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Sunday, August 17, 2008

 
Today's Sermon

That Rottweiler post attracted some discussion on church/state issues. I offered this summary of the central issue:

Church and State are separate in that they serve two separate functions. The Church is a voluntary institution that exists to further human relationships with God - and with other humans, secondarily. The State is a body of elected individuals to which is delegated the authority to use prescribed coercive means to protect people from the criminal actions of other people.

(These definitions reflect the Founders’ bias, not those of systems the Founders wished to expel to the dustbin of history.)

God commands the realms of both religion and politics. God defines the requirements for relationship with Himself. He also says what people should and shouldn't do to each other; since the State governs a portion of this concern, the State is a servant of God. The State may acknowledge its Master, but it may not seek to govern matters, religious or otherwise, that fall outside its jurisdiction.

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