- The Founders Meant to Keep Government Out of the Church, Not God Out of the Government
- These days the phrase “wall of separation between church and state” has come to mean keeping God or His believers from having a big effect on government and public life.
- But that’s far, far from what the Founding Fathers were thinking of when they were separating church and state.
- They were afraid of what so many of the Old World countries had: a religion established by the state as its one true religion, that would tyrannically rule over the faith and conscience of every citizen.
- Not only did the First Amendment say, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion,” but it also said, “or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”
- “What they wanted was the freedom that we have in the Bible: the rights of conscience,” Barton said. “And they didn’t want the state telling us how we could or couldn’t practice our faith.”
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