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Christian Scriptures on Government Buildings!

☆The Rock☆ * AFCL* The Sheriff!! 2011/04/17 17:02:39
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Hallowed Ground: Washington's Monuments to Faith, Family and Freedom
By Chuck Donovan and Christina Darnell
(Courtesy of Family Research Council
(c)1999)

Judges and legislators who exhibit confusion about the constitutionality of acknowledgments of God in (and on) public buildings should get out of their stuffy chambers and go visit some of our national treasures. Just one day spent traversing the Mall in Washington, D.C., would expose them to an undeniable fact of American history: Biblical and religious quotations, including the Ten Commandments, adorn nearly every significant building and monument in our nation's capital
, inscribed and enshrined there as the natural public conversation of America's leaders in every generation. Indeed, the role of faith, family and freedom in American history is inscribed on monuments across the length and breadth of Washington, D.C. For instance, the words of Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address, carved in granite, thunder from inside the Memorial that bears his name, praying that the "mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away" but recalling that "the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether."

From the Lincoln Memorial, a perfect line of sight connects you with the magnificent obelisk of the Washington Monument. The form of the Monument recalls ancient Rome and Greece, but at its topmost point, inscribed on the aluminum tip of the capstone, is the Latin phrase Laus Deo -- "Praise be to God." Along the stairway to that height are 190 carved tributes donated by states, cities, individuals, associations, and foreign governments. The blocks resound with quotations from Scripture -- "Holiness to the Lord" (Exodus 28), "Search the Scriptures" (John 5:39), "The memory of the just is blessed" (Proverbs 10:7) -- and such invocations as, "May Heaven to this Union continue its Benefice."

Further east, along the Mall's north side, stands the National Archives. No building in Washington, save perhaps the Library of Congress, is more emblematic of this nation's desire to preserve its history as the key to a secure future. Carved in stone adjacent to the entrance of the Archives are the words "What is past is prologue," appropriately introducing the original parchment of the United States Constitution inside. Inlaid at the Archives' entrance is a bronze medallion of the Ten Commandments, surrounded by four winged figures representing Legislation, Justice, History, and War and Defense, a testament to the Archives' architects' bold witness to the centrality of biblical truth to the American experience.

Still further east, the level expanse of the Mall gives way to the gentle rise of Jenkins' Hill, known by its more political name, Capitol Hill. Below the west front of the Capitol, where our presidents take their inaugural oaths, lay gardens planted with the offerings of people and organizations from around the world. One such planting is a group of five crabapple trees, donated by the people of Iowa in memory of the five Sullivan brothers, sons of the Hawkeye State, who served and died together aboard the U.S.S. Juneau in World War II. This living monument, eloquent beyond words, reminds Americans of the "costly sacrifice" so many families have laid, in Lincoln's words, "on the altar of freedom."

The U.S. Capitol also bears public witness to the legacy of biblically inspired faith that Americans have passed on from generation to generation. New England statesman and orator Daniel Webster was voted by the United States Senate in the 1980s as one of the five greatest senators ever to serve in that chamber. In 1851, when the new House and Senate wings of the Capitol were begun, Webster gave a speech that was deposited in the cornerstone. Its final words are these:

If, therefore, it shall hereafter be the will of God that this structure should fall from the base, that its foundations be upturned, and this deposit brought to the eyes of men, be it then known, that on this day the Union of the United States of America stands firm, that their constitution still exists unimpaired, and with all of its original usefulness and glory, growing every day stronger and stronger in the affection of the great body of the American people, and attracting more and more the admiration of the world. And all here assembled, whether belonging to public life or to private life, with hearts devotedly thankful to Almighty God for the preservation of the liberty and happiness of the country, unite in sincere and fervent prayers that this deposit, and the walls and arches, the domes and towers, the columns and the entablatures, now to be erected over it, may endure forever.

From the plaza of the Capitol, look west across the Mall to the hillsides of Arlington Cemetery, where lay the remains of generations who kept the pledges of life, fortune, and sacred honor to keep our nation free. Each hour the guard is changed at the tomb where rests "in honored glory an American soldier known but to God."

From cornerstones to capstones, from cornices to colonnades, from the halls of Congress to the hallowed hillsides of Arlington Cemetery, a mighty causeway of faith courses through the landscape of the nation's capital. To eliminate that causeway would require more than the intellectual dishonesty of judges and legislators; it would require the wielding of chisels and jackhammers against marble and granite. The dramas playing themselves out in Alabama and other communities across the nation do not yet feature such tools of historical revisionism, but their implication is the same: To blot out the acknowledgment of God in our public life is to change the meaning of America.

***

Charles A. Donovan is Vice President for Program Planning at the Family Research Council. Christina Darnell was a Witherspoon Fellow at the Family Research Council during the summer of 1997. This article is adapted from "Washington's Monuments to Family, Faith and Freedom," by the same authors, which originally appeared in the October 3, 1997, Washington Times.

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Top Opinion

  • Ron–Born from Above 2011/04/17 17:21:51
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    Ron–Born from Above
    +7
    French social philosopher Alexis de Tocqueville, while touring the United States in the 1800s said about America: “America is great because America is good. If she ever ceases to be good, she will cease to be great.”

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  • Josh Kohler 2011/09/25 18:15:35
    None of the above
    Josh Kohler
    The Constitution makes no mention of God anywhere. The Declaration says Nature's god and endowed by their "creator" The supreme court building has a sculpture of moses, but it also has sculptures of 20+ other people, it symbolizes law givers not christianity. The "ten commandments" are not sculpted on the doors of the supreme court. It just has numbers. The washington monument does say Laus deo, but it also has the names of many other people on it. It is not the focal point. Many government buildings have roman and greek god statues inside. The buildings were designed after the parthenon and the pantheon. The original intention was to never make a specific reference to god. All of these christian images were added much, much, later. Late 1800s if I'm not mistaken. Under god in the pledge of allegiance was added in 1954, also in god we trust was legalized as the national motto and became standard on currency in 1954. Quite a bit after the founders had passed wouldn't you say. We have gone so far beyond what the founders intended.
  • relic 2011/04/19 18:37:58
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    relic
    +1
    ...and I approve of creating more.
  • Sonia 2011/04/19 09:08:31
    No, Rock I had no idea!
    Sonia
    +1
    thanks for letting me know.
  • sylviaplatt 2011/04/18 04:22:05 (edited)
    None of the above
    sylviaplatt
    +1
    and the official motto if US since 1956 has been "IN God We Trust". Check out Wijipedia for that motto if you din't believe me! official motto 1956 god trust check wijipedia motto dint  in God We Trust official motto 1956 god trust check wijipedia motto dint  in God We Trust r u in favor of reprinting all the money and changing all the coins! U r cracked!
  • colton delaney 2011/04/18 03:51:29
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    colton delaney
    +2
    I love that we still have some of the christian sybolism around, I say we put every speck of christian sybolism taken down these last few years back.where they belong. Please wish someone a "happy easter "this week. no more politically correct "happy holiday".
  • CUDDLY BUT STILL CRABBY 2011/04/18 02:22:07
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    CUDDLY BUT STILL CRABBY
    +2
    They are there for a reason.

    This current president can't even give a speech without nearby crucifixes being covered over even at a Catholic venue.

    I doubt that obama even has a soul. Typical "progressive".
  • PrettieReptar 2011/04/18 00:42:08
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    PrettieReptar
    +2
    I just finished reading "Rediscovering God in America: Reflections on the Role of Faith in Our Nations History and Future" by Newt Gingrich.

    Not many references to Christianity in particular, but to religion in general, to a creator, to God.
  • Wolfman 2011/04/18 00:26:12
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    Wolfman
    +2
    and I have no problem with it.
  • jbcracker 2011/04/17 23:43:36
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    jbcracker
    +1
    This food fight will probably never end. One group feels that their understanding of Christianity is the only correct one and thus then look at facts that may offer some support while they ignore all references the the separation on church and state. Also they are unable to understand the desire for freedom (including religious freedom) was rooted in the horrors of the 30 years war and the 100 years war and the intolerance they generated/
  • doofiegirl BTO-t- BCRA-F ~... 2011/04/17 22:32:30
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    doofiegirl  BTO-t- BCRA-F ~PWCM~
    +2
    You mean there's someone who Doesn't know? Must not be more than six . I learned this in 1st grade!
  • texasred 2011/04/17 20:54:12
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    texasred
    +2
    And thank you for bringing up and providing documentation!!!
  • Ken 2011/04/17 19:22:54
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    Ken
    +2
    Yes, I served a tour at the Bureau of Naval Personnel, located just up the hill from the Pentagon across the road from the Arlington National cemetery and got to visit most of the monuments in D.C. I was in D.C. when JFK was assassinated and saw the pageantry of his funeral, and I had read about the inscription on the capstone of the Washington monument.

    It seems that liberal judges and justices willfully fail to recall the circumstances at the time of this nation's founding, finding contemporary tributes to God to be a form of "establishment of religion", while the founders had no such problem. It shows that the "originalists" on the Supreme Court, those who look to original intent, are right, and those who want a "living, breathing document" are attempting to change the document that gives us our liberty.

    The "Establishment Clause": "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion".

    Liberals and progressives would have this clause interpreted to ban even the mention of God in public places!
  • colton ... Ken 2011/04/18 02:30:31
    colton delaney
    +2
    "Its not that our liberal friends are ignorant, its just that they know so much that isnt so" --Ronald Reagan
  • Ken colton ... 2011/04/18 02:51:43
    Ken
    +1
    I love that quote, it is so accurate an assessment!
  • colton ... Ken 2011/04/18 04:24:55
    colton delaney
    +2
    It really says it all, in a nice way. sometimes on here, its the only thing to be said.
  • WhereIsAmerica? ~PWCM~JLA 2011/04/17 19:21:33
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    WhereIsAmerica? ~PWCM~JLA
    +2
    Leave our history ALONE!
  • CC 2011/04/17 19:06:48
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    CC
    +2
    Our great history........if they would only teach children in our schools the true founder of our country(God) we would be so much better off!
  • Pegasis 2011/04/17 17:59:51
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    Pegasis
    +1
    But I think we should be quiet about this because so far they haven't dragged out the sandblasters to remove all these references--and I think they will if they ever take a look around!

    Sarcasm button on? Kinda sorta, almost, but not quite.
  • Annette 2011/04/17 17:52:19
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    Annette
    +3
    Furthermore, the first purchase by the United States Congress (unanimously) was BIBLES!!! So much for the lies from the left who have neither the wisdom God gave them, nor the ability to use it properly!
  • Lord Nils 2011/04/17 17:38:53
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    Lord Nils
    +4
    But I thought that our founders were all anti Christians. That is what the brainless, immoral, inhuman left say.
    And we all KNOW they would never lie about history, now, would they?
  • Ron–Born from Above 2011/04/17 17:21:51
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    Ron–Born from Above
    +7
    French social philosopher Alexis de Tocqueville, while touring the United States in the 1800s said about America: “America is great because America is good. If she ever ceases to be good, she will cease to be great.”
  • beachbum Ron–Bor... 2011/04/17 17:36:16
    beachbum
    +7
    And that is exactly what is happening.

    Blessings to you, your family and your friends this week of Easter.
  • Ron–Bor... beachbum 2011/04/17 17:45:29
    Ron–Born from Above
    +3
    America will become more decadent as time passes.

    God Bless you beachbum and the same to you!!!
  • wtw 2011/04/17 17:04:49
    Yes, Rock I knew about this
    wtw
    +4
    Our early foundins were on the basis of justice and the beleif that there is indeed truth.

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