Re: Church-State -- some history

From: Innovatia <>
Date: Sat May 15 2004 - 14:09:13 EDT

Burgy writes:

> >>You may have heard in the news that a couple of Post Offices in Texas
> have been forced to take down small posters that say "IN GOD WE TRUST."
> They claim that the law is being violated; something silly involving
> "electioneering posters.">>
> No -- the law that is being violated is the 1st amendment to the
> constitution. The P.O. is a government building, and the government is
> enjoined by our constitution from favoring one religion over another.
> Some religions have a personal God; others (Buddhism, for instance) do
> not. The poster, whether "small" or large, clearly favors a god-religion
> over one like Buddhism (there are others) and is, therefore, not in
> compliance with the Constitution.

Not correct either. The Constitution was written in the Christian milieu of
the late American colonies and no discernible line of legal argument can be
made historically that the founders, though the key ones were Freemasons and
not Christians, were arguing for religious disengagement by government to
this extent, only to the extent of not favoring the usurpation of one
Christian sect over another, to paraphrase Jefferson.

Then there is the fleeting matter of who is "we". As Christians, our
political allegiance is wholly to the kingdom of Christ. Consequently, _our_
constitution is the biblical covenant of God and not a humanly-contrived
document which claims
that the highest authority for determining right and wrong are "we the
people". Aaron led the Israelites into that error.

I agree that the posters are problematic, but only in that they violate the
3rd Commandment by fraudulently claiming something that does not, nor ever
has held true for the U.S. government.

> If "In God We Trust" is allowable, on what basis can the others be
> prohibited?

This argument supports the claim that the U.S. is founded on humanism, not
Christianity, which is correct.

The key US founders did not intend to establish a Christian government. The
Colonies originally had such governments. The founders were intending to
consolidate power in a centralized government. The Treaty of Tripoli in 1796
was unanimously approved by the United States Senate and was presumed to
have been authored by treaty negotiator Joel Barlow, a friend of Thomas
Jefferson. In article 11 is plainly stated: "The government of the United
States is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion." The early
Senate did not think the US was a Christian government.


Dennis Feucht
Received on Tue May 18 12:26:14 2004

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