Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
First Amendment Correctly Interpreted:
1) An establishment is a business. Establishments of religion were church businesses supported by their members, which businesses are distinct from religion itself. Religion can be factored as RELI-God-I-ON which means I RELY ON God, which includes all Bible based interpretations. This is the true meaning used in the Declaration of Independence. So the first amendment separated Bible businesses, not the Bible and its use from the federal government.
2) By complete separation of the Bible businesses from government, churches were forerunners of Indian reservations, separate nation-states which were laws unto themselves, capable of ruling their members as they saw fit without government interference. At the time some states had state religions, denominations, or churches and the first amendment was in part to remove them from federal jurisdiction, control, and interference.
3) The Bible businesses or reservations created the nation from their pulpits as documented by David Barton and were free to participate in government by sending their representatives to Congress making government a mechanism for the free and equal unification of the churches. The first meeting of Congress demonstrated this.
4) The three hour prayer and Bible study meetings in Congress before they conducted the nation's business, corresponds to the typical length of church meetings where free equal speech is practiced without the lectures of pastors. Without hierarchy in worship or the prostitution (Rev. 17:5).of money and power, these were among the first true church meetings since Jesus' time on earth. Therefore Congress was a church greater than the sum of its parts.
5) True church or true religion should be Jesus based as in a spiritual number line where Jesus is on the right, Satan is on the left, and Paul is at zero. A focus on the New Pentateuch (four gospels plus Revelation which have most of Jesus' written words) working to fulfill every prophecy therein, including preaching the gospel as a testimony to all nations and building the overcomers, would prepare a church worthy of rapture in Rev. 12:5. Believers must continually replenish the grace they receive from God to do His tasks.
6) The Declaration of Independence is included in the Constitution Article 7 by reference as established law according to Constitutional Lawyer Anne Coulter. This fact provides for interpreting the reference in the Declaration to our relying on Divine Providence as including the Bible as one of the founding documents. Since the Divine Providence clause applies to all citizens, one may consider those who do not rely on Divine Providence are not fully American as intended by the Founding Fathers. To rely on Divine Providence means they had enough experience with it to trust it. Divine Providence was essential in winning many battles and thus, independence from England [David Barton].
7) Jews were and are Christians by definition because the word Christ means the anointing of the Holy Spirit which Jews also seek evidenced by their Holy Anointing Oil and prophet's miracles. They also have the same ultimate goal, ascension to God's throne in Rev. 12:5 and Isa. 66:7.
Overstepping the Founders
1) The First Amendment has been attacked and twisted from its original commonsense meaning by legal terrorists such as the ACLU, KKK, secular news. The Democratic party's KKK succeeded in getting a member named Hugo Black on the Supreme Court who took a note by Thomas Jefferson out of context to create the precedent of separation in 1947 instead of the church and state cooperation previously enjoyed for one hundred fifty years.
2) Religion has been redefined to indicate all philosophies people live by, including those without any God such as atheism and secularism. Establishment has been redefined to indicate any and all activity and funding supporting a worldview. These redefinitions have been recognized by the Supreme Court yet it often weights decisions in favor of atheism and secularism instead of treating worldviews equally, let alone with respect to America's heritage. This shows profound disrespect for the founding precedents of the court, making its modern decisions arbitrary and not worth enforcing.
3) More twisting from the original intent has occurred through the Supreme Court's arbitrary formula, the Lemon Test and the 14th Amendment applied to remove states rights.
4) The Supreme Court released a decision in 1980 reversing its 1960's prohibitions against prayer and Bible study in public schools. This modern decision is not generally obeyed by public schools or enforced because of lawsuit threats.
5) Nations are the only organizations rich enough to give a Bible to everyone on earth, so the conversion of Congress and the USA back to a Christian nation may be required to fulfill Jesus' prophecy that the gospel be preached to all nations. Christian businesses can be instrumental or inactive in helping Congress decide to work on making this a Christian world, eventually ending the need for war.
Persecuted ChurchesVirtue in business establishment churches was shown by history to exist when they were persecuted. Under persecution their emphasis moves toward the absolute truth of Jesus Christ applied to give faith to their members, even to the point of working for free.
When this vital urgency dissolves, the pastors tend to become lazy on spiritual matters and slide into material concerns. Concern for truth falls by the wayside so Bible verses often get chosen for their ear tickling value hoping that will translate into the tinkling of donations, expressing prostitution of purpose.
Jesus' Non-Establishment ChurchJesus' example was fully balanced. Jesus himself did not need or use money but he called a thief Judas to use it and hold the bag of whatever donations were received.
Jesus, the Son of God, could miraculously provide anything needed, including keeping the disciple's shoes and clothing from deteriorating during his three and a half year ministry. It is not certain that, at the end, when He said to buy a sword, that He meant a material sword. He could have intended a spiritual sword. Or Jesus may have wanted one available so He would have the opportunity to heal the ear Peter cut off, showing His glory and providing a lesson. The events related to the thief Judas’ materialism can be seen as Jesus treating Judas’ disease of greed, separate from needing money in Jesus' spiritual church.
The issue of Jesus’ money use is nearly non-existent. Jesus did ask for a Denarius to illustrate rendering unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God's. Money belongs to the government and men's hearts belong to God.
The easy way to overcome the establishment clause consistent with Jesus' example is to remove the business component from church. If we define church as 100% spiritual and nothing material except the humans involved, we have it. The true church operates by prayer to Jesus Christ, not by money. That defines Jesus' church as non-establishment.
Application of Non-Establishment ChurchTo be non-establishment, church has to use prayer alone without money for church purposes. If people support themselves by some material means that involves money, the means and use of money must be kept separate from church.
A church meeting might occur in a home, in a park, or any other free location. There should be nothing other than free speech on the Gospel, prayer, and one hymn. There need be nothing on paper if everyone memorizes a gospel. So there is no need for money in church.
Practical Yet Independent MaterialismThe use of material support including gifts of food must be considered separate from church unless done by miracle. Taking a break from the spiritual work of church to eat or otherwise conduct human life can be considered hospitality given to friends instead of part of church activities as can assisting people in practical needs such as improving their economic productivity, medical health, or housing using material technology.
A true non-establishment church must be defined and kept separate for spiritual work but if practical human needs are not met by miracle they must be met by independent means just as a traditional establishment church member’s work life is usually separate from their church life.
Any materialism even temporary can be considered a failure of the church to obtain and exercise the talents of faith to take care of needs by miracle as Jesus did – as an incentive to more prayer. However, the demands of human life should not be ignored like those who refuse medical treatment to people insisting on miracle healing without an adequate relationship with God to accomplish it.
Government SponsorshipThe application of non-establishment church to augment or replace America's war strategy could be done by faith as the Founders did in appropriating money to buy Bibles for converting Indians or it could be carefully defined with respect to keeping the soldier's material support separate from their church activities, especially Gospel preaching to enemies we hope to convert to friends and allies.
Of course, the non-establishment church in the halls of Congress would be the normal situation there. Any decision made in Congress that provides material support for people involved in spiritual church activities including gospel preaching to the nation’s enemies, could include funds for hospitality while the Gospel work itself is separate. Working through these issues with God, there should be a way to keep free of the prostitution that afflicts religious establishments. Perhaps constantly keeping the matter before God in prayer is a piece of the answer.
Continuous prayer with the humility to ask for God’s will to be done on every decision can keep the person praying also walking in the true Spirit. This is far superior to living for money. In that Spirit, one may learn to exercise the use of money properly as Jesus did, as led by His Father without falling to Rev. 17:5 prostitution.
Jesus’ example of teaching first then a miracle feeding when needed followed by the teaching to eat Jesus’ flesh and drink His blood caused the crowd to leave and only the disciples to remain. That example provides understanding on dealing with people who are there for material gifts instead of the spiritual. One must diligently apply the material and spiritual lessons to help people grow from material to spiritual interests. Going by God’s leading can help beggars become spiritual.
Liberation theology, the social “gospel,” 1000 points of light, faith based initiatives, and all other material welfare programs, organizations, and systems should not be part of the true church whose job is growing spiritual life not prostituted by materialism. Should government sponsored material welfare programs exist? First be led by Jesus in answer to prayer. Then if a need exists give good gifts as He leads. All people already have some economic floor or they wouldn’t be alive. The first priority must be helping them grow their spiritual life, then help take care of other needs.
Checks And BalancesThe historic influence of Montesquieu to have balanced forces pushing against each other to prevent tyranny is mostly obsolete. The American experience where government works with a moral people contrasts other government systems which fail repeatedly due to immorality of the people in many of its positions. The system of checks and balances work in certain applications like the division of labor on appropriations and spending between Congress and the President but it fails in allowing the majority party to shut out participation by the minority. Gridlock or the inability to get bills passed is a sign of lack of Christian prayer to ask for the best proposals on which to vote.
The best check and balance that exists in Congress now is the frequent elections to provide feedback on laws that do not work. The effects of some Christian changes may take a generation to notice. So it is up to the vigilance of voters both in and for Congress to make sure laws are written clearly and provide for amendments or discontinuance if the results are less than effective.
A check which can be used in court and conversations with government employees is to object to every mention of “separation of church and state” which doesn’t appear in the Constitution and counter with an opposite phrase. Any of these may meet your needs: “Make no law, including legislation from the bench, against free expression of faith in state [Tom Fosler],” “Separation of Church and Church since Congress is a Church based on its first official act,” "Separation of America from Atheists" based on Supreme Court Justice John Jay's remark that we should select Christians as our leaders.
With prayer, the ultimate executive is God himself. If there are multiple conflicting requests, He decides based on His perfect will. You can realize what happens on most topics by considering the weather. If you pray for a sunny weekend and a farmer needs rain to grow crops (which ultimately you need to eat) then God must arbitrate and may provide some of each. Or He may decide one of you has greater faith that corresponds more to His will at the moment.
Therefore the real relationship each individual has with Jesus Christ is what counts. Congress can now just as with the founders make decisions based on faith without regard to what any liberal says or what contradicting Supreme Court precedents are current. The arguments above are simply to show the liberals lack logic which if thought thoroughly through would support Jesus based Christianity which by definition is the very best possible way to absolute perfection.
Godless JusticeThe war of atheist secular liberals who are progressive toward hell in their acts against Christianity in Government and other public venues has been documented to have started with the American Liberal Union in 1876 [David Barton].
There have been so many bad decisions by courts it is amazing people haven't found a better system. When government employees seem to follow the Peter Principle of rising to the level of their incompetence, then bad DA's will be bad judges, appeals judges will be worse, and Supreme Court judges will decide using inconsistent precedents, making justice a high stakes gamble. The bar and judicial review system is a roulette of judicial ethics.
Maybe if court sessions started like the first Congress with three hours of prayer and Bible study, so everyone would become of one mind on God first, then address the issues at hand, there would be much better decisions.
Maybe if people were stronger Christians the need for court would disappear as participants received greater peace in their lives. I was called for jury duty and my request for dismissal in advance was refused by the court. I talked with a local Iranian gun merchant who had lots of reasons to go to court and we had a peaceful conversation about having boy scouts memorize a gospel. That extended the spirit of peace over the town and suddenly the court case was dropped. Peace is always preferable to legal processes.