Green Room

The False Claim Concerning a Right-wing Theocracy

posted at 9:26 am on May 10, 2009 by

“Among the features peculiar to the political system of the United States,
is the perfect equality of rights which it secures to every religious sect. ”

James Madison

Throughout our history, most Americans were never in doubt about the origins of our national ethos – Sinai, Jerusalem, The Ten Commandments, The Sermon on the Mount, The Torah, The New Testament – collectively known as our Judeo-Christian heritage .

For the secular left, which now occupies the White House, America’s heritage is found not in the Bible, the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution (in its original sense), but in secular humanism, collectivism and multiculturalism – values based not on timeless standards but on prevailing cultural norms, as determined by a political/media/academic elite.

Obama doesn’t want us to consider ourselves a Christian nation because the Judeo-Christian ethic conflicts with his worldview. Whatever Joel Osteen and Rick Warren tell us (Pastor Ken Hutcherson calls them “evan-jellyfish”), Obama is not a Christian – unless you consider the hate-filled ravings of his former pastor, at the church he attended for 19 years, to be Christianity.

Christian America does not condone civil unions or same-sex marriage. (It does not regard as equal all sexual acts.) Obama’s America does. Judeo-Christian America believes in the defense of innocent human life – including the most defenseless, the unborn. Obama’s America does not – witness the reputation he’s acquiring as the most pro-abortion president in U.S. history, and his votes against anti-infanticide bills as a member of the Illinois Senate. Christian America believes in limited government. It does not mistake government for God. Obama’s America believes there’s nothing the state can’t do, no power the state shouldn’t have and no limitations on its power to tax, spend and control.

Christian America understands the Biblical mandate to support Israel. Obama’s America views the Palestinians (anti-Semitic, anti-American, bloodthirsty, exalting jihad) as the moral equivalent of the Israelis (democratic, pro-American, governed by the rule of law). Obama’s fantasy of Israel and Palestine living “side by side in peace and security,” is either delusional or a euphemism for a temporary settlement which will lead to the demise of the Jewish state. Like Lincoln’s proverbial house divided, these two America’s can’t coexist forever. During his presidency, Obama means to bury Christian America, with an imam presiding at the memorial service.

Patrick Henry remarked: “It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religions, but by Christians; not on religions, but on the Gospel of Jesus Christ.” The Constitution is dated “in the year of our Lord, 1787,” in reference not to Allah, Krishna or Buddha, but to Jesus. Supreme Court Associate Justice Joseph Story, in his 1833 treatise on the Constitution, observed that the Founding Fathers believed “that Christianity ought to receive encouragement from the state.” In the 1931 case of U.S. v Macintosh (decided before the federal judiciary began to deconstruct the First Amendment), the Supreme Court declared, “We are a Christian people.”

Every President of the United States, including B. Hussein Obama, took an oath to uphold the Constitution on a Bible. In every case save one, it was the King James Version. Speaking of Obama’s predecessors – clearly less enlightened and worldly than the Messiah-in-Chief and probably in thrall to the religious right – their opinion is unanimous:

George Washington: “It is impossible to govern rightly without God and the Bible.” By the Bible, the Father of our Country was not referring to the Koran or the Bhagavad Gita.

John Adams: “The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were…the general principle of Christianity.”

John Quincy Adams: “The highest glory of the American Revolution was this: It connected in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity.”

Andrew Jackson: “The Bible is the rock upon which our Republic rests” – again, in reference to the Christian Bible, not the Lotus Sutra.

Abraham Lincoln: “Intelligence, patriotism, Christianity, and a firm reliance on Him who has never yet forsaken this favored land are still competent to adjust, in the best way, all our present difficulty.” The “present difficulty,” which Lincoln believed Christianity would resolve favorably, was a civil war in which more than 600,000 Americans died.

Woodrow Wilson:” “America was born a Christian nation. America was born to exemplify the devotion to the elements of righteousness which are derived from the revelation of Holy Scripture.”

Franklin D. Roosevelt, speaking of World War II: “Today, the whole world is divided, divided between human slavery and human freedom – between pagan brutality and the Christian ideal.”

Harry S. Truman, writing to Pope Pius XII: “This is a Christian nation. … It is not without significance that the valiant pioneers who left Europe to establish settlements here, at the very beginning of their colonial enterprise, declared their faith in the Christian religion and made ample provision for its practice and support.”

John F. Kennedy, in the midst of the Cold War: “And yet the same revolutionary belief for which our forbearers fought is still at issue around the globe, the belief that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state but from the hand of God.”

Thomas Jefferson said something strikingly similar: “Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we remove their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are the gift of God.”

Still, the Great Community Organizer can blithely proclaim that America is no more a Christian nation than it is a Moslem nation. In a 2007 speech, Obama qualified this opinion –“Whatever we once were, we’re no longer a Christian nation.” The president thereby allowed for the possibility that America once was a Christian nation, but is no longer.

My niece (very Liberal) once asked me why I call myself a Conservative. She boldly stated, “your not a member of any particular church, you don’t talk like a religious nut case, you work construction and you get in fist fights far too often.” I asked her what her definition of a Conservative minded person was, and how she came to those conclusions. I won’t bore you with the details of that conversation, I’ll break it down in short form. Teachers, prime time news, magazines, and movies…  Somehow, if you believe in a way of life that includes principles such as those found in the Ten Commandments; principles that include giving freely of yourself so that others might gain, so that the community that you live in might be a better place for all, including our children. A simple belief that anonymous acts of kindness bring about a feeling inside our spirit that no amount of money can buy. Somehow my belief in a “power greater than myself, a power I choose to call God” makes me a threat to Society.  Somehow these simple elements of faith make me a right wing nut case Liberals refer to as a Conservative.

If liberals are afraid of a Judeo-Christian “theocracy,” then why didn’t our Christian Founders establish a theocracy? The theocracy they should fear, is that of Islam. However, the “theocracy” fear, is just a front, a deception. What they really fear is liberty defined within the boundaries of morality as “endowed by the Creator,” and not by Big Government.

Sources: Don Feder, earstohear

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I may be wrong, but I do remember reading somewhere that theocracy originally referred to an individual being governed by God, not a nation, and that ecclesiocracy meant rulers that were at the behest of God. Is that wrong?

Anywho — good post.

Islam is the only belief system that stands a chance of creating an ecclesiocracy, simply because it is not only a religious system, but a political system as well.

Shari’a law, blah blah blah. You know the drill.

The beauty of democracy is that it derives its very core elements from Judeo-Christian traditions.

blatantblue on May 10, 2009 at 2:53 PM

Obama doesn’t want us to consider ourselves a Christian nation because the Judeo-Christian ethic conflicts with his worldview.

But we are not a “Christian Nation.”
We are a pluralist Republic.

strangelet on May 10, 2009 at 2:57 PM

which begs the question, “why so many Americans are opting away from Christianity”? The responsibility has to lie with those “evanjellyfish” pastors you spoke of. The emotional/slop/pablum that comes out of America’s pulpits. Worrying more about filling the pews of their mega churches than in speaking hard, sometimes unpopular truth. DD

Darvin Dowdy on May 10, 2009 at 2:59 PM

The beauty of democracy is that it derives its very core elements from Judeo-Christian traditions.

blatantblue on May 10, 2009 at 2:53 PM

And also we are NOT a democracy.

strangelet on May 10, 2009 at 3:00 PM

Good point strangelet. The left is bringing about totalitarianism.

Good catch!!

blatantblue on May 10, 2009 at 3:09 PM

Let’s forget about the non-Christians who have died fighting for America in every war since the Revolution. Let’s forget about the Deists and secular Christians who found the basis for a free country in enlightenment values. The Chinese immigrants who helped America realize its Westward expansion. Forget about completely secular technological achievements the United States has produced, and the scientists of all religions or no religion who laid the theoretical groundwork for them. Forget about the thousand years of genuine Christian nations in Europe that we won our independence from.

Forget about the first amendment. Then you can tell me about how we’re a Christian nation.

RightOFLeft on May 10, 2009 at 4:20 PM

We can debate whether or not we are a “Christian nation,” but I think it’s clear our ideals of freedom, liberty, and the other things that make up our institutions have a strong root in judeo Christian traditions.

blatantblue on May 10, 2009 at 5:26 PM

RightOFLeft on May 10, 2009 at 4:20 PM

I’d prefer to recognize our history in all of it’s factual form. I don’t want to see any portion of our history hidden or buried. I’m proud of my country, my heritage, and the freedom’s and liberties that I was born into. I have family members that have made different choices regarding their personal faith. Very few of us in my family have stayed with the church we were raised in. Some have left the church and sought their spiritual direction/growth on their own. We remain a close family despite these dynamics. Our country allows us these freedoms. I believe Obama misspoke while addressing foreign nations; that is, if he was speaking for me when he made the statements referenced in this article. I fear Obama chose his words on purpose, following an agenda driven by calculated choices.

Keemo on May 10, 2009 at 5:46 PM

Keemo on May 10, 2009 at 5:46 PM

It’s a fact that non-Christians have been helping make this country great since its founding.

Obama was deliberate in his words, yes. He made a common sense point of not excluding something like 20% of the country’s voters. There wasn’t any sinister motive behind his “not a Christian nation” statement, and it happened to be the truth.

Christianity has no historical claim to the roots of democracy. Greece does. Christianity does not. If anything, the history of Europe after the fall of Rome suggests that Christianity might have stunted the development of democracies. I don’t really believe that, but it follows the same reasoning you use to claim American democracy is a “Judeo-Christian” invention. For over a thousand years, monarchs claimed totalitarian rights over the minds and bodies of their subjects in the name of the Christian god. Was their religion incidental to their political ideas, or is feudalism a Judeo-Christian tradition?

There is nothing in the bible — either the Judeo part or the Christian part — that suggests the principles that undergird our liberty, and there’s quite a bit that contradicts them. Find me the passage in the bible that forms the basis for things like the Bill of Rights, a government by and for the people, universal suffrage, free markets, intellectual property, or emancipation. These are all secular ideas that only really began to be fulfilled as the government got better at guaranteeing religious liberty.

The conservative movement to create a party that respects only a specific kind of Christian belief offends the purpose of our country, to secure the blessings of liberty for her people. More saliently, it cannot succeed any longer in building the political coalitions needed to keep our country from being spent into the stone age.

RightOFLeft on May 10, 2009 at 6:25 PM

RightOFLeft on May 10, 2009 at 6:25 PM

The conservative movement to create a party that respects only a specific kind of Christian belief offends the purpose of our country, to secure the blessings of liberty for her people.

I was with you until this passage. This is just nutter crap that the likes of which had my niece completely uneducated on the term Conservative. The existence of a portion of the right are nutters in my way of esperience; completely out their on their own. The other 80% of the Conservatives need not be grouped with those of which you speak.

I have a feeling you know that.

Keemo on May 10, 2009 at 6:35 PM

RightOFLeft on May 10, 2009 at 6:25 PM

I just think American democratic institutions owe themselves not only to Grecian traditions, but the prejudices of Christian founders, and the principles that spawned those prejudices hitherto.

Jefferson himself declared Jesus’ code as the most beautiful and sublime code of morals and ethics he had ever seen.

John Locke, one of our intellectual forerunners for modern American democracy worked within a Christian framework.

Don’t get me wrong, I think secularists have a lot to be proud for in framing what and where we are today. I’m one myself — I just think Christian traditions have done a lot for us too — more than most people admit.

Grecian traditions only got us so far. They laid a groundwork, but thinkers (secular and Christian alike) helped us become what we are today.

blatantblue on May 10, 2009 at 7:01 PM

I find it strange when so-called Christians are so eager to judge who is and who isn’t a Christian.

Anyway, our government is by definition secular. You may not believe it, but there is a seperation of church and state. No matter the personal religious beliefs of our founders, they were explicitly careful to not apply a religious test for the structure of government.

Do you remember back in elementary school, when we learned about Thanksgiving. Even then, I learned that the reason that the Pilgrims came to this continent was because of religious persecution. Why would our founders create the very beast that many of their ancestors risked life and limb to escape.

The very ground that Americans walk on were originally inhabited by tribes who were not Christian.

I think that you confuse the basing our government upon the principles of Christianity, which I think is true, and government sponsorship of Christianity.

Our government is about the rule of law, not the laws of Christianity.

I love my country, and I love Christ, but my love for both allows me to have love for all–even those I disagree with.

sandman on May 10, 2009 at 10:28 PM

sandman on May 10, 2009 at 10:28 PM

I agree the government is the rule of law. No disagreements from me there.

blatantblue on May 10, 2009 at 10:49 PM

Our government is about the rule of law, not the laws of Christianity.

Did the OP claim otherwise?

However, our Constutition is built on a framework of Natural Law which is most certain Judeo-Christian in origin. The Founders recognize that religious belief was essential to the operation of our government as they built it and even those who were hostile to organized religion (such as Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson) said so.

There is no contradiction in a country being firmly rooted in religious beliefs while also holding that its citizens are free to worship, or not, as they wish. We can certainly be a “Christian nation” — one built on the general beliefs of the several Christian religions — without cleaving to any one of those religions specifically.

Jimmie Bise, Jr on May 10, 2009 at 11:27 PM

“It is not intellectual knowledge about God that quenches man’s ancient heart-thirst, but the very Person and Presence of God Himself. These come to us through Christian doctrine, but they are more than doctrine. Christian truth is designed to lead us to God, not to serve as a substitute for God.” (Leaning Into the Wind by A.W. Tozer)

This “Christian truth” is a threat to the secularist who choose not to recognize that God created human life, or that Christian faith submits to a being greater than themselves. Keemo’s examples that many of our founding fathers believed in Christ, (and used this faith in shaping our moral compass, ie our constitution and bill of rights), proves that this nation was built on these Christian principals. Secularist, by default, find it difficult to argue against one’s personal faith. The next logical step is assure that this faith is not used when shaping our laws that are based on these moralities. Our founding fathers would argue this point. And so would every Christian that believes God sits in final judgment. Using secularism as a tool to separate and isolate government from its people is a poor excuse.

Rovin on May 11, 2009 at 9:18 AM

Rovin on May 11, 2009 at 9:18 AM

Very well stated!!!

Keemo on May 11, 2009 at 9:22 AM

You may not believe it, but there is a seperation of church and state.

This isn’t a constitutional principle, it is a mantra repeated by the ACLU based off a ruling that having only the Bible in public schools met the ESTABLISHMENT standard. Nothing in the Constitution says religion and government must be separate, just that CONGRESS shall make no law establishing an official religion. In other words, if you take what the founders said their intent was and the ACTUAL language of the first amendment, they wanted religion to be part of government, just not give the government the right to tell the people what their religion had to be . . . Every government that has allowed man’s standards to be the measuring stick for their laws has eventually collapsed, many times slaughtering their own people to create their world view.

In a strict, and in my view proper, interpretation of the first amendment, states could put the Bible back in schools just by turning down all federal money. The 1st Amendment only applies to Congress, not the states.

Non-Christians have thrived in and died for our country because it affords them the right to be who they are, and our federal government can’t discriminate through an official religion. However, laws against murder don’t come from secular humanism, they come from Judeo-Christianity. They don’t even come from Islam, where it is OK to kill those who are not of their faith. Non-Christians in the US enjoy the protection of individual rights that are only enumerated in any kind of permanent form, in the Bible.

Where Christians have failed is not challenging and forcing case law and creating their own institutions instead. Instead of squishing the separation mantra and the lie that it is, they created their own schools and began home schooling. Time after time Christians win for Ten Commandment displays, mangers, etc.

Any questions about our founders intent are answered by the Ten Commandments being carved and plastered all over the Supreme Court building.

PastorJon on May 11, 2009 at 5:20 PM

PastorJon on May 11, 2009 at 5:20 PM

Thanks for your input Pastor Jon! Isn’t it amazing how many Americans simply don’t know this information. Talk about a complete brainwash.

Keemo on May 11, 2009 at 6:48 PM