Summary: Christian thought and biblical morality have an important historical and practical place in American society. This sermon examines the historical evicence that demonstrates America's strong religious foundation and calls Christians today to reclaim oru s
Religious intolerance is growing in our country. Organizations such as the American Civil Liberties Union, an Americans for Separation of Church and State have brought lawsuit upon lawsuit against the placing of religious symbols on public property, against churches and clergy who speak out against cultural issues, against the promotion or mention of creationism, and against groups like the Boy Scouts who hold high moral standards for their members. The intended result of these actions is to insure that America becomes a completely secularized nation.
Does Christian thought and biblical morality have a place in American society? The answer to that question is YES!
First of all, The BIBLE demands it.
(Psalm 127:1, NIV) "Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain."
(Proverbs 11:11, NIV) "Through the blessing of the upright a city is exalted, but by the mouth of the wicked it is destroyed."
(Isaiah 33:22, NIV) "For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; it is he who will save us."
(Acts 4:28-29, NIV) “We must obey God rather than men.”
Secondly, Our FOUNDING FATHERS practiced it.
JAMES MADISON the “Father of the Constitution wrote: “We have staked the whole future of American civilization, not upon the power of government, far from it. We have staked the future. . .upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to sustain ourselves, according to the Ten Commandments of God.”
GEORGE WASHINGTON wrote: “The people know it is impossible to rightly govern without God and the Bible.”
President ANDREW JACKSON stated: “ The Bible is the rock on which our Republic rests.”
And THOMAS JEFFERSON, who is regarded by secularists as a proponent of a secular society, actually supported religious involvement in government. In a treaty with the Kaskaskia Indians, Congress provided for a church building and a Christian chaplain. President Jefferson signed the bill into law and authorized that the government pay $300 to build a church for the indians!
Our Founders authorized the printing of Bibles with tax dollars. They provided for chaplains for various branches of government and the military. General George Washington demanded that his officers and enlisted men attend church service when not in battle. Presidents and congress routinely called for days of prayer, and fasting and national thanksgiving. References to God and quotes from the Bible appear throughout their writing, speeches and laws. Many states required Christian faith as a pre-requisite for holding elected office. School children were taught to read from the Bible and public schools taught Christian doctrine up until about 50 years ago.
Where does the term “separation of Church and State” come from? That phrase is NOT in Constitution, Declaration of independence or US law. It was first used in the 1947 Supreme Court decision, Everson vs. Board of Education. Justice Hugo Black, for the majority opinion, wrote: “The First Amendment has erected a wall between church and state. That wall must be kept high and impregnable. We could not approve of the slightest breach.”
It is interesting that the case was brought by NJ resident Everson, who objected against State money being used to transport students to a parochial HS in Trenton. Everson’s objection was denied, but the wording has stuck ever since. The case used to support the “non-involvement” of a government agency toward a religious institution actually supports the use of public money to assist a church run school! How many secularists know or understand this important fact?
As we look at the wording in question, Justice Black quoted from Thomas Jefferson. But he quoted Jefferson out of context! President Jefferson wrote to reassure the Baptists of Danbury Ct. that the government would not establish an official religion in their state. He was NOT opposed to government support of religion. He was opposed to the government establishment of one religion over another.
Since Everson, the phrase “wall of separation between Church and State” has been quoted to a degree that many Americans assume it is part of the First Amendment, which reads: 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
Since the Everson decision, state and federal courts all the way to the Supreme Court, have been practicing a form of judicial tyranny, ignoring or twisting the original intent of the Constitution and imposing a judicial form of legislation on our entire nation.
In 1962, the case Engle vs. Vitale, any form of school sanctioned prayer was ruled an “establishment of religion. The NY State sanctioned prayer read “Almighty God, we acknowledge our dependence upon Thee, and we beg Thy blessings upon us, our parents, our teachers and our Country.” It is hard to see how this simple prayer establishes any religion. It was a generic prayer, one that was designed to be inoffensive. The reality is, that to the secularist, any acknowledgment of God threatens their atheistic preference.