Seperation Of Church and State


The following information is from the ADF.  The ADF is a group of lawyers who are going up against the ACLU and other groups who want to do away with our religious freedoms.

At a time where the National Day of Prayer is being attacked by atheist groups everywhere.  We need to understand our rights and freedoms as Christians. 

Please read the following and leave your comments.  Remember, we are protected,”Under the Shadow of His Wing.”

Contrary to popular opinion, the term “separation of

church and state” is found nowhere in the United States

Constitution. While the First Amendment clearly forbids

the creation of a national denomination, it says nothing

about the so-called “separation of church and state.”


• The term “separation of church and state” was first used by

Thomas Jefferson in a letter to the Danbury Baptists in 1801,

when he responded to their concerns about state involvement

in religion. Jefferson’s letter had nothing to say about limiting

public religious expression, but dealt with government’s

interference in the public expression of faith.


• It was U.S. Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black who first

inserted the term “separation of church and state” into American

jurisprudence in his majority opinion of Everson v. Board

of Education (1947). He wrote: “The First Amendment has

erected a wall between church and state. The wall must be

kept high and impregnable. We could not approve the

slightest breach.”


• Black’s opinion was based on a previous misreading of

Jefferson’s 1801 letter in the U.S. Supreme Court decision

Reynolds v. United States (1878). Black also confused his

history. In the opinion, he wrote that the Danbury letter was

“almost as an authoritative declaration of the scope and effect

of the First Amendment.”


• The First Amendment states: “Congress shall make no law

respecting an establishment of religion; or prohibiting the free

exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or the

press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to

petition the government for a redress of grievances.” No

mention is made of a “wall between church and state.”


• The true purpose of the First Amendment was to prohibit the

federal government from establishing a national church, like the

Church of England, or require that sectarian policy be forced

on an individual state or on the federal government. While the

amendment does recognize a “differentiation between church

and the government, it does not mean that they could not

cooperate with each other.”


• In 2001, Daniel Dreisbach, Associate Professor of Justice, Law

and Society at American University, wrote that Black was wrong

to apply the term “separation of church and state” to the First

Amendment. The danger of Black’s argument, according to

Dreisbach, is that it gives constitutional reasons to “separate

religion, religious values, and religious organizations from public

life.” He continues: “If we can’t talk about religion in any

meaningful way in public schools, religious citizens can’t communicate

their faith in public life. [The public square] must be

‘sanitized’ of religious messages, and we are left with a strictly

secular public life.”


• The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and its allies, along

with other groups hostile to religious freedom, have used

Black’s wording to:


– Deny churches the right to rent public school facilities for

Sunday worship services.

– Have public displays of the Ten Commandments removed

from public buildings.

– Prohibit students from praying at graduation ceremonies or

football games.

– Threaten fixed income housing project residents with eviction

for displaying signs about prayer in their apartment windows.

– Tell an eight-year-old girl that she cannot pass out handmade

Valentines that read “Jesus Loves You.”


• In 2005, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, in ruling

in favor of a public display of the Ten Commandments, wrote:


“The ACLU’s argument contains…fundamental flaws…[It] makes

repeated reference to ‘the separation of church and state.’ This

extra-constitutional construct has grown tiresome. The First

Amendment does not demand a wall of separation between

church and state.”


For almost four decades, the ACLU’s distortion of

the “separation of church and state” went nearly

unchallenged. In 1994, God raised up a new

organization, the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF),

which has taken the ACLU and its allies head-on to

expose this distortion and restore the original intent of

U.S. Constitution with regard to religious freedom.

Since its inception, ADF has helped to win many

groundbreaking cases in defense of religious freedom

and expression. The result is that the so-called

“wall of separation” erected by Hugo Black and

others is slowly starting to crumble.


With your prayers and support, ADF and its allies

can provide the strategy, training, funding and

litigation needed to tear down the “wall of separation.”

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