THE CONSTITUTION
SOLUTION OR PROBLEM?

By: Al Cronkrite

"Far from being the ideal document hailed and heralded in a sea of campaign oratory, the Constitution was a lawyer's contract that claimed no higher law than its managers, who represented themselves as reflecting the will of the people. Since such a will was undefined and undefinable, lawyers made up the rules and procedures of government as they went along, within limits that were often ignored, slyly subverted, or poorly guarded. In effect, the Founders had recklessly placed the government in the position of what ancient Greeks called a 'tyrant' which, in its original sense, meant a rule without divine authority." Otto Scott

With hope that the direction of our nation might be changed, many Christians, myself included, have been ardent supporters of Ron Paul. Ron Paul is himself an ardent supporter of the Constitution and obedience to the Constitution would certainly be better than the rank humanism that is quickly pushing us into oblivion. However, there is a body of evidence that the Constitution itself may be the source of our problem.

For many American Christians patriotism involves supporting the nation right or wrong. They view our Founders as Christian men who produced documents that, if they were not expressly Christian, contained Christian principles. Others find it strange that Christian men would fail to encode the name of the Savior or refer to His dominion. The former group has argued, written, and studied to buttress their opinion. The latter group is joined by atheists, agnostics, and other humanists in contending that the Constitution is and was intended to be a secular document.

There is no doubt of the Founder's intent to prevent tyrants from rising to power and to encode restraints on a government that under the Constitution would be controlled by representatives elected by eligible voters. They sought freedom and attempted to preserve it by crafting a legal document called a Constitution. They often used religious language providing fodder for Christian Federalists.

A host of famous Christian leaders support Constitutional Christian conformity. Among them are Gary DeMarr, David Barton, Ron Paul, Peter Marshall, Marshall Foster, Doug Phillips, John Eidsmore, the late Verna Hall, the late D. James Kennedy, Herb Titus, Stephen McDowell, Mark Beliles, Chuck Baldwin, Mike Farris, Alan Keyes, Pat Robertson, Paul Crouch, David Ceurello, James Dobson, John Whitehead, and many, many more.

These men might argue that the Constitution has nothing to do with religion that it is just a control document. They might contend that the mention of Christianity was omitted because the individual states included it in their constitutions or that Christianity was not mentioned because of the need to conform to the Biblical principle of separation of church and state. They might cite the use of the phrase "the year of Our Lord" in the date line or the "day of rest" included in the time allowed a president for his signature on a bill. They might contend that the men who drafted the Constitution were Christian men using as proof godly verbiage attributed to them.

The Philadelphia Constitutional Convention, in the Summer of 1787, was a secret gathering convened for the purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation. It was an elite group that Jefferson described as "demigods". Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and probably President Washington had no intention of abiding by instructions from congress to revise the Articles. Their intention was to form a new federal government which they believed the states would accept in order to solve the problems they were having in conducting their inter-state affairs. They were conspiratorial and dishonest in their actions but right in their political assessment.

Patrick Henry of Virginia claimed he "smelled a rat" and refused to attend. Rhode Island declined to send delegates.

Very little has been written about Christian opposition to the results of the convention. The shift from a reformation to a substitution was successful and in the exuberant pride that characterized the birth of a new nation the still small voice of the Creator was drowned out and a grave error was made. Several prominent clergymen expressed their dissatisfaction. Rev. John Mason of New York wrote, "Should the citizens of America be as irreligious as her Constitution, we will have reason to tremble, lest the Governor of the universe, who will not be treated with indignity, by a people any more than by individuals, overturn from its foundations the fabric we have been rearing, and crush us to atoms in the wreck." Rev. Samuel Austin said, the Constitution "is entirely disconnected from Christianity. It is not founded on the Christian religion." Rev. Samuel Taggart lamented the lack of Christian reference to be "a national evil of great magnitude". Rev. Chauncey Lee said, "the Constitution has not the impress of religion upon it, not the smallest recognition of the government['s] being of God." It is "a great sin to have forgotten God in such an important national instrument and not to have acknowledged Him in that which forms the very nerves and sinews of the political body", lamented Rev. George Duffield. Rev. Jedediah Morse thought that the secular constitution meant that America like ancient Israel was doomed; Rev. James Wilson considered its creation "a degree of ingratitude, perhaps without parallel".

Maintaining separation of church and state and government neutrality in religious matters was one of the arguments used to sell the new Constitution. But as Dr. R. J. Rushdoony dutifully explained, there is no such thing as a religious void. Otto Scott wrote, "There was equally little doubt that they {the people} did not fully realize that a land with no religious center is a land where religion is what anyone chose to claim".

It was not only the lack of any mention of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob that creates concern about our Constitution but what it does mandate is disastrous as well. The first sentence in the First Article of the Bill of Rights reads, "Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;"

I receive dozens of emails complaining about the admission of Muslim immigrants into the United States. Many of those who complain are Christian men and women who are cultivating hate for people who have come into our country legally and are worshiping legally as well. Our Constitution specifically states that congress shall not "prohibit the free exercise of religion". Islam is considered a religion and our Constitution enforces the right of Muslims to worship here without being harassed. The fault, gentle reader, is not with the Muslims but with our own government and our own legal system!

Polytheism or multi-religionism is a violation of the First Commandment.

There is another major problem. Article six, Section 3 of the Constitution requires all state and federal officials, senators and representatives, to take an oath to support the Constitution. It ends with these words "but no religious test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States". These are shocking words! The Constitutions of all of the original thirteen states had clauses requiring adherence to Christianity. There had been some deterioration in these mandates but ratification of the new Constitution was a major coupe d'etat.

Gary North makes this comment, "The voters had not been willing to require of their national representatives what most states required of state representatives: an oath of allegiance to God and His Bible. The voters had been embarrassed by God. The Framers were not embarrassed by Him; they simply prohibited any public oath to Him in their new covenant document. They regarded Him as some sort of senile Uncle who could be trotted out on holidays, counted on to make a toast or two - judicially non-binding, of course - and then be sent back to His retirement home."

In 1863 the National Reform Association maintaining that religious neutrality was impossible to achieve began an effort to amend the Preamble to the Constitution with these words, "We the people of the United States, humbly acknowledging Almighty God as the source of all authority and power in civil government, the Lord Jesus Christ as the Governor among the nations, and His revealed will as of supreme authority, in order to constitute a Christian government, to form a more perfect union...do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America." In 1874 the House Judiciary Committee formally rejected the proposal.

Pastor Ted Weiland recently published Chapter 9 of his book "Bible Law vs Constitutionalism, a Christian Perspective". He begins by pointing to the Biblical doctrine of debt cancellation at seven year intervals and the salutary effect this would have on our current financial problems. He contends with any constitution that claims to be the "supreme law of the land" and challenges "We the People" being enshrined as god.

Seldom noted in other venues, Pastor Weiland writes about early attempts by Jewish settlers to have religious tests removed from state constitutions. He records the fact that several of the Founders were indebted to a Jewish broker name Haym Salomon, a member of Mikveh Israel Synagogue in Philadelphia. Salomon was a participant in an effort to have the Christian religious test removed in Pennsylvania.

James Madison was a recipient of Salomon's monetary favors. Madison wrote "The kindness of our little friend [Salomon] in Front Street, near the coffee-house, is a fund which will preserve me from extremities, but I never resort to it without great mortification, as he obstinately rejects all recompense." (See footnotes in the Mission to Israel link at the end of this essay)

Both President Washington and Benjamin Franklin had close relationships to Jewish leaders. President Washington had several Jews on his staff and Benjamin Franklin "was sufficiently friendly with them to be one of the contributors to the building fund for Philadelphia's first synagogue, Mikveh Israel. Samuel Keimer, an English printer who was one of Franklin's first employers, was a Jew".

Pastor Weiland explains that these men were Talmudic Jews and Talmudic law conflicts with the Hebraic Law of the Bible. It was Article VI of the Constitution and the First Article of the Bill of Rights that opened the door for Jews, Muslims, Hindus, atheists, Satanists, or any other religion you can imagine to be a part of the governing body of our nation. He writes, "Since the ratification of the federal Constitution and the eradication of the states' Christian test oaths, the nation's laws - including America's current legislation concerning capital punishment and infanticide - have reflected Talmudic law more than biblical law. It cannot be argued that the ban on the religious test clause was issued because a federal test was unnecessary in light of the states' constitutions. It was not the intent of the federal Constitution to leave the decision of religion solely to the states but, instead, to pave the way for deists, atheists, and even (and it would seem particularly) antichrists, to hold public office".

It is impossible for a nation to call itself Christian without enshrining God as sovereign and His Law as the standard of obedience. The United States of America has always been home to a Christian majority but for most of the time most of the country has been inhabited by humanistic Christians so severely backslidden that as R. J. Rushdoony says they "used God as a resource for man rather than as Lord or Sovereign".

Think about that, my Christian friend, are you a servant to the Living God or are you attempting to use Him as a resource?

I recently had a short email exchange with an apparently erudite individual who had read some of my writing and who conversed in Christian vernacular. As it turned out his Christian veneer was carefully selected to conform to the limits of his opinions. True followers of Christ cannot fellowship with opinion. We must assess all of life through the immutable word of God. We must read His Word with the intention of understanding His Will and determining how we can behave in a way that will please Him. We are His servants and it is the pleasure of servants to understand and obey their master. Few American Christians understand their proper position before God.

There are many good Christian leaders who support and study our Constitution. It is time to consider how our nation or any nation can please the Creator without seeking obedience to His Law in all of His creation. Will an oath to obey the Constitution pave the way for national obedience to God's Law? Should Christians work for democracy or should they be working toward monarchy? Is God pleased with polytheism and secular government? These are questions that need to be determined from God's Word, not from the opinions of men.

This article depended heavily on these websites:

http://www.missiontoisrael.org/biblelaw-constitutionalism-pt9.php

http://www.america-betrayed-1787.com/

http://www.ismellarat.com/

 

"Published originally at EtherZone.com : republication allowed with this notice and hyperlink intact."


Al Cronkrite is a free-lance writer from Florida. He a is regular columnist for Ether Zone.

Al Cronkrite can be reached at: fmsinfla@hotmail.com

Published in the July 22, 2009 issue of  Ether Zone.
Copyright 1997 - 2009 Ether Zone.

We invite your comments on this article in our forum!