DAILY DEVOTIONAL: America’s Waiting On You, Church

…or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right.
1 Peter 2:14

Do you know where the phrase “separation of church and state” comes from? If you guessed the Constitution or the Declaration of Independence, you’d be wrong. Thomas Jefferson referred to it in a letter to the Danbury Baptist Association, which had written to him seeking his help. Connecticut had an established state Congregational Church, which meant that the Baptists’ religious freedom in Connecticut was not an inherent right, but a favor granted by the state. Jefferson wrote to the Baptists that he shared their belief in religious freedom, and that under the First Amendment there existed “a wall of separation” between the federal government and the churches; the federal government was not allowed to interfere with religion, an example he hoped the states would follow.

Today, it’s hip to invoke “separation of church and state” to insinuate or even demand that the Church have no influence on government and no role in politics. That is exactly wrong. In fact, Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists closes with an invocation of God and prayer.

I love 1 Peter 2:14 because it suggests that leaders really have to know the difference between right and wrong. Believers have a responsibility to teach and provide counsel for our government leaders.

Sweet Freedom in Action
Today, pray for our public officials, but also hold them accountable – and tell your pastor to quit chickening out when people need to hear truth about right and wrong in politics.



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