Why Churches Must Participate In Politics

Man is constituted by nature as a religious being. Every society on earth throughout history has been influenced by some type of religion that forms the foundation for the culture of that society. For the first 300 years of America’s existence, from 1620 until the mid-twentieth century, Christian values provided the foundation for most of our civil laws and the moral standards underpinning the American Culture. Since about 1950 there has been an organized concerted effort to eliminate Christianity and God from America’s political and social institutions.

Particularly in America, as we eliminate Christianity as the foundation of our culture the “default” religion that replaces it has been Humanism. Humanism is the religion of socialism, progressivism, radical feminism, radical environmentalism, and all other left wing -isms. Most Americans fail to recognize Humanism as a religion because it has so permeated our society that today it is just accepted as the norm. Nevertheless, it functions as a religion, complete with ministers, doctrinal statements, seminaries and a missionary zeal every bit as active as the most fundamental evangelical church.

Humanism is both a movement and a religion. As a movement, it has made major inroads into our educational, social, political and religious institutions. As a religion, it spreads its influence and adds constituents through the American Humanist Association and its affiliates, Appignani Humanist Legal Center (AHLC), the International Darwin Day Foundation, the Feminist Caucus, the Humanist Charities, the Humanist Institute, the Humanist Society, the Kochhar Humanist Education Center, the LGBT Humanist Council, and Reason Cinema. It also works closely with the Unitarian Universalists Association, the UN, UNESCO, WHO and the ACLU.

Humanism is an integral part of the progressivism, (American socialism) that has permeated the American society since World War II. Its deceptive message is spread relentlessly through the media, the Democratic Party, the Department of Education, and liberal religious institutions. It uses any and all institutions that shape public opinion to spread its central doctrine of “social justice” disguised as humanitarianism. One of the reasons humanism meets so little opposition among the public is because of its humanitarian disguise. It just “feels” so right to the average person exposed to traditional American values but not knowledgeable in their true meaning and application. There is a vast difference between the humanist concept of “social justice” and traditional humanitarianism.

Humanism is egocentric, self-serving and coercive. It uses the coercive powers of government, the courts, the legislatures, and, when all else fails, the social sanctions of “political correctness”, to impose its will on the lives of the American people. True humanitarianism is the philosophy of love taught by Jesus in the parable of the Good Samaritan, and the Sermon on the Mount. It is personal, altruistic, compassionate, and from the heart. It is always non-coercive, depending on the natural impulses of all humans to help those in need.

Because of humanism’s interactive relationship with our government’s political, judicial, and educational institutions, it has become in recent generations the de facto “established” religion of America. The only institution that has the potential of effectively opposing the corrupting influence of humanism is the Church. Unfortunately, most Pastors of our evangelical churches have succumbed to the coercion of the IRS and accepted the popular interpretation of the First Amendment as establishing a separation between “Church and State”. Nothing could be further from the truth.

A cursory reading of the First Amendment, with a modicum of understanding of the English language and American history, shows that what the Founders had in mind was “independence” not “separation”. It was their desire that the Church should be independent of the coercive powers of government, not that government should be sheltered from the civilizing influence of the Church and its Judeo-Christian values. If we are to recover our dwindling liberties, and restore our republican form of government, we must return to the founding documents that provided the blueprint for building the most successful society in the history of the world, the Constitution and the Bible. To do that, we need the leadership of a modern day  “Black Regiment”.

In closing, I would like to quote, what should be a self-evident truth articulated by one of the leading preachers of the second Great Awakening.

“If there is a decay of conscience, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the public press lacks moral discrimination, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the church is degenerate and worldly, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the world loses its interest in religion, the pulpit is responsible for it. If Satan rules in our halls of legislation, the pulpit is responsible for it. If our politics become so corrupt that the very foundations of our government are ready to fall away, the pulpit is responsible for it.”
~Charles G. Finney

The Progressive Mind: Moral Values

To the Christian mind, socialism or progressivism, as it is called in America today, is the epitome of evil. However, to the socialist mind, it is the essence of morality and virtue. Most believers in Biblical Christianity find it difficult to comprehend how anyone could support a philosophy that has resulted in the enslavement, torture and murder of millions of people, just during the past century alone. In attempting to understand the slavish devotion of millions of people to the doctrines of socialism, it is important to realize that it is much more than a philosophy of politics and economics. It is also a religion. More specifically, it is a division or “sect” of a religion. That religion is Humanism, the established religion of modern America and most other nations of the world today.

As a religion, Humanism is the mirror image of Christianity, which is a monotheistic religion that worships and glorifies the God of Creation, revealed in the Bible and worshiped by most of America’s Founding Fathers. Humanism is a polytheistic religion worshiping and serving the creature more than the Creator. Humanism has many gods. Its two major ones are, the human race en toto, and its political systems — “the State”. Its lesser gods include science, human reason, and nature — including the earth and its creatures. Just as Christianity has many divisions or denominations, Humanism also has many divisions or sects, but rejects both the Christian God of Scripture and the Scriptures themselves.

Background of Humanism

The lure of humanism first appears in the creation story of the Garden of Eden, in the dialogue between Eve and the serpent recorded in Gen. 3:1-6.

“Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, ‘Yea, hath God said, ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?”

“And the woman said unto the serpent, ‘we may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, ‘Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die’.”

“And the serpent said unto the woman, ‘ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.”

The history of mankind is the history of man’s efforts to cast off the boundaries established by God and creating or becoming our own gods, determining for ourselves that which is right or wrong, good or evil. That is the essence of Humanism, which is normally divided into two types, religious and secular. Our purpose here is to examine the influence of organized and focused Humanism on our culture, economy and government. Since both religious humanism and secular humanism share the same worldview and the same vision for America and the world we do not distinguish between the two.

Modern Humanism traces its beginnings back to the sixteenth century Unitarian movement started by Ferenc Dávid in 1565 in opposition to the reformed theology taught in the Churches of Switzerland. David was court preacher to János Zsigmond Zápolya, Prince of Transylvania, a historic section of what is today Romania. David rejected the doctrine of the Trinity and later came to believe and teach that Christ’s existence began with his birth. A similar movement sprang up in Poland at about the same time as the one in Transylvania. This group was known as the Polish Brethren and was completely suppressed by the established church. One of its best known leaders, Michael Servetus was burned at the stake.

Eventually Unitarianism spread to the colonies among dissenters to the Calvinism preached in the Congregational churches. In the mid to late-eighteenth century two momentous events transpired in America, the Enlightenment and the Great Awakening. Proponents of the enlightenment sought to apply science and reasoning to human nature, religion and society. The Great Awakening was a time of widespread religious revival. Along with the tremendous growth in the more traditional Christian churches like the Congregational, Presbyterian, and Baptist, Unitarian congregations also experienced considerable growth as a backlash to the “hell fire and damnation” preaching styles of evangelists like Jonathan Edwards, John and Charles Wesley and George Whitefield.

The eclectic mixture of Calvinism, Armenianism, and scientific reasoning created an ambivalence in America’s religious climate that continues to this day. Many of the Founders attracted by the intellectual nature of the enlightenment were drawn to the Unitarian point of view. The Dictionary of Unitarian Universalist Biography lists John Adams, John Quincy Adams, Dr. Benjamin Rush, Thomas Jefferson and several others as Unitarians. Although Jefferson never joined a Unitarian congregation he makes it clear in his correspondence that he embraced the Unitarian philosophy of his day. In a letter to Dr. Benjamin Waterhouse, June 26, 1822, Jefferson writes, “I rejoice that in this blessed country of free inquiry and belief, which has surrendered its creed and conscience to neither kings nor priests, the genuine doctrine of one only God is reviving, and I trust that there is not a young man now living in the United States, who will not die an Unitarian.”

In 1791 Joseph Priestly, an English scientist, philosopher, and Unitarian theologian, fleeing persecution in London, migrated to America. He settled in Northumberland County near Philadelphia where he became the Pastor of a Unitarian congregation. Philadelphia served as the seat of the federal government from 1790 until 1800 while buildings were being erected in the District of Columbia to house the new government. Priestly became one of the leading ministers in Philadelphia with many government officials regularly attending his sermons. He developed a close friendship with Jefferson and is credited with providing the encouragement and inspiration for the famous Jefferson Bible.

In America, the early unitarian movement—as opposed to an organized religion— was led mostly by Congregationalist ministers or former ministers. Unitarians at the end of the eighteenth century still clung to many of the doctrines taught by the Congregationalists. Most had a strong faith in the providence of God, believing He ruled in the affairs of men and nations, as expressed in the Declaration of Independence. They rejected the divinity of Christ, however, as well as the infallibility of the Scriptures and the doctrine of original sin. Since Unitarianism is primarily a free thought movement, it has no creed or firm theological position. Although most held the scriptures in high regard they did not consider it to be either infallible or the final authority in matters of religion. Their primary source for religious truth was nature, science, and human reason which were to be used in understanding Biblical teachings.

As time went on Unitarian teachings gained widespread acceptance among the “intellectual” classes. In 1805 Unitarian Henry Ware was elected Hollis Professor of Divinity at Harvard, a school originally founded to train Congregationalist ministers. The Arminianism that had become popular during the first Great Awakening mixed with the teachings of Calvinism from the Reformed movement and Unitarianism from the age of reason to form the religious “soup” that produced the second Great Awakening in the nineteenth century.

The influence of Unitarianism can be seen in the work of the antebellum reformers of the early and mid-nineteenth century. Brook Farm, one of the more famous utopian communes of that era, for instance, was founded by former Unitarian minister George Ripley and his wife Sophia in West Roxbury, Massachusetts. Although many of the utopian communes were started by reformers not connected to the Unitarian movement, they all were based on the Unitarian doctrine, the “perfectibility of man”. Although the belief that man was a being created by God was still widespread, many rejected the Creation Story and the story of the “fall” in the Bible as myth. The common belief among the reformers was that man’s development was progressive and the utopian communes were designed to help that progression along. It would be some time before they found a satisfactory answer to how mankind came into existence.

During the second Great Awakening a new reform element emerged with the preaching of the “social gospel” and the widespread popularity of millenniumism. This new wave of reformers attempted to create “Heaven on earth” and bring in the Millennium Kingdom through social reform. The temperance, abolitionist, feminist, prison reform, asylum reform and the settlement house movements were all reforms inspired by the social gospel and the developing religion of humanism.

With the ratification of the Constitution and Bill of Rights in 1788 and 1791 the United States became the first civilized nation in history not to have an established religion. For the first time man could allow his imagination to run free in matters of religion, believing, teaching and preaching whatever his fantasy could conjure up without government repercussions. New churches were formed and old ones split as congregants followed the new doctrines of their latest charismatic leaders, resulting in the nine hundred or so divisions we currently have among the self-identifying Christian churches in America. Without the objective authority of the Bible, Unitarians, the unchurched and nominal Christians gravitated toward the developing humanism, the “natural” religion of man without God.

In the 1850’s, two books were published in Europe that were to have a lasting effect on American religion, culture and politics. They were Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto and Charles Darwin’s Origin of the Species. Both of these books furthered the development of the humanist philosophy. They provided answers to the two basic questions of existence, “where did we come from?” and “where are we going?” Evolution theory validated the utopian efforts of the reformers. If man was not created, but came into being through the natural processes of evolution, then he must still be evolving. If man does not possess a sin nature as a result of the “fall”, then the evil we see about us must come from life experiences and the social environment in the culture.

Therefore, since mankind is in a state of perpetual evolution, it just makes sense that in order for that evolution to have a positive outcome, a proper environment must be created to guide man’s development. That is where utopian socialism comes in. An ideal environment for human evolution cannot be left to chance or the whims of individual men. It must be planned and controlled collectively, that is, by government. While the labels of Marxian socialism has never been accepted by American socialists, its precepts along with Darwinian evolution theory were incorporated into the humanist religion destined to later become the de facto established religion of America. As Norman Thomas observed in 1944, “The American people will never knowingly adopt Socialism. But under the name of ‘liberalism’ they will adopt every fragment of the Socialist program, until one day America will be a Socialist nation, without knowing how it happened.”

By 1825 Unitarian ministers had formed a denomination known as the American Unitarian Association. For the next hundred years Unitarianism continued to grow as a liberal and forward thinking segment of Christianity. In 1867 two Unitarian ministers, David Atwood Wasson and William J. Potter, founded the Free Religious Association. Its stated purpose was to, “emancipate religion from the dogmatic traditions it had been previously bound to.” It opposed organized religion and supernaturalism, promoting the supremacy of individual conscience, reason and the perfectibility of humanity.

In 1927 a group of seminarians and professors at the University of Chicago organized the Humanist Fellowship and began publishing the New Humanist magazine. In 1933 a group of 34 Unitarian ministers and academics from America’s leading colleges and universities convened and drew up The Humanist Manifesto. The Manifesto has since had two updates, the first in 1973 and the most recent in 2003. The updates reaffirmed the principles expressed in the original and expanded its vision for a one world government with an even distribution of resources and incomes around the globe.

“We deplore the division of humankind on nationalistic grounds. We have reached a turning point in human history where the best option is to transcend the limits of national sovereignty and to move toward the building of a world community in which all sectors of the human family can participate. Thus we look to the development of a system of world law and a world order based upon transnational federal government.” Humanist Manifesto II (1973)

Corliss Lamont was a leading light in the Humanist Movement for most of the twentieth century. He authored many books on Humanism and Socialism, among them The Philosophy of Humanism and You Might Like Socialism. In a document titled “Humanist Support The United Nations” Lamont writes,

“The Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted in 1948 by the United Nations, is in its entirety a Humanist document. Which could have easily been inspired by our own Humanist Manifesto”.

The first Directors of three prominent United Nations Departments were also prominent in the Humanist movement following World War II, Julian Huxley of UNESCO, Brock Chisholm of the World Health Organization, and John Boyd-Orr of the Food and Agricultural Organization.

Humanism supplies the underlying value system of American socialism, Progressivism, and America’s Democrat Party. The three organizations that have exerted the most influence during America’s journey from a Constitutional Republic to a Democratic Socialist state were, the American Humanist Association, The Unitarian Universalist Association, and The Democratic Socialists of America. The American Humanist Association has been particularly active in efforts to eliminate the influence of traditional Christianity from our national discourse and public institutions, working through the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and its own Appignani Humanist Legal Center (AHLC).

The ACLU was begun in 1920 ostensibly to “defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties that the Constitution and laws of the United States guarantee everyone in this country”. Corliss Lamont, mentioned above, served as Director of ACLU from 1932 to 1954, and until his death in 1995 was Chairman of National Emergency Civil Liberties Committee. This group successfully blocked Senator Joseph McCarthy’s Senate Committee attempting to expose Communists in our government. History has shown that McCarthy was right in many of his accusations.

In the Introduction to the Humanist Manifesto I, the author gives the reason for the necessity of such a document as, “While this age does owe a vast debt to the traditional religions, it is none the less obvious that any religion that can hope to be a synthesizing and dynamic force for today must be shaped for the needs of this age. To establish such a religion is a major necessity of the present. It is a responsibility which rests upon this generation. We therefore affirm the following:…” He then goes on to list the basic principles of Humanism. It is ironic that the ACLU, a creature of organized Humanism that presents itself as a defender of the Constitution uses the First Amendment of that same Constitution to suppress religious liberty for Christians and to censor any attempts to teach Creationism in any of our educational institutions in favor of its bedrock doctrine, Evolution.

The ACLU with two hundred staff attorneys and thousands of volunteer lawyers working pro bono file hundreds of lawsuits annually designed to suppress Christianity and further the doctrines of Humanism. Although, according to its manifesto Humanism was organized to establish “a religion” “shaped for the needs of this age”, it is allowed to operate freely among government departments and officials, as well as our educational and other social institutions without sanction. Since it does not recognize any Deity or maintain places of worship, it is not officially considered a religion and is not subject to the restrictions of the widely held doctrine of “separation of Church and State”. Laws designed to further its doctrines as a result of its litigation and lobbying efforts among our state and national governments, however, have made Humanism our de facto established national religion. The eighty-five members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, considered by the Democratic Socialist of America as its Washington lobbying arm, also serves as the chief lobby for Humanism in the nation’s Capitol.

Introduction To The Progressive Mind

For more than a hundred years, American Socialists, known today as Progressives, have been moving doggedly and single-mindedly toward the goal of establishing a socialist utopia in America. There are a number of reasons why they have been steadily expanding their influence and their base of support among the American people for so long, with as little opposition as they seem to have engendered. One is that the average person is so busy with their families, careers, and leisure activities they do not have the time to follow the course of socialism’s progress.

A second and, perhaps more important reason is that the average American cannot allow themselves to believe that some of our foremost political, academic and social leaders would deliberately set out to harm the freest and most successful nation on earth at the expense of their own future descendants. In this, they are correct. In the mind of the progressive socialist, his goal is to liberate America from the forces holding it back, and preventing it  from realizing its true potential for greatness; the greed and selfishness of capitalism and the stifling restraints of God and Christian morality. To do this they first have to break free of what they consider to be the antiquated and unrealistic documents that have governed our nation for the past two hundred plus years; the Bible, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.

The 2012 election, more so than any other in our history, has put before the American People stark choices as to which course they will  follow. On the left there is a life planned and controlled by the federal government; a cocoon in which everyone is equal, enjoying or enduring the same standard of living, with little individual responsibility for their own or their family’s welfare, little or no opportunity to improve one’s station in life, and little incentive for attempting to do so. On the right is a life of individual liberty and responsibility, with unlimited opportunity for personal planning and fulfillment of one’s own goals and desires for themselves and their families. Of course, along with the opportunity for personal fulfillment there is also the possibility of personal failure with the consequences failure entails. It is important that each of us understands the choices we are making as we plan for the future.

Over the next few weeks we will be posting a series of articles to help readers understand these choices better.  Some of the articles will be written by socialists outlining and describing their aspirations and goals for this country. Others will be written from the viewpoint of the Conservative Christian. At the end of the series, everyone should have a better understanding of how our progressive leaders think, what their plans are for America’s future, and the consequences if their plans should succeed. Everyone should fully realize that whatever type of country our children and grandchildren enjoy or endure will be the one that we have bequeathed to them.

America’s Deal With the Devil…Part Two

In our previous article, we discussed how America had made a Faustian Bargain with the state concerning religion, expressed in the cliché, “Separation of Church and State”.The unspoken terms of this bargain is that the government will tolerate all religion so long as it is confined to religious activities conducted within prescribed religious settings and involving only those people amicable to the religious beliefs being expressed. In return, government agrees not to establish by law any official religious group or levy taxes for its support. This arrangement is unworkable for a number of reasons, chiefly because it makes religion dependent on retaining the good will of the government.

Contrary to popular belief, religion cannot be isolated from government. They are inseparably linked together through the culture. The best we can do is to make the institution of religion independent of the legislative and therefore coercive powers of government. That is what the Founders attempted to do with the First Amendment.

Every nation on earth throughout history, has had a predominant religion; paganism, Mohammedism, Shintoism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Protestant Christianity, Catholicism, Judaism, Biblical Christianity, Humanism or Secular Humanism. Invariably these religions shape the culture of their respective nations and ultimately determine the laws and policies of government. (“By their fruits shall ye know them”). This is a self-evident truth that can easily be discovered by simply observing the underlying connections between government, culture and religion in any nation on earth today or any that have existed in the past.

Prior to the mid-twentieth century Protestant Christianity was the dominant religion in America. (For the sake of brevity, I include independent Christian Churches within Protestant Christianity.) Its influence could be seen in the laws and policies of communities throughout the nation during that time; Sunday closing laws, the prohibition of liquor sales before noon on Sunday, anti-prostitution laws, anti-gambling laws, divorce laws, and anti-abortion laws, just to name a few. With the rise of socialism during the past century, Christianity has gradually lost its influence on government to be replaced with Humanism, the oldest form of religion, dating back to the Garden of Eden. The primary feature of Humanism is the elevation of man and rebellion against the laws of God. Throughout Biblically recorded history, its practice always brought about the judgment of God; Expulsion from the Garden of Eden, the Flood, confusion of language and dispersion throughout the world from the Tower of Babel, and the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah are some well-known examples.

In spite of the prohibition against an established religion in America in the Bill of Rights and the Faustian Bargain between “Church and State” already mentioned, America has made Humanism the de facto established religion of the nation. Billions of tax dollars are spent each year to further its doctrines and thousands of laws and bureaucratic rules are implemented to enforce its belief system. The Humanist doctrine of evolution is mandated to be taught in our public schools and the Christian doctrine of creation is forbidden by law. Radical environmentalism, evolution, radical feminism, multi-culturalism, open borders, world government, sodomite marriage, bi-lingual education, etc., are all Humanist doctrines promoted under the umbrella doctrines of pseudo-science and social justice.

Those among us who insist that America is a secular nation are advocating Secular Humanism, the ultimate form of Humanism, wittingly or unwittingly. Using history as our guide, we can see that secular Humanism inevitably leads to totalitarian Socialism and eventually to Communism. We only have to look at the history of the twentieth century to prove this truth. Consider the history of Nazi Germany, Communist Russia, China, Cuba, North Korea, etc. It is said that nature abhors a vacuum. When one occurs, something else always rushes in to fill the void. Government cannot exist unless it is compatible with its culture, and culture cannot exist without an underlying belief system or religion. Since the desire to worship a supreme being is inherent in human nature, when a religion loses its influence in the culture, it creates a vacuum that must be filled with another one. In America that void is being filled with Humanism.

The modern understanding of the purpose of the First Amendment and the popular interpretation of the doctrine of church and state leaves Christianity defenseless in human terms. Government can use the coercive powers of government to promote Humanism. The Church has no coercive powers. It must rely on the persuasive powers of the written and spoken word to accomplish its ends. That is why the role of Pastors and Teachers in the Churches are so important. While I do not agree with many of the doctrines preached by Charles Finney during the Second Great Awakening, his words do ring true today.

“If there is a decay of conscience, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the public press lacks moral discrimination, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the church is degenerate and worldly, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the world loses its interest in religion, the pulpit is responsible for it. If Satan rules in our halls of legislation, the pulpit is responsible for it. If our politics become so corrupt that the very foundations of our government are ready to fall away, the pulpit is responsible for it.”
~ Charles G. Finney

Churches must get outside their cloistered walls and bear testimony to the world at large if we are to have any effect on the creeping destruction of our nation. Although “we are in the world but not of the world” we have the responsibility of being good citizens of the world while we are here. That involves carrying out the great commission in its totality, “Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” Matthew 28:19, 20 (emphasis added)[Beginning first at Jerusalem]

America’s Deal With the Devil

As that great twentieth century American philosopher, Pogo Possum, observed over forty years ago, “We have met the enemy and he is us.”As we consider the post-Constitution, totalitarian oligarchy modern America is fast becoming, millions of Americans are awakening from their slumber and asking, “What happened?”

What happened is that we ignored the warnings sounded loud and clear by our Founding Fathers who designed our system of government and allowed a fifth column to grow in our midst like a giant malignant cancer. Consider the warnings issued by some of our first Presidents and compare them with the President now sitting in the White House with his advisers planning for the “fundamental transformation of America”.

Elias Boudinot, President of the Continental Congress, 1782-1783: “Good government generally begins in the family, and if the moral character of a people once degenerates, their political character must soon follow.”

George Washington, first U.S. President, 1789-1797: “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens.”

John Adams, second U.S. President, 1797-1801: “should the people of America once become capable of that deep simulation towards one another, and towards foreign nations, which assumes the language of justice and moderation while it is practicing iniquity and extravagance, and displays in the most captivating manner the charming pictures of candor, frankness, and sincerity, while it is rioting in rapine and insolence, this country will be the most miserable habitation in the world; because we have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.

Although Benjamin Franklin was not a President, no essay on our present day condition of political and cultural corruption would be complete without quoting from his last speech to the Convention: “Sir, I agree to this Constitution with all its faults, if they are such; because I think a general Government necessary for us, and there is no form of Government but what may be a blessing to the people if well administered, and believe farther that this is likely to be well administered for a course of years, and can only end in Despotism, as other forms have done before it, when the people shall become so corrupted as to need despotic Government, being incapable of any other.” (Emphasis added)

The truth clearly recognized by the Founders quoted above is that a nation’s government is always an expression of the moral character of its people. Fredrich Hayek pointed out this truth in his popular 1944 treatise, “The Road to Serfdom”, an examination of the rise of National Socialism in Germany during the 1930s. Hayek argues that the implementation of socialism with its centrally planned economy demands a concurrently planned social order enforced by a totalitarian government. Socialism and individual liberty cannot coexist and for socialism to thrive in America requires a shift in moral values so its people are willing to sacrifice liberty for vague promises of security. Although Hayek’s book was published almost fifty years ago in England, one cannot read it without experiencing the eerie feeling that he is writing about America in 2012.

In tracing the historical roots of socialism in America, we have to start with the Second Great Awakening at the turn of the nineteenth century. It was during this time that the “social gospel” with its emphasis on changing human nature through revival meetings came into vogue. In terms of the “number of converts” the Second Great Awakening was a huge success, but its utopian ambition of bringing in the millennium kingdom through social reform created a fertile ground in which socialism could thrive. By the time the effects of the Great Awakening began to fade at the end of the nineteenth century, socialism was already well entrenched in America. Among the groups responsible for our cultural decline and the corresponding growth of socialism we have to include the Christian Churches and the Christian clergy.

During the last century the “church” made a Faustian bargain with the government, –“You leave us alone and we will leave you alone”–, expressed in the often heard slogan, “separation of church and state”, which is based on a misunderstanding of the First Amendment that says, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;” An objective reading of the First Amendment without the preconceived assumptions fostered by the constant drumming into our consciousness, the cliché “separation of church and state” shows, not a separation between government and religion but rather, a declaration of the independence of religion from the coercive powers of government. What the Founders were attempting to accomplish with the First Amendment was to free religion from the symbiotic relationship between church and state and establish its rightful independence from the despotic powers of government that had plagued the Christian Church throughout its seventeen hundred year history.

Certainly the Founders quoted above did not consider the First Amendment in the same sense in which it is understood today. Even James Madison who is generally considered to be the Father of the Bill of Rights, but was not as fervent in his religious beliefs as some of the others, frequently called for special days of national prayer and fasting during his eight years as our fourth President. In 1813 Madison even supported and signed into law a bill to rebate the import duties on printing plates used by the Bible Society of Philadelphia to print Bibles.

“An Act for the relief of the Bible Society of Philadelphia. Be it enacted, &c., That the duties arising and due to the United States upon certain stereotype plates, imported during the last year into the port of Philadelphia, on board the ship Brilliant, by the Bible Society of Philadelphia, for the purpose of printing editions of the Holy Bible, be and the same are hereby remitted, on behalf of the United States, to the said society: and any bond or security given for the securing of the payment of the said duties shall be cancelled. Approved February 2, 1813.”

Our current application of the doctrines of church and state relationships is not supported by the Constitution or the Bible. The ministry of Christ, the Apostles and the early churches were conducted in large part in a public venue and often before hostile crowds; a far cry from today’s Sunday morning services in the comfortable sanctuaries of elaborate church buildings before congregations of adoring believers. When Jesus did teach in the Temple and Synagogues, His messages were often directed against the religious leaders and teachers of the day, the Scribes, Pharisees and Sadducees. Today they would probably be directed against the Pastors and teachers of our modern evangelical Christian churches.  Unless we are willing to work to restore the Biblically moral foundations of our culture there is little chance that we can survive as a nation with our liberties intact. America is sorely in need of a spiritual revival, and that revival must start with the Christian Church and its ministers.