education or registration activities with evidence of bias that (a) would favor one candidate over another; (b) oppose a candidate in some manner; or (c) have the effect of favoring a candidate or group of candidates, will constitute prohibited participation or intervention.

    "The Internal Revenue Service provides resources to exempt organizations and the public to help them understand the prohibition. As part of its examination program, the IRS also monitors whether organizations are complying with the prohibition."

  3. Keith and Michael have made a very good point and I acknowledge your understanding of the wording of the Constitution. But there is an underlying storm that is brewing and will begin to surface in the years to come, if not sooner.

    We as Americans have taken for granted that the main religion here for many years is Protestant. Yes there are many others but, predominantly Protestant. That status quo is demographically changing along with the changing of the guardians of the Constitution. Our days of comfort and assumption of our Christian presence in government is coming to an end. Our government is beginning to open its arms in government offices to a people we once regarded as the enemy. The time will come in the near future when the Constitution will be forced to be changed or even abandoned to serve the purpose of the elite. We are now beginning to witness this change and the American mindset is being reprogrammed to accept this fact. The ACLU is but one of those forces that is forcing the judicial court system to reevaluate the wording and meaning portrayed in a different light.

    In the wording of the First Amendment we need to accept the fact that it was never intended that the State embrace the Church. I don’t have a problem with this. The way I see it is I would rather the government abandon all form of religious practices rather than give way to preferences. I for one don’t want to be in the presence of a pagan praying to his or her pagan god and while I have to be present to witness the abomination. I say, leave the practices of everyone’s religion in the designated places of worship and not to force or coerce anyone to cringe in their deities names. We will be forced by our own conscience to abandon the once loved and appreciated Christian liberty once enjoyed by the majority of Christian politicians. The time now is and we are witnesses to this tragedy of American society.

    The prophecies of the Bible clearly remind us that these days are coming, but unfortunately, sooner than we would want to it happen. It is heartbreak for all Christians to have to witness the very demise of their once beloved country and its Christian values that influenced the land.

    Our duty is to the LORD and His WORD that encourages each of to pray for all men and especially for those who hold political office. The day will come when Christians will be once again the scourge of the land and driven into obscurity. It happened to Christ and His Disciples’ and we are no better than they, are we?

    We have to believe that prayer changes things and that Jehovah God is still in control.