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Author Topic:   Is America a Christian Nation?
jar
Member
Posts: 29445
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.3


Message 151 of 206 (663806)
05-26-2012 8:09 PM
Reply to: Message 149 by Jzyehoshua
05-26-2012 8:01 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
Gish Gallop much?

The question was to find out where Christianity was mentioned in the US Declaration of Independence or your cite from the Virginia Statute and it just is NOT there.

Thank GOD the US is NOT a Christian Nation and never has been.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 149 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 8:01 PM Jzyehoshua has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 152 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 8:17 PM jar has responded

  
Jzyehoshua
Inactive Member


Message 152 of 206 (663809)
05-26-2012 8:17 PM
Reply to: Message 151 by jar
05-26-2012 8:09 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
The U.S. was founded on William Penn's 1682 government, the Province of Pennsylvania, which clearly was a Christian nation. You still haven't refuted this.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 151 by jar, posted 05-26-2012 8:09 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 153 by NoNukes, posted 05-26-2012 8:38 PM Jzyehoshua has responded
 Message 154 by jar, posted 05-26-2012 8:41 PM Jzyehoshua has responded

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9998
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 153 of 206 (663814)
05-26-2012 8:38 PM
Reply to: Message 152 by Jzyehoshua
05-26-2012 8:17 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
The U.S. was founded on William Penn's 1682 government, the Province of Pennsylvania, which clearly was a Christian nation.

You have not done anything more than assert this, so I'm curious what there is to refute. Your claim is that much/most of what is considered American is based on William Penn's 1682 government. How about describing a few examples?

I see a number of Christian related things that are definitely NOT part of our structure for government. For example a requirement that public officials be Christian is not part of our Government. The religious freedom clause is nothing like the First Amendment as it singles out a single object of worship as being legitimate.

Further some of the institutions that are in common with our form of government were also in common with England.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

The apathy of the people is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal and hasten the resurrection of the dead. William Lloyd Garrison


This message is a reply to:
 Message 152 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 8:17 PM Jzyehoshua has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 155 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 8:52 PM NoNukes has responded

    
jar
Member
Posts: 29445
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.3


Message 154 of 206 (663815)
05-26-2012 8:41 PM
Reply to: Message 152 by Jzyehoshua
05-26-2012 8:17 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
Well, I ignored it as I often do when Creationists try to pull a Gish Gallop and simply throw out yet another unsupported assertion.

Until you actually provide support for the new assertion that "The U.S. was founded on William Penn's 1682 government, the Province of Pennsylvania, which clearly was a Christian nation" I will simply continue chuckling.

The Gish Gallop is not a new tactic to the folk here; throw out yet another unsupported assertion and when that gets refuted then throw out another unsupported assertion.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 152 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 8:17 PM Jzyehoshua has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 156 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 8:56 PM jar has responded

  
Jzyehoshua
Inactive Member


Message 155 of 206 (663816)
05-26-2012 8:52 PM
Reply to: Message 153 by NoNukes
05-26-2012 8:38 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
You have not done anything more than assert this, so I'm curious what there is to refute. Your claim is that much/most of what is considered American is based on William Penn's 1682 government. How about describing a few examples?

I see a number of Christian related things that are definitely NOT part of our structure for government. For example a requirement that public officials be Christian is not part of our Government. The religious freedom clause is nothing like the First Amendment as it singles out a single object of worship as being legitimate.

Further some of the institutions that are in common with our form of government were also in common with England.

Thomas Jefferson called Penn "the greatest lawgiver the world has produced". His government in 1682 originated the principles of representative government, separation of church and state, and elimination of nobility and ranks. http://www.phmc.state.pa.us/bah/DAM/charter/charter.html

It produced almost exactly a century before the U.S. Constitution concepts such as an elected 2-house Congress to pass bills, religious freedom, freedom of speech, and a Bill of Rights.
http://avalon.law.yale.edu/17th_century/pa04.asp

I wrote an in-depth analysis of the charter here:

http://creationwiki.org/Province_of_Pennsylvania

The U.S. House and Senate were clearly designed around Pennsylvania's General Assembly and Provincial Council, and required 2/3 approval for bill passage. It had a Governor like today's President and 18-member subcommittees within the Provincial Council, similar to today's Senatorial committees. The 1701 Charter of Privileges was much like the later Bill of Rights guaranteeing freedom of religion, right to private property, free elections, and fair trials.

http://www.constitution.org/bcp/penncharpriv.htm

Courtrooms were similar to today's as well. Witnesses were commanded to speak "the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth", something we adopted. There was even a public education system where children at age 12 were taught useful trades/skills.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 153 by NoNukes, posted 05-26-2012 8:38 PM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 158 by NoNukes, posted 05-26-2012 9:10 PM Jzyehoshua has responded

  
Jzyehoshua
Inactive Member


Message 156 of 206 (663819)
05-26-2012 8:56 PM
Reply to: Message 154 by jar
05-26-2012 8:41 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
Well, I ignored it as I often do when Creationists try to pull a Gish Gallop and simply throw out yet another unsupported assertion.
Until you actually provide support for the new assertion that "The U.S. was founded on William Penn's 1682 government, the Province of Pennsylvania, which clearly was a Christian nation" I will simply continue chuckling.

The Gish Gallop is not a new tactic to the folk here; throw out yet another unsupported assertion and when that gets refuted then throw out another unsupported assertion.

Not sure how you think this is a "new point". The first post I wrote here, Message 141, began with the following:

quote:
Whether America began a Christian nation is debatable, but what is not questionable is that it was based upon the first democracy in America, the Province of Pennsylvania founded in 1682 by William Penn, that was most definitely a Christian nation. Much of America's government was based on Penn's, which originated concepts like a 2-house elected assembly, a bill of rights with freedom of religion/speech/property, term limits, women's rights, and fair trial by jury.
I've written quite a bit about it at CreationWiki:

http://creationwiki.org/William_Penn#Pennsylvania


My original and main point was always William Penn, others just chose initially to focus on my lesser points about Jefferson and the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 154 by jar, posted 05-26-2012 8:41 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 157 by jar, posted 05-26-2012 9:08 PM Jzyehoshua has not yet responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 29445
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.3


(3)
Message 157 of 206 (663821)
05-26-2012 9:08 PM
Reply to: Message 156 by Jzyehoshua
05-26-2012 8:56 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
Because you were shown to be wrong in your assertion that the US Declaration of Independence and the Virginia Statute mentioned Christianity in any way.

Now you are making yet another series of unsupported assertions that the US Democracy was based on the Pennsylvania Government.

Much of the US Government is based on the Iroquois Confederacy. Does that mean the US is an Indian Spirit Nation?

The US was designed to make sure that NO religion played a part in Government.

In addition, what the Founding Fathers imagined is also irrelevant. In case you haven't noticed we are not living in the 1600's.

The Founding Fathers were smart enough to realize that what they believed government should be was irrelevant to later generations. Fortunately today we have the "Lemon Test" and unless there is a SECULAR purpose to any legislation it is rightfully to be found unconstitutional.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 156 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 8:56 PM Jzyehoshua has not yet responded

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9998
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.2


(1)
Message 158 of 206 (663822)
05-26-2012 9:10 PM
Reply to: Message 155 by Jzyehoshua
05-26-2012 8:52 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
It produced almost exactly a century before the U.S. Constitution concepts such as an elected 2-house Congress to pass bills, religious freedom, freedom of speech, and a Bill of Rights.

Most of those things are unrelated to being a Christian nation.

We also know historically that the bicameral legislatures date back to medieval times.

In particular, though, given the huge differences between religious freedom as Penn viewed it, and the version that was incorporated into the Bill of Rights, it seems pretty strange to cite this.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

The apathy of the people is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal and hasten the resurrection of the dead. William Lloyd Garrison


This message is a reply to:
 Message 155 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 8:52 PM Jzyehoshua has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 159 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 9:32 PM NoNukes has responded

    
Jzyehoshua
Inactive Member


Message 159 of 206 (663824)
05-26-2012 9:32 PM
Reply to: Message 158 by NoNukes
05-26-2012 9:10 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
Most of those things are unrelated to being a Christian nation.

We also know historically that the bicameral legislatures date back to medieval times.

Well, as far as being a Christian nation, Penn's government:

-Strongly declared this in the beginning of the Preface, stating:

quote:
When the great and wise God had made the world, of all his creatures, it pleased him to chuse man his Deputy to rule it: and to fit him for so great a charge and trust, he did not only qualify him with skill and power, but with integrity to use them justly. This native goodness was equally his honour and his happiness, and whilst he stood here, all went well; there was no need of coercive or compulsive means; the precept of divine love and truth, in his bosom, was the guide and keeper of his innocency. But lust prevailing against duty, made a lamentable breach upon it; and the law, that before had no power over him, took place upon him, and his disobedient posterity, that such as would not live comformable to the holy law within, should fall under the reproof and correction of the just law without, in a Judicial administration.

This the Apostle teaches in divers of his epistles: " The law (says he) was added because of transgression: " In another place, " Knowing that the law was not made for the righteous man; but for the disobedient and ungodly, for sinners, for unholy and prophane, for murderers, for wlloremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, and for man-stealers, for lyers, for perjured persons," &c., but this is not all, he opens and carries the matter of government a little further: " Let every soul be subject to the higher powers; for there is no power but of God. The powers that be are ordained of God: whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil: wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same." " He is the minister of God to thee for good." " Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but for conscience sake."

This settles the divine right of government beyond exception, and that for two ends: first, to terrify evil doers: secondly, to cherish those that do well; which gives government a life beyond corruption, and makes it as durable in the world, as good men shall be. So that government seems to me a part of religion itself, a filing sacred in its institution and end. For, if it does not directly remove the cause, it crushes the effects of evil, and is as such, (though a lower, yet) an emanation of the same Divine Power, that is both author and object of pure religion; the difference lying here, that the one is more free and mental, the other more corporal and compulsive in its operations: but that is only to evil doers; government itself being otherwise as capable of kindness, goodness and charity, as a more private society. They weakly err, that think there is no other use of government, than correction, which is the coarsest part of it: daily experience tells us, that the care and regulation of many other affairs, more soft, and daily necessary, make up much of the greatest part of government; and which must have followed the peopling of the world, had Adam never fell, and will continue among men, on earth, under the highest attainments they may arrive at, by the coming of the blessed Second Adam, the Lord from heaven. Thus much of government in general, as to its rise and end.


-Based marriage on "the law of God":

quote:
XIX. That all marriages (not forbidden by the law of God, as to nearness of blood and affinity by marriage) shall be encouraged; but the parents, or guardians, shall be first consulted, and the marriage shall be published before it be solemnized; and it shall be solemnized by taking one another as husband and wife, before credible witnesses; and a certificate of the whole, under the hands of parties and witnesses, shall be brought to the proper register of that county, and shall be registered in his office.

-Required public officials be Christians:

quote:
XXXIV. That all Treasurers, Judges, Masters of the Rolls, Sheriffs, Justices of the Peace, and other officers and persons whatsoever, relating to courts, or trials of causes or any other service in the government; and all Members elected to serve in provincial Council and General Assembly, and all that have right to elect such Members, shall be such as possess faith in Jesus Christ, and that are not convicted of ill fame, or unsober and dishonest conversation, and that are of one and twenty years of age, at least; and that all such so qualified, shall be capable of the said several employments and privileges, as aforesaid.

-Had Sunday "Blue Laws":

quote:
XXII. That, as often as any day of the month, mentioned in any article of this charter, shall fall upon the first day of the week, commonly called the Lord's Day, the business appointed for that day shall be deferred till the next day, unless in case of emergency.
XXXVI. That, according to the good example of the primitive Christians, and the case of the creation, every first day of the week, called the Lord's day, people shall abstain from their common daily labour, that they may the better dispose themselves to worship God according to their understandings.

-Outlawed homosexuality, profanity, gambling, lying, incest, drunkenness, prostitution, and cruelty to animals based on the Bible:

quote:
XXXVII. That as a careless and corrupt administration of justice draws the wrath of God upon magistrates, so the wildness and looseness of the people provoke the indignation of God against a country: therefore, that all such offences against God, as swearing, cursing, lying, prophane talking, drunkenness, drinking of healths, obscene words, incest, sodomy, rapes, whoredom, fornication, and other uncleanness (not to be repeated) all treasons, misprisions, murders, duels, felony, seditions, maims, forcible entries, and other violences, to the persons and estates of the inhabitants within this province; all prizes, stage-plays, cards, dice, May-games, gamesters, masques, revels, bull-battings, cock-fightings, bear-battings, and the like, which excite the people to rudeness, cruelty, looseness, and irreligion, shall be respectively discouraged, and severely punished, according to the appointment of the Governor and freemen in provincial Council and General Assembly; as also all proceedings contrary to these laws, that are not here made expressly penal.

http://creationwiki.org/Province_of_Pennsylvania

In particular, though, given the huge differences between religious freedom as Penn viewed it, and the version that was incorporated into the Bill of Rights, it seems pretty strange to cite this.

By today's standards such a definition of religious freedom, omitting atheists, is inadequate, but at the time it was a huge step forward. Institutions like Catholicism and Anglicanism required those in countries they dominated to pay tithes to the state church and prevented those of other denominations from running for office, or even had them imprisoned and their properties seized. By providing religious freedom to all Christians Pennsylvania made an unusual change for its time.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 158 by NoNukes, posted 05-26-2012 9:10 PM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 160 by jar, posted 05-26-2012 9:40 PM Jzyehoshua has not yet responded
 Message 167 by ringo, posted 05-28-2012 12:31 PM Jzyehoshua has not yet responded
 Message 168 by NoNukes, posted 05-28-2012 3:51 PM Jzyehoshua has responded
 Message 170 by RAZD, posted 05-28-2012 6:49 PM Jzyehoshua has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 29445
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.3


Message 160 of 206 (663826)
05-26-2012 9:40 PM
Reply to: Message 159 by Jzyehoshua
05-26-2012 9:32 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
And still has nothing to do with the topic.

Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 159 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 9:32 PM Jzyehoshua has not yet responded

  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 15960
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 5.6


(2)
Message 161 of 206 (663858)
05-27-2012 5:45 AM
Reply to: Message 150 by Jzyehoshua
05-26-2012 8:06 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
What you believe on Separation of Church and State I'm not sure. We may be in agreement. All I'm saying is the founders opposed restrictions on religious expression, including in U.S. politics, as evidenced by the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom.

But they instituted restrictions on religious expression by the government.

Yes, obviously they let politicians, in their capacity as private individuals, express whatever religion they wanted, just like any other person could. But they forbade them to do so in their capacity as holders of public offices.

Obviously if he wanted to stop Christians from presenting views on God in government, he wouldn't have used such religious language himself in referencing "Almighty God". His own document on religious freedom provides an example of what his thought process on religious freedom was like, and what should be permissible. Therefore, it should be alright for me to write a bill proclaiming Almighty God institutes X rights, and drawing logical conclusions as such, just as Jefferson did.

I think you might find that the First Amendment would be an obstacle in certain cases. After all, have you ever seen any of the whackier breed of Republican congressmen writing a bill saying what Almighty God thinks? And yet they do think that they know what Almighty God thinks and that he's in favor of every bill they write, it's one of the more egregiously nutty things about them. I would suggest, then, that if they don't do that it's because they know that they can't.

And really, would it be desirable if they could? Should Congress be allowed to pass laws saying what God thinks?

Edited by Dr Adequate, : No reason given.


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 Message 150 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 8:06 PM Jzyehoshua has not yet responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 19089
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 2.5


(1)
Message 162 of 206 (663911)
05-27-2012 7:42 PM
Reply to: Message 150 by Jzyehoshua
05-26-2012 8:06 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
Hi Jzyehoshua,

My point was that Jefferson, the same guy who created the term and concept of a "wall of separation" was at the same time writing (in U.S. Law mind you) about how Almighty God is Lord of both mind and body yet didn't coerce others into belief, and this is the basis for U.S. religious freedom.

Just curious, have you read the Jefferson Bible?

Obviously if he wanted to stop Christians from presenting views on God in government, he wouldn't have used such religious language himself in referencing "Almighty God".

Would this not also apply to deism, or in fact to any religion known and practiced at that time?

Is not the issue that no one religion would be given supremacy, but and and all beliefs would be allowed without bias?

The founding fathers included christians, but that does not mean that they in any way intended to create a christian nation: the evidence in the Constitution says otherwise.

Enjoy.


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
Rebel American Zen Deist
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This message is a reply to:
 Message 150 by Jzyehoshua, posted 05-26-2012 8:06 PM Jzyehoshua has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 163 by Evangelical Humanists, posted 05-27-2012 7:53 PM RAZD has responded

  
Evangelical Humanists
Junior Member (Idle past 1812 days)
Posts: 14
Joined: 05-27-2012


(1)
Message 163 of 206 (663913)
05-27-2012 7:53 PM
Reply to: Message 162 by RAZD
05-27-2012 7:42 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
The Founders knew that including a god mean't passing laws to protect him. Jefferson wrote in the Treaty of Tripoli this:

Art. 11. 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.

This treaty was authored by American diplomat Joel Barlow in 1796 it was later sent to the Senate floor on June 7, 1797.................it was approved by John Adams after being read allowed that is.

It was created (the US) as a secular nation.

Edited by Evangelical Humanists, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 162 by RAZD, posted 05-27-2012 7:42 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 164 by RAZD, posted 05-27-2012 8:41 PM Evangelical Humanists has not yet responded
 Message 165 by Dr Adequate, posted 05-27-2012 11:39 PM Evangelical Humanists has responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 19089
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 2.5


(1)
Message 164 of 206 (663923)
05-27-2012 8:41 PM
Reply to: Message 163 by Evangelical Humanists
05-27-2012 7:53 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
Hi Evangelical Humanists and welcome to the fray.

It was created (the US) as a secular nation.

Indeed, as rather explicitly stated in Article. VI. Clause 3:

quote:
Clause 3: The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.

bold for emphasis.

... and that is the only place religion is mentioned in the main body of the constitution.

Enjoy.

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This message is a reply to:
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Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 15960
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 5.6


Message 165 of 206 (663959)
05-27-2012 11:39 PM
Reply to: Message 163 by Evangelical Humanists
05-27-2012 7:53 PM


Re: Madison And Jefferson
Jefferson wrote in the Treaty of Tripoli this [...] This treaty was authored by American diplomat Joel Barlow

There seems to be an inconsistency in your narrative.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 163 by Evangelical Humanists, posted 05-27-2012 7:53 PM Evangelical Humanists has responded

Replies to this message:
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