Thursday, November 13, 2003

This quote is from a blurb that appeared in yahoo about an Alabama Judge who defiantly had a large statue of the 10 Commandments at the courthouse.

The Alabama case has fueled a long-running U.S. debate pitting defenders of the First Amendment against Christians who believe the Ten Commandments should be viewed in schools or courthouses as a reminder of basic values.

This quote is about a dispute between atheists and christians. When I first read the quote, something about it appeared wrong. I had to read the thing twice, then it jumped out at me. The Ten Commandments is not "a reminder of basic values". A true believer should hold first and foremost that the Ten Commandments are a direct covenant with God. These are not simple values, these are a law that transcend any written human law.

If the judge does not understand that his having this statue carved in stone at the courthouse tells the world that he holds his religious beliefs to be higher than the laws of the land, then the Judge Roy Moore is showing that he either does not understand the premise of the rule of law, or that he does not understand the nature of the ten commandments.

Commandments are not basic values. In the Judeo-Christian tradition, the Ten Commandments are a law that was written in stone by the hand of God. A true Christian who understood the theology would know that spending taxpayer's dollars to put up an expensive statue with the Ten Commandments carved in stone directly tells the public that the court holds The Ten Commandments to be a higher law than the Constitution, and to be a higher law than any law passed by the legislator.

A true Christian would know that the ten commandments is a set of laws that they themselves must obey. However, the rule of law does not permit us all to run around with our own laws. A Judge who swears an oath to uphold the laws of the land is derelict if he holds another set of laws in supremacy to the laws of the land. If there was an Islamic Judge that claimed Shari`ah was a higher law than the Constitution, he would be drawn and quartered in Alabama.

Although I think the Atheist's movement to prevent the Ten Commandments from being discussed in schools is horrible, I agree 100% that Judge Roy Moore needs to be tossed on his keister for this absurd little symbolic battle of his.

Personally, I think Christians should be more up in arms about these people who are claiming that the Ten Commandments are just a moral principle than about the statue issue. A true Christian who understand both the nature of the covenent with God, and the nature of the rule of law would understand the conflict and why a Courthouse should not have a statue of the ten commandments on their steps.

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