Church and State

With all the political hubub that is going on I have been thinking about the way in which religion (particularly Christian and Islam) are being bandied about in a nation with religious freedom undergirding its central tenants. Now, to be clear, the First Amendment does not say there is to be no religion in the political theater. It simply states that there will be no state imposed religion. That being said, the idea of this amendment acting as a firewall between church and state is not new and was introduced by Thomas Jefferson in 1802. Did Jefferson and the constitutional framers envision the level of religious pluralism we are swimming in today? Of course not, but that's another thought for another day.

Here is what's on my mind for today. It seems to me that many of those who decry the Theocracies of the Middle East and want to replace them with a secularized Democracy are the very ones who are condemning the leadership of our country when they are not in lock step with a right wing fundamentalist approach to Christianity. Now, realizing that I have overly generalized (and written a run on sentence), I am yet curious to know if others feel this way. If not, how do you explain or describe this apparent connection? If so, what are the roots for such an orientation? Do we simply believe that its OK when we do it because we are right? Better yet, can anyone offer some proof for or against this theory?

Personally I am not opposed to public prayer. I rather like it and find it indispensable. And although I believe Jesus is the truth, the way, and the life, I have concerns that Christianity as it is being known and understood in the public theater is not what Jesus came to establish. Jesus came to announce God's kingdom and show us how to live as members of it. Furthermore he died and was risen so that we might be able to live here and now as members of God's kingdom. So, like it says in the title, I'm asking questions and expecting answers to come in our mutual discernment. That is how I believe the Holy Spirit works.
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