For years we have heard how the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution separates church and state. This is not true.
The First Amendment reads in part: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” It is interesting to note that the sentence is constructed in very specific language aimed directly at Congress and not the .states or the judiciary.
However, today it appears more and more that the First Amendment is being tested in the courts system at the state level.
Historically, this amendment was written to prevent a creation of a national church run by the government like the types that exist today countries such as England. There the parliament approves the bishops and other clergy members as designated by her royal majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
Even their Book of Common Prayer cannot be changed without the approval of parliament.
France removed nationalized religion during the French Revolution, by severing ties with the Roman Catholic Church . Many heads were severed during this time period as well in the name of religious purging.
Prior to 1790, it was viewed ‘that the Congregational Church was the ‘official ‘ church of the Thirteen Colonies; however this came to an end with the ratification of the First Amendment. And it remained that way until after World War II, when a constitutional battle arose over the use of public funds for transporting children to and from parochial school.
Then in 1963, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld that bible reading and classroom prayer violated the First Amendment and had to be stopped. At the time reading from the bible and classroom prayer were considered commonplace throughout the United States and had been upheld by the lower courts of a majority of states where it had been first challenged.
Today, the battle not only includes prayer in our schools, but there is a challenge before the courts to remove our national motto, ‘In God We Trust,’ from our currency, to remove ‘Under God’ from our Pledge of Allegiance and just recently the Ten Commandments on a monument in a state building was ordered removed by a Federal Judge .
According to James 1:26, “If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.”
Jus’ for perspective, these cases are being decided by the courts and are in no way being infringed upon by Congress.