The Great Myth - Bible Principles and the U.S. I don't see where the Bible supports much o

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The Great Myth - Bible Principles and the U.S. From: e_p@unl.edu (edgar pearlstein) Message-ID: <1um9o9INNm0t@crcnis1.unl.edu> Newsgroups: sci.skeptic I don't see where the Bible supports much of the basic ideas of the founding of our country. On the contrary, except in two important cases, it opposes them: The Declaration of Independence is a document that justifies revolution against the established royal government. The Bible, however, says "the powers that be are ordained of God" (Romans 13:1-7), and "For kings, and for all that are in authority" (I Timothy 2:2), thus giving rise to the idea of divine right of kings. There is no mention of "consent of the governed" in the Bible, as the Declaration demands. While the Declaration deplores taxation without representation, Jesus says, regarding taxation, "Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's" (Matthew 22:21) Tolerance of different religions is embraced in both the original Constitution (Article VI, paragraph 3) and in the first Amendment. Yet in the Bible we have: "Thou shalt have no other gods before me" (Exodus 20:3), "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live" (Exodus 22:18), "He that sacrifice unto any god save the Lord only, he shall be utterly destroyed" (Exodus 22:20), "He who is not with me is against me." (Matthew 12:30, Luke 11:23) "he that blasphemeth the name of the Lord, he shall surely be put to death, [and] all the congregation shall certainly stone him" (Leviticus 24:16). Such stoning was actually carried out (1 Kings 21:13). I don't find in the Bible anything in favor of a republican form of government, as our Constitution demands (Article IV, Section 4). On the contrary, Romans 13:1-7 tells people to obey authority because it is instituted by God. I find nothing in the Bible in defense of freedom of speech. On the contrary: "he that doubteth is damned" (Romans 14:23) "there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers...whose mouths must be stopped..". Titus, 1:10-11 Proverbs 6:16-19. "These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: ......and he that soweth discord among brethren." The last one could be construed as being against democracy, since anyone who runs for office against an existing office holder is sowing discord. "Corruption of the blood" is forbidden by the Constitution (Article III, Section 3, paragraph 2). "Prepare slaughter for his children for the iniquity of their fathers; that they do not rise, nor possess the land, nor fill the face of the world with cities". (Isaiah 14:21) "visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation" (Exodus 20:5, 34:7, Numbers 14:18, Deut. 5:9) "His blood be on us, and on our children." (Matthew 27:25) Bastards may not enter the temple, nor their descendants (Deut. 23:2) As Tom Paine says in The Age of Reason, this is "contrary to every principle of moral justice". The god killed a baby because of a sin of his father, David. (2Samuel 12:14) Ahab escaped punishment for murder by making an elaborate apology, and his descendants were punished instead. (I Kings 21:29) *BUT*: "neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers" (Deut. 24:16)!! One of the foundations of our country that we are not proud of was slavery. It was important economically both before and after independence. It was an institution condoned by the founders and recognized and defended by the original Constitution (Article I, Section 2, paragraph 3; Article I, Section 9; Article IV, Section 2, paragraph 3). It is also condoned in many places in the Bible, as pro- slavery people liked to point out in the days before the Civil War. In Genesis 17:23, it's clear tha Abraham had slaves, as it talks about his household "all that were bought with his money". Exodus 21:4 ff describes conditions for slavery. Leviticus 25:44-46 says that heathen may be purchased as slaves, that their children become slaves, and that they are inherited as property by the owner's children forever. Deut 20:10-14 says that when you conquer a city, if it surrenders then all people inside it become your slaves. But if it doesn't surrender, then all males are to be killed and all women and children "take unto thyself". Luke 12:47-8 shows that Jesus approves of slavery, for he describes the conditions under which one should give a severe beating to a slave. Some would argue that the KVJ BIble in most places uses the word servant, rather than slave. But it's clear that it means the same thing, and other translations do use "slave" a lot. Genesis 9:18- 27, about Noah and his son Ham, has been interpreted to mean that black people are supposed to be the slaves of white people. Timothy1 6:1-2 tells slaves to honor their masters, particularly if the masters are believers. Even the Dred Scott case (1857) has a biblical parallel: In the book of Philemon, Paul sends a runaway slave, Onesimus, back to his former master. Another place where one of the foundations of our country agrees with the Bible is in the treatment of Indians: Numbers 33:50-55 tells the Hebrews to TAKE AWAY LAND from the inhabitants and drive them away. In America this was called "manifest destiny."

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