Why is christianity not the state religion of the USA?

Jun 2017
2,909
Connecticut
#31
I thought that Deism was the belief in God but also a belief that he doesn't intervene in our daily lives? If so, Deism would be different from both atheism and agnosticism.

As for different Christian sects, it's quite interesting that some of them are not fully embraced by contemporary Christians even nowadays. For instance, Mormons.
Well think of it in the context of the 18th century. Really isn't a basis to say there was no god or higher power or to even try answering the question generally, and the natural explanations for many things weren't known. Also seeing how important god's intervention in daily life is to just about every major religion that's pretty close. In a pre industrial world honestly hard to walk through life without the conclusion there's some sort of higher power. Entirely different world.
 
Likes: Futurist

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,198
SoCal
#32
Well think of it in the context of the 18th century. Really isn't a basis to say there was no god or higher power or to even try answering the question generally, and the natural explanations for many things weren't known. Also seeing how important god's intervention in daily life is to just about every major religion that's pretty close. In a pre industrial world honestly hard to walk through life without the conclusion there's some sort of higher power. Entirely different world.
TBH, I don't think that Deism was too difficult to embrace for educated people even in the 18th century. After all, Voltaire talked about the Lisbon earthquake in the 1750s in his book Candide and questioned why exactly a devout, God-loving city such as Lisbon experienced such a severe earthquake.

Honestly, even nowadays, Deism isn't that hard to embrace considering that there are certain things that are hard to explain if one believes in a benevolent creator--such as the question of why exactly god created pedophiles. Seriously. Why would a loving god do something like this and thus ruin these people's lives and put children at the risk of harm in the process?
 
Oct 2009
3,610
San Diego
#33
I'm really glad that it isn't but i find it weird. Even today, one in three Americans want it to be; i assume this number was much greater in the late 18 century, and given that the usa was,even then, a functional representative(if not democratic intially), republic you'd assume that people would have elected representatives who would make Christianity the state religion.
But it didn't happen. Why?
After Centuries of religious warfare and persecutions in Europe- the Founding Fathers ( and the masonic movement in general ) determined that RELIGION was a major cause of cultural and political upheaval. They identified that these upheavals were ugliest and the most deadly when the Government got involved by naming One particular faith as the official faith of State.
In addition to most masons being not all that christian ( deists did not believe in the divinity of jesus ) You have to understand that the colonies were absolutely lousy with splinter denominations.
Keep in mind that being "christian" was NOT a thing... Catholics and Protestants were both christians, but that didn't stop generations of slaughter.

In trying to forge a new nation, the one thing the founders came to understand was that naming ANY denomination as the state religion would immediately imperil any union.

And, in a very true sense, the ONLY thing that enabled the formation of a federal charter was the idea that the State would have NOTHING to do with religion, and VIce Versa.
The only way you could get the Quakers AND the Lutherans AND the Catholics AND the Anglicans to ALL join forces was by promising them that none of their rivals would be handed special privilege.
 

Chlodio

Forum Staff
Aug 2016
4,320
Dispargum
#34
As I understand Deism, God created the universe and also created natural laws. At the moment of creation God set the universe in motion and ever since, the universe has been playing out according to natural laws, not the active participation of God. For instance, a Medieval explanation would be that if your house was struck by lightening it must be because God was angry at you. An Enlightenment explanation is that lightening is just electricity, it behaves according to natural laws, and God had nothing to do with your house being struck by lightening. Next time, put up a lightening rod. Since God is no longer involved in, or perhaps even interested in, the daily workings of the world, Deism is about as close to atheism as one can get and still be a Christian.
 
Likes: Scaeva
Aug 2019
38
Southwest Florida
#35
I'm really glad that it isn't but i find it weird. Even today, one in three Americans want it to be; i assume this number was much greater in the late 18 century, and given that the usa was,even then, a functional representative(if not democratic intially), republic you'd assume that people would have elected representatives who would make Christianity the state religion.
But it didn't happen. Why?
It wasn't in their temperament.

It wasn't until the Progressive Movement became the dominate ideal in the early 20th Century that Americans began to see government as the answer to every question. I.e. Believing that government recognition of an institution was necessary for it to be viewed as important is a post turn-of-the-century event; 18th/19th century Americans didn't need government codification for a value to be embraced, that's a 20th/21st Century idea.
 
Likes: Chlodio
Aug 2019
92
Bengaluru, India/Sharjah, UAE
#36
Because it's a secular nation. And that isn't changing. Period. Yes the majority are Christians. And yes the said majority would be in power and any atrocities committed would be shoved down the table easy
 
Feb 2016
42
United States
#40
As Thomas Jefferson put it, he said there should be a wall of separation between church and state, and while some of his contemporaries disagreed on moral grounds, they overall concurred on his arguments no specific religion should have national protection or backing by the federal government because that would unfairly prejudice the rights of the states and personal religious freedom.

One of the bulwarks of American law is absolute freedom to the limit it does not harm another person, and allowing everyone a personal choice of religious faith and practice thereof is well within American law to protect as a measure of legally protected individual freedom.

Christianity was in the decided majority at the time, but even then there were enough sectarian issues no one of them would have stomached any of them dominating the other legally.
 

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