Here there be Monsters By Pete Garcia Author’s note: Originally written on November 13, 2013,…
The Separation of Church and State
By Pete Garcia
A Short Treatise on our Heritage and our Future
243 years ago to the day, our liberty-minded forefathers (fifty-six British colonists representing thirteen colonies) committed the ultimate act of treason by declaring their independence from the then world’s number-one superpower, Great Britain. Having lived under a corrupt monarchial system, the founding fathers understood all too well what despotism looked like. They addressed this tyranny by declaring,
“But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.” (Source)
By signing their names to the Declaration of Independence, these men jeopardized their own health, wealth, and liberty to give teeth to the ideal that all men are created equal and entitled to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. They put in place an ingenious form of government, which ensured that the power of governance went to the governed (by way of unalienable rights). The law (the bill of rights) was designed to reduce government authority and reach. Lastly, that the authority for said unalienable rights belonged not to government (who could take away said rights), but to God alone (our Creator).
They borrowed from the ancient cultures of Israel (morality and ethics), from Greece (political philosophy), and from Rome (jurisprudence). They then mixed that formula with a Christian worldview to create a new form of government, a Constitutional Republic. We know this was a Christian worldview for three simple reasons:
1. Christianity is the most superior belief structure ever known to man and thus, is not challenged or afraid to let other worldviews operate under its umbrella of protection.
~q. Which other religious systems (atheism, Islam, Roman Catholicism, Hinduism, paganism, etc.) allows other belief systems to operate freely and unimpeded under their umbrella?
~a. Historically speaking, none.
2. Christianity is the only belief structure in the world that recognizes that at its core, belief must be genuinely heartfelt and not forced. Thus, adherence to true, biblical Christianity is not about our own works or righteousness, but about Christ’s.
~q. Can morality and ethical behavior be mandated or enforced by law (thou shalt not murder; thou shalt not steal, etc.)?
~a. Yes. However, keeping those might make you a good citizen and a decent human being, but they do not make you a Christian.
3. Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely (Lord Acton). While not explicitly citing chapter and verse, our forefathers understood this timeless principle to be as sure as the rising of the sun each day through their reading of the Bible. The Bible is replete with examples that power corrupts (Nimrod, Pharaoh, King Saul, Nebuchadnezzar, etc.) because man himself is corrupt (sinful).
~q. Given their own recent experiences (Roman Catholic Popes, English, Spanish, and French monarchs, etc.), why did the founders limit the power given to the government they themselves would be running?
~a. They understood authority should come from a divine and benevolent Creator, not from flawed and corruptible human beings. Only Christianity teaches this (Romans 3:23).
Numerous arguments have been made to say, our nation was never a Christian nation. Whether these critics do so by nonsensically citing Thomas Jefferson or Thomas Paine, I would agree with the premise, but not their reasoning. Our country was never intended to be purely a Christian nation (see point #1) because governments are incapable of being Christian. We were however, a nation governed by Christian people with Christian principles.
“Separation of church and state” is a common metaphor that is well recognized. Equally well recognized is the metaphorical meaning of the church staying out of the state’s business and the state staying out of the church’s business. Because of the very common usage of the “separation of church and state phrase,” most people incorrectly think the phrase is in the constitution.
“The phrase “wall of separation between the church and the state” was originally coined by Thomas Jefferson in a letter to the Danbury Baptists on January 1, 1802. His purpose in this letter was to assuage the fears of the Danbury, Connecticut Baptists, and so he told them that this wall had been erected to protect them. The metaphor was used exclusively to keep the state out of the church’s business, not to keep the church out of the state’s business.
The constitution states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” Both the free exercise clause and the establishment clause place restrictions on the government concerning laws they pass or interfering with religion. No restrictions are placed on religions except perhaps that a religious denomination cannot become the state religion.” (Source)
Understandably, some of the founders were Masons, and others possibly deists (biblically undecided). However, the overwhelming majority of the signers of the Declaration of Independence were bonafide, born-again Christians. What they all understood however was that our form of government would cease to work should we ever depart from those Christian ideals (as it is part of the formula).
“Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” – Second President of the United States, John Adams
In a moment of rare concurrence, I happen to agree with Preterist Gary DeMar (The American Vision) in that our nation was not so much founded in 1776, but rather, 150 years earlier at Plymouth Rock by the Pilgrims. 1776 was simply the watershed year for the long-awaited response by the colonials to address said train of abuses. Nevertheless, both the Pilgrims and the founding fathers understood that this endeavor into the New World was something divinely ordained. Should they (we) ever depart from acknowledging God as the orchestrator of this endeavor, we would succumb to the same fate as all other kingdoms and empires before us…as one relegated to the dustbins of history.
“For we must consider that we shall be as a City upon a hill. The eyes of all people are upon us. So that if we shall deal falsely with our God in this work we have undertaken, and so cause him to withdraw his present help from us, we shall be made a story and a byword throughout the world. – John Winthrop, aboard the Arbella, 1630
What has sustained these United States over the past four-centuries has been an unwavering belief that the United States was special and unique, and source for good in the world. A shining city on the hill as President Ronald Reagan once famously stated in his farewell address to the nation. Three tangible things have aided that ideal:
1. Building and maintaining a strong, independent economy
2. Maintaining a robust education system that promoted the ideals of religious morality and liberty
3. Allegiance to our nation as a Constitutional Republic
There has been however, a concerted effort (both physically and spiritually) over the last two-centuries to destroy the United States both from without and within, and to prematurely remove it from the pages of world history. This has been a multifaceted effort and is only by the grace of God and His divine sovereignty that we have not succumbed much earlier to the aforementioned fate.
“And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;” – Acts 17:26-27
Dollars and Sense
These efforts to destroy America from within began in earnest with the numerous attempts to create a centralized bank. Beginning with the seventh president, Andrew Jackson, all the way through the twenty-seventh president, William Howard Taft, the repeated proposals to hand over the authority to print and coin monies (a responsibility of Congress) was repeatedly rejected. However, Democratic president Woodrow Wilson approved the passage of legislation for the creation of a non-federal (i.e., privately owned) central bank in his first year of office. This would prove to become the foundation for which, the downfall of American economic system would eventually come.
“History records that the moneychangers have used every form of abuse, intrigue, deceit, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments by controlling money and its issuance.” – Fourth President of the United States, James Madison
From an economic standpoint, this began in 1913 with Christmas Eve passage of the Federal Reserve Act. This took the responsibility of printing and coining money away from Congress, and gave it to a private institution, the erroneously labeled Federal Reserve. 106 years later and the Federal Reserve has yet to be audited. By 2019, the US crossed the boundary of twenty-one trillion dollars in national debt. While it has been argued that there is no dreaded red-line a nation has to cross before it becomes financially insolvent, a nation’s continued indebtedness is only as good as its ability to either continue borrowing money, or printing their own. The downside is that they are borrowing against our children’s future assets, as well as adding inflation and potentially, deflation, into the mix.
What this really means is that our indebtedness really relies on the strength of the US Dollar, which, as our debt continues on its downward death spiral, continues to weaken substantially. With the rise in digital cryptocurrencies (security by encryption) and quantum systems (to handle the volume of information processing), nations have already begun looking for alternatives to US financial hegemony on the world’s markets. It is only a matter of time before the world feels secure enough to abandon the US Dollar for something else, which means our national economy will crumble, and be forced to accept whatever global or regional currency is forced upon it. At that point, we will have completely lost our autonomy.
The Passed Torch
From spacious skies and purple mountain majesties, to her amber waves of grain, America has long been blessed with abundant resources unparalleled in all the world. Furthermore, she was fearfully guarded by two large oceans (Atlantic and Pacific) which helped shelter her from both the atrocity and frequency of wars that had long plagued Europe, Asia, and Africa. However, the sparkling jewel in America’s crown was her rich educational systems, which rivaled the natural endowments Americans were blessed with. Harvard (Puritan-1636), Yale (Puritan-1701), and Princeton (Presbyterian-1746) to name a few, were all initially established as theological seminaries.
However, by the mid-1800s, they all began to increasingly embrace liberalism (in regards to a Biblical hermeneutics), which was fueled by the rise in naturalistic sciences that both advocated for an old-earth and ultimately, Darwinian evolution. Once the foundation of Genesis was destroyed for the average student, the floor as it were, fell out and the schools largely abandoned Christian teaching altogether for that of methodological naturalism and secularism.
“Methodological naturalism says that scientists must do their work as if there is no God and that everything they study must be explained by three things: time, chance, and the laws of nature. Such a methodology for studying the physical world rules out the miraculous and providential works of God in His creation, even before investigation begins.” (Source)
This was in essence, the beginning of the end for the United States as a “Christian nation.” Although technology would continue to propel the United States through the industrial revolution, the computer age, and the age of information (where we are today), educationally speaking, we are less educated individually and collectively, than that of our predecessors a hundred years ago. Our public education system was one of the first areas targeted by Marxists going back to the 1930s through institutions like the Frankfurt School and the things they promoted like political correctness (aka, cultural Marxism).
Even worse, though, the work done by those promoting secular humanism through men like John Dewey and the Humanist Manifest, have essentially performed an abortion on the conscience of the American nation. Secular humanism is a worldview based on atheism, naturalism, Darwinian evolution, and ethical relativism (e.g., everything is morally relative). It has abrogated the very worldview (Judeo-Christian) necessary for this nation to function as intended. Instead, children have been systematically taught that God has a box, and they should take Him out of said box only between the hours of 0900-1200 on Sunday mornings. By removing God from the classrooms, the public education system created a vacuum. As the popular maxim states, nature abhors a vacuum.
Something has to fill it, and what was placed in God’s stead, was the Nihilistic worldview that man is nothing more than a cosmic accident, evolved from apes, objective truth was really subjective, and that we only have this life, so live it however you want.
“On the fundamental religious issue [the existence of God], the modern [school] intends to be, and supposes it is, neutral, but it is not. Certainly it neither inculcates nor expressly repudiates belief in God. But it does what is far more deadly than open rejection; it ignores Him…It is in this sense that the [school] today is atheistic.” – Sir Walter Moberly (Source)
Furthermore, students today are financially burdened with worthless degrees that are increasingly biased toward an atheistic and socialist worldview. Each passing generation (either through public education or cultural indoctrination) has increasingly become antichrist in its nature.
Correspondingly, revivals would come and go (the first and second Great Awakenings, Billy Graham crusades, etc.), yet, this nation has decidedly become a post-Christian nation that has long been steering away from both God and nationalism. Not that nationalism has anything to do with being a Christian, but they are somewhat connected.
Europe abandoned Christianity a long time ago and has since suffered two major world wars, seventy-years of iron-fisted communism, and is now threatened with its own cultural extinction due to the leftist-progressive open borders policies and unchecked mass immigration. We here in the United States are being force-fed this same idea that we should abandon our own American Constitution to become a part of the greater multicultural global community. This means either an absolute watering down or complete abandonment of our own Christian heritage.
The Resolve of a Nation
The Civil War (1861-1865), proved to be America’s bloodiest and most costly war (in terms of American life). However, it took a godly man, the sixteenth president, Abraham Lincoln (Republican), to shepherd the nation through its darkest hour. In the end, he kept the country together by refusing (through armed conflict) to allow the southern states to secede, declared the Emancipation Proclamation as a war for freedom, and was assassinated after the war.
Both the Great War (WWI) and World War II demonstratively showed the resolve of the American fighting forces and her people.
During the first five decades of the 20th-century, Americans were largely viewed as champions for liberty wherever they might be needed in the world. It set the stage for the ensuing seventy-years Cold War, which attempted to contain the spread of communism from spreading (primarily to developing nations).
However, all was not well on the Homefront.
Globalist-minded Americans (Democrats, Socialists, Communists, etc.) have long been plotting to commit treason against their own nation, by incrementally weakening the United States through whatever means possible. This war of cultural incrementalism had been fought in the shadows and largely ignored by most of the media and politicians for decades.
However, by 2008, this treason surfaced to the mainstream with a vengeance through the election of one President Barack Hussein Obama. Along with his lapdog media (i.e., the fourth estate and the fifth column simultaneously), Obama began culturally dissecting the military as well as the building block of this nation, the family unit, to systematically weakening our foreign policy objectives, and emboldening the shadow government.
“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.” – Fortieth President of the United States, Ronald Reagan
With a decaying academic program of diminishing returns, to its precariously unbalanced financial system, the last vestige of a sovereign nation has always been the family unit. It is neither accidental nor coincidental that the family unit has been under attack as long and as viciously as it has. From the 1960s promotion of free love and easy divorce, to the federally sanctioned and funded abortion-mill industry of the 1970s, the family unit is under attack. Adding what they hope to be the death knell of the family structure, is the now normalization of gay marriage, drag queen story hours, transgenderism and gender fluidity.
If they cannot accomplish the destruction of the family unit with those aberrations, and should the Lord tarry a little longer, we will surely see the normalization of pedophilia, necrophilia, and the reinstitution of polygamy among other things.
Along the same vein as that of the 2014 Houston, Texas Sermon Subpoenas, the state of California recently passed legislation (Resolution ACR 99) that intends to browbeat churches, counselors, or anyone else of influence, that calls homosexuality a sin or portrays it in a negative way. The intent being having drummed God out of schools and government, that they should now drum God out of the United States. They will do this through lawsuits, legal actions, violence, public shaming, and financial boycotts.
Hollywood and numerous movie streaming services, have all but abandoned states who either passed strict abortion laws (heartbeat law) or have banned abortion altogether. Furthermore, they (Hollywood) continue to put pressure on businesses to boycott states, individuals, or businesses who adhere to Christian principles, or does not wholly endorse homosexuality or abortion on demand.
It is getting rough out there these days being a Christian in America. The pace at which the spirit of antichrist is rising is becoming frightening surreal. While not at the levels of persecution we see presently in the Middle East, Africa, and China, the United States (even if Post-Christian) is truly the last safe haven of Christianity left on the planet. If we fall here, there will be nowhere else Christians can seek refuge in the future. Some of you might be asking, why does it seem like the leftist progressives and their godless agenda always seem like their winning. Why are they so intent on destroying America? Why are they so intent on trying to remove every trace of God from our once great nation? What does all this have to do with the separation of Church and State?
I am about tell you.
While I love this nation, and what it has stood for, for over four hundred years, I fear, as John Winthrop prophetically noted in 1630, our abandonment of God is hastening the moment of our demise, and that we will become nothing more than a byword of a formerly great nation. Beloved, there is coming a day when the Separation of Church and State will absolutely happen, but not by the will of man or the schemes of Satan. No, this separation will be one that is divinely enforced and in its own rights, a form of judgment (Luke 12:48). It (the separation) will happen with such a quickness and certainty that it should cause anyone reading this to fear for those left behind.
“For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words. But concerning the times and the seasons, brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night. For when they say, “Peace and safety!” then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape.” – 1st Thessalonians 4:16-5:3
Even so, Maranatha!