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Truly, we have moral problems today. There is a gener= al moral decline that all good Christians would like to see stop and begin to= rise to a higher level of general respect and a higher level of moral concern. = Not all of the problem is with the non-religious left, and some of the root problem rests with the rather ignorant Religious Right. One wonders just who is be= ing duped when Pat Robertson writes kooky conspiracy theories that fool innoce= nt trusting people and then claims 90% of America is Christian. Without a dou= bt, Christianity has never been as prolific, pervasive, and prosperous as toda= y in the 21st century. So then, here is a real problem made worse by folks like Robertson and other media stars. Isaac Kramnick and R. Laurence Moore<= !--[if supportFields]>xe "Moore, R. Laurence"= powerfully said:
If Americans are Christian—in fact, if they ar= e by dint of church membership more Christian than they were a hundred years ag= o, and vastly more Christian than they were in the eighteenth century—t= hen how do we explain the decline in religiously based morality? Can it really= be that a cabal of God-hating liberals has succeeded, despite the overwhelming numbers confronting them, in driving religion from the public square? And without anyone’s suspecting, before Robertson and other leaders of t= he Religious Right came alone, what were they up to? An alternative theory mi= ght suggest that too many religious leaders have stopped doing what they do we= ll and started doing what they do badly, in alliance with men who don’t= care much about religion at all except when it returns votes.
We thus have an anomaly. [With moral decline amid a = 90% Christian populace] … Robertson is uninterested in the strengths or = the failures of organized religion, or the possibility that religion may be it= s own enemy. The villain for spiritual decline is the state, which never in this country carried the burden for maintaining the spiritual health of the peo= ple or for teaching them how to pray. Roger Williams would have smelled a r= at. If religion isn’t making people who profess to believe in it good, neit= her can the Republican or the Democratic party.= sup>
How about that? I do not necessarily like it—Robertson spouting things too incredible to digest—but Kram= nick and Moore’s words ring with truth through and through. And with thos= e two paragraphs in tow—if you have not already—now pick up a politi= cal book by Pat Robertson, whose conspiracy theories are not nearly as credibl= e as a Robert Ludlum fiction novel.
Just who is being duped?
Pat Robertson’s New World Order is buggy through and through. It is hard to imagine anyone who reads a daily paper = or who is moderately involved in any kind of civic affairs could believe his fanciful illusions. Truly, if his illusions were true, he would not be as famous as he is, for his conspirators would have cut him off. If his conspiracies are truly as widespread and as powerful and wicked as Robertson’s makes them out, Robertson would never have become a mult= i-millionaire. Robertson became a multi-millionaire from convincing innocent and vulnerab= le people to buy into his conspiracies; his conspiracies made him a rich man, where if they were true conspiracies Robertson would have been sharing a r= oom with Jimmy Hoffa somewhere. Robertson’s celebrity status earned him a review of his book in the Wall Street Journal, a piece headlined, “A New World Order Nut.”= sup>
You have to laugh. Just who is being duped?
Tim LaHaye listed George Washingt= on and Benjamin Franklin<= !--[if supportFields]>xe "Franklin, Benjamin"= as the “two most-honored Founding Fathers.”= sup> LaHaye gave a long quote by Michael Farri= s that ended with,
The Declaration says that we are a nation under God&= #8217;s laws. Therefore, all other laws of our Country should be consistent with t= he law of God or they violate our national charter.= sup>
Now that is truly off-the-wall, especially since= LaHaye introduced Farris as a constitutio= nal attorney. Seemingly oblivious to the reason the Declaration was written in= the first place, Farris connects the Declaration with our Constitution as thou= gh the Constitution had no constituted authority. Furthermore, Farris certain= ly meant to use “charter” as a metaphor; but in this very context= of both Farris and LaHaye, the word “charter” is out of place for the Declaration. Forget that the Declaration truly included the word God only once and for some of the reas= ons LaHaye, Farris, Barton, and o= thers claim—one nation under God and appealing to God the Father—but the primary reason for use of the word God was to address= a Christian empire upon its own Christian principles for the purpose of a parting-of-the-ways and as peaceful independence as the new America could obtain. Surely, our Founding Fathers were praying then, but they were also bargaining with their lives; it was good business to appeal to Christ= ian sensitivity and conscience so that the parting-of-the-ways might come about without the shedding of blood. But the Christian British Empire would not = let go without a lot of bloodshed.
Many of our Founding Fathers prayed, sincerely and so= lemnly, using God a lot of the time not as a bargaining chip, but as their heavenly Father and even in certain and sure reverence for God as the Great Architect of the Universe.
That is a nice start, but LaHaye nearly slaps Jefferson and humanis= ts when talking about Jefferson’s famous wall of separation metaphor. H= mmm? Who better than Jefferson to consult about the U.S. “charter”—by LaHaye’s and FarrisR= 17; rationale—that actually determines the Constitution? Listen to LaHay= e’s opinion of the= author of the Declaration when it comes to something they disagree about, like the wall of separation.
Doesn’t it strike you as strange that the huma= nists had to skip all the Founding Fathers when trying to get an opinion they co= uld agree with, and had to resort to a contemporary [Jefferson] who hadn’= ;t even been a part of the constitutional deliberations? And even then, they = went to a man who was out of the country at the time the Constitution was being debated, and one who was so hostile to Christianity that while in the White House, he made his own Bible by cutting out all the miracles of Jesus Chri= st because they emphasize= d His supernatural nature.= sup>
What a powerful statement that reverses upon Tim= LaHaye. It is absurd that Jefferson’s persona was forgotten upon the Constitutional conveners.= The only reason he and a few others were abroad was because he was at the fore= front of leadership and knew the leadership in the states were in general agreement—even his brothers Benjamin Franklin and George Washington<= !--[if supportFields]>xe "Washington, George"= . And Franklin went to = France, shortly after signing the Declaration to help win France’s recogniti= on. And Jefferson did become president.
It is clear by all historical records that we would n= ot have won the American Revolution and War of Independence as soon—if at all—without the help of the French. And our American Revolution was linked with the Enlightenment and in many ways linked with and helped the French start their own revolution of 1789 that would become more anti-<= /i>religion than not. In sum and in view of religious tolerance and even the higher te= rms of religious pluralism, the American Revolution pushed against tyranny and religious establishment and even against religious tyranny. The American Revolution pushed toward religious freedom and freedom of conscience, and = the French Revolution pushed against tyranny and religious tyranny and toward = an anti-religious state. The common link was the Enlightenment value of human dignity and va= st array of Freemasonry lodges as the greatest institution that embodi= ed both liberty and equality under God. Where does all that come into = play for our U.S. original intent?
That is another book that a true historian needs to w= rite in the light of Bullock, Jacob, Lambert, Dumenil, Weisberger, Rutyna, Foss, Roberts, Stillson, Ovason, Levy, and Curry. In the light of those historia= ns, the occulting is easier to see in the silly works of Gordon, Holly, Ankerb= erg, and their ilk shrivel. If this book does not send Frankenstein back to the graveyard in the decades to come, a book comparing real history with the v= ast array of occulting and spook-house tactics of the anti-Masons should finis= h the job.
It’d be nice if the occulting and prostitution = of character would just stop.
Tim LaHaye listed George Washingt= on and Christian sympathi= zer Benjamin Franklin at the top of his list= . The next five “most-influencing Founding Fathers” were James Madis= on, Gouverneur Morris, Ro= ger Sherman, Alexander Hamilton, and George Mason. LaHaye interestingly said of Morris that = he was,
The first to use (in writing) the expression, “= ;We the people of the United States.” So divided were the colonies at the ti= me, that many doubted it would be acceptable. Fortunately for all of us, it wa= s.
What was LaHaye’s meaning there? “We the people” says more than both LaHaye and Barton want. Herein, LaHaye XE "LaHaye, Tim" partially defeats his own bookR= 17;s purpose. Part of the reason “we the people” was inserted was to avoid the establishing of religion. At the end of his listing of only sixt= een “outstanding Christians” among the Founding Fathers, LaHaye XE "LaHaye, Tim" said,
There are many other Christians among the Founding F= athers who are not included in the chapter. Unfortunately, sufficient personal testimonies or recorded acts of their lives have not survived to warrant t= heir inclusion.
After those, LaHaye lists other Christians who signed = the Constitution and who were delegates to the Continental Convention who did = not sign the Constitution. Tim LaHaye lists 54 significant Christians in all, and 24 or 44% of those were Freemasons (see appendix 5). There were as many as 4 million inhabitants in the colonies, and LaHaye XE "LaHaye, Tim" could only identify two clergymen = that were his example of outstanding Christians! Nearly every town had a church= , and nearly every town had a Freemasonry lodge within 50 years after 1776. Cert= ainly there were many more than two significant clergymen as Founding Fathers ju= st fifty years after the Great Awakening. There were more Revolutionary era clergyman of influence. It is just that Tim LaHaye and David Barton could not find them.= p>
There are better records of Freemasonry attendance th= an there are of church attendance in the colonial era.
Despite the stretching and gross omissions, Tim LaHay= e’s closing statem= ents are right on target, though not quite the target LaHaye had set out for himself.
Our Founding Fathers did their part. They gave us a Constitution for the ages. Now it is up to us to do everything we can to k= eep it.
Amen there. Yet that is not what LaHaye meant or intended, ironical= ly. LaHaye wanted to us to believe our Foundi= ng Fathers were 20th century evangelical twins, more than less. Nevertheless, agreeing here, truly our Founding Father did do their part, and we do desperately need to do everything we can to keep our beloved Constitution = of the United States—even in spite of= some of the Religious Right’s revisionism and their occulting and hostili= ty to Freemasonry contributions.
= sup> Isaac Kramnick and R. Laurence Moore<= !--[if supportFields]>xe "Moore, R. Laurence"= , The Godless Constitution—The Case Against Religious Correctness (NY: W. W. = Norton, 1996): 156.
= sup> John J. Robinson, A Pilgrim’s Path: Freemasonry and the Religious Righ= t (1993; 179p.): 62.
= sup> Tim LaHaye, Faith of Our Found= ing Fathers (1987; 268p.): 99-124.
= sup> Tim LaHaye, Faith of Our Found= ing Fathers (1987; 268p.): 42, quoted from Michael Farris, “The Real Meaning of the Declaration of Independence,” Concerned Women for America News 8 (July, 1986): 3, 16.
= sup> Tim LaHaye, Faith of Our Found= ing Fathers (1987; 268p.): 192.
= sup> Tim LaHaye, Faith of Our Found= ing Fathers (1987; 268p.): 125-143.
= sup> Tim LaHaye, Faith of Our Found= ing Fathers (1987; 268p.): 133.
= sup> Tim LaHaye, Faith of Our Found= ing Fathers (1987; 268p.): 183.
= sup> Tim LaHaye, Faith of Our Found= ing Fathers (1987; 268p.): 201.