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  1. #381  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    Which of the quotes above supports the notion that Christian principles overlap with the principles of a democracy in general and the principles the US are founded on in particular, according to you?
    How is that you were able to find the scriptures that were referenced without but miss the context in which the references were made?
  2. #382  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    While I appreciate the articles quoted by HobbesIsReal, looking at the parts of the bible which are quoted in that post quickly reveals that there is nothing which actually supports democracy:

    Deuteronomy 17:
    Thou shalt in any wise set him king over thee, whom the LORD thy God shall choose: one from among thy brethren shalt thou set king over thee: thou mayest not set a stranger over thee, which is not thy brother.

    1 Samuel 8
    ..."and they said to him, "Behold, you have grown old, and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now appoint a king for us to judge us like all the nations."

    1 Peter 2:13-17
    13Submit yourselves for the Lord's sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority,
    14or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right.
    15For such is the will of God that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men.
    16Act as free men, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God.
    17Honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king.

    Leviticus 25:10:
    According to the article HobbesIsReal quoted, it says "Proclaim liberty throughout the land unto all the inhabitants thereof."

    However, the New American Standard Bible reads "'You shall thus consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim a release through the land to all its inhabitants It shall be a jubilee for you, and each of you shall return to his own property, and each of you shall return to his family."
    All of this reads like theocracy to me.


    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    Which of the quotes above supports the notion that Christian principles overlap with the principles of a democracy in general and the principles the US are founded on in particular, according to you?

    So, again:

    (A) state a principle on which the US as a nation are based on
    (B) quote where in the Bible this is advocated.

    Repeat (A) and (B) for examples 1 to n.


    Frankly, I don't think you will come up with anything that fits. I doubt Jesus cared in the least about the political system or the conditions people lived in. May I remind you of John 18:36: Jesus said, "My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jews. But now my kingdom is from another place."

    and Mark 12:14-17: "Teacher, we know you are a man of integrity. You aren't swayed by men, because you pay no attention to who they are; but you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not? 15Should we pay or shouldn't we?"
    But Jesus knew their hypocrisy. "Why are you trying to trap me?" he asked. "Bring me a denarius and let me look at it." 16They brought the coin, and he asked them, "Whose portrait is this? And whose inscription?"
    "Caesar's," they replied.
    17Then Jesus said to them, "Give to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's."
    While this reads like fundamental separation of church and state.
  3. #383  
    Quote Originally Posted by whmurray
    All of this reads like theocracy to me.
    Only in the since that there is a ruling head of the government. Again, you have taken small quotes and applied to today's standards and definitions without any thought to the political meaning at THAT time that the statements were made, the events that lead to those quotes, or the society that the events took place. The point is, is that the King was not all powerful. The power (though leaned to one side of the scale or the other during their history) was split among 3 different governing bodies...sound familiar? That certain constitutions, laws, etc... were ratified and approved by the people....which does not sound very much like tradition middle age dictatorships. It may not have been a full representative democracy but it had many fundamental principles of a democratic government.

    Do you dispute that there were 3 powers that governed? Do you refute that the people had a say (even though by today's standards in America would be considered limited) in their government?
  4. #384  
    Quote Originally Posted by AnteL0pe
    haha. Im all for private citizens expressing their religion, just not my government. And what if im Rastafarian, will you all support me in my quest for the legalization of marijuana? It is, after all, a necessary part of that religion.
    You would probably get tons of support in Jamaica! However here in AMERICA we tend support the religion that she was founded on.

    Which leads me to another thought....

    Wouldn't it be more accurate to remove the "one nation" part? That has got to be offending many of the the immigrants (or whatever the correct term for the people who come here but don't really want to be part of "here" is).
  5. #385  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    This may be true nowadays, but the date 25th of December is in fact a pagan date the Christians "borrowed" as a marketing tool in order to superimpose Christian traditions over older ones.

    For instance, the Egyptian god Amun Re was (allegedly) also born on December 25th, as well as the Roman god Mithras. The Roman "Sol Invictus" celebration on the same date was the reason why Christians also started using that date in the third century AD.

    Basically, December 25th is just the date when the days start getting longer again after the winter solistice. That's a good reason to celebrate for most religions, and also non-religions.
    The date was borrowed to aviod persecution, for thier beliefs. The cloaking was so succesful that centuries later you will find even people such as DA defending the celebration, or day off, or whatever he(they) calls it.
    Last edited by sxtg; 09/29/2005 at 02:58 AM.
  6. #386  
    Most historians put the actual birth of Christ in or around April actually.....and many of them put it 3 BC to 5 years AD.
  7. #387  
    Quote Originally Posted by t2gungho
    There are probably other examples as well...like the electoral college. We don't trust the majority to pick the president so as a safeguard, we have electors do it.
    As I understand it, the college was conceived as a matter of convenience, when the mail system wasn't efficient (is that an oxy moron?). I imagine a few years ago it would have taken almost the entire term of the proposed presidency just tally all the votes. That said, I believe the college has seen its useful life and should be disolved
  8. #388  
    Quote Originally Posted by sxtg
    As I understand it, the college was conceived as a matter of convenience, when the mail system wasn't efficient (is that an oxy moron?). I imagine a few years ago it would have taken almost the entire term of the proposed presidency just tally all the votes. That said, I believe the college has seen its useful life and should be disolved
    I don't know if I am ready to dissolve it, we still don't have a uniform way of counting/casting votes. That being said, imagine the last election if it was just a popular vote. In states like Idaho, Dems would come out and vote more often (knowing it would count more). Same would hold true for NY...more Reps would vote knowing that it will count. More participation would be a good thing in my book.
    Palm III-->Palm IIIxe-->Palm 505-->Samsung i300-->Treo 600-->PPC 6600-->Treo 650-->Treo 700wx-->BB Pearl--> BB Curve

  9. #389  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    How is that you were able to find the scriptures that were referenced without but miss the context in which the references were made?
    I know the context, and I think it's quite a strange allegation to claim (without knowing what I know and what I don't know) that I don't. In case you think I did not quote the right parts, please share you knowledge and show us what I missed.

    So, again:

    (A) state a principle on which the US as a nation are based on
    (B) quote where in the Bible this is advocated.

    Repeat (A) and (B) for examples 1 to n.

    Since you cannot come up with anything of that sort, I conclude your statement that the US are based on Christian principles was false, or grossly overstated at best.

    I guess though it would be correct to say the US were founded by people with a mostly Christian or Deist background, that the bible does not directly oppose the principles on which a democracy is built on, and that there are weak references showing that the kings of the Old Testament were not all-powerful, but had to take into consideration the views of the population they were ruling.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  10. #390  
    Quote Originally Posted by HobbesIsReal
    The power (though leaned to one side of the scale or the other during their history) was split among 3 different governing bodies...sound familiar? That certain constitutions, laws, etc... were ratified and approved by the people....which does not sound very much like tradition middle age dictatorships. It may not have been a full representative democracy but it had many fundamental principles of a democratic government.

    Do you dispute that there were 3 powers that governed? Do you refute that the people had a say (even though by today's standards in America would be considered limited) in their government?
    I think this argument is typical for how some people try to make the case of a Christian basis of modern democracies with close to nothing: 3 powers, does that sound familiar? Yes, sure, but according to what you qouted before, the three powers in the Jewish tradition are something totally different:
    This leads to the other dimension of Jewish republicanism, namely, that in the traditional constitution and throughout Jewish history power has always been divided among three domains, known in traditional Hebrew as ketarim (crowns): that of Torah, responsible for communicating God's word to the people and interpreting the Torah as constitution to them; Kehunah (priesthood), responsible for being a conduit from the people to God; and Malkhut, which may be best translated as civil rule, responsible for the day-to-day business of civil governance in the edah.
    So, according to you, the US are based on the principle of the three powers Bible, priesthood, and civil governance?? Gimme a break...
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  11. #391  
    More news from the founding fathers...
    http://dim.com/~randl/founders.htm

    John Adams, the country's second president: "This would be the best of all possible worlds, if there were no religion in it!".
    During Adam's administration that the Senate ratified the Treaty of Peace and Friendship, which states in Article XI that "the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion."

    Thomas Paine: "I do not believe in the creed professed by the Jewish church, by the Roman church, by the Greek church, by the Turkish church, by the Protestant church, nor by any church that I know of...Each of those churches accuse the other of unbelief; and for my own part, I disbelieve them all."

    James Madison, fourth president and father of the Constitution, was not religious in any conventional sense. "Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprise."
    "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."

    Benjamin Franklin, delegate to the Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention, said:
    As to Jesus of Nazareth, my Opinion of whom you particularly desire, I think the System of Morals and his Religion...has received various corrupting Changes, and I have, with most of the present dissenters in England, some doubts as to his Divinity; tho' it is a question I do not dogmatize upon, having never studied it, and think it needless to busy myself with it now, when I expect soon an opportunity of knowing the Truth with less trouble." He died a month later, and historians consider him, like so many great Americans of his time, to be a Deist, not a Christian.
    Last edited by clulup; 09/29/2005 at 04:18 AM.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  12. #392  
    Quote Originally Posted by sxtg
    .......
    Wouldn't it be more accurate to remove the "one nation" part? That has got to be offending many of the the immigrants (or whatever the correct term for the people who come here but don't really want to be part of "here" is).
    Perhaps. However, until the "under God" phrase was added, "one nation, indivisible," is what the pledge was about. It was a nationalist pledge. The whole purpose was to have loyalty transferred from the several states to the broader nation.
    Last edited by whmurray; 09/29/2005 at 10:31 AM.
  13. #393  
    Quote Originally Posted by sxtg
    As I understand it, the college was conceived as a matter of convenience, when the mail system wasn't efficient (is that an oxy moron?). I imagine a few years ago it would have taken almost the entire term of the proposed presidency just tally all the votes. That said, I believe the college has seen its useful life and should be disolved
    Never going to happen. While most of us do not understand its purpose and intent, the small states do. They understand that were it not for the college, the blue states win. Were it not for the college, they would never see a candidate. They understand that were it not for the college, the interests of, for example, agricultural and mining, states would be ignored. Many of us who live in blue states do not like what appears to us to be the disproportionate power of the dairy, tobacco, sugar, and corn states.

    That is why a change in the Constitution can be prevented by just the thirteen smallest states and why they will never consent.
  14. #394  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    ...Instead of continuously asking back questions at me, I think it is really time for you to

    (A) state a principle on which the US as a nation are based on
    (B) quote where in the Bible this is advocated.

    Repeat (A) and (B) for examples 1 to n.
    Item 1: There is a Creator

    It has been stated that this is not specifically a "christian" principle. I concur. However, it is pertinent to the discussion to point out text in the Bible where this principle is advocated.

    Key passages include:
    In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginnig with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. John 1:1-3
    In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. Genesis 1:1
    Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were createdRevelation 4:11
    There are other texts that provide evidence of advocacy, but thsese should suffice (after all , that the Bible advocates a Creator is not surprising).

    Why is it pertinent to include this principle, when we have already agreed that the principle is not unique to Christianity?

    The question at hand is the christian/biblical influence on the charter documents. So, while there are many belief systems that advocate the concept of a Creator, if we cross-reference that list of belief systems with the belief systems present and influential in the times, the number of hits is reduced.

    For example, Islam advocates a Creator. However, Islam was not prominent in the territory during that era. Further, Islam advocates a deference to Islamic law even in civil government, so the likelihood of that influence on the charter documents is further diminished given the absence of such corroborating language.

    What does a "creator" have to do with democracy?

    Answer 1: It does not matter. We are talking about the influence of biblical/christian principles on the founding of this particular democratic republic.

    Answer 2: Democracy assumes an equality inherent to all individuals without regard to station in life. Thus, one person gets one vote. Your vote is equal in influence and effect to my vote.

    The founders perceived that the inhernet euality was endowed by the Creator. Thus, it is pertinent to address the principle of the existence of a Creator first and foremost.

    Any questions?
  15. #395  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    Item 1: There is a Creator

    It has been stated that this is not specifically a "christian" principle. I concur.
    ...

    What does a "creator" have to do with democracy?

    Answer 1: It does not matter.
    Exactly.
    Answer 2: Democracy assumes an equality inherent to all individuals without regard to station in life. Thus, one person gets one vote. Your vote is equal in influence and effect to my vote.

    The founders perceived that the inhernet euality was endowed by the Creator. Thus, it is pertinent to address the principle of the existence of a Creator first and foremost.

    Any questions?
    Yes, I have a question. You still did not
    (A) state a principle on which the US as a nation are based on
    (B) quote where in the Bible this is advocated.

    When will you start? Would it not be wiser to admit that the US are not based on Christian principles? It would not make the US or Christian principles any better or worse. However, it is of course also true that the principles on which the US are founded on do not oppose Christian principles.

    As quoted here (dim.com/~randl/founders.htm), "the Treaty of Tripoli, passed by the U.S. Senate in 1797, read in part: "The government of the United States is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion." The treaty was written during the Washington administration, and sent to the Senate during the Adams administration. It was read aloud to the Senate, and each Senator received a printed copy. This was the 339th time that a recorded vote was required by the Senate, but only the third time a vote was unanimous (the next time was to honor George Washington). There is no record of any debate or dissension on the treaty. It was reprinted in full in three newspapers - two in Philadelphia, one in New York City. There is no record of public outcry or complaint in subsequent editions of the papers."


    Besides, from the assumption that there is a creator does not follow that all have or should have equal rights. I think you made that connection up.
    Last edited by clulup; 09/29/2005 at 04:51 PM.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  16. #396  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    Exactly.Yes, I have a question. You still did not
    (A) state a principle on which the US as a nation are based on
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    Item 1: There is a Creator
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    (B) quote where in the Bible this is advocated.
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginnig with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. John 1:1-3

    In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. Genesis 1:1

    Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were createdRevelation 4:11
    Last edited by shopharim; 09/29/2005 at 05:37 PM. Reason: Back to the Future Reference removed
  17. #397  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    Besides, from the assumption that there is a creator does not follow that all have or should have equal rights. I think you made that connection up.
    Actually, the founders made the connection. But we'll get to that.
  18. #398  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    "There is a Creator" is certainly not a principle on which the US as a nation and a demorcracy are built on. You cling to this, but the question of whether there is a creator or not is irrelevant for the political basis of the US. None of the principles of a democracy like "one person, one vote", freedom of speech, freedom of religion etc. depends on that.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  19. #399  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    "There is a Creator" is certainly not a principle on which the US as a nation and a demorcracy are built on. You cling to this, but the question of whether there is a creator or not is irrelevant for the political basis of the US. None of the principles of a democracy like "one person, one vote", freedom of speech, freedom of religion etc. depends on that.
    When listing such principles, please do not overlook or ignore the rule of law. Magna Carta: "Not even the king is above the law." I hope that the proponents of Christianity and a role for the church in the authority and authenticity of the state will support this proposition.

    I still hear them saying that the king is appointed by God and is (above) the law. [This proposition would offend me as theocratic even if so many of its adherents did not believe that G. W. Bush is the king.] Still, while the idea that the law is above the king was novel at the time, it was mature by the time of the founding. I will argue that it should start any such list but it must at least be on it.
  20. #400  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    "There is a Creator" is certainly not a principle on which the US as a nation and a demorcracy are built on. You cling to this, but the question of whether there is a creator or not is irrelevant for the political basis of the US. None of the principles of a democracy like "one person, one vote", freedom of speech, freedom of religion etc. depends on that.
    That there is a creator is fundamental to the argument the founders made for independence. The expressed it as obvious ("self-evident") that all men are created equal and endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights.

    Everything that followed stood upon that same foundation. The constitution they drafted established the practical implementation of the system government that would be deployed to secure the creator-endowed, unalienable rights. As such, the notion that "there is a creator" is central to the founding of the republic.

    The analogy is similar to the exampe of Jesus and the denaris. Jesus' exgortation was to give to caesar that which was caesar's. In other words, the coin was issued by caesar and as such caesar had a the authority to dictate its use. No one else was entitled to make such determinations. Likewise, in as much as the rights were endowed by the Creator, they were unalienable. No one else had the right to infringe upon them.

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