> Distinctives > Church and State
liberty can be established on no foundation of human reason which will
not at the same time demonstrate the right of religious freedom."
~ John Quincy Adams
the Bill of Rights really call for the separation of church and state?
There are actually those
who would have all Americans believe that anytime a Christian exercises
his freedom (I did not say "right") to influence government based on his
Biblical convictions, he/she is violating the Bill of Rights. Furthermore,
that same believer is infringing upon the rights of others.
This is indeed ignorance
in it's saddest form, for the Bill of Rights does not state what rights
we have but, rather, what restrictions are placed upon government so that
it cannot infringe upon our God-given freedoms. It is much less a
document stating what citizens can do but much more one that clearly states
what government cannot do.
The ongoing argument still
being put forth by those who resent Christians (including us Baptists)
is that our wanting to keep such things as prayer and the Ten Commandments
in our public school systems smacks of violating the human rights of those
who do not accept such things.
Before we go any further,
let's read what the first ammendment to the Constitution actually says...
|"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
Was it simply a matter of
chance that the ammendment concerning how government is to protect religion
is at the top of the list? Of course not. One of the major
factors that forced Europeans to leave their homelands for the new world
was the promise of religious freedom. The Anabaptists of old had
endured persecution but now they could come to America and finally be free.
State sponsored churches were intolerent and jealous not to allow it's
citizens to worship outside their sometimes brutally enforced and totally
intollerent laws. Those who would not comply for shunned, ridicutled,
and even tortured for their faith.
Therefore, the chief cornerstone
of this nation is that government is totally restricted from establishing
religion. Neither can it prohibit us in exercising our faith as we
determine to do so. That promise was extended to all peoples regardless
of their religious persuasion. No nation on earth has ever been as
tolerent toward so many divergent religious views as this one. As
a result, Baptists have flourished in this nation and continue to do so.
Prayer in our public schools?
The Ten Commandements in
public schools and governmental buildings?
Manger scenes set up in front
of post offices?
Christian political action
Where in the Bill of Rights
does it say that the state is establishing religion or deny it's free exercise
by allowing children to pray in school, some of the first laws to ever
govern a people be displayed, the recognition of what is considered to
be a major holiday in our culture, and the freedom of Christians to unite
so as to influence government?
If a child does not
want to pray in school, he/she has the freedom not to do so. That
is a right we believers will defend to the death.
Do schools not teach
views and theories that conflict with those of Bible-believing Christians?
Let all of man's thoughts be presented but let God's Word be included,
Would Christians get upset
if the Star of David were to be displayed in front of a United States Post
Office during Hannakuh? Of course not!
Are Christians of a mind
to destroy and extinct all other political action groups? Absolutely
not! We will die to protect the freedoms of even those with whom
By having a correct understanding
of the First Ammendment, we are able to see through the ways in which Bible-believing
Christians are being attacked. Let's call it what it is. It's
just another form of persecution by those who, should they be allowed to
press their agenda all the way to it's obvious end, desire to force government
to establishing a religion (whether secular or spiritual) that opposes
The history of the indomitable
Baptists gives us the insight we need to recognize the true motivation
of such agendas. We are fully aware that the end of such philosophies
is the subjugation and persecution of those who cling to their own Biblical
We've been there and done
We won't allow it anymore.
Let that be understood once
and for all.
|Slippage Questions: Separation
of Church and State
"Therefore we ought to
give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any
time we should let them slip." ~ Hebrews 2:1
| Are you willing to submit
the the false concept that the Bill of Rights states that the Christians
have no right to influence government?
| Is it not true that all religions,
philosophies, and political action groups work very hard at influencing
government? If so, are Christians to take a backseat just because
we are told to do so by those who disagree with our agenda?
| Do you think that it is possible
for Christians to be too involved in polititcs, thus, losing site of our
main purpose to be that of leading souls to a saving knowledge of Jesus
| Can we legislate righteousness
to those who remain unsaved?
| Therefore, can we be sure
that Biblical principles can be set forth with the expectaton that those
who are spiritually unregenerated will honor and follow them?
| Would it then be better to
be more active in evangelism so that we can lead others to Christ, thus,
maintaining an ongoing Bible-centered influence in our nation?