Energy elsewhere

We are a better nation when Jesus is in the center

(name withheld)


Hi (name withheld),,

The MRFF has no quarrel with your belief about Jesus. Our concern is that since

not everyone shares that view and ours is a secular nation in which people are free
to practice and enjoy the belief system of their choice, neither our government nor
any part of it should be promoting one belief or faith over others.

Best,

Mike Farrell

(MRFF Board of Advisors)


Dear (name withheld),

Our Founding Father’s thought otherwise.

 

Jesus is never mentioned in the Constitution or the Bill of Rights. The words “religion” and “religious” encompasses all religions not just Christianity.

 

Article VI, clause 3 of the Constitution

“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.”

 

First Amendment

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion (establishment clause), or prohibiting the free exercise (exercise clause) thereof.”

The establishment clause comes first and the free exercise clause is subservient to it.

 

The Treaty of Tripoli was signed at Tripoli on November 4, 1796.It was submitted to the Senate by President John Adams, receiving ratification unanimously from the U.S. Senate on June 7, 1797, and signed by Adams, taking effect as the law of the land on June 10, 1797; a mere 8 years since our Constitution went into effect. If what was written was wrong in anyway, there would have been uproar. But, it passed unanimously and confirmed that America was not founded on Christianity.

Treaty of Tripoli

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 tranquility, of Mussulmen [Muslims],—and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan [Mohammedan] 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.

.The Constitution reflects our founder’s views of a secular government protecting the freedom of any belief or unbelief.

 

The historian, Robert Middlekauff, observed, “The idea that the Constitution expressed a moral view seems absurd. There were no genuine evangelicals in the Convention, and there were no heated declarations of Christian piety.”

 

“The Salem witchcraft was the rock on which the theocracy shattered”. George Lincoln Burr (1857 – 1938), Professor of History and Librarian at Cornell University

 

“Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, then that of blindfolded fear.”
Thomas Jefferson, letter to Peter Carr, August 10, 1787

 

“History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance of which their civil as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purposes.”

Thomas Jefferson: in letter to Alexander von Humboldt, December 6, 1813

“The United States of America have exhibited, perhaps, the first example of governments erected on the simple principles of nature; and if men are now sufficiently enlightened to disabuse themselves of artifice, imposture, hypocrisy, and superstition, they will consider this event as an era in their history. Although the detail of the formation of the American governments is at present little known or regarded either in Europe or in America, it may hereafter become an object of curiosity. It will never be pretended that any persons employed in that service had interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the influence of Heaven, more than those at work upon ships or houses, or laboring in merchandise or agriculture; it will forever be acknowledged that these governments were contrived merely by the use of reason and the senses.”
John Adams, “A Defence of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of America” 1787-1788

“If I could conceive that the general government might ever be so administered as to render the liberty of conscience insecure, I beg you will be persuaded, that no one would be more zealous than myself to establish effectual barriers against the horrors of spiritual tyranny, and every species of religious persecution.”
George Washington, letter to the United Baptist Chamber of Virginia, May 1789

“Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law.”
Thomas Jefferson, letter to Dr. Thomas Cooper, February 10, 1814

“The civil government functions with complete success by the total separation of the Church from the State.”
James Madison, 1819, Writings, 8:432, quoted from Gene Garman, “Essays In Addition to America’s Real Religion”

“Strongly guarded as is the separation between Religion and Government in the Constitution of the United States, the danger of encroachment by Ecclesiastical Bodies, may be illustrated by precedents already furnished in their short history.” 

James Madison; Monopolies, Perpetuities, Corporations, Ecclesiastical Endowments

 

 “God has appointed two kinds of government in the world, which are distinct in their nature, and ought never to be confounded together; one of which is called civil, the other ecclesiastical government.”
Isaac Backus, An Appeal to the Public for Religious Liberty, 1773

 

“During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What have been its fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the Clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity; in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution.

What influence, in fact, have ecclesiastical establishments had on society? In some instances they have been seen to erect a spiritual tyranny on the ruins of the civil authority; on many instances they have been seen upholding the thrones of political tyranny; in no instance have they been the guardians of the liberties of the people. Rulers who wish to subvert the public liberty may have found an established clergy convenient auxiliaries. A just government, instituted to secure and perpetuate it, needs them not.”

James Madison 1785 Memorial and Remonstrance against Religious Assessments

 

“Where the preamble declares, that coercion is a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion, an amendment was proposed by inserting “Jesus Christ,” so that it would read ‘A departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion;’ the insertion was rejected by the great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend, within the mantle of its protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mohammedan, the Hindoo and Infidel of every denomination.”

As Thomas Jefferson wrote in his Autobiography, in reference to the Virginia Act for Religious Freedom

 

“Because religious belief, or non-belief, is such an important part of every person’s life, freedom of religion affects every individual. Religious institutions that use government power in support of themselves and force their views on persons of other faiths, or of no faith, undermine all our civil rights. Moreover, state support of an established religion tends to make the clergy unresponsive to their own people, and leads to corruption within religion itself. Erecting the “wall of separation between church and state,” therefore, is absolutely essential in a free society.” Thomas Jefferson, to the Virginia Baptists (1808) ME 16:320.

 

According to our Founding Fathers the Constitution is not based on Christianity or biblical law.

 

Even though Christianity is in the majority it cannot be elevated above other religions in our secular government.

 

Joan Slish

MRFF Advisory Board Member


Good Day,  (name withheld) –

Thanks for taking a moment to write to the MRFF. I’d like to offer a response to your brief message — in addition to being a staunch supporter of the MRFF, I’m a lifelong, active and committed Christian, a USAF Academy graduate (’85), and a veteran USAF officer.
With all due respect, I think your statement, while assuredly well-meaning, is off-base. I would agree that the following is true for Christians such as you and me…
I am a better Christian when Jesus is in the center
…. but you drift off-base when you ascribe that notion to a nation which is comprised of many beliefs about God and religion and has been from its very beginning. America was not founded as a Christian nation. Rather, our true heritage is one of religious freedom for all citizens, regardless of individual belief or non-belief. That reality does not devalue our individual Christian beliefs in any way, nor does it threaten our own religious freedom. So I’d encourage you to keep Christ at the center of your life, and I will do the same. I’d also encourage you to respect the religious freedom rights of all Americans, particularly those who don’t believe what you and I believe.
As for spending “energy elsewhere”, I believe that the focus of the MRFF is in the right place. We are dedicated to ensuring that all members of the United States Armed Forces fully receive the Constitutional guarantees of religious freedom to which they and all Americans are entitled by virtue of the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.  Many of us are either current or former military members, so we have a good understanding and appreciation for the meaning of the oath that everyone takes at the time of enlistment or commissioning — to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign or domestic”, and to “bear true faith and allegiance to the same…”
With that in mind, I’d suggest that the following statement is absolutely true…
Our military is a better military when the Constitution is in the center
Peace,
Mike Challman
Christian, USAF veteran, MRFF supporter

 

 

 

 

 

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