Friday reflections: Should religion matter?
October 14th, 2011
04:13 PM ET

Friday reflections: Should religion matter?

As the election engine picks up steam, the GOP presidential candidates are prepping to have every detail of their lives publicized and scrutinized. Most recently, Mitt Romney’s faith has become a key issue among debaters: Supporters say to give the topic a rest, while some critics accuse him of not being a Christian and others have gone as far as to call Mormonism a cult.

However, Dr. Dewey Wallace, a professor who specializes in “Christianity and religion in America” at the George Washington University in Washington D.C., says the term “cult” is subjective.

“They even use the term ‘Cult’ for the Mormons, which is a tricky word to use,” says Wallace. “In my classes, I define a cult as ‘Someone else’s religion.’ No one ever invites you to ‘Join me in my cult on Sunday morning,’” Wallace adds with a laugh.

It’s important to note that Romney isn’t the first candidate to be criticized for his religious beliefs, nor will he be the last. But one might assume that because of separation of church and state, presidential religious belief shouldn’t be a political issue. As history tells us though, that’s just not the case.

Thomas Jefferson, credited by most Americans as the founder of the church vs. state ideology in American politics, was “accused of being an anti-Christian Deist,” says Wallace, which hindered his election campaign.

“You can’t say religion and politics don’t intersect. They always do. And people vote on the basis of who they feel comfortable with, and they feel comfortable with people of their own religion.”

Jump ahead a few years (and by a few, we mean 60), where Honest Abe was condemned for not being a “regular enough” churchgoer, despite his ultimate election into office.

Fast forward another hundred years or so, where Wallace says that since the 1940s and ‘50s religious revival, U.S. presidents have catered more to a religious public than they even did before.

“Ronald Reagan became the darling of the evangelicals, and let me tell you something: He was one of our least church-going presidents. As a president, he went to church only about five or six times. I was here all the time and I counted them,” says the grey-haired professor with a smile. “The paper would report he had gone to church somewhere or other… [But] they loved him because he went down to Oklahoma and told them he was against evolution and teaching evolution in public schools… He did things they liked.”

Other presidents have simply ignored their religious traditions in favor of winning the presidency – Herbert Hoover and Richard Nixon were technically not allowed to take the presidential oath of office because of their Quaker beliefs but did it anyway.

Kennedy too, was questioned about his Catholic upbringing– some Americans were concerned his allegiance would be to the Pope in Rome, rather than to American citizenry. The Catholic candidate put many fears to rest, however, during a 1960 speech in Texas:

“Contrary to common newspaper usage, I am not the Catholic candidate for president,” said Kennedy matter-of-factly. “I am the Democratic Party’s candidate for president, who happens also to be a Catholic. I do not speak for my church on public matters, and the church does not speak for me.”

And while this year it may be a Mormon against whom the finger of suspicion is pointed (hat tip to Kennedy’s speech), many people think perhaps it’s time to give the religion debate a rest. Perhaps the religion of the president, both current and potential, isn’t important. And it might be going out on a limb here, but some people believe that perhaps there are more important issues the American public should be focused on.

And even though Kennedy’s speech is a little outdated, there are points he made that are still relevant today:

“[These are] far more critical issues in the 1960 campaign. The spread of communist influence, until it now festers only 90 miles from the coast of Florida, the humiliating treatment of our president and vice president by those who no longer respect our power, the hungry children I saw in West Virginia, the old people who cannot pay their doctors bills, the families forced to give up their farms, and America with too many slums but too few schools, and too late to the moon and outer space,” said Kennedy.

“These are the real issues which should decide this campaign, and they are not religious issues. For war, and hunger, and ignorance, and despair know no religious barrier.”

Some believe religion humanizes.  Others say it detracts.  Either way, religious conservatives and many Americans are putting a high value on it this election cycle.  What do you think – do candidates’ religious beliefs matter?


Topics: Campaign • Faith • President Obama

soundoff (59 Responses)
  1. CRW

    Religion is irrelevant with respect to who is qualified for president. Rather it is what a candidate says or does and has done that matters more. While it would be almost impossible for an atheist to be elected to office, in most cases, it is how a person's beliefs are practiced rather than his or her actual membership in a religious group that should matter.

    Since the first amendment explicitly forbids the government from establishing a national religion, why should the religious membership or lack there of ever matter?

    October 14, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
    • gerald

      What is it to you if individuals consider religion as 1 of the criteria in deciding who to vote for?

      October 15, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
    • Jay in NC

      You say " it is how a person's beliefs are practiced" Does that mean that we should take their religious beliefs into consideration?

      October 15, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • Paul from New Zealand

      Hi,
      If Jesus' Kingdom is no part of this world as he once stated, should a christain vote?

      October 20, 2011 at 4:59 pm |
  2. Daniel Griswold

    Religion does matter but not how people think it does. For a person of faith, religion is part of one's makeup, but each person applies faith in a different way. One Christian may make bad decisions in life and another make good decisions, so while it is part of the whole picture, placing your bets on someone of the same faith category as you may be an incredibly unwise decision. Speaking as a person of faith, who looks to scripture, there were many times when pagan kings ruled more wisely than some Kings of the Israelite faith. Same is true today. Faith is considerable, but is part of the whole person.

    October 14, 2011 at 5:18 pm |
    • Paul from New Zealand

      Hi Daniel,
      I enjoyed your comments. Glad to see you read the scriptures. Did you read Jesus' comment about his Kingdom not being part of this world John 18:36. So if his Kingdom is 'no part of this world' then who runs the governments of the world? Answer you will find in John 12:31. That being said should a christain vote for a man under the power of Jesus sworn enemy?

      October 20, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  3. kimsland

    No, religion does not matter.
    Religion is about after you're dead, it has nothing to do with life, or politics.
    Plus its an insane idea anyway. Of the MANY different religious beliefs they can't all be right.

    October 14, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
    • gerald

      "Religion is about after you're dead, it has nothing to do with life, or politics."

      That's kind of an absolute statement but it reflects your religious beliefs. I think it is an absurd statement. After life it is too late.

      October 15, 2011 at 1:32 pm |
    • Paul from New Zealand

      You are absolutly right. There are about 10,000 different christian religions. At best only one can be 'right', as truth allows for only one. You cannot have several truths. So sticking to God's word has got to be the truth. In fact Jesus commented on this in Matt 7:13,14. You will fine most religions adapt the scriptures to their own liking and desires while rejecting the truth because it does not suit them, thats why Jesus said we could identify them by their 'fruits' or by what they do. Matt 7:15-23

      October 20, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  4. Liz Carter in Georgia

    kimsland; you need to start studying 'the word', of whichever religion you claim affiliation; because you're wrong to think religion's only applicable to you after you DIE! It's a way of life, and living. If you don't do it right here while you're living, according to my own religious studies, CHRISTIANITY I'll be in trouble after I die 'I also believe that we as a 'UNITED' nation will continue to be indescisively, morally, spiritually, and socially deficient as long as we choose 'EGO'! Easing God Out!

    October 15, 2011 at 2:42 am |
    • Jay in NC

      Liz, I agree with you, partly, on this one. They are wrong to think that religion is only applicable to you after you die. Wow, God does move in strange and mysterious ways that we should actually agree on a subject.

      October 15, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
    • Paul from New Zealand

      Hi Liz,
      You are right Religion should be part of our way of life. Should impact everything we do or say. However Jesus said his kingdom was no part of this world. In fact He also said Satan was the ruler of the world. So when you vote for this worlds governments who are you really voting for?

      October 20, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
  5. Liz Carter in Georgia

    My Bible also tells me that ultimately...'and the government shall be upon HIS shoulder!...and HIS name shall be called...Wonderful, Counselor, Almighty GOD, the Everlasting Father, the Prince Of Peace'. However, it will be impossible for anyone, from any party to govern a nation who has literally chosen to place GOD in the closet and pull HIM out only when you need HIM, using any one of the many religious creeds! Everything now has to be politically correct; morally?, spiritually? or truthfully? No way!

    October 15, 2011 at 3:02 am |
    • Mike

      Um your 'bible' was written by a man a thousand years ago .. .there is no proof your Invisible Sky Daddy wrote anything.

      October 15, 2011 at 9:11 pm |
      • Paul from New Zealand

        You obviously have not read it.Try reading 2 Timothy 3:16,17.

        October 20, 2011 at 6:40 pm |
  6. Clephas

    Do a candidate's religious views matter...? Yes and no. A person who is religious privately but keeps it out of his job is fine for becoming President, but the second they start acting on religious beliefs using the power and influence of their office or even say they plan to do so, they lose their right to be President. The President's job, despite what a lot of evangelical Christians would like it to be, is not to enforce Christian ways of thinking and doing things on the rest of us and the very idea of doing so is a violation of what this country stands for. However, I see nothing wrong with the President having faith... I just don't want it interfering with him seeing reality as coldly and devoid of unnecessary emotional overtones as possible.

    October 15, 2011 at 4:44 am |
    • Paul from New Zealand

      Sounds like you want someone Non-Human!!

      October 20, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  7. cpmondello

    "In the history of the world, nothing has been the catalyst of more grief, hatred, war, and crime than religion. Religion allows a person to hate, kill, torture, or steal, while allowing him to recuse himself of all blame. Religion causes people to break the laws of ethics and morality in the name of a god." (http://atheists.org/religion)

    "The United States of America should have a foundation free from the influence of clergy." ~ George Washington

    "Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprise." – James Madison

    "Millions of innocent men, women and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined, imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity. What has been the effect of coercion? To make half the world fools, and the other half hypocrites." ~ Thomas Jefferson

    "The day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin, will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter." ~ Thomas Jefferson wrote, in a letter to John Adams (April 11, 1823)

    "The Christian god is a three-headed monster, cruel, vengeful and capricious. If one wishes to know more of this raging, three-headed beast-like god, one only needs to look at the caliber of people who say they serve him. They are always
    of two classes: fools and hypocrites." ~ Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826)

    "It is from the bible that man has learned cruelty, rapine, and murder, for the belief in a cruel god makes a cruel man, and the bible is a history of wickedness that has served to corrupt and brutalize mankind" ~ Thomas Paine (1737-1809)

    "All national institutions of churches whether Jewish, Christian or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit. … My own mind is my own church." ~ Thomas Paine 'The Age of Reason' (1794)

    “As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion; as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquillity, of Mussulmen; and, as the said States never entered into any war, or act of hostility against any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties, that no pretext arising from religious opinions, shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.” ~ Tripoli of Barbary. Art. 11. – Authored by American diplomat Joel Barlow in 1796, the following treaty was sent to the floor of the
    Senate, June 7, 1797, where it was read aloud in its entirety and unanimously approved. John Adams, having seen the treaty, signed it and proudly proclaimed it to the Nation.

    "The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion". ~ Thomas Paine

    "The number, the industry, and the morality of the Priesthood and the devotion of the people have been manifestly increased by the total separation of the Church and the State." ~ James Madison a.k.a. 'The Father of the Constitution of the United States of America

    "Those who would renegotiate the boundaries between church and state must therefore answer a difficult question: Why would we trade a system that has served us so well for one that has served others so poorly?" ~ Retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Conner on the Ten Commandments ruling, June 27, 2005)

    "Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false and by rulers as useful." ~ Seneca the Younger (c.3 BCE-CE 65)

    "Gods are fragile things; they may be killed by a whiff of science or a dose of common sense." ~ Chapman Cohen (1868-1954)

    "When I became convinced that the universe is natural, that all the ghosts and gods are myths, there entered into my brain, into my soul, into every drop of my blood the sense, the feeling, the joy of freedom. The walls of my prison crumbled and fell. The dungeon was flooded with light and all the bolts and bars and manacles became dust." ~ Robert Green Ingersol."

    "Religion is regarded by the common people as True, by the Wise as False, and by the Rulers as Useful." ~ Lucius Annaeus Seneca

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from killing the rich." ~ Napoleon Bonaparte

    I suggest you ALL watch the following DVDs & Videos:

    'Imagine If All Atheists Left America': http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mbef07aQtB8

    'Constantines Sword': http://www.ConstantinesSword.com

    'Theologians Under Hitler: Gerhard Kittel, Paul Althaus and Emanuel Hirsch' (http://yalepress.yale.edu/book.asp?isbn=9780300038897). By Robert Ericksen "Robert Ericksen is a renowned historian of the
    Holocaust. His book Theologians Under Hitler (1985) was widely acclaimed, and was made into a documentary in 2004: ‘Theologians Under Hitler’ DVD: http://www.theocracywatch.org/theologians_hitler.htm. He maintains affiliations with the Humboldt Foundation and the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, and sits on the editorial board of Kirchliche
    Zeitgeschichte, an important German journal. He is currently professor of history at Pacific Lutheran University." (Quote source: http://www.amazon.com/Robert-P.-Ericksen/e/B001HP7IYI/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1)

    'The God Who Wasn't There': http://www.TheGodMovie.com/

    'A brief rundown of the cost in human lives exacted by religion and religious warfare': http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lq0oMhR3OgI

    "The Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense founded on the Christian religion – Many Religious Right activists have attempted to rewrite history by asserting that the United States government derived from Christian foundations, that our Founding Fathers originally aimed for a Christian nation. This idea simply does not hold to the historical evidence. Of course many Americans did practice Christianity, but so also did many believe in deistic philosophy. Indeed, most of our influential Founding Fathers, although they respected the rights of other religionists, held to deism and Freemasonry tenets rather than to Christianity.": http://www.nobeliefs.com/Tripoli.htm

    I tell every one to support those who fight for 'Separation of Church and State'. These are a few I've been supporting for years;

    Americans United for Separation of Church and State: http://www.au.org/

    Freedom From Religion Foundation: http://ffrf.org/

    Military Religious Freedom Foundation: http://www.militaryreligiousfreedom.org/

    The Interfaith Alliance Foundation: http://www.interfaithalliance.org/

    October 15, 2011 at 8:19 am |
    • jean2009

      Well said, and well researched. Thank you.

      October 15, 2011 at 5:47 pm |
      • Jay in NC

        So we found an issue that Jean and Liz Carter don't agree upon, Religion.

        October 15, 2011 at 11:04 pm |
    • Krabz

      Yeah, so what's your point.? Putting people's names after quotations doesn't make them fact. I would agree that one of the posts, "The day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin, will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter." ~ Thomas Jefferson", has almost been accomplished. Reap what you sow, man.

      October 15, 2011 at 8:23 pm |
    • If I had a penny for every stupid Republican

      We are all profoundly grateful for all your quotes and references against religion. Where did the words "One nation under God" come from?

      October 16, 2011 at 12:27 am |
      • Clephas

        Long-standing habit from generation after generation of using such statements in public oaths of course... tradition is a far more powerful force than religion when it comes to formal matters.

        October 16, 2011 at 3:23 am |
      • Bronislaw

        Be, I am curuois. I don't think so but I would like to ask anyway: Are you accepting/promulgating the notion put out by some irreligious folks that moderate or liberal religion somehow means religion lite ? That is, not taking it (or certain parts of it) as seriously? Watering it down by getting rid of certain elements (the miraculous, etc)? If you want to discuss and defend liberal religion, it would help to more clearly define or describe what you think that is. Perhaps you have done that elsewhere, and if so it would be useful to link that at the top of these posts.For example, if someone believes in the resurrection of Jesus Christ, participates in Communion/the Eucharist, etc, and has what would be considered progressive views on gay marriage, women as priests, etc, does that make such a person a religious liberal or moderate? A religious conservative with liberal political views? Something else? If you just want to go feel good about community and social justice on Sundays without all that God nonsense but you are against publicly funded health care and are pro-life, are you a religious liberal with conservative political views? Something else?Even if we leave out conventional political issues, which beliefs or affirmations count you toward being conservative or liberal? For example, there is room in theology for a view of God that simultaneously transcendent and immanent, ineffable yet personal, source and sustainer of existence. This is rooted in religious tradition going back thousands of years, so it is liberal, moderate or conservative? There is a longstanding acknowledgment in Christology that the resurrection is a mystery. If someone believes Jesus was an embodiment of Wisdom who in some fashion rose from the dead and went back to the Heart of creation, the Source from which of existence rises and falls in a perpetual cycle, that may sound to some a bit Eastern perhaps Taoist or Buddhist. So is that liberal, moderate, or conservative?Is liberal in religious terms really just code for being critical and not too committed to any particular view unlike those poor dogmatists? Or not being to committed to only certain kinds of views? Or not being too traditional? Or is it something else? Some of the people you mentioned from the liberal/progressive camp were/are firmly committed to things like the resurrection of Christ, the existence of a personal God, etc, so it would help to know how it is you think they all fit together. I ask because one can't expect atheists respect or listen to liberal religious people or ideas if it isn't clear who or what qualifies and why.

        March 2, 2012 at 1:56 am |
    • ruemorgue

      Religion makes for an easy target especially for those who want to pooh-pooh religious beliefs. Instread of feeling all-high-and-mighty because you *know* religious beliefs are just myths, why don't you ask yourself why do *you* put religious believers down? I suggest there is a much more general problem than just religion. It's call zealotry. Religions, or theism as I choose to called it, is nothing more than another one of the *isms* that zealots used as excuses. A small list of isms includes: theism, atheism, fascism, communism, nationalism. socialism, multiculturalism (yes, that one also), etc. All the isms are just convenient excuses or justification for a zealot's hate, violence, or whatever action the zealot beleives is necessary to correct the *evil* he perceives.

      October 16, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
    • Chrisg510

      excellent post.

      October 16, 2011 at 10:10 pm |
    • Martin

      Don't tell me these atheists are claiming moral perfection!!!. This is what the Bible says about that:
      "For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God"

      Pointing out that Christians sin validates the basic assumption of Christianity: All mankind sins, and cannot create moral perfection without the intervention of God. Do we really have to point out the atrocities of each other?? Aren't these well documented? People kill for shoe color these days, or even perceived slights.. no God needed for that!!!
      But Jesus said:
      "Love your enemy, and bless those who persecute you, bless and do not curse. "

      October 20, 2011 at 3:49 pm |
  8. Mike

    To The Teabaggers who love to say they are all about the Founding Fathers ... read your history books; only about half were some form of Christian; some were atheist, one was a deist (thomas payne). All of them wrote of the importance of separating religion from government, so all you Teabaggers need to drop your Founding Father BullSh*T and just admit you want to turn the U.S. into a Theist nation. Those of us who are rational have long-since figured you out; you aren't fooling anyone. Religion HAS ZERO PLACE in a democratic (democracy) government. If you bigots want to live in a theocracy, move to the Middle East.

    October 15, 2011 at 9:10 pm |
  9. Ubersetzer

    WELL, YES, RELIGION DOES MATTER TO EVERYONE AND IN EVERY SUBJECT MATTER ALONG THE LINES OF OBEDIENCE AND AUTHORITY AND LAW AND ORDER IN THE SENSE THAT THERE IS AN OBVIOUS WAR BETWEEN DIVINE TEACHING AND THE TEACHING OF EMPTY PHILOSOPHIES("FALSE KNOWLEDGE") DESIGNED TO SUBVERT THE DIVINE TEACHINGS OF THE GOVERNMENTS WHICH MAY BE IN PART PURELY SCRIPTURALLY BASED OR PARTIALLY SCRIPTURALLY BASED AND PARTIALLY PHILOSOPHICAL.

    UNDER THE SUBJECT MATTER OF LAW WEBSTERS THIRD INTERNATIONAL DICTIONARY STATES THAT LAW ADMINISTERED BY THE GOVERNMENTS IS "“a divine commandment or a revelation of the will of God . . . the whole body of God’s commandments or revelations: the will of God . . . : a rule of right living or good conduct esp[ecially] when conceived as having the sanction of God’s will, of conscience or the moral nature, or of natural justice.”—Webster’s Third New International Dictionary, 1981.* ALSO, ETON COLLEGE'S LATIN DICTIONARY EDITORS HAVE LONG STATED ESSENTIALLY THAT BY DEFAULT OF THE WORD VERIDICTUS(PRESIDENT) AND THE LATIN TERMS WHICH DEFINE THE WORD GOVERNMENT OR SUPREME POWER, SPECIFICALLY IN THE CASE OF THE U.S. GOVERNMENT, "IMPERIUM, REGNUM AND DEIO " THAT THE VERY GOVERNMENT IS AN ENTITY WHICH SERVES AS "A God(Elohim, without the article "HA" in the case of the Hebrew language or theos, without the article "HO" in the Koine Greek language). " THIS IS NOT SOME NEW CONCEPT, AS WE ARE ALL AWARE THAT THE EGYPTIAN PHARAOHS RETAINED THE TITLE :KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS(USR MAAT RA/RE).**

    *NATURAL JUSTICE WOULD BE BASED PARTLY UPON THE WILL OF GOD AND PHILOSOPHICALLY BASED CONCEPTUALISATIONS SUCH THE "SOCIAL CONTRACT." THE AUTHORITY OF THE U.S. AND ITS ASSOCIATE GREAST BRITAIN ALONG WITH THE UNITED NATONS ARE "King."

    ** THIS WAS THE TITLE SPECIFICALLY ASSOCIATED WITH RAAMSES II WHO IS NOT THE SCRIPTURAL PHARAOH OF MOSES' EXODUS BECAUSE HIS CITY WAS BUILT 80 YEARS BEFORE THE BIBLICAL EXODUS

    October 16, 2011 at 12:51 am |
  10. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Well Jay, I still say when it comes to religion, each to his own..so you're right Jean has her personal position on that as do I. So what? I've said before that because my faith defies many civil and politically correctnesses, such as abortion, same-sex marriages, but I won't use MY BIBLE to stop or denounce the practice of it! If I was Pres, and because that's my faith, evidently, it's not theirs. I couldn't go to the polls and NOT vote for it because I believe what my BIBLE says! BTW, GOD IS OMNIPOTENT!

    October 16, 2011 at 3:05 am |
  11. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Jay, you agree wth me partly on this? What part didn't you agree with? @cpmondello, you did give us some great research on problems with religion as it tries to enter-twine with politics, so have you ever sat back and wondered why? We keep screaming., hypocritically 'May God Bless America', 'My Country Tis Of THEE', and the way we've lived doesn't justify or validate those songs one bit! God knows, even the most stupid knows that It's been proven that, generally the world HATES GOD! He knows it..that's why!

    October 16, 2011 at 3:24 am |
    • Jay in NC

      I believe this country should be for both atheist and believers. Just do not want to see either one push the other out. I do not know how dogmatic you are about including religion in government, that is why I said partly.

      I think the anti-religious groups fail to see that no religion is also a belief system. That the government sanctioning atheist is no better than pushing Jesus. It is not whether or not there is a deity in ones religion, it is the fact that they are forcing their, do I dare say, spiritual belief on others.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:16 am |
      • Clephas

        You are correct. There is no effective difference between fanatic Christians and fanatic atheists. The key part is that a public official's religious beliefs should remain private and shouldn't be pushed onto the public. There are some parts of Christianity, for example, that are universal to most civilized nations in history, such as murder and theft being wrong. However, it is when religion and law and the desires of the people diverge that a candidate should start thinking seriously about whether he should be considering pushing his beliefs on the rest of the country. That is why it is best for a politician to never let his religion become a key issue in his election, as to do otherwise is a flat-out betrayal of America's ideology.

        October 16, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
      • jean2009

        I don't think there should be government sanctioned religion or government sanctioned non-religion. I don't think our founders thought so either. The current problem is we have too many of the ones who want government sanctioned evangelical protestant/catholic religion forcing laws on those who are either non-religious, or of different beliefs. In the end, they are no better than the Taliban fanatics they rail against.

        The original Pledge of Allegiance did not contain the phrase "one nation under God" until after I finished high school. So, I never learned it that way. It was not added until 1954, under President Eisenhower, and the red scare or McCarthyism. Until World War II, the hand was kept over the heart until after the line "to the flag" when it was then extended palm down..... which looked a lot like a Nazi salute, so that was amended to keeping the right hand over the heart for the full pledge.

        October 16, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  12. UBERSETZER

    ACTUALLY, THERE IS NO WORD TO DESCRIBE SOMEONE WHO SAYS HE OR SHE DOES NOT BELIEVE THAT A SUPREME BEING EXISTS. CLASSIC LATIN DICTIONARIES INDICATE THAT THE WORD AND LETTER "A" IN THE CONTEXT OF THE WORD ATHEIST WOULD REFER TO THE WORD OR EXPRESSION "AH" OR "OH, AH" WHICH IS IN REFERENCE TO THE LATIN WORD "VAH" FROM WHICH THE SURNAME JEHOVAH IS DERIVED.* WE ALL KNOW THAT THE 4TH CENTURY C.E. MANUSCRIPT OF THE SCRIPTURES CALLED THE VATANICUS #1209 CONTAINS THE "PERSONAL" NAME OF GOD, JEHOVAH IN ITS ORIGINAL FORMAT. THE WORD THEO FOR "A God" IS DERIVED FROM THE GREEK WORDS "HO THEOS" AND THEOS, WHICH INDICATES THAT TWO Gods ARE BEING SPOKEN OF HERE IN THIS CONTEXT OF THE DISCUSSION.

    BESIDES, IF ONE IS TRULY AGAINST GOD, THERE IS NO NEED TO ATTACK VERBALLY OF PHYSICALLY THOSE FOR GOD, ONE'S FIGHT IS AGAINST GOD HIMSELF AND THAT'S WHY THERE IS THE REFERENCE TO THE BATTLE AT ARMAGHEDDON WHERE THERE IS SPIRITUAL WAR SOLEY BETWEEN GOD AND HIS OPPOSSERS . THERE IS NO LITERAL PLACE CALLED ARMAGEDDON BUT ON THE CITY OF MEGIDDO WHERE CERTAIN EVENTS TOOK PLACE FROM WHICH THE TERM ARMAGEDDON DRAWS ITS SIGNIFICANCE.IN THE BATTLE THAT DID OCCUR AT MEGIDDO, NATURAL FORCES EMPLOYED BY THE ALMIGHTY GOD WERE USED TO ASSIST THE ISRAELITES IN BATTLE WITH JABIN'S ARMY.

    * The Latin lettre "A" also means "Septentriunibus(which means towards the North )" and makes reference to the fact that the god Janus-Clavus-Satan the Devil and the Gods Janus-Clavus-Jehovah and Janus-Clavus-Jesus are gods in time, duration, or distance, by the words tertia, tertius, and tricesimus which can further explore using Eton College's Cassell's Latin Dictionary.

    October 16, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  13. jean2009

    The original Pledge of Allegiance was written by Francis Bellamy (a socialist) in 1892. That should irk Jay....and he did not add "under God".

    "In God we Trust" was not adopted as our national motto until 1956...also during the McCarthyism red scare. Although, "in God we trust" appeared on some coins around 1864 it was not required officially on all coins until 1938, and not on paper currency until 1957. It took until 1966 for it to appear on all denominations of currency.

    I really wonder how we survived as a nation before then? Sarcasm.... I find all this, and the flap made over whether a candidate wears a flag lapel pin a big todo about nothing.

    Remarkable our founding fathers did not have coinage, currency, flag lapel pins, or a pledge of allegiance with (or without) "under God", and they managed to think things through just fine using common sense.

    October 16, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
    • jean2009

      Maybe I should have put the last two words "Common Sense" in quotes because Thomas Paine's "Common Sense" was a big part of how and why we became a nation. Paine described himself as a deist as did many of our founding fathers. That is why I find Glenn Beck so laughable....Thomas Paine was definitely not a conservative.

      October 16, 2011 at 6:41 pm |
    • Jay in NC

      Jean we agree! You may have done a better job of saying it than I did so I will repeat it here again...
      "I don't think there should be government sanctioned religion or government sanctioned non-religion."

      I would like to point out that the founding fathers did include the concept of a Creator in the Declaration of Independence.

      "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

      I wonder if "common sense" was the Creator they were talking about?

      October 16, 2011 at 7:05 pm |
      • jean2009

        You must remember a lot of different forces created the Declaration of Independence and Jefferson's original version did not state the word "Creator".

        Jefferson's original read:
        "We hold these truths to be sacred and undeniable, that all men are created equal and independent; that from that equal creation they derive in rights inherent and unalienables, among which are the preservation of life, and liberty and the pursuit of happiness; ."

        John Adams wanted it to read: "We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal and independent; that from that equal creation they derive in rights inherent and unalienables, among which are the preservation of life, and liberty and the pursuit of happiness;"

        Eventually as with all political processes...the end results is what we have. " We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

        Though many other changes were made in the rest of the document, Congress accepted those lines for the finished Declaration.

        It probably came about as what we find the same as today ....the final draft was what could be agreed upon by the final Committee of Five. ..and what would garner the most votes to pass the Continental Congress and become the written demands placed before King George.......LOL!.

        We have all seen this same process at work many times.Do we really think our founding fathers were all that much different than us? They were human, men, politicians....and regardless of the century they still put their pants on one leg at a time.

        http://candst.tripod.com/doitj.htm
        "Jefferson's Original Declaration of Independence Did Not Use the Word "Creator"

        October 16, 2011 at 11:31 pm |
      • Puja

        In my experience, the plborem for those of us committed to some form of organized liberal religion is the inadequacy of our self-critiques. That is, since there are no dogmas or doctrines whereby religious belief can be judged, the standard of being nice to each other is all that remains. The result is that the development of serious thought about religious issues can be ignored, especially since that allows promiscuous participation motivated by pop standards.Organized religion always begins as a folk art, practiced at the level of intimate communities. If it grows, it may develop some skills for expression at the level of the classical arts; e.g., Bach's music left to gather dust but now honored. Sooner or later a pop style will develop.The new atheists have chosen the pop style as their target. They are rewarded with pop tokens such as money, celebrity, and invitations. None of that ensures that their critiques are worthwhile. However, in the absence of critiques at the level of folk participation or classical expression, religion simply atrophies.Today, with the subject matter of religion having advanced to the level of serious secular study in public universities, an understanding of religion as a classical discipline is well underway. That is the critique that organized religion can benefit from. In my experience, it is a critique that practitioners prefer to ignore when they need only get along with fellow church members. It's a pity.

        March 4, 2012 at 1:24 am |
    • Chrisg510

      Jean, you are a wealth of knowledge, thank you for your post.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:53 pm |
  14. Chrisg510

    No religion in government

    October 16, 2011 at 9:48 pm |
  15. sara

    Well, it did and does for the current President....remember "MUSLIM"!!!! So I guess we can ALL shout "MORMON"!

    October 17, 2011 at 5:11 pm |
  16. Sabrina

    I don't think a candidate's religion should matter; I think it is their values that matter. And if they are a person full of value....step right up because we need honest people up there!! Yes, our country as a whole believe "in God we trust" so having a president who believes in a God (any God) is someone that will protect our nation's beliefs.

    Mormon, Catholic, Baptist, Muslim...so what!? What do they stand for?

    And additionally, I feel like too many people "attack" the Mormon people because they simply don't know enough about them. Ask questions, get to know the truth and you'll find out that they are some of the most self-sacrificing, loving, and Christian people there are.

    October 17, 2011 at 10:49 pm |
    • Paul from New Zealand

      One thing though, they are prepared to go to war and kill their fellow man morman or not. Does that sound loving and kind?

      October 20, 2011 at 6:15 pm |
  17. kimsland

    I don't think we should have a muslim with Islamic beliefs and who follows sharia law in his feelings as a president!
    Oh and likewise for that other one (some jesus sh!t)
    Religion just doesn't matter anymore in our society, thankfully.
    I don't even think we want to hear from barbaric religious people, they just talk rubbish.
    Religion these days is just a joke. At least we ALL believe in that.

    October 18, 2011 at 9:34 am |
    • Paul from New Zealand

      Hi Kim,
      Are you suggesting we have a God less society?
      I believe we have tried that! Have a look at China or Russia. Would you suggest that their rulership was the best we have got? I am sure if you asked 2 thirds of the population of this planet uner these regimes you would get a very different answer.
      Lets do something we have never tried, actually rule by God? Theocratic government. Surely our designer and maker has a few ideas worth exporing.

      October 20, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
    • kimsland

      YES paul
      And by the way its a shame you are from New Zealand, usually its only the US religious spew that I reply to.

      This may make some sense to you so listen up.
      God or jesus or Allah or any other of the unfounded spiritual entity beliefs out there, committed suicide when the Internet was born.
      Once people actually found out what all these religious groups actually believe in (seriously I just laughed this moment) Everyone said stuff that, religion is garbage.

      Atheists are on the UP and UP, and I'm extremely excited, pleased and happy to see this.
      Church is presently under desperation and therefore we are seeing all the ludicrous end of the world statements (these lies are based at CHILDREN, since adults just laugh at this religious nonsense)

      Religion is out of public school (MANY years ago) So WAKE up Paul, religion is bad and only serves to hinder any advancement in our society.
      Paul, please wake up, I worry that you have contact with children, and you say these religious things to them, it is VERY sad, in our day and age.

      October 21, 2011 at 10:32 pm |
  18. Martin

    No matter what your belief system is, you must make some basic assumptions about the nature of the universe to have them. Athiests assume that science will eventually answer all of the nagging questions that hang over their creation story.. (for ex:How can everything come from nothing?) Another name for these assumptions is FAITH.

    The idea that we should ignore the basis of a candidates beliefs is absurd. The idea that people who claim to be driven by "Data" wish to ignore data regarding a candidates belief systems is politically driven ignorance.
    We vote based on what we believe the person will do in office, and any information that will help us make that judgement is useful data.
    Do we study Chemistry without understanding thermodynamics? We need to know not only what candidates are doing and have done, but also WHY they say and do the things they do, to understand what they may do in the future.

    Willfull ignorance is not a strategy.
    The vitriol here against religion is not becoming scientific / acedemic behaviour....whatever happened to the dispassionate Scientist/ observer?

    "Methinks the lady dost protest too much!"

    October 20, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
    • kimsland

      Its obviously science it's not some absurd overseeing spiritual entity.
      The passionate scientist/observer yes observes but will never state something is truth unless proven ironically.
      But what 'proof' is there in a magical fairytale god? NONE. Actually compared to science religion is without doubt noted as pathetic. Mere faith is not the answer that we all say oh that's how it all happened! That's just crazy.

      And please note, scientists do not try to answer ANY questions over unfounded creation theory, what that is, is your 'christian' mind at work. Scientists ONLY use fact and proven fact, and scientists try through years and lifetimes of work to help our world progress to a way better understanding than where religion left us some 2000 years ago. If religion was actually left in charge (thankfully not) you would see then doctors (ie witch doctors and alchemists don't need to be sought and killed by christians any longer) and you would not see any space age advancement what so ever.

      Religious people are not only ignorant + + But they are detrimental to the advancement of science on ALL levels.
      MOST definitely religion should not be shown to children, with the over and beyond bible's teachings,' What they meant was...' Is utterly ridiculous. For religion to continually change to suit the present science and our society only shows too well how pathetic it is. Unless you feel stoning your children to death (as precisely written in the bible) is still reasonable punishment?

      Know this, only science (and in your small mind, data) can help solve further unknowns of the universe.
      Whereas ignorant faith, in one of the MANY different religions is just pathetic.

      Good luck with your learning of this, it will be a shame to quote people such as you in the future as someone who still held on to a man made belief system, that only encourages fear and ignorance and was written in a fairy tale book 2000 years ago, pretty sure it's totally wrong. And so is that ridiculous jesus spirit notion, he was just a MAN that tried to speak of good morals for children, after you become an adult it should be noted as nonsense (actually even for children it is nonsense, I'm not about to SCARE my child in saying they are going to burn in hell, how dare religious people say this)

      Religious Ridiculous get use to it.

      October 21, 2011 at 10:21 pm |
      • Paul New Zealand

        Hi Kim,
        Well, I feel very sorry for you. You have obviously had a bad experience with religion.

        If that is so be assured false religion will be judged for it's lies and deceit. This is promised in the Bible you hate so much. God promises to rid this earth of all false religion in the near future, as it has caused untold missery for millions, including you by the sound of it. Even you have come to believe some of the lies of false religion, for example Hell Fire. Such a notion is not taught in the Bible but came from false religion and was taught in many churches. The God of the Bible does not burn people in a Hell Fire. If you were taught that as a child I am sorry, but you were taught lies Kim.
        However in saying that, there are a people with faith in God who love peace and justice, teach there children high moral standards and are leading better lives as a direct result of worshipping the true God. Name one teaching of Jesus that is bad for us to pratice?
        Just as not all scientists are good, so too not all religion is good either.
        Ask the people in Horishma and Nagasaki, Chenoble and Japan how they feel about the sceintists who developed Nuclear technology? They too have caused untold misery on the earth, if we were to go down your line of thinking we should lock up all sceintests for these terrible acts. and ban them from society.
        I am sorry your experience in life has made you a bitter person, I would encourage you to keep an open mind before condemning or you will fall into the same trap as false religion. False religion condemned scientists for proving the earth to be round, only to find out the scientists were right on that occassion. You will find yourself in a similar position with your blanket stand on religion. One day you too will find you are wrong in your present stand. I only hope you see the truth before it is too late.
        One day you will realise you are only human, something made of dust and water. Does the thing made question ist's maker? You stand and wave your banner of science and say how great we are. There are many men in the past that have said such things, all recorded in the Bible. And where are they today? They are a forgotten mist! Rarely spoken of!
        Use your brain, something scientists don't understand, but given to you by God as a gift.
        You have become like a smoker who was gifted beautiful clean lungs and have defiled them with the poisenous gas of cigarettes, only death can result.
        You have been given a brain and filled it with so much rubbish of self-greatness it has poisoned your oultlook on life.

        October 24, 2011 at 10:21 pm |
      • kimsland

        About dust

        Yes, what's the point about people if they just turn to dust?
        And before answering that, what about animals, flowers, birds, insects and even micro biological life forms?
        It seems that only 'humans' according to your god are allowed to have the promise of heaven, what the hell is that about? God placed these other lifeforms there just for our entertainment? This is just rubbish. People are presently on the top of the food chain just as dinosaurs were once. So where are the dead dusty dinosaurs that ruled the Earth? Are they in dinosaur heaven? No, they are dead, that's right, just like all lifeforms they died. Think of it as part of living.

        So what of all this 'dust' then. What life purpose did any of these (including humans) life forms possess?
        The only answer in that they were alive once and this should be respected. They all served to create a better world and for us to build greater understandings and technologies. Who knows, with the advances of science we may be able to live for a 1000 years in centuries to come, I'd say it would be worth it to create a better world for all. Another possibility is that we could even create biological life scientifically, I can't see why that won't happen. ie We could be 'gods' (in your mind)

        Plus you say that we are here to just move on to heaven to then praise your one lord for eternity. Now that would be hell. Even if I'm hypothetically wrong, I'd be saying to god, hey I'm not about to go to your pathetic version of heaven, I'd rather be my own entity, and continue my human learned free will, see yu later fools.

        You know one thing really amazes me about 'your' religion (and its not just the clown spirit of jesus Middle Eastern 'miracles' (what?) that he supposedly performed, but even people back then didn't believe him) YOU think your religion is right. What the hell is that about? You are basically saying that ALL the children who happened to be born in another country or society or even time period that don't say the jesus religion is right (ie millions and millions and millions of innocent young children) are ALL going to be NOT welcomed in your heaven, just because THEIR religion you don't believe in? This is just crazy, what happened to all you religiously christian people in your life to make you so bitter and judgmentally mean to all these respected children? How dare christians say if you don't follow their lord then ALL others (ie other religious people and atheists) are just going to turn to dust, and have no right going to heaven! As far as I'm concerned your 'lord' or 'god' is truly based upon HATE, FEAR, and all things that are NOT humanlike. We can ALL get along in life, oh but no no, after death send those innocent 10yo children who died loving Allah only to dust, you (and your god) despise them!!!

        So what of science and dust?
        It is to learn (this against religion) to advance (this against religion) to live life to the fullest happily and without fear (this against religion) to one day explore the stars and ideally find other intelligent life (this against religion) and possibly even live on other planets (this against religion).
        Religion serves to ONLY place barriers for us humans, this with way too many examples past and present to quote here. Religious views are out of public schools, and will be totally out of our society the sooner the better, and to those that say religion will never go in its entirety, I disagree, I fully expect religious ridiculous thoughts to be gone soon. Things like the Internet and even these blogs are truly helping in waking the world up. Ignorance and 'faith' is being laughed out of our world, and good riddance to it.

        Note, I just woke up and read your comment and responded straight away, so it possibly could be more clearer in areas, but here's the punch line.
        RELIGIOUS RIDICULOUS

        October 25, 2011 at 6:15 pm |
  19. kimsland

    Why do my comments say:
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.?

    I speak the truth, I'm polite, I don't spam, and try to write clearly all the time.

    Since this is my comment, I may as well write the most important point that all should be aware of.
    Religious Ridiculous.

    Have a nice day🙂

    October 21, 2011 at 10:38 pm |
    • Paul from New Zealand

      Hi Kim,
      Well what can I say?
      There is none so blind as one that refuses to see.
      Lets wait and see who is right?
      Will it be the true God in heaven, or will it be the man made gods of this world like your scientists and yourself?
      Only time will tell!
      In the mean time you enjoy your future of inlightened missery for the masses caused by men and I will look forward to a restored paradise earth under rule by the only true God, our creator who knows what is best.
      Bye!

      October 27, 2011 at 7:48 pm |
    • kimsland

      Yes Paul,
      I'm sure you can't wait for you and your make believe god to sit down and have a laugh at ALL the young children of the world in other religions, why they are either going to burn in hell or turn to dust.
      Seriously Paul seek help, its never too late whilst you're alive.
      Don't waste your life on religion.

      October 29, 2011 at 7:41 pm |
      • Paul from New Zealand

        Hi Kim,
        I am not sure what you do with your life Kim? But I spend considerable amount of volunteer hours helping people deal with the problems this wonderful world of yours dishes out.
        If your so concerned about 'Religion Rediculous', do something constructive like offering to help people have real meaning in life, be successful in relationships, finding real hapiness.
        Instead of critising, how about doing something positive to make peoples lives more meaningful. Instead of tearing down how about building up.
        Tha's what I do! I thought I might be able to help you with your overly critical view and negative feelings. But I suppose not everyone wants help.
        Let me know when you have done something worth while!

        Bye

        November 1, 2011 at 11:54 pm |
  20. Bob Seidensticker

    “it might be going out on a limb here, but some people believe that perhaps there are more important issues the American public should be focused on.”

    Well said! Religion seems to be the most important issue, though the Constitution demands that there be no religious test at all. Can we ever get beyond this?

    http://crossexaminedblog.com/2011/10/07/bungling-the-facts-behind-evolution/

    October 30, 2011 at 12:05 pm |
  21. Maron

    Ah, yes: ctfiirmaonon of Hegel's contention that where you begin determines everything that follows. The best brief discussion I have found of the etymology of religion is provided by Derrida in his essay Faith and Knowledge. Emile Benveniste [Indo-European Language and Society, trans. Elizabeth Palmer (London, Faber and Faber, 1973)] finds at least two likely contrary sources for the word, one of which is the now popular translation of it as meaning to bind. At best the etymology is ambiguous, making reliance on the popular choice into misinformation. On pp 73-4 in the essay version that appears in Acts of Religion, Derrida writes, Benveniste also recalls that there is no common' Indo-European term for what we call religion.' The Indo-Europeans did not conceive as a separate institution' what Benveniste, for his part, calls the omnipresent reality that is religion.' Even today, wherever such a 'separate institution' is not recognized, the word religion' is inadequate. There has not always been, therefore, nor is there always and everywhere, nor will there always and everywhere ( with human' or elsewhere) be something, a thing that is one and identifiable, identical with itself, which, whether religious or irreligious, all agree to call religion.' My critique of academic religious studies is the extent to which they fail to distinguish religion from superstition. The social sciences have given us a behaviorist explanation of superstition, as an instinct widely shared in the animal kingdom. The refusal to identify superstitious behavior, as such, when it is promoted by religion invalidates the scientific claims academic religious studies may wish to rely on. So much for sociologically accepted definitions.

    March 1, 2012 at 5:42 pm |
  22. Ariel

    An Easter Story

    What I want to do is get angry with the whole darn church issue. I know it is big, and that only God and His wisdom and time can deal with the pompous ignorance of the men of the cloth. A friend of mine once told me that a United Church minister once told her that those who wear uniforms, be it priest, doctor or police always make a man high minded and arrogant. I think he might have been right. Maybe the more gold, or red they wear the greater they are insufferable.

    Right now what appears to be a recent phenomenon in the way the Catholic Church, is bullying heads of countries to get what they want, a look back in time tells us it is nothing new.

    I’m not going to quote scripture here for what I feel is something pulled from all four gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John because together they make a whole picture. In part one ‘The last Supper’ we saw how the priests themselves went right to Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane to take Him to the governor to be tried. The governor found no fault with Christ, nor did a visiting head of state named Herod. There you have two political leaders in agreement, but the priests whipped the people into a frenzy to join their cry for His Crucifixion. Isn’t that what is being done today? They knew Christ was God’s Son; but He had revealed their sins unto them making the priests angry and despiteful. They wanted to be rid of their accuser, saying He was blaspheming God’s Holy Word by confirming He was the Son of God.
    When a person is guilty of something, he tries to redirect that quilt by blaming another of the very sin for which he himself is guilty. Such was the case with the priests’ accusations about Christ being blasphemous, when in fact they were guilty of this very same thing. The priests’ blasphemy was the desecration of God’s Word revealing the truth of His Holy Spirit, while at the same time they were killing His Spirit before the people thus nullifying God’s reasons for sending His prophets and His Son to bear witness to His Kingdom, and the more abundant life Christ came to bring forth to His people. Isn’t that an interesting bitter pill of blasphemy?

    Is everyone asleep? Perhaps you sleep like the disciples at the Garden of Gethsemane; beware the unthinkable will descend upon you. Why don’t you read God’s Word? Why don’t you try to understand why we are going through such horrible situations? Why don’t you ask questions, the church doesn’t have the answers so go where you can find answers? Is God so unimportant to you that He is not worth seeking? He says, in the day you seek me with all your heart and soul, I will be found. Is the boil on someone else’s backside more important to you than seeking God?

    When I look at the religious theologies being taught today through the eyes of the Scriptures I don’t see God and His Son being lifted up for man to see, I see Christ being crucified. This makes me angry! In addition to being angry I’m extremely frustrated with the self-righteous attitude of the sheep that see no error in the blasphemers sitting in God’s seat. Many of these leaders who claim they are Christians say they don’t live under the law. If they were free from the law they wouldn’t be living by it? In truth, they are no different from the Jewish priests who also claim God’s law testifies we are to give ten percent of everything we earn unto God through handing it over to the church. Show me one place in God’s Word where God instructed His sheep to give ten percent of their financial wealth unto the church. You won’t find it in the New, nor will you find it in the Old because such a commandment doesn’t exist, and those who preach such are blasphemers through ministering a doctrine contradicting God’s Word. Is that not the charge the priests laid against Christ at His Trial?

    Tithes are mentioned in both the Old and New Testament, but those Scriptures are not taught in the church. How many people know that the third year is the year of tithing, and that at the end of that year we are to tithe the increase we made in that year? For example, if you made $500.00 more in the third year than you made in the two years prior, you are to tithe that $500.00 by giving it unto the Levite, the stranger, the fatherless and the widow that they may eat and be filled, Deuteronomy 26:12. This is not the only Old Testament Scripture that speaks of tithes; there are several, most of which are associated with sacrifices, and the spiritual blessing intended by the revelation of those sacrifices is buried under sin because the Christian Church claims the law doesn’t apply to them. One would think the church leaders would have an intense desire to understand the law because the One they profess to love and follow said He came to fulfill the law, which means He came to deliver man from the bondage and sin revealed by the law. How can God through His Son deliver man from the bondage and sin revealed by the law, if the bondage and sin revealed by the law dwells in the heart of those who minister the law, and in the heart of those who proclaim they are ministers of Christ who said He came to fulfil the law not to destroy the law. It’s time for people to wake up – Christ wasn’t nailed to the Cross because He truthfully claimed to be God’s Son; He was nailed to the Cross because His knowledge in His Father’s law was a threat to the lucrative business taking place inside His Father’s House.

    The New Testament testifies Abraham’s tithe unto God was not monetary. Both the Jewish and Christian priesthoods claim his tithe unto God was monetary, and both use Abraham’s tithe to rob God’s people out of ten percent of their financial income. Read the Scriptures – they testify Levi paid tithes in Abraham before he was born, Hebrews 7:9 & 10. It is quite obvious this Scripture is not speaking of money for it testifies Levi paid tithes in Abraham before he was born. Through testifying Levi’s tithe wasn’t monetary, and that he paid tithes in Abraham the Scripture says Levi’s tithe is revealed through Abraham’s tithe. That testifies the foundation upon which the churches attain immense wealth is a lie. Remember here that Christ said He came to fulfil the law, to bring forth the knowledge of it, that through the knowledge of sin we could seek God for deliverance from sin. Therefore by the deeds of the law shall no flesh be justified in his sight; for by the law is the knowledge of sin, Romans 3:20. The church, both Jewish and Christian, have made the law carnal through their theology of the law, and have used the law along with God’s Commandments to judge God’s sheep. Who are they to pass judgement? Does judgement not belong to God?

    The sin taking place in the church today is no different from the sin Moses testified the Levities partook in, and that sin was also present in Abraham’s house whose theology of God came out of the linage of Seth whose doctrines of God was founded upon the knowledge God brought forth through Noah, and when you read Genesis chapters 6 – 9 it is evident that knowledge revealed the wickedness God said He saw in Noah’s day, and that wickedness came forth from the philosophies preached by the sons of God; same thing is happening today. The Scriptures testify man would be in that same state of wickedness when Christ returned.

    What saith the Scriptures; the love of money is the root of all evil and those who lust after it cannot serve God because their desire is unto the wealth of this world not unto the knowledge of God that reveals the wealth of His Kingdom. God delivered Abraham from the bondage caused by that sin, and seeing God’s Spirit manifested through God’s Deliverance Abraham made sacrifices in his personal life to follow God’s Spirit who he saw and heard through God’s Deliverance. Moses was another man who received God’s Deliverance, and like Abraham, he also made sacrifices in his life to follow God’s Spirit and before he died, he left behind a letter that testifies the Levites were a corrupt priesthood who did evil in the sight of the Lord, Deuteronomy 31:24 – 29. It’s sad that no one cares to read it. And then there is Christ who not only sacrificed His life, but also drank of the cup filled with the abominations of the priests for us to receive the Holy Ghost who is not present in the house bearing God’s Holy Name because those who minister in those houses partake in the sins Christ bore on the Cross. Talk about blasphemy – how can these pompous bustards say they are free from the law when their sins reveal the law.

    Open your eyes people – look at this most current issue concerning creating a civil law to allow same sex partners the same social rights as the heterosexual couples. The Catholic Church throws forth a loud NO, saying it is a sin. Other denominations are on board with this sentiment, but the most vocal is the Catholic Church, even unto threating to discontinue basic needs for 68,000 poor individuals in Washington DC. How did they accumulate that kind of wealth to be able to do so? If they were paying taxes as Christ told them to do when He said render unto Cesar what is Cesar’s and unto God what is God’s there would have been money in the political coffers to address this need, but instead it is being held over the country’s head – I believe it is called blackmail! If the churches were truly doing God’s will, how could they not be afraid to go against God’s directive? This smells worse than decaying flesh. You may say well, the church gets its wealth from tithes and offerings, not to mention their coercion of silly minded old people who leave their personal estates to the church; tax free at that! Greed and control are in full blossom in the churches, and all those who diligently carry out their directives, such as would be government leaders.

    Another issue making headlines today is the Catholic Church’s stand on contraceptives. I have a couple thoughts on this. To begin with there are no Scriptures that validate the Church’s stand on this issue, therefore they have absolutely no right to bring it into God’s House. Secondly, I would think that an institution with as many pedophiles and gay priests as this one has, the Pope would have learned by now to stay out of affairs that are related to sex. The fact that he hasn’t just proves what I said earlier, men who wear uniforms are high minded and arrogant. Personally, I think the man ought to be ashamed of taking upon himself God’s Holy name when the institution he’s the head of is either covering up sex scandals or creating new ones.

    What troubled me the most about the church’s stand on the issue pertaining to contraceptives was that President Obama caved under the pressure of the church, showing its authority in the White House! The spirit in the churches theological teachings spoke to the former Unites States President, President George Bush Junior, telling him to end the tyranny in Iraq. Here, we have two heads of State allowing the church to influence their decisions. It’s quite obvious the spirit who led President George Bush Junior to go to war wasn’t God because when God is in the midst of something, be it war or otherwise, He manifests himself in the midst of the people in the form of Deliverance for the people. That has certainly not been the case here! Wake up people! The world is in a worse place today than it was before the United States invaded Iraq. This nonsense of following spirit(s) founded upon man’s theological beliefs that ultimately stem from what’s in man’s heart needs to stop because those spirits do not exalt God; they exalt the church whose philosophy of God is based upon the sins that Christ’s teachings (found in the Gospels) testify dwelt in the heart of the priesthood.

    A journey back in time to a day where man feared God tells us how the church laid the foundation for the mayhem being seen today. So let’s take that walk together in search of the One who holds the key to our Deliverance from this horrific mess the church has brought upon us. Even if you don’t believe God is capable of delivering us from our current state of affliction, don’t you think it’s worth making an effort to find out if He can?

    Earlier in this letter I mentioned two other heads of State, Pilate and Herod. After the priests’ handed Christ over to stand trial God spoke unto Pilate’s wife through a dream: When Pilate sat down on the judgement seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, Have thou nothing to do with that just man: for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him, Matthew 27:19. Pilate revealed that dream through the manner in which he dealt with Christ’s trial, and since deliverance from God is given unto man through His Son it is vital that we understand what took place at Christ’s trial and why He was crucified. How can you understand His Resurrection with knowing why He was tried and killed?
    There is no question what priesthood handed Christ over to stand trial; the Scriptures clearly testify that priesthood came out of Levi’s linage which came out of the loins of Abraham. That priesthood received God’s call under God’s commission upon Moses who told the Levites that God was going to raise unto them a Prophet who was like Moses, and that they needed to hearken unto that Prophet. That Prophet was Christ, and when His teachings revealed the sins committed by those called to be ministers unto God, those called to be God’s ministers despised the Prophet God raise up because His knowledge of God’s law revealed the sins Moses testified he saw in that priesthood sixteen hundred years earlier. Seeing those sins, and knowing that God was going to raise up Christ who Moses acknowledged he saw, he warned the Levites the day would come when God would visit upon them their iniquities, Deuteronomy 31:24 -29. When that day came, they handed the Prophet Moses told them God would raise up unto them over to stand trial, with the thought in their hearts to have Him crucified because He revealed their sins, that they certainly had knowledge of through being ministers of the law God handed down unto them through Moses. Now, this picture isn’t pretty, and to many it will be uncomfortable, but the truth needs to be told because the world is in hard bondage to the sins committed against God by those sitting in houses that bear His Holy Name.

    When Pilate and Herod came under fire by the priests they didn’t succumb to the pressure of the church as did President Obama. Both of those heads of State stood firm on their belief which was, the priest’s charge against Christ was bogus. In fact, the Scriptures testify Pilate said he knew the priests wanted Christ to be crucified because he saw they envied Him, Matthew 27:18. Why did they envy Him? What did He have that they wanted? In searching for those answers one must look at the times and observe what was taking place in and before the day Christ was handed over to stand trial. Throughout His ministry God revealed himself through His Son seen through various signs all of which are laid out in the four Gospels. One can easily see the disparity the priests must have felt watching God heal the sick, open the eyes of a blind man, restore another who was lame from birth, give life to another who was dead, etc. through His Son. Those divine healings along with the miracles performed by Christ would have most certainly had a huge impact on the priests because none of those divine healings and miracles occurred through the priests.
    We know from Scripture that the witness of God through His Son affected the numbers in the church for the Scriptures testify many began following Christ which would have most definitely had an impact not only on the churches finances, but also on the priests whose heart would have been pierced through witnessing the One they claimed they followed revealing himself through someone they despised. In addition to all that, they would have been struggling with the controversy that would have been present in that day through the people witnessing two theologies of God that contradicted one another. Certainly these Words spoken by God that were heard by many, ‘This is my Son, in Him I am well pleased’ would have angered the priests who showed themselves before the people as being God’s anointed. That anger is apparent in the Scripture that testifies the priests slapped Christ’s face and spit on Him after they had already handed Him over to be tried. How utterly disgusting is this! Is anyone troubled by it?

    Moving along here, we know from Scriptures that both Pilate and Herod found no fault in Christ, and beckoned with the priests to let Him go. Seeing their plan to crucify Christ going south they stirred the people (obviously speaking of those who hadn’t been touched by God through His Son) to support them in their quest to have Christ crucified. Seeing their cunningness and that their plan was working, Pilate made another attempt to release Christ. He offered up a prisoner to be crucified in lieu of Christ. We know of coarse that attempt was unsuccessful, and when Pilate saw there was no way to satisfy the blood thirsty priests, and the mob that supported them, he made one final announcement being, that he and Herod didn’t agree with Christ being crucified, and then he washed his hands in water, handed Christ over to the priests and told them he would have no part in crucifying a man he found to be just. Satisfied that they had gotten their way, the priests didn’t care, which was seen in their response to Pilate when they said, His blood will be on our hands. Do you see any fear of God here? No, just arrogance without any concern for the bondage and judgement they brought upon themselves and God’s sheep who they were to love and lift up unto God through being ministers of God’s truths through which God’s Sheep receives God’s deliverance from the bondage and sin pissing out of the hearts of those whose primary concern was for the kings gold. Pretty darn sick, don’t you think!

    As for the mob who cried out for Christ to be crucified after given the choice between Christ and a murderer named Barabbas, they got what they asked for; a murderer was set free in God’s House. After killing nearly all God’s prophets, the priests went on to kill God’s Son, and all but one of Christ’s disciples including Paul the apostle. Throughout their entire calling to this day they have killed God’s Spirit with their blasphemous theologies of God’s Word. Nothing has changed; Christ is still being crucified today. We ought to be ashamed of ourselves for standing idly by while this atrocity is taking place right under our nose. It’s not like we can’t see it, the church through its lascivious behaviour has taught us they are not in their right standing with God. What more do you need people!

    It’s also quite clear that we are not one nation under God; we are one nation under blasphemous church rule, and the spirit leading the church is not God. Wake up here people! Stop this nonsense! As for the leaders of the state who are struggling to keep their ship afloat, don’t bother, it has already sunk! The cow can’t produce what’s needed here. Moses saw that in the wilderness of sin when he destroyed the molten calf; the image of what he saw in the hearts of the people. Seeing the people’s desire for a god they could see with the naked eye the priests made gods of themselves for the people, and deceived the people using Abraham’s tithe, to satisfy their desire for the gold upon the altar, making the altar a crap table, not a place of sacrifice where one sacrifices their sins unto God to receive from God His deliverance from sin that bears a testimony of His Son. That testimony through which one receives the wealth God commanded the priests to seek after never made it to the altar because the priests were more interested in the gold upon the altar. Read the Scriptures people! Stop listening to the church! Let no man deceive you by any means; for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition. Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God. And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming, 2 Thessalonians.

    Indeed a separation from church is required here, and all heads of state need to recognize this, and seek God’s counsel for a way out of this unimaginable mess the obnoxious bastards sitting in God’s seat has brought upon us. When that falling away comes the noose the church has around the necks of heads of state will fall off and both the heads of state and God’s people will be free to hear God and understand that He is a Spirit not seen through the naked eye, but through His Deliverance that bears the Testimony of His Son that He called the priests to be ministers thereof. In that day, when the latter rain falls, and people are lifted up from earth through God’s Deliverance, they will be with Christ, and then will He bring a quick end to this utter nonsense taking place inside the houses bearing His Father’s Holy name, and the priests will surely remember how caviller their forefathers were when they said these words, let His blood be upon our hands. Watch people! This day is not far off; you’ll be here to see it.

    The scientific community studies with great intensity the universe beyond ours, curious I’m sure about what keeps all the planets, suns, moons and even the galaxies in place, rotating around one another with great precision, but do not seem to explore the power and intelligence which keeps everything working like a fine tuned clock. Even to the depths of the galaxies way beyond our capability to see. Nothing down here simply floats around without some kind of power behind it.

    God is that power in the never ending universe. The native people call Him ‘Creator’, for surely that is what He does and is doing. The power of the word of His mouth moves everything, even His Spirit which moves animals and birds to migrate. They know His voice. There are those on earth who hear and know His voice, unfortunately most that do, call the Spirit they hear evil. I couldn’t tell you how many times God has shown me something, and confirmed it through asking me to attend church where I heard the pastor of that church say the devil had spoken unto him the very thing God had shown me. God does speak to many men of the cloth but they call His Spirit evil because the truth of the words of His mouth contradicts their theologies of His Word. What a sad, sad situation. I pray for judgement all the time because in that day God’s sheep will be free to worship God, and receive His Son who is our Deliverance.
    When God led me to write this four part series, the Last Supper, Christ’s Trial, Crucifixion and Resurrection, I didn’t know that the last two letters would be written by the finger of God. The ‘Last Supper’ has already been posted on http://www.theresurrection.ca which is the website God commanded me to build. This one will be posted there as well. The third letter ‘Christ’s Crucifixion’ will be visible when the churches rise up to defend themselves against the truth of the letter. In that face to face meeting with God the entire world will see the crucifixion of God’s Spirit witnessed by the patriarchs, God’s prophets, Christ, His disciples and Paul in the day the Scriptures were written. Seek God in that shameful hour and He will lead you into the understanding of the Resurrection of His Son, where He will deliver you from the bondage caused by erroneous religious theology. As for the free will offering God instructed me to place on the site, God has not yet brought me to full understanding of His purpose for that free will offering. Whether or not you make that offering is between you and God; the site and all on it is free, it does not require you to pay to read what God has instructed me to place on it. I have no interest in man’s wealth nor a desire to have wealth beyond that which is necessary for my basic needs which I have been able to manage through working with my hands. I’m going to eat regardless of your decision; my table is full, in truth I have great difficulty in being able to eat the feast God has prepared and placed before me. There are many empty chairs around God’s table, come, join me in eating the Lord’s Supper, the meal of divine revelations in Christ Jesus the Son of the Living God, Amen.

    Ariel

    March 29, 2012 at 8:46 pm |