Pledge of Allegiance Under God

By now, most everyone has had something to say on the “Under GodPledge Ruling, so anything I say from either conservative or liberal lobe of my brain will probably be a redundancy.

I’m a Baptist, and one of our foundational statements of faith is the separation of church and state: government should not dictate the religious affairs of the private citizen, nor should a religious entity use its institutional influence to coerce the governance of the state. (I need to read up on this bit of Baptist tradition, however, because I’m wondering about its biblical precedence.) Given that, if a judicial branch of established government rules that the “Under God” line of the Pledge is unconstitutional, I suppose I accept that. But government may not interfere with my right to continue openly professing my belief in God — even while others are intent on vehemently denying Him.

A few more observations:

  • A lot of conservatives like to point out that the Founding Fathers were building a Christian nation. That’s not entirely true. Deist, Masonic, and Humanist influences were also present, though Christian thought was the primary paradigm.
  • I worry a bit about blurring the lines between patriotism and faith. With this hazy non-thematic “God” concept ingrained in many institutions of our country, it’s too easy for nationalism to become an idol on its own: the flag beside the cross where only the cross should stand.
  • It’s worth noting that the Panatang Makabayan, the equivalent Pledge of Allegiance from a largely Catholic nation, makes no mention of God at all. That doesn’t seem to affect in any way the Filipino faith — or the Filipino Church hierarchy’s propensity for occasional political meddling. ;)
  • So why have government force citizens to say an “Under God” they don’t even believe in, when we can instead show forth the love of God and inspire people to say “Under God” of their own free will? Let’s not make embarassing quantities of noise over a secular government’s choices for the allegiances of a fallen world. Rather, let us go out and be salt and light.


  1. garver says:

    Saying the Pledge is entirely optional and the courts have consistently upheld the right of school children and others to exempt themselves from saying it. Personally, I can probably count on one hand the number of times I’ve had occasion to recite it.

    On the other hand, I sometimes think the distinction between being “forced” to say something and saying something of one’s own “free will” is overplayed. I think of the use of Creeds within the liturgy in which one’s freely embraced faith is confessed in a regulated and corporate manner.

    But, on the whole, I’m indifferent about the entire matter.

  2. Concerning your first observation, that’s popular for many school teachers to teach, but it’s simply not true.

    Out of 250 Founding Fathers, only three were deists, or not religious. That leaves 247 others who were wholly Christian.

    In fact, of the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence, 27 of them held seminary degrees or Bible school degrees. In his first official act, President George Washington did the unthinkable: He prayed in public. “Most” of the founding fathers were actually Christians, and they merely reflected a faith held by “most” of the country.

  3. D J says:

    Why is it this Nation that was built on Godly principles are rejecting The God that have blessed them all these year with life, health and strength.

    It’s so amazing, I hear God Bless America so much, yet you don’t want Him in one of the most important entities in America? What’s happening to this country? ” Blessed Is The Nation Whose God Is The LORD.” May God have mercy on us all, because it seems we are trying to get rid of Him!