Huffington Post reporting;
Sarah Palin joined Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly recently to condemn the critics of the National Day of Prayer, saying that the Judeo-Christian belief was the basis for American law and should continue to be used as a guiding force for creating future legislation.
According to Palin, the recent backlash against the National Day of Prayer is proof that some people are trying to enact a “fundamental transformation of America” and to “revisit and rewrite history” in order to shift the Christian nation away from its spiritual roots.
Palins’s advice: “Go back to what our founders and our founding documents meant — they’re quite clear — that we would create law based on the God of the bible and the ten commandments.
While it may be true that many of the founders were religious, that does not serve as evidence that they based our laws on the New Testament, as Palin audaciously claims. In fact the founders took the time and made sure that there was a separation of church and state, that a religious denomination cannot become the state religion, and placed restrictions on the government concerning laws they pass or interfering with religion.
Palin is not wrong in stating the founders were religious but she is wrong by saying that the founders created the constitution based on their religious belief.
In fact Jefferson, the author of the constitution, wrote, “Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should ‘make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,’ thus building a wall of separation between Church & State. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties.”
As you can see, the founders wanted to keep government from placing restrictions on and being involved with religious institutions. However, there is a common misconception that the founders meant the church to stay out of the state’s business and the state to stay out of the church’s business. The term separation of church and state was written in a letter by Thomas Jefferson not the constitution. The constitution simply says (1st amendment),”Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” The church like big banks lobbies congress all the time.