169 thoughts on “GOH: I Pledge My Allegiance”

  1. This pisses me off so much. America does not equal the kingdom of God. Love Jesus? Great, so do I. Have this ridiculous, worshipful view of America? You need to rethink your priorities.

  2. This is exactly what took place at the church I attended yesterday (my parents’ church). So many out-of-context verses essentially equating the United States to Israel of the Old Testament, claiming the promises and judgement God promised to Israel. Sigh.

  3. Gag! I’m glad my church doesn’t do this sort of stuff. We don’t even have a flag in our sanctuary. The over use of the red, white and blue was tacky. Wonder if the pastors had patriotic undies?

  4. I made it 31 seconds into the “performance” before I had to stop. ๐Ÿ™„

    Unfortunately, my non-fundie Baptist church didn’t fare much better yesterday. We had the obligatory “special” music (and boy, was it special!). The soloist got up and rambled for a few minutes about how last week, America left its Christian roots, and how the persecution of Christians will summarily begin. This was followed by an old standard God and country song – albeit a forgettable one, as I’ve already forgotten its title.

    1. Not getting to foist your beliefs onto others does not equal persecution.

      Even if Christians WERE being persecuted, what of it? “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousnessโ€™ sake, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven …” Math. 5: 10-12.

      1. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I repeat:
        Conservatives, Fundamentalists, etc. are NOT persecuted in the United States. Not getting your way does NOT mean you are being persecuted.

        This makes me angry because I know people who have really been persecuted in other countries– arrested, beaten, forced to leave their homes, had relatives killed, had all their property taken away, and so forth. That’s persecution. Losing an election or having a court decision or a Congressional vote not go your way is just part of living in a democracy.

        Justice Scalia, in his dissenting opinion on the Defense of Marriage Act case, brought this to a height of ridiculousness, as he is so good at doing: “It is one thing for a society to elect change; it is another for a court of law to impose change by adjudging those who oppose it hostes humani generis, enemies of the human race.”

        The “hostes humani generis” designation was historically used for pirates, bandits, and the like. It meant they were international outlaws whom anybody could legally kill at will. Have you heard any pro-gay-marriage people arguing in favor of killing all the anti-gay-marriage people? I haven’t either.

        If you don’t understand the difference between saying “I think you have an irrational prejudice” and saying “I think you should be shot on sight,” then you have some pretty severe cognitive deficits.

    2. My non-denom church did pretty much the same spiel yesterday. The soloist got up and made a little speech and then sang, but they did sing well. Still.

  5. Contrast to our church where we actually prayed for our congress and president. We recognized our country and the sacrifices of our military but we never went all “Revelation” about the role of the USA in the end times. (maybe because there is no role?)

    1. Yeah, me too. A prayer for our nation and its leaders, expressing gratefulness for our freedoms, including our freedom to worship openly, and then back to actually doing that, worshiping the One who provided ultimate freedom (that is available even in nations where our other freedoms don’t exist)

      Oh, and no patriotic music.

      I don’t miss it at all. It was funny last year when my kids were in a patriotic program for school and I told my wife “feels like a worship service” – so happy that is no longer my experience in church.

      1. Pretty much the same at my church, for Canada Day (July 1st). The only hint of patriotism was, during prayer, the pastor thanking God for this country where we are able to come together and worship freely – which is something he does every Sunday, anyways.
        Canadian patriotism is very different from American patriotism. I don’t think we see it as melded with religion. Maybe that we are called the Dominion of Canada because one of the Fathers of Confederation had in mind the verse “He shall have dominion from sea to sea”. And I’ve only seen that mentioned in a Christian social studies course.

        1. There’s a famous quotation (though I forget from whom) that Canadians view nationalism as a foreign disease.

          If so, hooray for Canada!

  6. Next time you hear someone waxing eloquent about the USA and patriotism, ask if Christians in other countries are allowed to say the same things about their country.
    Great Britain used to be God’s next chosen people, now it is the US. Who is next?

    Not too long ago I heard someone in a sermon saying that the US is in trouble because they have left their “Christian roots”. I asked them that if financial well being is a reward from God for following Him, why are Japan and China wealthy countries.

    Then there are all the preachers who make the Deists among the Founding Fathers honorary Christians for patriotic purposes.

    1. You may need to do some more research on the Founding Fathers and the Deist myth. While I’m not claiming that they were IFB, no such thing existed at the time, they were much more inline theologically with conservative Christianity than is typically supposed. I get tired of hearing this tired line regurgitated when it has no basis in any objective reading in history.

      1. ^ This is mistaken belief/understanding that Jefferson/Franklin/Adams/Washington were not Deists and that Deism did not exist. Tiring or not, truth matters.

        1. Yeah, I get tired of hearing about slavery, but that doesn’t make its history go away.

          More importantly, why does it matter what religious views the Founding Fathers had? The Constitution they wrote is good or bad on its own merits, regardless of their personal beliefs.

      2. Loren, I have. I do my best not to repeat hear-say. Jefferson, Paine, Franklin and others were Deists. Thomas Paine even wrote of his reasons for deism.

        Thomas Hobbes wrote of his Deistic beliefs in the 1600’s.

        I agree with Big Gary. In spite of their beliefs, they designed a great document.

        1. Def can dispute which founders were deists which were universalist and which were just heretical marginally Christian, but it’s not possible to make the case that many were remotely orthodox or “conservative” Christian.

        2. Religious Right AND the Secularists are both usually wrong about the Christian vs Deist debate. See Gregg Frazer’s book The Religious Beliefs of America’s Founders: Reason, Revelation, Revolution (University Press of Kansas)

  7. In my church, the pastor discussed salvation from the book of Galatians. Learned alot about the love of God and did not hear a word about the 4th or patriotism. It was a good day.

  8. The label on the video says “CBC Choir”. I doubt the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation has a choir; what religious entity would this be?

      1. BTW, I’m always endlessly entertained by “fundamentalist churches” that don’t seem to have any idea what the fundamentals of the faith actually are.

        The “what we believe” section has no reference to virgin birth, the deity or the humanity for Christ, the resurrection of the Savior, and seems more preoccupied with the imminence of Christ’s return than it’s reality.

        They at least seem to know there are 5 fundamentals defined, just have severely changed/altered what they are to fit what they preach.

        1. Robby, I enjoy reading the What We Believe sections of Christian websites, and have never failed to see any Baptist ones that did not affirm the virgin birth, the deity of Christ, His bodily resurrection, the inspiration of the Scriptures. However, many of the emerging and modernist churches are quite vague regarding these truths. CBC, as one of your buddies so hilariously named the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, is the first that I’ve ever seen that was so vague in stating their beliefs on their site. Which others, pray tell, do not post their belief in the fundamentals. Quite an unsubstantiated claim the Rob.

        2. I just linked to the one that I was mocking for doing so, and you confirmed I was right.

        3. If you use the search feature of this website and search for keyword “FWOTW”, you’ll find a bevy of fundy churches with no concept of what the fundamentals of the faith are, and often skip anywhere from 1 to all 5 of them in their statements of faith, or minimally skew them further than can be justified.

        4. So Rob, have you ever taken a walk on the wild side and done a search other than here or Google ? Have you ever perhaps ventured out and checked the doctrinal statements of actual IBF church websites, or just these strange, fringe groups ?

        5. Ooh, ooh, this is partly unrelated, and it’s yet another tale of why I love my current church, but I must share my joy.
          Regarding fundamentals of the faith, and how often fundies have such complex statements of their wee tiny specific beliefs, but not a lot about Jesus Himself – a few Sundays ago two people decided to get official memberships in our church. I didn’t even know there was such a thing there, but I think they just wanted to make an official commitment. Anyway, they came up to the front of the church, and the pastor said that he’d ask them a couple of questions. I instantly cringed, ready to hear the spiel of bits of doctrine (yes/no to speaking in tongues, the necessity of baptism, etc., etc.). The pastor turned to them and asked, “Do you believe that Jesus was the Son of God?”, to which they responded, “We do.” Then he asked, “Do you believe he died for your salvation and rose again?”, to which they again responded, “We do.” Then the pastor said, “Okay”, smiled, prayed for them, and they went back to their seats.
          That was it. That was the essential doctrine of our church. I was so happy and surprised that I grinned my face off for the rest of the service. It was so different from what I’ve experienced before!

        6. I’ve got no idea and not much interest in where Dave’s tangent is heading. I was correct in mocking Cleveland Baptist.

        7. No tangent Rob, straight to the point. YOU said fundamentalist churches do not mention the virgin birth, the deity or resurrection of Christ, and I simply ask you to produce proof of your asinine assertion. And why don’t you enlighten us as to what the fundamentals of the faith actually are, oh Google Master.

        1. I believe you are correct. I would guess they would prefer all SFL commenters stay far away, even more than we enjoy staying away. ๐Ÿ™‚

        2. I bow to your mighty acronym-fu, Cleveland Baptist.

          I look forward to reading about your men’s fellowship, PAW (Pissers Against Walls), and your ladies’ circle, HISS (Helpmeets In Supine Submission).


        1. Their website seems to match the auditorium in the video, and the other videos posted by the youtube user that posted this one are from events (Great Lakes Youth Conference) held by Cleveland Baptist from googling. Also CBC in the title I assume is for Cleveland Baptist. Seems too many coincidences to not be that church. From their “what we believe” page and this video alone I would not be going there for a church service. I would hope it’s not as pompous, etc as other IFB, but the doctrines & teaching are not what I expect out of a church.

        2. It is indeed Cleveland Baptist. I recognized some people. I would not go there either; Kevin Folger is pastor. I believe he has a couple of sons on staff as well.

        3. They use Beka for their “school” and they also host SMITE. Of course, I was already scared off by the large announcement of “1611 KJB …. Soulwinning, etc.”. Ick.

        4. There’s a Fundy organization called SMITE?!

          That’s just too perfect. ๐Ÿ˜•

        5. This place deserves a LOT of FWOTW scrutiny if my cursory googling and local confirmations are representative.

        6. I bow to your mighty acronym-fu, Cleveland Baptist.

          I look forward to reading about your menโ€™s fellowship, PAW (Pissers Against Walls), and your ladiesโ€™ circle, HISS (Helpmeets In Supine Submission).


        7. I forgot they had SMITE. I think they’re FWOTW-worthy.

        8. I have to respect the rare in fundamentalism honesty of naming the program that you are teaching youngsters to go out into the world and verbally and emotionally smite all the innocent pedestrians and drivers that are within the sound of your voice “SMITE”, is almost refreshing.

        9. “I have to respect the rare in fundamentalism honesty of naming the program that you are teaching youngsters to go out into the world and verbally and emotionally smite all the innocent pedestrians and drivers that are within the sound of your voice ‘SMITE,’ is almost refreshing.”

          This reminded me of http://www.thefrumps.com/comic/2013/07/01/lend-me-an-ear

        10. (Footnote to “The Frumps” cartoon:)
          “I always felt that if someone wanted to stop me in my tracks and talk to me about something that I have no interest in then I should return the favor and fill their ear holes with something they should find just as equally uninteresting.”

          I’ve actually done this a couple of times. It was great fun.
          Some Jehovah’s Witnesses rang my doorbell to tell me about something or other (we never got around to their topic), and I decided to lecture them about ichthyology for a half hour.
          Another time, some young missionaries from an obscure curch in Argentina (I live in an interesting town) came around, and I showed them my hummingbird feeder and talked about hummingbirds until they got tired and went away.

        11. I remember the few people I’ve known who thought door knocking was a good idea telling stories of how Satan would just guide the conversation off topic, or the people were confused & obsessed with some off-topic subject.

          I’m beginning to think a lot of those experiences were more like people returning passive aggressive behavior with some good old fashioned stalling techniques of wasting the time of the time wasters. ๐Ÿ™‚

        12. Gig Gary–
          One of my brothers had a couple of JW women stop by his house while he was in the yard. As he came around the house and saw them, he told them to wait just a moment, he had a couple of squirrels he had to finish skinning, and he would come talk to them. He peeked back around the house to see two ladies walking back up his driveway at a rapid pace.

  9. Although this is definitely silly and I wouldn’t want that in my church (the US is not a spiritual Israel by any means), It bothers me a lot when americans complain about their country, I live in Mexico, in one of the worst cities in the world, and when I visit the US it really feels like “heaven” in a way, hahaha, you people are blessed to have a country like that, I would utterly love it if it were mine.

    1. I’d argue that singing the praises of America in a church service that is supposed to be about uplifting Christ and encouraging believers is more than just a minor stylistic problem.

    2. Most of us in the USA love our country and recognize that our government is better than average, as world governments go. But it isn’t perfect or holy. No government or country is.

      Just out of curiosity, what city do you live in, Ramon?
      (I live just across the border from Reynosa, Tamaulipas.)

        1. Wow, Persnickety, East Saint Louis has to be one of the most blighted cities in the country.
          How did you come to live there?

        2. My dad was stationed at Scott AFB. I live in Belleville now — it butts up to ESL. There’s almost an invisible line dividing the two cities. Quaint tree-lined streets and beautiful historic houses suddenly give way to industrial complexes, burned shells of homes and beaten-down people with hollow eyes and sad hearts. Some get out. Jackie Joyner Kersee and Katherine Dunham both did, but they also have given back greatly to help kids have a chance. A local developer has also put a lot of his personal resources into creating safe housing alternatives for the people there.

          As bad as it looks, there is hope, goodness and kindness blossoming in ESL. And many good people are struggling to take their city back from the edge.

          I really recommend “Birth of a Nation.” Fantastic book that really gives you an inside look at the people of the city and the social forces they are facing.

  10. At the zenith of the British empire, the British thought of themselves as God’s people. They sang of building Jerusalem on England’s green and pleasant land and even developed the bogus theory of British Israelism. Nationalism leads us to conflate our nation’s power and prosperity with being especially blessed or chosen by God. The British loss of interest in religion has pretty much followed their decline as a world power but I’m not sure if the two are related.

  11. Fundie alto = holding a note straight and not moving with the melody.

    Fundie soprano = singing the melody in a high octave with the nose or back of the throat (keep it as bland as possible with as little expression and annunciation as possible)

    Fundie tenor = singing the melody one octave below the sopranos and thinking that’s another “part”

    Fundie baritone/bass = it doesn’t matter; just try to make your voice go real low

  12. While I abhor the teaching that the USA = Israel in any way, I do love my country.

    God has certainly blessed the USA. That doesn’t mean that God only loves the USA or hasn’t blessed any other nation; it’s just an acknowledgment that we have been blessed in a great way… and I am thankful to live in this nation.

    While the Founding Fathers weren’t independent fundamental Baptists, the majority were sincere Christians. They realized that there were creating a nation suited for a moral and religious (Christian) people.

    1. Guilt, I’m thinking you’re going to have to share how you define “Christian”. I’m thinking you mean socially Christian. Bearing in mind the many ways in which the founding fathers parted ways with historic Christian teaching, I think it would be very difficult to demonstrate that they were theologically Christian. (e.g., Washington refusing to take communion, Jefferson’s Bible, Franklin’s denial of Christ’s deity, etc.)

    2. Dear Guilt Ridden:

      When I hear the ubiquitous ‘God Bless America’ mantra, I reply, ‘He has … now let America blessed God.’

      Somehow, that doesn’t go over so well.

      Christian Socialist

      1. C.S.–I have responded to the phrase “God bless America” with the question “Why should He?”. Talk about receiving a blank look……..

        1. Another good question — maybe because He is good and full of lovingkindness.

  13. I have to admit. I love being free. I love the 4th of July. I love fried chicken and watermelon. I love fireworks. And I secretly like “God bless the USA” by Lee Greenwood.
    However, liberty given by our Lord should NEVER be equated to a red, white, and blue flag. Blasphemous.

      1. That would be like worshiping the fish on the back of a car. Which, by the say, is the extent of the faith of some who profess to be Christian. ๐Ÿ™

    1. I think that they do this because they do not want to work hard to exposit the Scriptures, and being Patriotic in America is popular in churches and if they can tie it into the scriptures, even in a twisted way, it is, in my mind, something that is woldly popular with churchgoers all througout IFB-dom.

  14. If I remember correctly I believe that Paul was a Roman citizen and yet said that he put his citizenship in heaven. Seeing as how the Romans had it going on at the time I’d say that is quite a statement.

  15. I like what Schaefer said about our Titanic freedoms and how they would consume one another when left unchecked by a Christian framework. We can see, even now, the freedoms we once held dear are now attacking one another in the post-Christian society which we find ourselves.

    1. Liberty and Responsibility have to be in balance.

      Post Modern/Post Christian thought has removed the ability for society to define what responsible behavior is, and a majority of people believe we live in a democracy of majority rule, so everyone does what is right in their own eyes, and liberty becomes about doing whatever you want.

      As a lovely grandmother used to say to me, “your liberty to freely move your body parts about ends at your brother’s nose” – it is difficult to balance the competing liberties when there is no objective standard for how those liberties can be exercised.

      Implementing some pseudo-Theocracy isn’t the answer, and that’s not what the founding fathers did in spite of what many fundies will tell you, but where we seem to be headed now is not the answer either.

    2. Do you really think people are less moral than they used to be?
      I don’t. I think people are about the same as in previous generations– some very good, some very bad, with the great majority somewhere in between.

      1. Agreed, the problem is more that the morality is now viewed with contempt by the ruling elite class. The fact that 3.5% of the country self identify as LGBTQ, and the rest of the country think its 20-30% show that the visibility of particular movements is far above their actual organic influence. This is by design, and that is merely one example of a current hotbutton issue.

        The best way to win the hearts and minds is to get them to think they are the minority. That is enough to turn most people, as fundamentalism demonstrates clearly. The vast majority of people want to believe what they believe and for the most part don’t care what anyone else believes. Right now there are efforts being made to enforce belief/thought/morality – It once was done in a direction more amenable to conservative, religious folk, and now is going the other way. Its wrong both ways.

        1. Morality and legality are neither equal nor one a subset of the other. I’m confused by this post.

        2. perhaps I should replace the word “morality” with “certainty”

          It has become unpopular to hold certain and determined moral principles. The politically correct “not that there’s anything wrong with that” being the only proper sentiment.

          I agree with Big Gary that for the most part the majority of the population are relatively as they have always been. The difference is that in popular culture, small and organically less influential groups are having a disproportionate level of influence because of media, and the idea that a political leader would take a definitive stance on any issue is increasingly painted as extremism or bigotry. So perhaps what I mean to say is not that fewer people actually have a “moral compass” but fewer people are willing to say that the true north their compass is pointed at is actually a fixed point outside of their reference. It just happens to be where their compass is pointing right now, and your compass might just as validly point elsewhere.

          I understand the pendulum swing, I recognize the need for certain things to change, but there is way too much societal enforcement of belief being attempted in the name of tolerance, political correctness, or so called equality. I find it just as troubling as the excesses of the moral majority and with an even more shaky foundation because of its grounding in post-modernism.

        3. I would argue it’s immoral for the government & public institutions to not equally enforce the law regardless of the underlying morality of the individuals seeking the protections of that law. In this case if the law says people can marry, it’s the church’s/God’s/conscience’s imperative to communicate the morality of whether gays can marry or not the government’s. Government is only there to provide the legal framework that marriage exist in.

          Also goverment allowing gay marriage isn’t an endorsement of immorality, they also fervently allow Westboro Baptist to decry the perceived immorality.

        4. I don’t agree that the movement for gay rights is grounded in post-modernism. I think it is grounded in Enlightenment ideas of human equality and freedom.

        5. I don’t buy the argument that allowing same-sex marriage is somehow intolerant of people who believe homosexuality is immoral.
          It would be intolerant if a law or a Supreme Court decision said everyone had to marry someone of the same sex, whether they wanted to or not, but I haven’t heard of anyone proposing that kind of rule. People who don’t want to marry same-sex partners don’t have to.

          As it is, I honestly don’t see how my neighbors being in a same-sex marriage can interfere with my marriage to a woman.

  16. If you want to see a fundy’s head explode, just tell them that, as Christians, we have a greater responsibility to a French believer than to any American non-believer.

    I am all for supporting our country (as I still believe that it is finest on the planet), but there is no such thing as a “Christian nation”. Christ died for individuals, not for nations. Add to that the fact that hardly any of our Founding Fathers were orthodox Christians, and it becomes obvious that God has no special responsibility to bless the US.

    I love how fundies maintain that the OT promises to Israel will still be literally fulfilled, yet they claim those same promises/instructions as pertaining to the US (i.e. 2 Chronicles 7:14).

    1. Or better yet a greater responsibility to a non-believing “illegal immigrant” than to non-believing citizens. That’ll get the rage started.

    2. Either it’s literal or it’s not, Fundies. If the Bible is literally (not metaphorically) true, than “Israel” does not mean “the United States of America.”

      1. Dear Big Gary:

        ‘There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise’ [Gal 3:28-29].

        ‘For neither is circumcision anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation. And those who will walk by this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God’ [Gal 6:15-16].

        Christian Socialist

        1. There’s never a replacement of Israel taught in Scripture is Gary’s point, I think. Expansion of/grafting into is there, but no political nation can claim the mantra of “New Israel”.

        2. My point (perhaps not made well) is that people who claim they read everything in the Bible as literally true don’t really do that. The Bible doesn’t say anything about the United States of America, so any application of the Bible to our country requires interpolation by fallible humans.

          As to Israel, I don’t support the present Israeli government, and I deny that it has any divine mandate. I believe that Jews, Christians, Muslims, and everyone else should be free to practice their religions, but not to establish theocracies or states that discriminate in favor of one religious group and against others.

        3. Are you guys saying that 2 Chronicles 7:14 isn’t about the United States?

          Next thing, you heretics will be saying The USA isn’t really mentioned in Revelation as saving Western Civilization and supplying the Anti-Christ.

  17. Dear SFL Reader:

    I like the way my pastor handled this yesterday. He preached from the second lesson [epistle], and contextualized this by saying that this tiny group of believers lived in a huge, hulking, adversarial empire which confessed that Caesar is savior and Caesar is Lord.

    Get it?

    ‘In that context, this tiny church is called to know who she is, to whom she belongs, to be faithful to HER Lord, and to extend HIS kingdom in their time and place.’

    The preacher’s words lead me to ask, ‘do we.’

    Christian Socialist

  18. I remember one Sunday in my fundie Baptist church near July 4th when the misguided organist played the Star Spangled Banner for the offertory. No one knew whether to sit and listen or to stand with their hand over their heart. Meanwhile the plates went up and down the rows…..

  19. Sadly, within fundamentalism, America is revered (although not to such an extent) even in other countries. Our pastor was considered to be ‘big’ because he was invited to speak at conferences at American churches. We frequently imported American speakers. And we were to be oh so thankful to America for sending us missionaries in the first place, so we could have IFB’ism in the first place. Instead of all those christian denominations we already had.

        1. I didn’t take it seriously.
          I assumed it was a joke.
          I added my own piece of sarcasm to it.

  20. ” Where a child is hungry, where men have no homes, Where the powerless are yearning to breathe freeโ€”May we fight for justice โ€™til thereโ€™s justice for all And become what God meant us to be.”

    Yep, that’s what Fundamentalists are known for doing.

    By the way, this is a Gaither song. Is there a special dispensation for using Gaither music on certain days of the year?

      1. Bob, writing, “I think that the Gaithers have been around long enough to be considered safe” is like saying, “I think that Bob Jones and Jack Hyles have been around long enough to be considered safe.”

        We should be careful, unless you were being facetious?

        1. Well, I choose my words carefully, sir. I meant this: Fanny Crosby was at once considered new and a little on the wild side. Her music was similar to carnival music. But over time, it was adopted by revivalists and eventually acceptable in Fundamentalist churches. I think the same has happened with Gaithers. Their music has been around long enough and sung in enough churches that people generally accept them. Now, about Hyles and Jones, that is like comparing apples and oranges. No matter how long they have been around, they will not be safe. Why? Content. Objectively, the things they aid and taught were garbage. So, please my friend, be careful who you correct.

  21. The school this church runs is named Heritage Christian School. It is probably a little too apt that they are the Patriots. I’m thinking they are not claiming to be New England fans.

  22. If America was meant to be a Christian nation then the white house would have been a tabernacle and it would be in the constitution and the bill of rights in black n white. Thank goodness itโ€™s not. There is even is a no religious test clause in the constitution in article 6, paragraph 3 that states, โ€œThe Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.โ€ I know of 14 of the founding fathers who owned slaves. Yeah, owning a human being for labor is real Christian. Many of those choir members would crap a brick if they studied and found out that Ole Ben Franklin was a practicing nudist behind closed doors and a huge womanizer. Many founding fathers were indeed not Christian. Many thought Jesus was a great philosopher and teacher but not the son of god. Services like these are a disgrace and it is nationalism worship. Iโ€™m sure many of these choir members are hypocrites for singing these verses in the song. It goes, โ€œwhere a child is hungry, where men have no homes. Where the powerless are yearning to be free. May we fight for justice, till thereโ€™s justice for all.โ€ Iโ€™m pretty sure many in the choir are anti-food stamps and walk right by the homeless. They believe the myth of the welfare king and queen when the real welfare scam artist are the huckster preachers in the ifb .

    1. Jonathan Edwards and George Whitefield both not only owned slaves but vigorously promoted slavery. They didn’t even have the decency to free their slaves upon their deaths as many more enlightened people of this era did. Tell me this: is slavery Biblical? A literal reading of the Bible leads us to agree with the Jonathan Edwards that owning slaves is clearly supported by the Bible. Emancipation was a blow against a strictly literal interpretation of the Bible and an acknowledgement that the values of the enlightenment had overtaken those of the Bible.

  23. Hayee-mayuhn!! That’s the good ole fundy music I used to play!! That out-of-tune-pianny-pounding, soprano-descant-warbling, proud-patriotic-pedal-point, too-hot-for-a-suit-jacket, dinner-on-the-grounds, red-white-and-blue-color-attack, preacher-can’t-wait-for-it-to-be-over-with, war-on-ears fundy music!!

    1. Do you realize you’ve used up a year’s worth of hyphens in that sentence? Why, there are villages in Africa that have only one hyphen to pass around, and you go and waste a whole slew of them like that :mrgreen: ๐Ÿ˜† ๐Ÿ˜›

  24. Would godโ€™s favorite country have a history of land theft, genocide, ethnic cleansing and slavery? According to large parts of the Old Testament, he could be cool with that.

  25. I actually don’t mind that song as sung by the Gaither Vocal Band, at Gaither concerts. That said, the rendition above is horrendous, and the piano is – well – not sure I have a word for it – worse than horrendous. (I am a pianist). Not sure what was done to the song, but that is definitely not how Bill Gaither wrote the music.

  26. I couldn’t make it through the video – too many yucky memories.

    As others have stated, this isn’t just an IFB problem. As a former music director for a mainline denomination patriotic holidays were always a challenge. Most of the churches where I served followed the lectionary, but many often want to at least acknowledge the Fourth. It was hard to find something musically worthwhile that was too secular/patriotic or too America=God’s Country.

    I found one solution in my collection of old hymnals. I have some dating as far back as the 1820s. Back then the Revolutionary War and War of 1812 weren’t ancient history. Many of the national hymns from those old hymnals expressed more thankfulness to God for allowing the nation to thrive, rather than sounding boastful. I would often reset the hymn text to to a new melody, making slight alterations for archaic language, and use that as the choir anthem.

    Lots of good music sources there – William Billings, etc.

    1. Ahhhh, William Billings!

      You are a man after my own heart.

      Do you like shape-note, BTW? I am a shape-note fanatic. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      1. I love shaped-note music. I’ve got the books and have been to several singings. However, it was an acquired taste. Having studied classical voice and choral techniques for so long, I wasn’t prepared for the unrefined raw power that is shape note singing.

  27. Our pastor has proudly displayed the yellow “YOU LIE!” bumper sticker on his truck where the “O” is the Obama campaign emblem. In addition he has the “Impeach Obama” bumper sticker along with the “RMGO” (Rocky Mountain Gun Owners) sticker. We don’t pray for the president or any other politicians. Now that’s the biblical approach! (which is why were leaving this brand of fundamentalism)

  28. Mechanical, flat, braindead…and did I mention flat? Absolutley aweful on many levels…many, many levels. And what’s up with that mezzo-soprano? People!

  29. Good grief: As I continue to read some of these posts I have to ask, “what does same sex marriage have to do with this song?” Oh yes, we are a bunch of sheep that can’t think beyond the current media frenzy….Baaaah…baahhhh same sex marriage. Bahhh bah baaaahaah same sex marriage!

    1. It came up when people mentioned that someone in church had brought up the same-sex marriage SCOTUS decisions in a song introduction.
      Try to focus.

  30. We all need to watch the events in Egypt closely. President Morsi, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, is seeking to establish an Islamic state. The rest of the country is in turmoil. A lot of Christians would really like to establish the USA as a Christian nation. We would do so to our own peril. The constitution guarantees equal protection under the law–that includes equal protection for Christians, Muslims, Hindus, all races, gay and straight. I, for one, will have no part of a Christian Taliban, nor with any church that wants a “Christian nation.”

  31. Yes, not so good for Morsi and the Brotherhood, and Egypt is on the brink of civil war. I’ve been concerned about the rise of the Christian Taliban in America for 10 years or so. History should teach us that Christianity doesn’t do well spiritually when it’s the state religion.

    1. But I thought teh Gayz were leading Amurrica straight to hell?

      I think the point of some of that above commentary was that people like to get all hysterical about the “Christian Taliban” (doesn’t exist) or the rise of secularism on the other side of the aisle, but in reality, the middle majority is pretty much what its always been. Media, Fundy Preaching, Conservative organizations that survive in hysteria, and Liberal out of touch with reality elitists nothwithstanding.

      There just is really not a large group of anything that extreme in our culture.

      I am very balanced in my approach, that’s why I’m only concerned about the terrifying rise of the real Islamic Taliban in America. ITS COMING PEOPLE!

  32. Whichever he adopts, your main task will be the same. Let him begin by treating the Patriotism or the Pacifism as a part of his religion. Then let him, under the influence of partisan spirit, come to regard it as the most important part. Then quietly and gradually nurse him on to the stage at which the religion becomes merely part of the ’cause’, in which Christianity is valued chiefly because of the excellent arguments it can produce in favour of the British war-effort or of Pacifism. The attitude which you want to guard against is that in which temporal affairs are treated primarily as material for obedience. Once you have made the World an end, and faith a means, you have almost won your man, and it makes very little difference what kind of worldly end he is pursuing. Provided that meetings, pamphlets, policies, movements, causes, and crusades, matter more to him than prayers and sacraments and charity, he is oursโ€”and the more ‘religious’ (on those terms) the more securely ours. I could show you a pretty cageful down here.

      1. Fair enough. I’ve not been around here long, but presumably anyone who has seen my other posts knows I’m not nearly (nor will I ever be) as eloquent as Mr. Lewis.

        (The Screwtape Letters, ya’ll.)

  33. A similar thing is going to happen on the 12th July in Northern Ireland, where I’m from, “The Twelfth” so beloved to Northern Ireland (Ulster) Protestants, celebrating the military victory at the Battle of the Boyne of Protestsantism over the evils of Catholiscism. (Of course. it’s more complicated than that, but tribalism likes to keep things simple). Anyway, this event is more important in the eyes of Protestantism, (even among some born again Christians) that any other event, including Christmas and Easter. It is celbrated by Marches and bands, etc (and a great deal of disruption -but hey, that’s the price you pay for beating the catlicks) as well as Church services. There is a true story of a mister of one of the Churches, where the minister said during the services on the Twelfth of July said “I’m going to wish you all a Merry Christmas now, because I know most of you won’t be anywhere near a Church antil this time next year!”

  34. I was pleasantly surprised that we not only didn’t have a patriotic service (we had a sermon on soteriology), we also didn’t hear a word (overt or covert) about DOMA. That was pretty refreshing! ๐Ÿ˜ฏ ๐Ÿ˜€

    1. I can only wish I wasn’t hearing constant ranting about DOMA/Prop 8 (we’re not in CA, but that needn’t be taken into account!).

      That said, I’ll rejoice with you that your church did so well this past Sunday. ๐Ÿ˜€

  35. I braced myself and survived the entire thing.

    Do I win a prize or should I just be content that my ears didn’t hop off of my head and try to strangle me?

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