American citizens, their churches and synagogues, need to form a voting bloc to protect religious freedom in America – A Religious Freedom Association (RFA). The purpose of this organization is simply to return America to the freedom at her founding, and the position clearly spelled out in the Constitution. A RFA is needed because many politicians, sadly, care little about the law as defined by the Constitution. They also care very little about a single voter, but care tremendously about a large bloc of voters – members of a RFA.
Remember that the first settlers in America came here for religious freedom, to worship God as they believed appropriate. This belief was codified into national law with the 1st Amendment at the nation’s founding which states:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,
The Amendment prevented a national church of America that would discriminate against other Christian denominations (Catholic, Lutheran, Baptist….) or other religions. All citizens were free to worship God as they wished, or to not worship Him. The 1st Amendment strictly prevents government from “prohibiting the free exercise of” religion. What does this mean? If a public school wants to offer a religion class or graduation prayer, it is up to those who run the school – the elected school board. If a city wants to have a religious monument in a public space, it is up to the city council or mayor – elected office holders. The constitutional method allows voting citizens to ultimately decide what if any religion is found in the public square.
While allowing freedom for all religions, America was still a nation formed by Christians, and the early government promoted belief in the God of the Bible. This is documented in The Bible and Constitution Made America Great. Including the following quote from a Supreme Court Chief Justice:
Now there will probably be found few persons in this or any other Christian country who would deliberately contend that it was unreasonable or unjust to foster and encourage the Christian religion generally as a matter of sound policy as well as of revealed truth.
– Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States. Volume 3. 1833. Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story. P723.
It is amazing to contrast the early Supreme Court thinking expressed by Chief Justice Story with modern court thinking. In the last century, judges began removing God from the public square, based on the judges’ personal preferences rather than constitutional text. Recall the Constitution is a contract between the people and their government. The contract can be altered by amending it, but that is the only way. For example, the Constitution was amended to ban slavery, to allow the federal government to prohibit alcohol, then to prevent it from prohibiting alcohol. There have been 27 Amendments in total.
Americans used to realize and believe that the Constitution could only be changed by amendment, not by the whim of judges. But judges on the Supreme Court have seized the power to amend.
Going back to religion and the 1st Amendment, look at historical Supreme Court rulings that began to emerge in the 1940’s:
- States can’t offer voluntary or elective religious courses in school. (1948)
- It is unconstitutional for students to recite a long-standing prayer. (1962)
- Public school children can not read the Bible at school. (1963)
- States can not require creationism be taught in the public schools. (1968)
- Abortion is a “right”. Voided abortion laws in every state. (1973)
- States can not post the Ten Commandments in their public school classrooms. (1980)
- Clergy may not offer an invocation or benediction at a public school graduation ceremony. (1992)
- Students may not publicly pray before a football game. (2000)
- A 75 year old cross monument on public land was not ordered dismantled. (A 5-4 decision that could have gone either way) (2010)
- States must allow homosexual couples to marry. (2015)
Next up: Editing the Bible. $70M Suit Against Bible Publishers due to offensive verses on homosexuality.
The trend is obvious. The Supreme Court has, with no constitutional authority, relentlessly forced states to follow a secular liberal agenda that has eliminated God and the Bible from the public arena. What has the response of Christians and their churches been? Largely nothing. With the current judicial trend, does anyone doubt that the courts will eventually force the editing of the Bible to remove politically incorrect portions?
The courts were never intended to be an un-checked super-authority ruling on every aspect of life in America. Elected leaders at the state or national level were intended to resolve most of these issues. American government is a system of checks and balances. What checks are present on the court? Congressional representatives can restrict the courts’ jurisdiction or impeach rogue judges. State legislatures or governors can ignore obviously unconstitutional judicial rulings (as their oaths require). What is missing is the will for our elected representatives to act to check the courts.
This is where Christians and churches (as well as others seeking religious freedom) must now take a stand. We must educate fellow citizens on the true meaning and intent of the Constitution with respect to religion. This book is one way. We must talk to our representatives and educate them. We then must vote for those representatives willing to take action to stand up for religious liberty and the Constitution (and not vote for those who do nothing).
To do this, it is time for a Religious Freedom Association (RFA) to be formed to guard the 1st Amendment, similar to the way the NRA has protected the 2nd Amendment. The RFA doesn’t necessarily need to donate to politicians, rather it can spearhead the effort to educate Americans on the 1st Amendment, and become an uncompromising voting bloc of members to protect the right to Freedom of Religion. Those representatives who fail to take any action can be identified, and notified that they will no longer receive votes from RFA members. Votes must now be earned.
The RFA will be a force to prod reluctant representatives to follow their oaths to uphold the Constitution, and to use their authority to check unconstitutional actions by courts.