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Originally posted by Miraj
reply to post by onecraftydude
I have this argument with my father sometimes.
I recognize Christianity as an influence on the Declaration and Constitution. However I will always refuse that it was only meant for Christians.
And if those Christians were so righteous, then why did they commit genocide and enslave an entire race of people?
Adultery (Leviticus 20:10-12, man and woman)
Lying about virginity. Applies to girls who are still in their fathers' homes, who lie about their virginity, and are presented to their husband as a virgin. The accused is guilty until proved innocent. (Deuteronomy 22:20-21)
The daughter of a priest practicing prostitution (death by fire) (Leviticus 21:9)
Rape of a virgin who is engaged. If she is not engaged you only have to marry her and give her father 50 shekels. No mention is made of the girl’s opinion, and no punishment is specified for raping a single non-virgin female. (Deuteronomy 22:25)
Being the victim of rape, if one is an engaged female virgin and the rape occurs in a city. If it takes place in a field, the victim is spared because nobody would have heard her screams. (Deuteronomy 22:23-27) (Presumably, virgins who scream for help inside a city will always be rescued?)
Men practicing bestiality. (Both man and animal die). (Leviticus 20:15)
Women practicing bestiality (Both woman and animal die). (Leviticus 20:16)
Having sex with your father’s wife, as distinct from "your mother", as it was common practice for men at the time to have several wives. (both die) (Leviticus 20:20)
Having sex with your daughter in law. (Leviticus 20:30)
Incest. (Leviticus 20:17)
(for men): Sex with a man in the same manner as sex with women. Generally interpreted as male homosexuality. The girls seem to get a free... errrr ...ride on this one. (Leviticus 18:23)
Marrying a woman and her daughter. They are all burnt to death (Leviticus 20:14)
Worshiping idols (Exodus 22:20, Leviticus 20:1-5, Deuteronomy 17:2-7).
Blasphemy (Leviticus 24:14-16,23).
Breaking the Sabbath (Exodus 31:14, Numbers 15:32-36).
Practicing magic (Exodus 22:18).
Being a medium or spiritualist. (Stoning) (Leviticus 20:27).
Trying to convert people to another religion. (stoning) (Deuteronomy 13:1-11, Deuteronomy 18:20).
Apostasy - If most people in a town come to believe in a different god. (Kill everybody, including animals, and burn the town.) (Deuteronomy 13:12-15)
Giving one of your descents to Molech. Probably refers to human sacrifice, which is not now as commonly practised. (Leviticus 20:2)
Non-priests going near the tabernacle when it is being moved. (Numbers 1:51)
Being a false prophet. (Deuteronomy 13:5, Deuteronomy 18:20, Zechariah 13:2-3)
Striking your parents (Exodus 21:15).
Cursing your parents (Exodus 21:17, Leviticus 20:9).
Being a stubborn and rebellious son. And being a profligate and a drunkard. (stoning) (Quite a few of us might have a problem with this one)(Deuteronomy 21:18-21)
 Violent and legal crimes
Murder. However if a slave is beaten to death the owner is “punished” — not necessarily killed. If the slave survives the beating then there is no punishment. This is part of a wide range of slavery laws in the Old and New Testament. (Genesis 9:6, Exodus 21:12, Numbers 35:16-21)
Kidnapping and selling a man. This is really a law against making an Israelite a slave against his will, as other laws happily allow the "stealing of men" to make slaves. (Exodus 21:16).
Perjury (in certain cases) (Deuteronomy 19:15-21).
Deuteronomy 19:20 explicitly identifies that the purpose of this is deterrence. "The rest of the people will hear of this and be afraid, and never again will such an evil thing (malicious and false testimony by one man against another) be done among you." Presumably all the other death penalties are assumed to be for deterrence as well. Ignoring the verdict of a judge – (or a priest!) (Deuteronomy 17:8-13).
Not penning up a known dangerous bull, if the bull subsequently kills a man or a woman. Both the animal and the reckless owner of the dangerous bull are to be put to death. (Exodus 21:29)
 Things that don’t go anywhere else.
Living in a city that failed to surrender to the Israelites. (Kill all the men, make the women and children slaves.) (Deuteronomy 20:12-14)
The Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is the fundamental governing document of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts . . . . It was drafted by John Adams, Samuel Adams, and James Bowdoin during the Mass achusetts Constitutional Convention between September 1 and October 30, 1779. Following approval by town meetings, the Constitution was ratified on June 15, 1780, became effective on October 25, 1780, and remains the oldest functioning written constitution in continuous effect in the world. The Massachusetts Constitution was the model for the Constitution of the United States of America, drafted seven years later.
Article II. It is the right as well as the duty of all men in society, publicly, and at stated seasons to worship the Supreme Being, the great Creator and Preserver of the universe. And no subject shall be hurt, molested, or restrained, in his person, liberty, or estate, for worshipping God in the manner and season most agreeable to the dictates of his own conscience; or for his religious profession or sentiments; provided he doth not disturb the public peace, or obstruct others in their religious worship. [See Amendments, Arts. XLVI and XLVIII.]
Article III. [As the happiness of a people, and the good order and preservation of civil government, essentially depend upon piety, religion and morality; and as these cannot be generally diffused through a community, but by the institution of the public worship of God, and of public instructions in piety, religion and morality: Therefore, to promote their happiness and to secure the good order and preservation of their government, the people of this commonwealth have a right to invest their legislature with power to authorize and require, and the legislature shall, from time to time, authorize and require, the several towns, parishes, precincts, and other bodies politic, or religious societies, to make suitable provision, at their own expense, for the institution of the public worship of God, and for the support and maintenance of public Protestant teachers of piety, religion and morality, in all cases where such provision shall not be made voluntarily.
Even afterwards, the "Christian Nation" position obtained. (See the John Jay information a little earlier in this thread.)
However, many state constitutions -- when originally written -- required officeholders to believe in a God (or Gods or a Goddess, or Goddesses, or a God and a Goddess, or Gods and Goddesses). (Emphasis added)
Originally posted by charles1952
reply to post by Aloysius the Gaul
Dear Aloysius the Gaul,
Thanks for your response and the link, it's helping me to re-think my position.
What I'm trying to say (I think) is that prior to the signing of our Constitution, there were a number of statements and documents indicating that religion and government were meant to be mixed. From your source:Even afterwards, the "Christian Nation" position obtained. (See the John Jay information a little earlier in this thread.)
However, many state constitutions -- when originally written -- required officeholders to believe in a God (or Gods or a Goddess, or Goddesses, or a God and a Goddess, or Gods and Goddesses). (Emphasis added)(yours is underlined, mine is bolded - AtG)
I am not trying to say that the Constitution, considering only the words on the page, established a Christian government. But as I look at things, it is getting clearer that many founding fathers anticipated or expected our government to be Christian.
Originally posted by charles1952
reply to post by Aloysius the Gaul
Dear Aloysius the Gaul,
What I'm finding for the idea that this was founded as a Christian nation are documents and court rulings from 1620 to1892, saying that it was .
What I'm finding against that idea is the fact that religion is lightly touched on in the Constitution, and that Jefferson didn't like the idea.
"There is no dissonance in these declarations. There is a universal language pervading them all, having one meaning. They affirm and reaffirm that this is a religious nation. These are not individual sayings, declarations of private persons. They are organic utterances. They speak the voice of the entire people. While because of a general recognition of this truth the question has seldom been presented to the courts, yet we find that in Updegraph v. Com., 11 Serg. & R. 394, 400, it was decided that, ‘Christianity, general Christianity, is, and always has been, a part of the common law of Pennsylvania.”
— Supreme Court Decision, 1892 Church of the Holy Trinity Decision v United States
Having undertaken, for the Glory of God, and advancements of the Christian faith and honor of our King and Country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the Northern parts of Virginia, do by these presents, solemnly and mutually, in the presence of God, and one another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil body politic; for our better ordering, and preservation and furtherance of the ends aforesaid; and by virtue hereof to enact, constitute, and frame, such just and equal laws, ordinances, acts, constitutions, and offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the colony; unto which we promise all due submission and obedience.
In a letter addressed to Pennsylvania House of Representatives member John Murray, dated October 12, 1816, Jay wrote, "Real Christians will abstain from violating the rights of others, and therefore will not provoke war. Almost all nations have peace or war at the will and pleasure of rulers whom they do not elect, and who are not always wise or virtuous. Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty, as well as the privilege and interest, of our Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers."
Although the original document has been lost, three versions exist from the 17th century: printed in Mourt's Relation (1622), which was reprinted in Purchas his Pilgrimes (1625), hand written by William Bradford in his journal Of Plimoth Plantation (1646), and printed by Bradford's nephew Nathaniel Morton in New-Englands Memorial (1669). The three versions differ slightly in wording and significantly in spelling, capitalization and punctuation. William Bradford wrote the first part of Mourt's Relation, including its version of the compact, so he wrote two of the three versions. The wording of those two versions is indeed quite similar, unlike that of Morton. Bradford's hand written manuscript is kept in a vault at the State Library of Massachusetts
hope that helps
As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen [Muslims],—and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan [Muslim] nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.
There is nothing in there about the USA being a christian nation.
There is an opinion by 1 member of the House of Representatives that the people should elect christians, and there is a SCOTUS decision that Christianity has been part of the common law of Pennsylvania. . . .
"There is no dissonance in these declarations. There is a universal language pervading them all, having one meaning. They affirm and reaffirm that this is a religious nation.
I would argue that yes, there is something in there about the USA being a Christian nation.
Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty, as well as the privilege and interest, of our Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers."
The Treaty also had spent seven months traveling from Tripoli to Algiers to Portugal and, finally, to the United States, and had been signed by officials at each stop along the way. Neither Congress nor President Adams would have been able to cancel the terms of the Treaty by the time they first saw it, and there is no record of discussion or debate of the Treaty of Tripoli at the time that it was ratified.