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New Patriot’s Bible: God Bless America Indeed

posted by akornfeld

Americans looking to combine love of God with love of country this July 4th can quote the new “American Patriot’s Bible,” which says God has influenced America though godly Founding Fathers, presidents and soldiers.
“This Bible is designed for the decent, hardworking core of America, the ordinary man or woman who loves this nation and believes it springs from godly roots,” says Richard G. Lee, a Southern Baptist pastor from Georgia who served as the Bible’s general editor.
“Christians have believed all along that this nation sprung from Judeo-Christian ethics. Now they can say, `Oh, now I know where this uniqueness comes from in our nation’s history.”‘
More than two years in the making, “The American Patriot’s Bible” is the latest entry in a line of niche and specialty Bibles that have been targeted at women, men, parents, students, ethnic groups or people struggling with depression, addiction, obesity or even breast cancer.
For mega-publisher Thomas Nelson, the new “Patriot’s Bible” joins a catalog of bestselling audio Bibles and “BibleZines” that look and feel like glossy fashion magazines.
“It is my hope that this title can inspire people during a very turbulent time in our nation’s history,” says Wayne Hastings, senior vice president of Thomas Nelson’s Bible division, which is promoting Lee’s Bible with an “Honor An American Patriot” campaign.
In his introduction, Lee writes that “America stands without equal as a beacon of hope and freedom in a hurting world.” The “Patriot’s Bible,” he says, speaks to Americans who feel their conservative theology, politics and morals are under assault.
“We are at our lowest ebb at this particular time,” he said in an interview. “Judeo-Christian principles are being beaten down. They’re actually under attack. This has never happened before.”
Lee is the founding pastor of the 4,000-member First Redeemer Church in Cumming, Ga. A registered Republican who’s organizing an Independence Day-themed “Restoring America” conference featuring conservatives David Limbaugh and Oliver North, Lee said he’s “disappointed” when politicians “use the word of God for the purpose of vote getting.”
His goal was to create a “non-partisan” Bible, but he quotes Republican Ronald Reagan more times than Democrats Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, Lyndon Johnson and John F. Kennedy combined.
In an interview, Lee said he doesn’t even know if Carter, a fellow Georgian and longtime Baptist Sunday school teacher, is a Christian. As for President Obama? “I haven’t seen any patriotism from him yet.”
Lee sprinkles his Bible with some 300 articles about “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” the right to keep and bear arms, the war in Iraq and religious broadcasting.
While some have praised the “Patriot’s Bible” — former House Speaker Newt Gingrich called it “fascinating” — others have condemned it as something akin to theological and political heresy.
“Get thee behind me, Satan,” wrote “Crunchy Con” blogger Rod Dreher on Beliefnet. “To the extent that this Bible’s publishers conflate serving Christ with patriotism … they are corrupt, and corrupters.”
Evangelical author and pastor Greg Boyd’s lengthy critique, posted on Christianity Today’s Web site, calls Lee’s Bible “idolatrous,” saying, “There’s not a single commentary in this Bible that even attempts to shed light on what the biblical text actually means.”
Lee says such criticisms misunderstand the purpose of the “Patriot’s Bible,” which is already in its second printing.
“Another study Bible is not needed,” he said. “The purpose of this Bible is to go deeper in people’s understanding of the nation in which we live, from whence it came, and where it is going unless we return to the Scriptures.”
Lee isn’t alone in seeking to repackage the Bible for a particular ideological audience. Some recent Bibles have targeted more liberal Christians, including “The Poverty and Justice Bible,” produced by the American Bible Society, and the eco-friendly “Green Bible” from HarperOne.
Indeed, there’s nothing new about Christians seeking divine confirmation for their views. Northern and Southern Christians did as much during the Civil War. “Both read the same Bible, and pray to the same God; and each invokes His aid against the other,” Abraham Lincoln said in his Second Inaugural Address.
Today, both red and blue State Christians crave God’s endorsement, said Larry Eskridge of Wheaton College’s Institute for the Study of American Evangelicals.
“The problem for those who read `The American Patriot’s Bible’ is that their contemporary Christian peers on the left cite the same source to justify their view that America has much to repent for in its economic, cultural, and military relationships to the rest of the world,” Eskridge said.
“Maybe, just maybe, the unadorned text of the Bible has something to say to both sides of the equation.”

By Steve Rabey
Religion News Service
Copyright 2009 Religion News Service. All rights reserved. No part of this transmission may be distributed or reproduced without written permission.



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nnmns

posted July 2, 2009 at 5:51 pm


Just which Bible is it that’s supposed to be inerrant?
This is clearly modeled on Fox “News”; tell foolish people the lies they want to hear and make a lot of money. Don’t worry at all if they get dumber in the process; nobody ever got rich worrying about whether other people are getting dumber.



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Henrietta22

posted July 2, 2009 at 6:29 pm


Is there a Spiritualist out there that can bring Thomas Jefferson through so President Jefferson can straighten out what the Bible really says?



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Jacob

posted July 2, 2009 at 6:35 pm


Leave it to a bunch of southern protestants to turn the Bible into some unique blessing on this country. So ridiculous, bordering on stupidity, the Bible is a Hebrew Semetic collection of books, nothing in it has any blessings for the USA since we did not exist. These fundamentalists need to go to real seminaries and not schools that simply regurgitate this kind of American centric garbage. Happy Independence Day everyone, for the simple secular reason of our Independence from the British Crown.



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pagansister

posted July 2, 2009 at 8:15 pm


Count me as one who won’t be buying this waste of paper and ink.
Sounds like the same old stuff from the RR under new cover. Lee has the right to write what he thinks he can make money on…but I would think this won’t be a best seller…except to those who feel has he does.
Lincoln was right…North and South prayed to the same God and wanted him to make sure they won. In any war, both sides feel that GOD is on their side…IMO, if there was a god, there would be no wars. What’s the point in praying to a divine being who lets it’s creations kill each other off with at regular intervals? Obviously does no good.



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Mordred08

posted July 2, 2009 at 9:25 pm


“In the beginning, America was vast and without form. And Washington said, let there be democracy, and there was democracy. There was some stuff that happened before that too, but who cares? It didn’t happen in America.”



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LutheranChik

posted July 2, 2009 at 9:56 pm


Open mouth, insert finger…bleeeeah. Stupid. And what a surprise that there’s a Southern Baptist connection.



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cknuck

posted July 3, 2009 at 1:05 am


Actually there is no need to publish a new bible to remind us that this country was founded on biblical principals. The founding fathers prayed at every opportunity to Jesus Christ and put bibles in every school as required reading. This country as a result has risen to greatness enjoying at least for a time a power never before know. Things have changed and the toilet has been flushed our kids will never again enjoy the freedom from fear that once was a part of this nation.



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nnmns

posted July 3, 2009 at 5:50 am


Gee, cknuck I’d thought you might have remembered the ’50s and ’60s. Fear was a major part of our lives then. We rehearsed what to do if there was an atomic attack. We sent lots of soldiers to far parts of the world that didn’t have oil to stop a philosophy we thought would swamp capitalism and democracy. We live in a lot less fear now.
But I’ll admit the Bush/Cheney/Republican recession/depression has put us in a big hole and while our stimulus is keeping things from getting worse than they would have, we need more to get ourselves out of this. What’s happening to state and local budgets is terrible, just for instance. I’m with Paul Krugman that we needed more stimulus all along and we still do.



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Windsors Child

posted July 3, 2009 at 8:09 am


For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any two-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Hebrews 4:12



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nnmns

posted July 3, 2009 at 10:30 am


Ah, the Bible promoting the Bible. That’s a lot like used car salesmen promoting used car salesmen or realtors promoting realtors.



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Windsors Child

posted July 3, 2009 at 4:16 pm


Or atheists promoting unbelief.



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Henrietta22

posted July 3, 2009 at 4:20 pm


Happy 4th of July to you too Jacob and to all my friends and others! To Rev. Lee, a Happy 4th, too, even if he isn’t sure President Carter is a Christian and that President Obama is patriotic. ;)



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Your Name

posted July 3, 2009 at 4:27 pm


For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any two-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Hebrews 4:12
Jesus Christ is the Word of God…not the words of the Bible.
But even if that were true, one of the things that the Bible warns persons about most persistently is idolatry — placing one’s ultimate trust in something other than God. Which sounds like a working definition of nationalism.



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Heretic_for_Christ

posted July 3, 2009 at 6:28 pm


Patriots? True patriots do not tell lies about America. True patriots do not want America to become a Taliban-like theocracy. These people are not patriots and I don’t think they are even Christians unless Christianity has degenerated into nothing more than loud posturing shouts of “We’re Number One!” They defile our nation and their own religion with their cheap jingoism and faux religiosity.



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Henrietta22

posted July 3, 2009 at 8:57 pm


Happy 4th of July Heretic-for-Christ! Good to hear your comment again.



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nnmns

posted July 3, 2009 at 9:20 pm


Yes, happy 4′th to you all.



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pagansister

posted July 3, 2009 at 9:30 pm


Ditto: Happy 4th everyone.



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Gwyddion9

posted July 3, 2009 at 9:30 pm


It sounds like the stuff that the RR and Falwell promoted, if you’re patriotic, you’re Christian and therefore, if you’re Christian, you’re obviously patriotic.
I think the only ones fooled by this thought as well as this “patriotic bible” are those buying it. It’s the us versus them mentality simply given a new look and justification.
They’ll never learn.
Theocracy…about as Un-American as you can get!



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jestrfyl

posted July 3, 2009 at 11:46 pm


Happy 4th of July – INDEPENDENCE DAY – for All Americans, and not only Christians. Enjoy your freedoms; celebrate OUR national diversity; and have a hot burger, a cold drink, and a well deserved rest.



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cknuck

posted July 3, 2009 at 11:47 pm


Your Name person you are all over the place with your theology that’s why the bible so we won’t buy into false gospel spewings even atheists get into spreading this false gospel.
H4C I am so sure you don’t speak for any of the patriots referred to and because of your words you would be their enemy. Historically all prayed to God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit as they defended this country.
nnmns there have always been threats but the treat of no God and godless people is the worse of all for all. Yes I do remember the fifties and I remember prayers that comforted and the enemy was not from within like Columbine.



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nnmns

posted July 4, 2009 at 5:07 am


cknuck, if you don’t think the enemy (well, some of them) was from within you’ve forgotten HUAC and Senator McCarthey.
As for Columbine I expect we could have an interesting conversation (to ourselves, anyway) as to what was to blame. I’d put easy availability of guns as a prime candidate. As for the rest of it, I’d have to review but I imagine bullying and perhaps the school’s lack of response and of course the kids’ belief they are empowered to judge and kill other people for slights to them. Certainly there are failings in our society but none this Bible is going to cure.
As for gospel, you need to keep in mind the Bible changed over the years, by error or intention, as people copied it. And of course it doesn’t even agree with itself. So I wouldn’t be so worried about what’s “gospel” as what’s sensible and preventing people who love each other and have lived together for several years from getting married is just not sensible.



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Kauko

posted July 4, 2009 at 9:01 am


“Historically all prayed to God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit as they defended this country.”
As there have been Jews in this country (among other non-Christians) since before the Revolutionary war and they have fought to defend this country in every war (from the Revolutionary, both sides of the Civil War, WW’s 1 and 2, Vietnam, Gulf wars… all of them), your statement cknuck, is wrong.



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Heretic_for_Christ

posted July 4, 2009 at 9:36 am


Absolutely, there have been true Christian patriots–people who were sincere in their devotion to Christianity and to America. My contempt is reserved for those who FALSELY EQUATE patriotism and Christianity…. those who PROMOTE THE LIE that America was founded to be a Christian nation… those who DESECRATE THEIR FAITH with cheap jingoism and BETRAY AMERICA with calls for theocracy.



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cknuck

posted July 4, 2009 at 12:43 pm


Kauko my statement is not wrong while there were Jews, Muslims and I’m sure others they did not lead or drive the war efforts of the Revolutionary War to the World Wars I don’t include the policing efforts as wars in where our involvement paled in comparison to the great wars.
H4C you are so ridiculous, you make you charge against Christians that is unfounded and your opening statement is made to sound like Christian Patriots were a minority and played a very little tiny role in forging this country. What a bold faced lie dressed up in a slick soliloquy.



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cknuck

posted July 4, 2009 at 12:48 pm


nnmns I believe you are wrong there always have been guns I remember hunting as a youth with my foster father and uncle their was a gun in just about every house, something else changed the causes a Columbine.



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Kauko

posted July 4, 2009 at 2:02 pm


“Kauko my statement is not wrong while there were Jews, Muslims and I’m sure others they did not lead or drive the war efforts of the Revolutionary War to the World Wars I don’t include the policing efforts as wars in where our involvement paled in comparison to the great wars.”
Could you rephrase that in some way that’s more comprehensible?



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Kauko

posted July 4, 2009 at 2:15 pm


“Jews…..did not lead or drive the war efforts of the Revolutionary War”
Perhaps you are unaware of Haym Solomon, a Jew, who was one of the prime financiers of the American Revolution, to cite just one example. And by your logic if we can dismiss the contributions of all non-Christians in American history, why not just go a step further and dismiss the contributions of all non-white people, I mean its essentially the same flawed way of thinking?



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Henrietta22

posted July 4, 2009 at 2:59 pm


When I grew up in the 30′s and 40′s Christians didn’t divide themselves up into Classifications as they have in recent years. Amazing thing to think about; we didn’t argue over the Pledge of Alligence, it was before “Under God” was added in the days of the cloud of Communism. The Pledge was for our alligence to our great country of America and we said it every day standing by our desks with our hands over our hearts. We meant it. We were a very patriotic country back then. We understood where Churches stood in our lives and where Patriotism equally stood in our lives. We gave thanks to God for our lives of being Americans. Fundamentalism was called “holy rollers”, and we accepted them as interpreting Christianity a little differently than we did. Who knew it would turn into almost a disease and cause so much hate and trouble for the workings of our country. It’s time to stop just as our President has pointed out and get along with each other. Cknuck you can start by not accusing everyone that doesn’t agree with your religious take on being a Christian.



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nnmns

posted July 4, 2009 at 4:12 pm


cknuck you may be right about the guns. They have been generally available for a long time.
Henrietta is right about the way i remember things as a young man. And that pledge, the one without the divisive “under God” that I always forget, worked amazingly well. Too bad Ike had to try to make a great thing better and screwed it up.



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GodsCountry

posted July 4, 2009 at 4:18 pm


There is only one way to be a Christian. Fortunately, our founding fathers embraced that way. Now, anyone is free to say anything they like – even to the extent of denigrating the faith of the founding fathers.
Ironic, isn’t it, when freedom begins to devour itself, like a snake at it’s own tail?
The audacity of ye olde liberalism.



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pagansister

posted July 4, 2009 at 4:51 pm


“There is only one way to be a Christian.” GC Not all want to be, and that is fine too….lots of other very good “religions” (oh, that’s right, Christianity is a “faith, not a religion, your words).
There is also no basis for believing that this country ever was intended to be a “Christian” country. It is a country that is diversse in race, and religion. That’s was the intention, among many other things that we celebrate today. So being a Christian isn’t a priority or a necessity for patriotism or loyality to this country.
Oh, not all the “Founding Fathers (and Mothers) were Christians. FYI



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GodsCountry

posted July 4, 2009 at 6:23 pm


Not one right, not one freedom, not one liberty, NOTHING good, pure, righteous and excellent – like what our founding fathers framed into a constitution – is founded without a Biblical principle. No Faith, no America as we know it. America is based upon the foundation of Christian faith. This is undeniable.
Lie! Twist words! Redefine words! Produce straw men! Attack the truth-holder! Discredit religion! Hate God! Smear the Son!
Quickly! Truth is winning!
The audacity of liberalism.



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Nate W

posted July 4, 2009 at 7:27 pm


Please tell me that your posts are a bad attempt at satire, GodsCountry. Please!



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pagansister

posted July 4, 2009 at 7:43 pm


Got a little carried away there, huh GC? Lies? Twist words? “Rede- fine words? etc. etc etc. So, let me get this straight… it’s OK to own slaves…the Bible has slaves, and it’s OK to keep women “in their place” as Men are supposedly superior,(that’s a joke) and it’s OK to kill, as the Bible says..”eye for an eye” etc. and it’s OK to kill children who don’t obey, or beat on them (spare the rod, spoil the child AKA child abuse…it’s in the Bible!) and it’s not OK to wear clothes of differnt fabrics……sure. Where in the Bible is the word “democracy”? Where does it say that all Americans can be any religion they want? (not just Christian as the Bible (NT) promotes). I’m so glad I’m not tied into that book for my life guide! Sorry Charlie, not a Christian nation…thank goodness! That book has so many contradictions in it…and some really great myths, but as a guide? Scary. This country isn’t a theocracy…plenty of those around and we see the results of that…Iran anyone?
Truth is winning? And just who’s version of truth might that be, GC? You have your version, I have mine and never the twain shall meet. :o) In this country (USA), you can express your version, however you don’t have the right to push it on anyone else…
This liberal is a patriotic and proud American.
Have a nice evening.



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pagansister

posted July 4, 2009 at 7:44 pm


Nate W, I think GC is actually serious.



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Henrietta22

posted July 4, 2009 at 8:14 pm


Well GC is right about our country being formed on Christian Principles, but not because it was meant to be a Christian Only country. You can find many comments from many of our forefathers and put them on a page and say see our country was formed to be a Christian nation read what each of them say. These same people said many other important opinions of what our country was back then, as well.



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cknuck

posted July 4, 2009 at 10:27 pm


H22 quote: “Well GC is right about our country being formed on Christian Principles, but not because it was meant to be a Christian Only country.”
What in the world? You started out fine and I agree but many are trying to erase the facts of history. As we are now as a country is pitiful we have to borrow money the separation of classes grow more divided and our kids are living under false promises and they know it, that’s why they act as they do. So watch what comes next to a country so focused on homosexual activity that it pours move money into promoting homosexuality than other things it could give to its youth.



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Heretic_for_Christ

posted July 4, 2009 at 11:06 pm


Dear me! Is someone now promoting homosexuality? How is that done? Advertising? (“Try homosexuality! It’s new and improved!”) Tax incentives? (“New laws now enable same-sex couples to deduct TWICE the amount that opposite-sex spouses can deduct!”) Celebrity endorsements? (“Hi, folks! I’m a famous actor, and I want to urge all Americans to rethink their sexual orientation and give homosexuality a try!”)
Yes, cknuck, our nation is in desperate straits now–thanks to the dogmatic daffiness of Republican politics, starting with Saint Ronald. I don’t agree with a lot of what Obama has done since taking office, but the reason why we are in this trouble now is NOT because anyone is “promoting” homosexuality but because recent Republican administrations promoted Fantasyland delusions that deceived and seduced America.
As for the facts of history, the fact is that America was founded in the ideals of the Age of Reason, not the age of Christian evangelicalism. Did Christianity play a part in the thinking of the Founding Fathers? Of course. So did the writings of Enlightenment philosophers. And when you examine the great documents they produced–the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution–you see the ideas of those philosophers and not one word about Christianity. No, sir–America was NOT founded to be a Christian nation.
But let’s take it further. Suppose you agreed with the self-evident fact that Jefferson and Madison et al did not intend for America to be a Christian theocracy. Now let’s ask, did they intend that America should be guided by “Christian principles”? What would those principles be? The 10 commandments? Sorry, that would be Jewish principles, and they are basically the same principles that all societies develop as they emerge from savagery and anarchy. So what exactly is a “Christian principle”? I know what Christian theology is, but theology is not a principle. Nor is it a value. (And by the way, I still have not received a single reply from any Christian to my repeated challenge to define “Christian values”–what values are uniquely Christian, or at least originally Christian?)
America has always been a secular nation–that is, not a theocracy–and the fact that most of its citizens happen to be Christian does NOT make it a Christian nation except to those who think The Gospel According to Dobson provides a more accurate look at American history than American history texts.



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Karl Kroger

posted July 5, 2009 at 2:29 am


In an interview, Lee said he doesn’t even know if Carter, a fellow Georgian and longtime Baptist Sunday school teacher, is a Christian. As for President Obama? “I haven’t seen any patriotism from him yet.”
——————
What a bunch of crap. This is sick! How dare Lee suggest that Carter is not a Christian or that Obama doesn’t love America.



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cknuck

posted July 5, 2009 at 2:58 am


H4C what amazing double talk, practice much? Anything that people want other people to accept as fact is promoted by some champion or another you were not born yesterday. It is said that your so-called Age of Reason is simply a theology popular in France. America was not founded for or by Christian evangelism (shell game huh H4C) but in an effort of Christian freedom. I haven’t believed in or had faith in any president but I do hold faith in the system and the people of America so I don’t know why you bring that up.
Be for real what Christians have you challenged to define Christian principles, have you heard of the Sermon on the Mount, and have you ever read anything Jesus said. Whole books have been written about Christian principles and everyday Christians practice them the best they can.
Finally if America was meant to be secular why would a bible be in every court of law and the measure of truth be weighted on the bible. Why does Congress pray, why is there scripture on the walls of every building in Washington. Every president before Obama would defer with you on that statement as they all swore in on the bible and meant it.



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pagansister

posted July 5, 2009 at 1:20 pm


Why would a bible be in a court room, measure of truth weighted on the bible, scripture on the walls of every (?) building in DC? cknuck
I expect the buildings (and I doube the EVERY one has scripture)were build a long time ago…
Why all the religious stuff still? Some hang up on “tradition” and we haven’t gotten out of the dark ages yet! But we’re working it. If indeed I had to be sworn in to testify in court (and I hope I never have to), I’d NOT swear with my hand on the bible. I don’t think it is required….as a Jewish, or Muslim, non-Christian person would have no use for it. One just has to swear to tell the truth…and I’d leave out “so help me god”…since she/he would have nothing to do with my telling the truth. No in spite of many, we aren’t a Christian nation and are stronger for it.



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nnmns

posted July 5, 2009 at 2:02 pm


While we’re on the subject of religion, pagansister I thought you might be interested in this article on pagans in Russia celebrating summer solstice. It mentions that paganism in Russia has been nearly wiped out by centuries of Christianity. I wonder if those Christians demanding “freedom of religion” are upset about that.



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nnmns

posted July 5, 2009 at 2:06 pm


The issue of swearing on this or that is interesting. If one of us non-Judeo Christians (what do practicing Jews swear on?) said we’d swear but never mind the Bible, I imagine some jurors would give our testimony less weight, while others might possibly credit us for honesty given it would be very easy to just go along.



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Henrietta22

posted July 5, 2009 at 2:44 pm


You are right Pagansister, when I was a witness in a theft trial (Juvenile Court) I was just asked “will you tell the truth”, I said yes and the questions began. I asked about it later and was told that some courts ask with a Bible and some do not.



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Henrietta22

posted July 5, 2009 at 3:25 pm


When you read the Preamble of The Constitution Of The United States, it says: We, the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect Union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America. This is the setting up of our country, and no where in any of the articles God or religion are shown. This is secular-setting up of our country, business of how our country is to be run.
Under Amendments to The Constitution
Article I
Religion and Free Speech–Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
So Congress did not establish a religion for this country. How much plainer can this be? God is mentioned in many other places, as in the Declaration of Independence for instance: We, therefore, the Representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions do, in the Name and by the authority of the good People of these Colonies, etc., etc. The majority of the signers believed in a God and that they were guided by this God. That is why the paintings, etc. are here and there in buildings in Wash D.C. Our forefathers should be respected for their beliefs and for setting up our country, as the democracy in a republic that it is and William Tyler Page mentioned in The American Creed.



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cknuck

posted July 5, 2009 at 3:43 pm


I did get some good laughs from you post guys but that still does not change the heritage of this country. You guys have just illustrated the need from history to be reminded because as old as you guys are you seem to still get it muddled and at least one of you was a teacher so if you get it muddled then what chance do young people have especially if they talk to people like you. I’m not trying to be mean I am just making an observation.



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cknuck

posted July 5, 2009 at 3:50 pm


H22 they were certainly a lot more clearer than you. They did not say “a God” they said God.



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nnmns

posted July 5, 2009 at 5:00 pm


“God” is a very muddled idea since so many people worship so many different gods. It’s far clearer to talk about “a god”.



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pagansister

posted July 5, 2009 at 7:01 pm


Well said, Henrietta… and thanks for reminding us of just what was said in our official documents!
Interesting point,nnmns, on whether a jury would be influenced by a person swearing on a bible or not…if that is the choice of the court. Henrietta mentioned that she didn’t have to swear on it, just swear to tell the truth.
Thanks for the Russia/Pagan site…am planning to check it out,nnmns.
Glad we were able to give you a good laugh, cknuck. We all need that sometimes.



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pagansister

posted July 5, 2009 at 7:10 pm


nnmns, did read the Russian/Pagan article. Very interesting … would have been nice to have been there..but somehow I don’t think I’ll make it to Russia.



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jestrfyl

posted July 5, 2009 at 8:08 pm


Ya know, it just occurred to me that maybe – given the multitude of moral dilemmas we find ourselves in as a result of all this patriot pride – that they NEED a Bible to call their own. I hope it does not reinforce the previous bad behavior. As with any good Prophetic Proclamation, if it is as it should be, this Bible will make the Patriots prickle rather than swell.
Of course, I realize none of that is so. This will simply be like an ad for whiskey is to an alcoholic. They will use this as another puny justification for their arrogance and attitude. I prefer to listen to the Patriots who understand contrition, justification by faith, and the power of love, not war.



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Heretic_for_Christ

posted July 5, 2009 at 10:47 pm


America was indeed founded to be a secular nation. Secular does not mean atheist — it means that the laws are derived based on social needs rather than on sacred scripture. Some of the Founding Fathers were devout Christians; others were deists. None of them wanted America to be a theocracy. And if you deride the ideas of the Age of Reason, you deride the philosophical insights and aims of the Founding Fathers. This is plain historical fact. The question is whether a person accepts facts or trusts what some preacher tells them to believe. It’s the same with science–you can accept scientific fact or you can listen to some Bible-besotted preacher who thinks the Sun revolves around the Earth.
As for the Sermon on the Mount, yes, cknuck, I know it well. I repeat my challenge–in what sense is it uniquely Christian? Jesus’ supreme spiritual message is of unparalleled eloquence but very much a product of his Jewish heritage. Indeed, for someone who had never the Greek scriptures, it might be difficult to separate out the teachings of Jesus from those of his slightly earlier contemporary, Hillel, or his much earlier predecessor Isaiah. The most obvious illustration is the “Golden Rule” attributed to Jesus–a paraphrase of Hillel’s most famous teaching: “That which is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow.”
But all of this is beside the point. This is an article about a new edition of the Bible whose stated aim seems to be to reinforce the jingoistic delusion that God is a registered Republican. I regard such an enterprise with loathing, and that does not make me an enemy of America or of God. Indeed, I loathe it because it defiles true patriotism by telling lies about our nation, and defiles true faith by depicting God as a partisan politician.



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cknuck

posted July 6, 2009 at 1:27 am


As a patriot I know many Christians that have been on battle fields, many that have given their lives for this country and many that are in the line of fire currently; so when it comes to what a patriot actually is I’ll take the word of a doer over the words of a bunch of talkers.



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nnmns

posted July 6, 2009 at 5:32 am


A lot of non-Christians of many kinds have been on those battlefields too cknuck. Should they just go home? Will the armed forces let them? How do you get off ignoring them like that? How dare you ignore their sacrifices?



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nnmns

posted July 6, 2009 at 9:45 am


“so when it comes to what a patriot actually is I’ll take the word of a doer over the words of a bunch of talkers.”
You must have had a world of contempt for Bush’s administration. It was filled with chicken hawks. Bush, for instance, got trained up to fly jets at government expense but when it came time for him to go off and fly against someone who could shoot back he decided he had other interests. And most of those guys who got us into Iraq and screwed it up had never even gotten that close to an armed service.
Al Gore, on the other hand, went overseas and fought. So cknuck join me in appreciating Al Gore and scorning Bush and his fellow Republican chicken hawks.



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Your Name

posted July 6, 2009 at 9:51 am


This looks another example by the Religious Righters to justify Empire and Militarism with Christianity – which is the exact opposite with the message of Jesus. Many of the founders of this country were Deists and Thomas Jefferson was a Unitarian – remember the “Jefferson Bible”? I wonder if the Shawnee hero Tecumseh (a true American in my book) will be included in the quotes? Unfortunately this Bible will probably sell well among fundamentalists at least – even though God is not an American, Republican or Democrat. “When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross” -Sinclair Lewis 1935



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nnmns

posted July 6, 2009 at 10:00 am


Whoops, my bad. I was thinking of John Kerry. But in fact Al Gore also served, though not nearly as heroically as Kerry. But of course a lot more heroically than Bush and his gang of chicken hawks.



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pagansister

posted July 6, 2009 at 12:06 pm


cknuck, Patriots come in all sizes and shapes AND religions, including atheists and agnostics. All those who fought, died, and were disabled mentally and physically, in all our conflicts/wars weren’t necessarily Christians. IF they weren’t Christians does that mean they aren’t allowed to be called partiots, cknuck? Does that mean “GOD” is only on the side of Christian? I know a lot of those wars to “convert” the heathens to Christianity certainly were misguided in their beliefs! They were war mongers, thinking that all others weren’t human due to their non-belief in JC and friends. So sad.



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Cherubino

posted July 6, 2009 at 2:00 pm


There are more than 500 English versions of the Bible currently in print, each reflecting a somewhat different theological perspective. In rather stark contrast, there is still only one version of the U.S. Constitution.



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Bloodstone

posted July 6, 2009 at 5:43 pm


This is all we need. As if God in America wasn’t enough of a nationalist already. Maybe Jesus will come back acting like Rambo?
Wake me when America grows up.



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cknuck

posted July 6, 2009 at 6:45 pm


pagan you know i will never buy or read this book and i know there are other patriots outside of Christians and if they want to write their book good for them it probably will be interesting, but as long as we are in America these folk have every right to publish their thoughts.



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pagansister

posted July 6, 2009 at 6:55 pm


Yes, I totally agree, cknuck, that they have the right to publish the book, in the USA. One of our many freedoms.
Happy to hear you won’t be buying it.



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GodsCountry

posted July 6, 2009 at 8:34 pm


Touchstones of Liberal thought; to name what is evil as something good and that which is good to call it evil, to fancy up lies to make them sound like hidden or forgotten truths, attempt to destroy truth sources. To atomize humanity, so everyone believes they are the center of the world and that their own, fantastic beliefs are all that exist. To undermine legitimately established authority and usurp it’s power. In the end, the world will be pagan, anarchic and utterly chaotic. Then, finally, those who are today found to be merely foolish, will rule the world.
But, truth wins, evil is vanquished and love will reign!
The audacity of Liberalism.



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GodsCountry

posted July 6, 2009 at 8:47 pm


When love vanquishes evil, truth prevails and God reigns, those who lied will be some sorry people.
Love seeks what is good, tells the truth, encourages truth-telling, unites humanity, abandons power and with submission bows to almighty GOD. Imperfect people rejoice in the One Hope for redemption and new life, Jesus Christ.
Truth will win. Evil will be vanquished. Love will reign.
Forever and ever.



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pagansister

posted July 6, 2009 at 9:22 pm


Whatever floats your boat, GC, whatever floats your boat. Your boat can go one way and I’ll stick with my way…Pagan and Liberal and safe from those who find the RR the way to go.
I do agree, Love seeks what is good, that is why I’m doing so well.
Have a liberal night!



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Heretic_for_Christ

posted July 6, 2009 at 9:27 pm


GodsCountry (I’ll refrain from using the initials–bad connotations):
You are free to offer your bibliolatry and blasphemy to people you meet on the street, but it is a violation of Beliefnet “Rules of Conduct” to post pure proselytizing messages here. Or at least, that was the rule in the past. (I’ve been away for quite awhile.)
Cheers.



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nnmns

posted July 6, 2009 at 9:37 pm


If GOD really existed and wanted us to bow to him (her? it?) then it should darn well make it clear that it does exist and that it wants to be worshipped and just how to do so. Given all the religions and the total lack of trustworthy evidence for any of them, it would be insane to pick a religion out of a hat and donate a bunch of money to it with any expectations except to be dunned for more and more money.
As far as I can tell most religions exist to make some people money and to concentrate power in the hands of some people. While some religious folks do some good, it’s likely they’d have done some good without the religion; but in any case, good for them.
But some religious folks do a world of harm; they divide the country and the world, they instigate wars and terrorism, they fight science and the teaching of real science, they encourage people to look at the world through fantasy-colored glasses when there are some very serious things people need to se, they prevent real sex education from being taught, they mess with other people’s lives they have no business messing with and every so often the elect a really, really bad president. I do have to admit the possibility they’d try to do bad things like this without their religions but the religions help them organize and make them think they are fighting a good fight when in fact they are fighting the things that make America and other great nations great.
H4C I hope you are back to stay.



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Heretic_for_Christ

posted July 6, 2009 at 10:25 pm


nnmns,
Thanks for the welcoming-back words. It is good to see that you continue to post your thoughtful and humane insights.
I’d like to make explicit the link between what you have just written and the topic of this board–the “Patriots Bible,” forsooth. Religious people have always made God in their own image. In the case of those who have perpetrated a jingoistic Bible, God is angry, vengeful, egotistical, destructive, and self-righteous… and he’s on Our Side.



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cknuck

posted July 7, 2009 at 1:50 am


H4C you post pure proselytizing messages all of the time with blanket statements against people that opinions differ from you. Like the ridiculous sex education statement from nnmns yes some people teach abstinence but nnmns base our sex lives on animals. So you guys proselytize to promote your points but of course you think proselytizing is something only Christians do while you can continue to say what you like regardless to facts to the contrary.
Nnmns if you think wars are about religion then you either block out the facts or you just want to promote hate toward religions. Most folk follow their religion quietly with day to day lives honoring the law. Most wars on the other hand are about greed, land, and power, almost nothing to do with religion.



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nnmns

posted July 7, 2009 at 4:16 am


“Most folk follow their religion quietly with day to day lives honoring the law. Most wars on the other hand are about greed, land, and power, almost nothing to do with religion.”
I agree with your first statement and your second isn’t so far off the mark. But I’m right, too. Note the “some”‘s. And note the part about why religion makes it worse.
Bob Herbert wrote a powerful OP-ED for the NYT about Robert McNamara’s death and especially his life and the Vietnam War and about wasted lives due to wars based on lies. Everyone should read it, especially self-styled patriots.
H4C, thanks for making my day. Your posts add insight and style many of us rarely achieve. But enough of that.



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Heretic_for_Christ

posted July 7, 2009 at 5:52 am


Speaking an opinion is not proselytizing. Arguing a case with fact and logic is not proselytizing. Proselytizing is the attempt to convince, connive, or coerce a person into accepting a religious belief system without evidence or logic, usually with the threat of hellfire for rejecting the message, and usually by citing sacred scripture (invariably out of context) as if that were unchallengeable proof.
cknuck, I am not opposed to faith. I am not an atheist. I am not anti-American. But I am intractably hostile to dogmatism and pseudo-religious jingoism, and I will continue to argue–not proselytize–against the unholy wedlock of politics and religion.



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GodsCountry

posted July 7, 2009 at 1:49 pm


There is an old tale of blind men trying to discover what an elephant is like by feeling various parts – the legs are like a tree so an elephant looks like a tree, etc.
Blindness doesn’t just occur in old tales, neither the results.
Describe it as you will, an elephant is an elephant is an elephant.
God is, always has been and always will be God.
The founding fathers of our country knew God. They began a war of liberation from tyranny. Just so blind men could describe God their own way, or not, and try to lead others into oblivion.
In these pages, they would have seen the irony they unleashed.
So be it.
Liberalism is audacious AND ironic.



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pagansister

posted July 7, 2009 at 1:59 pm


Exactly…SO BE IT. Liberalism is wonderful. For those who worship some type of divine being, and have THE book to tell them what to do, to them it is wonderful. Thus is life.
Blessed Be



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cknuck

posted July 7, 2009 at 6:44 pm


nnmns it is more about how some people use religion to achieve their agendas not religion itself. For instance to many atheist is a religion some may quietly go about their lives and just not believe, others will try to get everyone in their sphere of influence to not believe with them then there are others still who will wage war against people who believe with every weapon at their disposal. It goes deeper still for the first fellow may try to do good along the way, the second may only do good for those who believe as he does but still doing good but the third is so consumed with doing harm he bring a bad name to all atheist. Could be true, huh?



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nnmns

posted July 7, 2009 at 7:33 pm


Well cknuck since you’ve tried your hand at categorizing atheists I’ll slip in this categorization of conservatives and slip away. See you elsewhere.



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cknuck

posted July 7, 2009 at 8:38 pm


nnmns you missed the point all together I was trying to show by using the word that it’s inter-changable, any group will do and all groups have some of the same type characters in them. Well maybe you made my point for me.



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Samantha

posted July 13, 2009 at 1:45 am


The Bible is a guide to leading a better life, to grow as a human being and to be a source of inspiration during tough times. A bible can make a great gift. I know as I got it from my mother and it has been with me since. You can gift bibles to your loved ones too and help give shape to their lives. At http://coupongrove.com/ABSBibleandbookstore/ you would find discount coupons for bibles making them very affordable. They have bibles both in English and Spanish and also for children.



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