General Question

mrwhoopie's avatar

Should "under God" be taken out of the pledge of allegiance?

Asked by mrwhoopie (100points) June 3rd, 2009

It was place there in the 1950“s due to the communist scare.Isn’t it time to take it back out?

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91 Answers

PupnTaco's avatar

I’m all for it but I suspect a lot of people would freak out.

Kiev749's avatar

absolutely not. are we going to take out any reference due to a higher being in the constitution or the bill of rights?

And the majority of the “Red Scare” was in the 60’s and 70’s.

NaturalMineralWater's avatar

Is it really so offensive that it needs to be taken out? I’d say that’s tantamount to removing evolution from school curriculum. You may not believe in God but say “under God” and others may not believe in evolution but are taught it in school anyway.

IMHO, people are far too sensitive with this kind of stuff. Simply saying “under God” isn’t going to sway someone’s belief system. So what is the motivation behind removing it?

oratio's avatar

@Kiev749 Correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think there is any reference to a higher being or god in the Bill of Rights to begin with. Is there?
I am not so sure there is any in the United States Constitution either.

And the reference under God in the Pledge of Allegiance seems to have been added 1954 as mrwhoopie says. It was not a part of the original pledge at all. Not that old.

DarkScribe's avatar

@Kiev749 And the majority of the “Red Scare” was in the 60’s and 70’s.

I suggest you Google “McCarthyism” – you might be surprised to discover how wrong you are.

DarkScribe's avatar

@NaturalMineralWater Simply saying “under God” isn’t going to sway someone’s belief system. So what is the motivation behind removing it?

For some swearing an oath on the Bible is as offensive as being asked to swear an oath on a comic book or can of soup. You are being asked to take something seriously that you hold in contempt. For quite some time now when swearing an oath in court you have the option of a Bible oath or a civil oath. I get called for Jury Duty every two or three years and I have never sworn an oath on a Bible yet. I refuse to do so.

The Bible (and the men interpreting it) is directly responsible for more pain, suffering and death than any other book ever published. In that sense it is indisputably evil. I would not dream of swearing an oath on it – it would be a mockery of my personal beliefs.

neo2049's avatar

I think that the USA is still a predominantly a Christian country with non-Christians being under some other faith. The constitution generally should reflect the people. If one day most of the population were Athiests then that is something different entirely. Having said that one should have the right to choose. If you don’t want to say it then that is your choice and should be respected.

DarkScribe's avatar

@neo2049 If one day most of the population were Athiests then that is something different entirely.

The country is already mostly atheist. There is not enough room in all Churches to hold a small fraction of the population if they all went on a Sunday – so they can’t be practising Christians. Ticking a box on a census form – where these stats come from – does not indicate a belief, it indicates a family history. It means “I was baptised xxxx”, nothing more.

NaturalMineralWater's avatar

@DarkScribe Should those who hold an equal contempt for what they believe is a false teaching in a public environment (evolution) be subject to the same rules then? To them you are misguiding the masses toward a false belief which could end up costing them their eternal life.. their soul.. Do you believe it’s as drastic as you’re making it sound?

neo2049's avatar

@DarkScribe but if you asked them “Are you a Christian?” what would they say? If they say Yes then it doesn’t matter whether they go to church or not. In their mind they are a Christian. They still believe there is something up there. I am an Athiest and I would love it if everyone else was also but I don’t think that is the case now.

DarkScribe's avatar

@NaturalMineralWater Should those who hold an equal contempt for what they believe is a false teaching in a public environment (evolution) be subject to the same rules then?

What rules? I simply don’t want to be obliged to swear on a Bible, I have no interest in how other people swear. I have no opinion as whether the “Under God” should remain or go, my only comment was that if someone does not believe in God, they should have another form of oath available to them. I am not guiding anyone toward anything – the fact that I find the concept of a deity of any flavour ludicrous does not concern anyone else. I do not have any interest in “un-converting” Christians (There really aren’t that many of them) just a fascination regarding the gullibility of those who really do believe in a magical being.

DarkScribe's avatar

@neo2049 If they say Yes then it doesn’t matter whether they go to church or not. In their mind they are a Christian.

Ok, so if someone asks me if I am a Penguin, and I say yes, according to you I should start waddling? How about if I say that I am an Eagle? Can I then fly? I don’t think so. Saying you are something doesn’t make it so, only “being” something makes it so. Being a Christian requires more than calling yourself a Christian or ticking a box on a ballot paper.

Bluefreedom's avatar

I guess if we’re going to consider taking the words “under God” out of the pledge of allegiance, someone should call the United States Treasury and tell them not to print the words “in God we trust” on all of the new currency they’re going to be printing in the future. If we’re intent on being so unyielding about the separation of church and state, let’s go the whole nine yards and not do it half-assed.

Harp's avatar

Does the Pledge of Allegiance actually have meaning or not? If we accept that it’s just an empty ritual that’s been trivialized to death, then let’s just drop it. What purpose does it serve? But if it actually means something, if it’s actually a solemn profession of commitment to the core principles of the country, then shouldn’t we pay attention to how it spells those core principles out?

For it to mean something, we should be able to go through it phrase by phrase asking “Is this a fundamental tenet that any good citizen of the United States should be expected to adhere to?” “Under God” doesn’t pass this test. I think most of us recognize that one can be a full-fledged citizen of this country without seeing it as being under God’s jurisdiction.

Including this phrase in effect weakens the entire Pledge. It introduces the notion that the precepts contained therein are optional and can be cherry-picked or said with tongue in cheek.

calvinette's avatar

Harp, I agree.

Going back to the actual question: “Under God” was added in the 1950s. It wasn’t part of the original text. It was added under pressure from certain rogue members of congress in a time of political paranoia. As far as I’m concerned, it should be taken out. And I am a Christian. Baptized, confirmed, married in a Christian church, attend regularly and I totally love Jesus.

However, I also believe it’s wrongheaded to think that just because conventional wisdom says that most Americans were raised in Christian homes gives that so-called majority the right to force their religion on the minority. That’s why I skip it whenever I say the pledge.

basp's avatar

I’m all for restoring the Pledge of Allegiance to it’s original words. Having said that… does not state which god we are all under.

IchtheosaurusRex's avatar

The Pledge of Allegiance is not a law. It therefore does not meet the requirements for a challenge under the First Amendment’s Establishment clause. Children recite it in school, but won the right to remain silent in the Barnette case, way back in the 1940s. You can, in fact, go your entire life without reciting the Pledge of Allegiance and not break any law. You are also free to leave “under God” out if you want to recite the rest of it.

There is an argument that the phrase “under God” should be stricken under Engel v. Vitale, but to my knowledge, no one has brought such a challenge.

Congress won’t touch it with a 10 foot pole.

libraryguy's avatar

Just like there will never be an atheist senator or President. No one has the guts to say “Oh come on, angels, demons, invisible non-answering go??”

SirBailey's avatar

Objectively? “Separation of church and state”. Yeah. Religious references should be removed from all political stuff including “In God We Trust”. And I’m a good Catholic!

kayysamm's avatar

Take it out, not everyone has the same beliefs.

We are suppose to be the land of the free. meaning freedom of religion falls into that place. If someone does not believe in god they should not be told to say this. I think it should be exchange with a better noun.

then again, i think “in god we trust” should be taken off money too

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

Let’s just get rid of the pledge of allegiance, and be done with the whole mess. Seems rather dictatorial to me. If you can’t align yourself with the country where you live, get out already. Who actually says it besides school kids anyway? Does it actually mean anything, really? Do you think Timothy McVeigh recited it in school? Look what he did.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

The pledge of allegiance is creepy. I think the US should do away with it completely. This kids have no idea what it means anyway. It’s just a remnant of the McCarthy era of anti-communism.

critter1982's avatar

Get over it….
Kids aren’t required to say the pledge of allegiance, so feel free in this free nation, not to say the words under god.

The country was founded on Judeo-Christian principles. James Madison stated that religion is “the basis and the foundation of government.” He also stated, “Religion gives us the capacity to govern ourselves; control ourselves; and to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God.” This is what our country was founded on.

The Pledge of Allegiance does not say “One nation under a Christian God”; so if you worship another God you should still be able to say the pledge without any offense being taken

Additionally, those who want “In God we Trust” off of our money, perhaps your first step would be to eliminate it as the official motto of the United States.

@DarkScribe: Where do you get your numbers from. Atheism is growing in the US but hardly makes up the majority.

oratio's avatar

@critter1982 I agree. It isn’t extremely important, since it’s not mandatory.

But I am unsure about the US being founded on Judeo-Christian principles. I guess it might be a matter of aspect. The founding fathers seem to have been mostly made up of atheists and agnostics. Sure the culture of europe was influenced by religion, but the foundation of the US? It is a bit contradictory when James Madison says one thing and several others of the founding fathers another.

These are two quotes I found. They might be out of context, and be seen as anecdotal evidence. But they are but two quotes attributed to two founding fathers.

John Adams:
“. . . Thirteen governments [of the original states] thus founded on the natural authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery, and which are destined to spread over the northern part of that whole quarter of the globe, are a great point gained in favor of the rights of mankind.”

Thomas Jefferson:
“Our civil rights have no dependence on religious opinions, any more than our opinions in physics and geometry.”

Since freedom of religion is a part of the constitution, it doesn’t seem to matter, but I am not sure attributing the foundation of the country to christian principles is fair. It seems that every country in europe was at the time though.

RedPowerLady's avatar

I’m all for doing away with the pledge of allegiance altogether.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

@critter1982 I hate to hijack this thread, but you know our Founding Fathers were deists, right? Thomas Paine found theocracies revolting, and the only Judeo-Christians in America were the Puritans. Not a lot of those folks running things anymore. And look what the Christians did to the Native American folks. Nothing to be proud of, in my opinion.

RedPowerLady's avatar


Kids are required to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance.
Not by law. But many school officials still do require kids to stand for the Pledge, perhaps not say it, but they do require kids of all ages to stand for it at least.
I faced issues with this myself as a teen and have nieces/nephews and know college freshman who still discuss this requirement. So even though the law may not support the requirement it is still enforced in schools.

@oratio My people do not have freedom of religion (in practice). So it may be part of the constitution but we have to look at the reality.

benjaminlevi's avatar

As an atheist I think it should be removed from this “pledge” under grounds of seperation of church and state, but it is so trivial an issue I think there are much more important legal matters to change.

DarkScribe's avatar

@critter1982 Where do you get your numbers from. Atheism is growing in the US but hardly makes up the majority.

Simple – VERY – simple math. To be a Christian, not just claim to be a Christian, you have to attend Church at least weekly. There is not enough room in every Church in the country to contain even ten percent of the population on one day. Probably not enough for one or two percent. The real estate doesn’t exist.

Try to picture a city with enough Church space to hold a tenth of its population. If they aren’t attending Church, then they are only claiming to be Christian. It is a bit like claiming to be vegetarian who eats meat. You have to walk the walk, not just talk the talk.

Add to that, if you do pop into most Churches on a day that is not ceremonial or wedding etc., most Churches are nowhere near at capacity.

critter1982's avatar

@DarkScribe: That seems fairly unscientific for someone whom I would bet bases all of his beliefs off of science? According to grounds for giving the US has about 300,000 churches. The US population is about 300,000,000. That means that each church needs to hold about 1,000 people. Additionally, not every church only has only one service. The church I attend has 3 services and can hold about 1,500 people. So if churches hold 2 or 3 services then they need only to handle 500 or 333 people. Every church I’ve been to is more than capable of these numbers, so it seems to me like there is plenty of real estate. But let’s forget about this correlation because it doesn’t imply much of anything, as attending church is not required of Christians or theists for that matter.

According to about 1.6% of US citizens consider themselves atheists. 2.4% of US citizens consider themselves agnostic and about 12% of US citizens define their belief only as secular. That leaves 84% of US citizens as something other than secular, atheist, or agnostic.

DarkScribe's avatar

@critter1982 That seems fairly unscientific for someone whom I would bet bases all of his beliefs off of science?

You would lose the bet.

I base everything on logic. Things like “my Church can hold 1,500 people” then applying that to all Churches, many that aren’t really much more than chapels isn’t logical.

I first saw that claim from the Vatican in the late nineties. The Catholic Church was decrying the fact that although the population had increased massively in the past one hundred years, the number of functioning Churches had declined. I doubt if it is much different with any other denomination. I am quite well traveled and have yet to see a city where the number of Churches could hold the population, even if they hold five masses. If they did all attend, how would they get there? Where would they park? Parking is at a premium in every major city full during the week/ Public transport is packed on weekdays. If people are truly attending Church on a Sunday – during the day, how are they traveling – where are they parking? Simple logistics support an atheist balance to the population.

Why are there more Priests without a congregation? Why are Priests themselves claiming a huge fall-off in attendance? The only growth that I can see is to do with Evangelistic Churches, and that is a uniquely American phenomenon. Little conmen like Benny Hinn who sucker gullible people into parting with their money. That sort of thing.

NaturalMineralWater's avatar

All this over two little words. It’s no surprise though. God is being systematically weeded out of everything these days anyway.. to the detriment of mankind.

DarkScribe's avatar

@NaturalMineralWater to the detriment of mankind.

It might surprise you to know that I agree with that. I find the God myth laughable, but I do realise that many people need a hook to hang their heart on. I would never advocate outlawing Religion or banning Churches. There are many things that I find no use for that I can accept is beneficial for others.

I would sooner ban fast food restaurants than Churches if I was looking to benefit mankind.

oratio's avatar

@DarkScribe There are other hooks. God is not needed, only wanted.

DarkScribe's avatar

@oratio There are other hooks. God is not needed, only wanted.

That is how such hooks work, they have to be wanted.

critter1982's avatar

@DarkScribe: I did not make any assumption that all churches can hold 1,500 people. I did however make the assumption that a lot of churches hold more than one service therefore only needing to hold 500 or 350 people which even most small chapels could do…...but you missed my point. To be a theist you need not attend any church. Therefore that stupid little correlation that we did is irrelevant. Every statistic that I have ever seen puts atheists below 20% of the US population. A simple google search resolves this discussion.

@oratio: God is not needed, only wanted
To believe this you first have to make the assumption that God doesn’t exist. I do agree, there are other hooks, but why not use the one that is so readily available?

oratio's avatar

@critter1982 Sure. That comment was quite subjective. I take it back. But I don’t agree with that to believe that, one has to make the assumption that God doesn’t exist. If it would be proven that God exist, I wouldn’t need God more than now. If God is a help in your life, that’s great.

critter1982's avatar

@oratio: Well if we at some point prove that their is a loving God, to say you wouldn’t need him is almost like saying you don’t need your mother or father or grandmother or grandfather. I do however understand what you are saying.

DarkScribe's avatar

@critter1982 _To be a theist you need not attend any church. _

You believe that someone can believe in God but choose to ignore Gods demands, not abide by the Bible and still call themselves a practicing Christian?

You live in a very flexible and accommodating world. Is it nice there?

critter1982's avatar

@DarkScribe: The Bible tells us that we should meet together and encourage one another and that we should converse and befriend other Christians and/or those with similar beliefs. No where does it say we must attend a church service every Sunday. So no, I disagree with you, attending church service is not a demand from God. Where do you find this commandment from God?

My world is the same as yours, and yes it is nice here!

DarkScribe's avatar

@critter1982 Where do you find this commandment from God?

I have found no commandment from God – there is no God.

The Church supposedly presents God on earth and seems to feel the Christians should keep the Sabbath Holy and attend Church. For some reason they tend to feel that as Jesus selected the Apostles and left them to “evangelise”, the Church that flowed from their efforts should regarded as essential to practicing Christianity. Maybe it is all a misunderstanding and he actually wanted them to start a chain of hair dressing salons.

It would seem to be hypocrisy to pick and choose what to abide by if claiming to be a practicing Christian. At least to me it would.

critter1982's avatar

@DarkScribe: I follow Jesus Christ and his teachings in the New Testament of the Bible, and no where does it tell me I need to attend church every Sunday. So again I ask you, where in the Bible did you get this notion that in order to be a Christian you must attend church.

Christianity is not a set of rules you must abide by in order to go to heaven. I certainly agree with you though, it would be hypocritical to only follow some of Jesus’ teachings and fail to follow others because it’s inconvenient. However, attending church on Sunday is not a commandment from God as you stated it was, earlier in this post.

DarkScribe's avatar

@critter1982 Hmmmm.

However, attending church on Sunday is not a commandment from God as you stated it was, earlier in this post.

Ok, I’ll repeat the relevant part of my last post.

The Church supposedly presents God on earth and seems to feel the Christians should keep the Sabbath Holy and attend Church. For some reason they tend to feel that as Jesus selected the Apostles and left them to “evangelise”, the Church that flowed from their efforts should regarded as essential to practicing Christianity.

It is either God’s Church or it isn’t. If it is, then shouldn’t you do what the Church says? If it isn’t, then what the hell is doing there?

Remember, I don’t believe any of this, but is what I was taught when I was young and gullible. I was raised as a Catholic and educated through the Catholic School system. (I got suspended when I kept asking who the father of Mary’s other kids was – Jesus’ siblings.)

critter1982's avatar

@DarkScribe: My church and the one I attended at the end of my college days do nothing of the sort. They tell us that we are to converse with other Christians and encourage other Christians but never did they say you must attend church to be a Christian and go to heaven. Perhaps they do in catholicism but they don’t where I go. They don’t because there is no basis for it in the bible, and churches are supposed to follow what is stated in the bible.

DarkScribe's avatar

@critter1982 They don’t because there is no basis for it in the bible,

Have you actually read the Bible? I can’t see how you can say that.

It is made clear that Temple worship was a part of spiritual necessity in the fact that when the sanctuary was destroyed and exiles arrived in Babylon, to meet the need for worship – (the Shema, Prayers, Scripture readings and exposition) the synagogue service was created. With the advent of the second Temple, daily services, adherence to the Sabbath, all fasts and festivals were a part of everyday life. In the New Testament Christ took part in both synagogue and Temple worship.

Tabernacle and Temple worship is prominent throughout the Bible.

Psalms 42:1
As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. 2 My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God? 3 My tears have been my meat day and night, while they continually say unto me, Where is thy God? 4 When I remember these things , I pour out my soul in me: for I had gone with the multitude, I went with them to the house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept holyday.

Psalms 95:1
O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. 2 Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms. 3 For the LORD is a great God, and a great King above all gods

These are just some instances – there are more.

critter1982's avatar

@DarkScribe: The temple in Jerusalem that you’re referring to was the figurative “footstool” of God’s presence. Jews believed this to be the only place that they could be forgiven for their sins, hence this was where all sacrfices took place. Since the time of Jesus Christ temple worship or temple sacrifice is no longer necessary as God does not only exist in one place, God thrives in all of us as the Holy Spririt. Therefore no need to go to some place to worship Him. I’m not debating that tabernacle and temple worship didn’t exist in the bible. I’m simply stating that for one to be a practicing Christian, they need not attend Church on Sundays. You still haven’t given me any instance of which states that we need to attend Church on Sundays or we will not go to Heaven.

DarkScribe's avatar

@critter1982 You still haven’t given me any instance of which states that we need to attend Church on Sundays or we will not go to Heaven.

Not a problem – there is no heaven – none of us are going there. ;)

I am saying that the Church insists that Church attendance is a necessity, and the Church is supposed to represent God. If you are going to dismiss all instances of Biblical Tabernacle, Temple, Synagogue worship as no longer necessary – that is fine by me. But I regard a Christian who doesn’t attend Church in the same manner as I would a vegetarian enjoying a nice rare steak with eggs. Subscribing to lip service only.

If agreeing with and following the example set by Christ is all it takes to be a Christian, why then, I must be a Christian Atheist.

critter1982's avatar

@DarkScribe: A church which insists on church attendence to be saved, in my mind is after one thing; money. I would never take part in such a thing, as again it has little to no basis on the Bible, of which is the basis for the Church. To be a Christian one must follow the world of Jesus Christ and accept Him as their savior. Christians are not required to follow a set of ridiculous rules to go to heaven. The Bible says this and to make the assumption that Christians who don’t attend Church don’t believe in Jesus Christ and are not saved is wrong in my book. I will agree to disagree.

DarkScribe's avatar

@critter1982 in my mind is after one thing; money. I would never take part in such a thing, as again it has little to no basis on the Bible,

‘Tithing has no basis in the Bible?

I see little point in continuing, you apparently have a Bible with an enormous number of pages missing. Cheers and good luck.

critter1982's avatar

@DarkScribe: Tithing is biblical, yes. Tithes although do not have to be paid to the church. I’m not so sure why you have to be condescending as you still have yet to point to a passage which states that in order to be saved and go to heaven, you must attend Church on Sunday?? You have yet to prove your earlier statement and have danced rather poorly around having to prove it with any biblical passage. My Bible is the same as your so please point me to a passage where it states, thou must attend church or you will go to hell! Otherwise I am convinced you just made that up based on your assumptions of Christians and the Church.

DarkScribe's avatar

@critter1982 Goodness – are you still on about this?

You dismiss the Bible’s references to Temple or Tabernacle, yet want “proof” of Christian requirements? Who is dancing?

The Bible makes much of keeping the Sabbath. That is done by attending a service, something you insist is not required.

And the next sabbath day came almost the whole city together to hear the word of God.
(Acts 13:44)

And when the Jews were gone out of the synagogue, the Gentiles besought that these words might be preached to them the next sabbath.
(Acts 13:42)

For Moses of old time hath in every city them that preach him, being read in the synagogues every sabbath day.
(Acts 15:21)

And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks.
(Acts 18:4)

Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
(Exodus 20:8)

And he shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, to be accepted for you: on the morrow after the sabbath the priest shall wave it.
(Leviticus 23:11)

And madest known unto them thy holy sabbath, and commandedst them precepts, statutes, and laws, by the hand of Moses thy servant:
(Nehemiah 9:14)

Or have ye not read in the law, how that on the sabbath days the priests in the temple profane the sabbath, and are blameless?
(Matthew 12:5)

And when the sabbath day was come, he began to teach in the synagogue: and many hearing him were astonished, saying, From whence hath this man these things? and what wisdom is this which is given unto him, that even such mighty works are wrought by
(Mark 6:2)

And it came to pass also on another sabbath, that he entered into the synagogue and taught: and there was a man whose right hand was withered.
(Luke 6:6)

And he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the sabbath.
(Luke 13:10)

astrocom's avatar

As far as the topic goes: I’m for removing it, simply because it was an addition that was made out of fear of communist influences. The pledge as a whole does serve a point, even if no one bothers informing our children of it, and I’d gladly say it on a regular basis if I were provided some reason to.

On that topic, people often misinterpret separation of church and state. The point of the first amendment is to assure citizens of their right to practice any religion they please in a reasonable manner and to prevent the country from becoming a theocracy, not to ban any and all mention of religious concepts or phrases in government institutions. That said, the founding fathers, and most people of their day, were religious; they found comfort in their faith in the existence of god, along with powerful sources of morals they held dear and founded the country on.

@DarkScribe: See, thing is, everything you just quoted were mentions of specific times that people were in temples on the Sabbath, not passages requiring people to worship, in a temple, on the sabbath, in order to be admitted into heaven. To my understanding of Christianity, there’s no actual requirement as such that’s stated in the bible. One of the main passages I remember in fact features Jesus telling a group of Jews that the Sabbath was for rest, and even that much was optional, specifically contradicting a priest who wanted to punish a man for not being in temple.

Besides, all the things you discussed make someone a good christian, not a christian in the first place. To follow every rule set out in every portion of the bible would be impossible, there are numerous points at which the new testament intentionally contradicts the old testament. Having gone through confirmation, the distinct feeling I got (both from talks with my minister and from reading the New Testament myself) was that a person need not follow all the rules of the bible to be saved, that this message was the entire point of Jesus coming to earth and the existence of the new testament. I’m completely aware that Catholicism until quite recently strongly disagreed with these points, but that’s one of the reasons protestantism (read: most of Christianity—and religion as a whole—in this country) exists.

DarkScribe's avatar

@astrocom Ok, no problem. If you don’t mind I’ll leave it to you to let the Pope, the Arch Bishop of Canterbury, the heads of the various Orthodox Churches etc, know that they have got it all wrong – that there is no need for Churches or Church services. They will probably appreciate not having to hold masses and services etc. – it should make a huge improvement in the amount of free time they’ll have available. Of course, they’ll have to something with all this spare time – maybe they’ll take up golf?

By the way, as you seem so knowledgeable about God, you might be able to answer something that has been puzzling me. If mankind (that means men & women in this egalitarian modern world) is made in God’s image – does that mean that God has man-boobs?

astrocom's avatar

@DarkScribe: I don’t need to let the Pope and various orthodox churches know they got it wrong, Protestant churches do that by operating separately and in the methods they so choose. I very much doubt the Pope would like it if people stopped going to mass, not supporting organized worship would be the death of an organized religion. (Doesn’t make it wrong, or less preferable as far as the Bible goes though.)
Your question gave me quite a giggle. I’d like to clarify that I’m an agnostic, and as part of my decision to be so, I made a serious and lengthy effort to understand the religion of which I was raised as a member. My understanding of “in God’s image” was that it meant sentient and sapient, not necessarily resembling god’s physical form (if I believe in a god, I believe he doesn’t really have one). Though I suppose if we were to interpret it literally, yes, god would have man-boobs. * chuckles *

critter1982's avatar

@DarkScribe: As astrocom stated, protestant churches operate separately from the Pope, Arch Bishop, and other Orthodox Churches. Additionally, your Bible references simply point out that back in the times of the Bible people went to Temples on the Sabbath, not that it was done so as a requirement to be Holy or to go to Heaven. Why did people go to Temples on the Sabbath in Bible times? Because that was the supposed “footstool” of God’s presence. If you wanted to praise God, this was the only place you could do it. After Jesus entered the world he told his followers that God was living in all of us as the Holy Spirit. There was no longer a necessity for a temple or for us to go to church to worship God. So again I ask, where in The Bible does God state that we must go to church to go to heaven, and I don’t want simple passages referencing that people went to church on the Sabbath because that does not make it mandatory. Apparently since I have so many missing pages in my Bible, I’ll need your help on this one.

samantha9twenty9's avatar

our whole nation was founded under GOD!!!! that’s the whole reason the Pilgrims and such left England…they came to America to practice religious freedom…and if you know anything about history you will know that this nation was in fact founded under God. Why do people get so offended?
any type of religion can be practiced today but bring up Christianity, prayer in schools, etc and oh no…that’s not fair to other religions.
What about Christianity? Christians should have just as much right to express their religion as anyone else.

oratio's avatar

@samantha9twenty9 Those pilgrim don’t make up your forefathers. They are a tiny amount of those millions of Europeans who went to America with hopes and dreams. Some one million swedes make up a portion of them. What you are talking about is a propaganda myth based on the story about the “Mayflower”. 185 puritans landing in New England.

The founding fathers were a collection of christians and agnostics and as it seems fully fledged atheists. There is nothing about god in the constitution, the declaration of independence, and the part “under God” in the pledge of allegiance, was added in 1954.

Harp's avatar

@samantha9twenty9 It was out of concern for freedom of religion that the founding fathers insisted that government have nothing to do with religion. They came from a state that was thoroughly involved in religion and saw that this was good for neither religion nor state. That position continues to be upheld by many people of faith today.

gallant's avatar

There is a clear difference between a practicing Christian and a non practicing Christian.
The truth is clear, to be a Christian all that is required is to believe in Christ as your Saviour. (Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.” Jn 6:29) You don not have to attend church to accoplish that.
Jesus declared, “Believe me, woman, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem.([at the temple]” John 4:21). It’s not where you are, where you go or what you do that makes you a Christian although God said that we as believers should assemble together it is not required. God wants believers to worship Him in every aspect of their life which would include acknowledging Him as being sovereign which denotes that He formed this nation.
Seperation of State does not imply no religion in politics, in fact the Bible clearly shows us that He appointed the government, what it (Separation of State) does imply is that we as individuals have a right to worship God without government tellig us that we can’t. Otherwise it would contradict the 1st Amd.
One of the reasons we broke away from England was to be establish the right to worship God without being told how or where we can do it. It was designed to protect the believer acknowledging that God is important. So many people don’t understand the true principle of seperation of religion and state and why it was manifested.
We are PROTECTED to worship God wherever and whenever we choose as defined in the 1st ammendment of the U.S. Constitution. Anyone should be able to carry a Bible to school or any other place he or she chooses. To deny so is also denying their right as a U.S. citizen.
Should the words ”..under God” be removed from the Pledge of Al. ? No, noone is being made to believe in God. And noone should be forced to worship God either…He gave us all free will. We’re certainly not robots, and therefore it is His will that we choose to worship Him. It’s a choice on the part of the individual. God is not a tyrant.
It helps to know what the Bible actually says, before forming an opinion of Him or His word. The Bible has suffered harsh criticism since it was established, and it will continue to be criticized mainly because people are affraid of what it reveals about themself.
The people and our gevernment are making a huge mistake by removing God from this nation and it will suffer as a result.
This nation came into existence with many blessings in a short time period and it is my belief that, that happened because God was not forgotten, dismissed from or removed from any part of it. That is changing as clearly shown inside this thread.
“Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”-Jesus (Matt. 11:29)

oratio's avatar

@gallant Oh come on. In my country, Sweden, you will have a hard time finding the presence of god. The population is made up of mainly atheists, agnostics, spiritualists, some amounts of christians and muslims. God hasn’t punished us yet for being godless, and I doubt he will.

We are doing pretty fine. You have been doing pretty good yourselves, with god and christianity. It seems like it doesn’t really matter if you believe in god or not in order to succeed as a nation.

The success of the US happened because of your strength and ingenuity. It’s not a reward from a omnipotent god. If it was, I kind of wonder why he would rewards atheists likewise, and just look at the marvel of Japan. Does god favor Zen-Buddhism and Shintoism? The Japanese outpace any nation, even the US, in so many areas.

gallant's avatar

@Michael. Like I said, God is not a Tyrant. We all reap what we sow no matter who we are. Jesus said, “That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.” Matt 5:45. I do not understand His ways, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” (Ecc. 3:1) We didn’t become strong without God, it was because of Him. England was a much stronger nation when we faught them for our liberty, and is why we won, because God was behind us. (What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? Rom. 8:31).
The U.S. has been resposible for more missions in the world since it became its own nation, then any other nation on the planet. God has used this nation to further His gospel.
Like I said, He gave us this nation!

DarkScribe's avatar

@gallant Like I said, He gave us this nation!

God has never given anyone anything.

gallant's avatar

He is my everything. He saved my marriage, showed me what true love is. I owe eveything to Him and so does this nation.
He died for me! What more could He give?
“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13.
“For God so loved the world, that he ‘gave’ his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16
He gave me my faith and hope.
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Heb 11:1.
He gave me truth and freedom.
“And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32
He gave me wisdom.
“For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.” 1 Cor. 1:21.

DarkScribe's avatar


He is my everything. He saved my marriage, showed me what true love is.
If he had been looking after you your marriage would not have needed saving.

I owe eveything to Him and so does this nation.
Yes, they must remember to give thanks for Bush.

He died for me! What more could He give?
He died because he was taken out and nailed to a cross.

He gave me my faith and hope.
Why does faith and hope always seem so similar to an intellectual by-pass?

He gave me truth and freedom.
Were you an imprisoned liar? I didn’t know.

He gave me wisdom.
When is it arriving?

critter1982's avatar

@DarkScribe: If in fact there is a God, he has given us things, first and foremost Life. So for you to say that, “God has never given anyone anything”, is simply illogical, as by stating this you recognize that God could exist, and if he does, would have given us something.

DarkScribe's avatar

@critter1982 If in fact there is a God, h

If God was a fact I would be wearing a long black robe and carrying a Bible. I am a person who only concerns myself with facts.

God is a myth, a strange conundrum in that even if he did exist, most decent and sensible people would want him locked up. If he was real, he could only be regarded as lazy, egotistical, uncaring, arrogant, jealous, bad tempered, petty minded and basically an asshole.

Those who claim to believe in him seem motivated more by fear of what he will do if they piss him off rather than love of him.

gallant's avatar

God is no myth. The evidence is clearly shown in His creation, His Word which has not only stood the tests of time and flourished, but has had most importantly predicted 2000 prophecies that have been fulfilled to the letter without any error. It is the ONLY book that has ever done this. The only means by which this is possible is that the Bible is inspired and authored by God..there is no one that has the ability to do this.
You have a strange idea of God, Dark, this is an epidemic.
Like I said, God is not a tyrant or dictator, if He was, you, myself and all men would be forced to worship Him.
I have to admit that with knowing God, there is a fearfulness, but it’s not the way you percieve it to be based on your mental imagery of Him.
The resurrection of Christ is a fact and there is more proof of it happening than any other one ‘single’ event in recorded history. And ‘if’ it is true (and it is) then we can very clearly get a picture of who God is through his Son, who willingly died a horable death so you and I can have fellowship wih our Creator and have eternal life.
The only honest athiests are actully agnostics because you cannot say with cofirmation of fact that He does not exist.
Man is blinded from seeing and having fellowship because of a ‘hardened heart’, which is caused by sin. (since God is perfect and Holy He cannot look upon sinful man) So He has provided a way to bring us back into fellowship with Him and that is through His Son.
Philip (a deciple of Jesus) said, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.” Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?” John 14:8–9
What Jesus was saying is that He was Himself, God in man form. So it was God who gave Himself as a sacrifice for all mankind.
That is by definition love. Love gives without expecting anything in return.
I cannot say honestly that in and of myself I could love my neighbor whom I have no fellowship with and that I would be willing to suffer and be put to death the way Christ was. Only God could do this.
God planned His death…Jesus embraced His suffering and before He died he said, “It is finished.”
Pilot knew He was the Messiah, and wanted to be free from the guilt of His death. This is clearly shown in John 18
“You are a king, then!” said Pilate. Jesus answered, “You are right in saying I am a king. In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”
“What is truth?” Pilate asked. With this he went out again to the Jews and said, “I find no basis for a charge against him.”
The more facts one knows about His death and all the circumstances surrounding it, the more one can clearly see that He was in deed ‘Emmanuel’.
The main case I’m presenting, is that you have a false idea of who God is and the best way to know who He is is through the example of Jesus. However, Jesus came as a lamb (Isaiah 53:7), but when He returns it will be in extreme contrast to this, as depicted in Hoseah 5:14.
What does wearing a long black robe have anything to do with God? It would appear that you have been subjected to catholicism. Catholicism is a pagan religion disguised by the use of christian names and themes. Religion itself was rebuked by Jesus. Jesus called such people “hypocrites”....actors performing for others. There are many hypocrites in all church families.
God doesn’t expect anyone to stop sinning, He just wants us to accept him on his terms which is through His Son.The forgiveness is already there, we just have to receive it but, this is our own choice…this is called free will. God will never force Himself on anyone and everything He does is motivated from love.
No good deed will bring us into fellowship with God or get us into heaven. God has already done the WORK for us, we just have to receive it by faith. In fact their is only one way to please God, and that is, by trusting Him.
John 14:15–21 I believe reveals a lot of this duscussion.
15“If you love me, you will obey what I command. 16And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— 17the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be[a] in you. 18I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. 20On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. 21Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.”

DarkScribe's avatar


What is the point of quoting from a book that was written by men? The Bible wasn’t handed down by God.

Still – you are wasting your time, if you are right, then God made me an atheist so stop challenging him.

gallant's avatar

God didn’t make you an athiest. You do.
The Bible was written by man, but it was authored by God. Just like you just used a computer to convey your thoughts. God used men who where willing to be used by Him.
Man took dictation. God was the author.
God, in His Word clearly says, that as a believer I should keep His commandments, which includes sharing His Word, so therefore. I’m not challenging God.
I am not “right”, He is.
John 14:6
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
If and since there is a God, it would be illogical to say that man had the ability of authoring a book such as the Bible. The more one knows about the contents of it, the more one realises its impossibility. Man could only dream of authoring a book like the Bible.
It’s also illogical to imply that the God would be somehow restricted, held back by man, or allowing man to not keep His word since He is God.
God would never but and actually hasn’t allowed this.
Saying man wrote the Bible is limiting God’s ability to keep His word from being tainted or ruined by man. That is illogical thinking.

DarkScribe's avatar

@gallant God didn’t make you an athiest. You do.

Ok, well look at it this way. God has had every opportunity to “un-atheist” me and hasn’t done so. If he doesn’t care – why should you?

gallant's avatar

How do you know this conversation isn’t His way of trying to get your attention.
One thing I’m sure of is that, we have to have open hearts, the mind can be a barrier.
Love transends logic because love itself is not logical.
God doesn’t love us because we’re good, He just loves us.
“And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart” Jeremiah 29:13
It is through the heart that God speaks to us, the mind is only a tool.
Our intelect doesn’t impress God. What He is more concerned with is the condition of our heart. one reason is because He desires fellowship with us.

DarkScribe's avatar

@gallant How do you know this conversation isn’t His way of trying to get your attention

If he is slow witted it might be, but if not then he would know that it is doing is reaffirming my opinion regarding religion and the futility of it.

gallant's avatar

He again fixes a certain day, “Today,” saying through David after so long a time just as has been said before, “TODAY IF YOU HEAR HIS VOICE, DO NOT HARDEN YOUR HEARTS.” Hebrews 4:7

DarkScribe's avatar

@gallant _God doesn’t love us because we’re good, He just loves us _

Sure – that’s why he threaten to kills us with such regularity, for trivialities that supposedly piss him off. He is a nasty old bugger. (or would be if there really were such things as Sky Pixies.)

gallant's avatar

That’s not the God I know. It is man that is nasty. God wants us to choose Him. He will never make us choose Him though. This is the reason He made the tree of knowledge, because without it we wouldn’t have free will. We would be like ‘robots’. You can’t have a meaningful relationship with a robot. So He leaves the choice up to us.
Man has messed up, such as religion. God HATES religion because religion seperates man from Him.

gallant's avatar

God hates anything that harms man and religion is a lie. God is limited in that He cannot do to things which tie in together.
1. He cannot lie.
2. He will not go back on or go against His word. He is unchanging and unchangable.

DarkScribe's avatar


Do you realize that if God and Harry Potter were both real, God would insist on killing Harry Potter?

A man also or woman that hath a familiar spirit, or that is a wizard, shall surely be put to death: they shall stone them with stones: their blood shall be upon them.
(Leviticus 20:27)

gallant's avatar

You have to understand that God had to make consequences. the same way we as parents punish our children, The idea in that verse serves us in that we should understand that those things are harmful to us.
The law was and often is misunderstood.
witchcraft is a rebelion to God, and it is also a lie. What comes with it is an infectuous spirit. So in order to prevent others from being ‘infected’, He had to make a law that they would understand that thing is ‘unclean’. It was a warning.
The whole of the context of what the laws being laid down were preventative to protect others from harful lies that would lead the peoplen astray.
The reason for the ten commandments in part, wasn’t just for us to keep the law, but to show us that we cannot keep it. Therefore the need for Him and His sacrifice.
sin caused death, but death to the believer is a good thing because it means not spending eternity in a suffering state.
Death is ugly. God used its ugliness to reveal to our hearts the ugliness of sin. Even through punishment.
God knew David would turn his back on Him before he promised David the throne.
He expects us to sin, but He has provided the way out.
I will die a sinner. I won’t be going to heaven based on what i did or didn’t do, but soley on His work…the work of the cross.
Jesus became the witch/wizard. He died in his stead so the wizard could live.

gallant's avatar

What I am also saying is that I, myself a like the wizard who actually deserves to be stoned or put to death, but Jesus said through His actions and words, “No, I will die for Philip.”
Why? for the ‘illiogical’ reason of, because He loves me.

DarkScribe's avatar

@gallant The reason for the ten commandments in part,...

The commandments show that there are other Gods – what makes this one special?

Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
(Exodus 20:3)

gallant's avatar

There is only one God.
We (mankind) make things of this world our gods. We place them in higher regards than we do God. We give them our affections and thoughts and love them rather than our Creator. But because of His love which is unconditional, has provided a means of escape.
The believer doesn’t live under the law, the law just shows us where we mess up.
The believer lives by grace.
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Ephesians 2:8

DarkScribe's avatar

@gallant There is only one God.

Then why does the Bible admonish us about other Gods if there are none? Was that a redundant commandment? Wasn’t God thinking clearly when he authored it?

gallant's avatar

No, the other ‘gods’ are what we worship. In the Old Testament they made images (things) and worshipped them, we do the same thing today in anything that we love more than God. He was referring to the gods that where man made. Man can make himself a thing of worship…in fact we all are guilty of having other gods.
Man has a bad habbit of loving other gods.
gods are anything we put “before” Him.

gallant's avatar

Again, it goes to the condition of the heart. If we place our affections on things which are actually made by God, then we are loving the gift more than the giver of the gift.
It’s not that things themselves that are bad, it’s where we place them in our hearts.

gallant's avatar

example: If you say have a friend who doesn’t have a car, and you decide to buy him one and give it as a gift. And then your friend gives all his affections on the car and forgets about you altogether.

DarkScribe's avatar

@gallant No, the other ‘gods’ are what we worship

Yes, other Gods. Not other objects. He is quite clear about your neighbours wife’s ass (or something like that) so why use the term “gods” if it wasn’t what he meant? Is he a bit slow?

gallant's avatar

Jesus explained what man confused with the 10 commandments.
This is the first and greatest commandment.And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.‘All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

The other verse you are referring to is , “You shall not commit adultry” is actually another form of idolatry. It was the people who wouldn’t understand that they are both alike. But if you are obeying the first two commandments than you will automatically be obeying the rest as Jesus showed us in Matthew 22:40.

DarkScribe's avatar


This has been fun – but I am just yanking your chain. You are taking me too seriously. Cheers – I am gone.

gallant's avatar

Man is an eternal being. When we die our spirit continues in either one of two places.
“And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:”
Hebrews 9:27
I take that verse seriously. How could I take that verse seriously and not be concerned for my fellow man?
I will be praying for you Dark.
“Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for GOD IS LOVE.”
1John 4:7–8

DallasPoleDancing's avatar

Just a simple, NO. ; ) i am not a religious man but i acknowledge our countries foundation. Let God be in the Pledge but realize that God can be my God, your God, the Catholics God, the Pagans God or whatever you choose to believe in.

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