‘Separation of Church and State’ can mean all sorts of things, depending on who’s defining it. But there is most certainly a biblical doctrine of separation that draws boundaries between Church and State without exempting the State from the...
Thomson, IL (PRWEB) June 11, 2013
In his latest article on Off The Grid News, The Amazing Origins of Church-State Separation, author Bill Heid takes on the ever-controversial topic of how the separation of church and state should be viewed. From the first state constitutions to the original thirteen colonies’ charters and all the way back to ancient Israel, Heid looks at some of the best definitions and executions of the separation of church and state.
With wildly varying definitions of “separation of church and state,” the concept never seems too far out of the news. From atheist groups trying to get a memorial cross at Marine Camp Pendleton removed in late 2011 (http://articles.latimes.com/2011/nov/22/local/la-me-1122-marine-cross-20111122) to whether the phrase “under God” should remain in the Pledge of Allegiance, the issue frequently becomes complicated by people with enormously different viewpoints. Heid remarks, “‘Separation of Church and State’ can mean all sorts of things, depending on who’s defining it. But there is most certainly a biblical doctrine of separation that draws boundaries between Church and State without exempting the State from the authority of Jesus Christ. The doctrine is hostile to religious and political tyranny, but in harmony with the biblical principle of civil authority by covenant.”
Heid’s point is that while church and state should be separated institutionally, the best governing authorities recognize that God goes beyond the church and He should not be banned from policy. He states, “… the history of Uzziah [a good king but punished by God for attempting to perform a task designated by God to be done only by the priests] points to God’s intention that the administration of State and Church, of civil government and formal worship, be institutionally distinct. The State is not to direct worship, administer the sacraments, or preach the gospel. The Church is not to pass civil laws, collect civil taxes, or impose the death penalty.” This is the extent of designated separation instituted by God and recognized by early Americans in colony charters, state constitutions, the Declaration of Independence, and in oaths of office. All these documents include references to God’s ultimate authority and show that “early America, while maintaining in large measure an administrative separation of Church and State, nevertheless saw the Christian faith as integral to her civil government, institutions, and laws.”
Heid concludes by challenging Christians to support this view of the separation of church and state and fight against pushes to make the government entirely secular.
Bill Heid is the radio co-host of Off The Grid News, an independent organization devoted to providing practical information about the world today and in light of the challenges of the future. He and his news team look for the truth beneath the facts of the top news stories and how they will affect your life.