This dissension is nothing new, it has been going on since the beginning of time. The separation of church and state in the United States Constitution was because King Henry VIII made himself, in 1534, the head of the Church of England. Objectors created a new church and called themselves “Separatists.”
THEY CAME to America at a great price. “The 102 members aboard the Mayflower endured many storms during the 66-day voyage before reaching Provincetown on Nov. 11, 1620. While building houses on shore at Plymouth most lived in the Mayflower, but poor food, bad weather and stress caused illness with a few dying daily for two months, 47 the first year, as well as half the crew. On April 5, 1621, the remaining crew returned to England aboard the Mayflower, the colonists chose to remain.” (From the Pilgrim Fact Cards.)
I wrote an article on the Fourth of July, 2010, which looked into the Declaration of Independence of the United States. Fifty-six delegates signed the Declaration of Independence. Being of the Baptist faith, I wondered why, of the four preachers who signed, none of them was a Baptist. I asked a professor at Shorter College why. He answered, “They thought of the Baptists as a cult in that day.”
President John Kennedy, a Catholic, made a point of telling people he would keep his religion and politics separate when he was running for president there was so much dissension among Protestants and Catholics.
I FRANKLY do not know how many different religions there are. There are over 100 churches in this small county of Chattooga. So far as I know, they are all Protestant, there was once a Catholic church here, but no longer. I’m convinced that we shall have a religious war in America if people of different denominations, or even those within the same denominations, don’t quit taking upon themselves to be the judge and jury of who will have eternal life. It is as though they can’t wait on the God in Heaven, (or there are those who do not believe there is a God in Heaven,) to do the judging but are self-appointed to do the job for him.
Dedicated men and women go to college for years to learn the gospels and give of themselves to discern the scriptures to lead people to Christ. (Of course, there are religions that do not accept that Jesus is the Christ.) They cannot preach the gospel without teaching the commandments by which people are expected to live. In so doing, they open themselves to criticism
HOW SAD that each of us cannot live up to Christ’s answer in Matthew 22 to a question from the Pharisees and Saducees: “Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, ‘Master, which is the great commandment in the law?’ Jesus said unto him, ‘Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.’”
If we love one another with all out hearts, if we wish only good for one another, then we would have no more wars.
Louise McCollum of Gore writes an occasional column for the Rome News-Tribune.