The ACLU has attacked the Ten Commandments once again, and this time a judge, Michael F. Urbanski, has recommended that the first four commands be removed to make the document more palatable to the ACLU. The case has been ordered into mediation. In June, the school board not only voted to take down the 10 Commandments at the high school, but also in ever other school in Giles County, Virginia. Then, after the "agreement", the school board was ordered to pay the ACLU more than $6,000 in their out-of-pocket expenses, all while the student and parents' identity remain secret.
There are framed documents depicting American law and government of which one is the ten commandments. Whether they can see it or not, whether they like it or not, there is no changing the fact that the ten commandments played a major roll in the development of United States law.
Our forefathers are rolling in their graves, so to speak, at what America puts first. Our nation was built on Biblical principles by Christian men and women. One has only to do a bit of reading of historical speeches and writings of John Hancock, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Samuel Adams, and many others to know that the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Matthew, Mark, Paul and John was also the God of our forefathers. Nonetheless, today the battle cry is not “A Bible in every house” (Ben Franklin). It is “King size it” and “I’ll have it my way” for “If it feels good, do it” and “Just do it” because “I deserve a break today.” Regardless of lessons from times past, Americans have not learned how to let history be a teacher.
From as far back in time as 1689 when our ancestors dissented against England’s tyrannical ruling thumb, troubles abounded so the rebels rebelled. But, they all looked to one God. In 1775, John Adams said, “We recognize no sovereign but God, and no king but Jesus!” Inscribed in the front of Thomas Jefferson’s personal bible, “I am a real Christian, that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus. I have little doubt that our whole country will soon be rallied to the unity of our creator.” He may have written in a letter something about the separation of church and state because of the freedom to worship God in the way it pleased each person, but he crafted one of the most famous documents in world history declaring our inalienably rights come from God Himself. George Washington said, “It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible.” Abraham Lincoln said, “I am busily engaged in study of the Bible.” Patrick Henry quoted both Matthew and Jeremiah in the very speech he cried, “Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” Unfortunately, it is only the last that is usually quoted or remembered.
The heart of biblical principles which is now called The Ten Commandments is the red in the Red, White, and Blue because of the blood shed for freedom from tyranny. It is the white because of its purity, and the blue because of the truth of God's blessing on this Christian nation.
What sparked this impassioned speech was a letter from Matthew Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel... Below is the the letter in its entirety. It is a bit long, but if it doesn't make you sit up and take notice about the forces of evil at work in our land, then we need to talk!
Mathew Staver, Founder and Chairman
On Monday, Judge Michael Urbanski of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia suggested that one way to “compromise” the ACLU’s case against the inclusion of the Ten Commandments in a public high school’s historical display would be to remove the first four Commandments. He has ordered the case to mediation suggesting that this compromise might resolve the case in which the ACLU wants to remove the Ten Commandments.
No decision has been made by either party, but the judge’s proposal would require the school board to censor only one document of the 29 framed documents. Would that show hostility or neutrality toward religion? I have prepared an audio update for you on this very important case – please click here to play it:
Please also read my update below – Mat.
I knew when I walked into the Roanoke, VA courtroom on Monday to face off against the American Civil Liberties Union that it was going to be an interesting day!
The ACLU complains that the Ten Commandments stick out like a “sore thumb” among the 29 framed documents depicting American law and government. Whether the ACLU wants to recognize history or not, the Ten Commandments played a significant role in the development of Western culture and the development of American law and government.
As the Liberty Counsel Litigation Team entered the courtroom, we knew that thousands of committed Liberty Counsel friends were praying for us, which is an undergirding for a clash with the ACLU unlike any other!Here’s a reminder about the nature of the case…
The ACLU of Virginia sued the Giles County School Board in Virginia, after the Board adopted an “open forum” policy, which permits the display of historical documents by private individuals or groups.
A privately-sponsored historical display consisting of eleven framed documents, one of which is the Ten Commandments, was posted in Narrows High School.The original display contains the Magna Carta, Mayflower Compact, the Declaration of Independence, the Virginia Declaration of Rights, Jefferson’s Statute of Religious Freedom, the Bill of Rights, Lady Justice, the Spar Spangled Banner, the Ten Commandments, an Explanatory Plaque, and the Resolution allowing private citizens to post additional historical displays.
Additional historical displays were later added, bringing the total number of framed documents to 29. All the displays, including the Ten Commandments, are physical reflections of the Virginia Standards of Learning and the curriculum, published by secular publishers Prentice Hall and McGraw-Hill. One high school history book depicts the “Roots of Democracy,” which shows the primary root being the Ten Commandments.
The ACLU’s mission has been to persuade the removal of the Ten Commandments from the public high school. When asked by the Judge if removing the first four Commandments would resolve the case, the ACLU squirmed and said, it might but the remaining Six Commandments should not be written so as to make people think they were Commandments. In order words, no “Thou shall not!”
++Edit the Ten Commandments down to Six?
The general outcome of Monday’s hearing was that the Judge delayed ruling on the case and ordered it to mediation under. If no settlement is reached, the case will return to the Judge for a final order.
But before adjourning, the Judge made this very unusual suggestion for compromise: Remove the first Four Commandments (the ones which reference God)!
In doing so, he remarked, “If indeed this issue is not about God, why wouldn’t it make sense for Giles County to say, ‘Let's go back and just post the bottom six?’ But if it’s really about God, then they wouldn’t be willing to do that.”++This is a truly novel “test”!
Ultimately, the decision as to whether or not to “compromise” will come from our client, the Giles County School Board. But the implications are far reaching. The School Board has not edited any other document.
Further, the Declaration of Independence mentions our “Creator,” and the Magna Carta and the Mayflower Compact mention “God.” In fact, a number of the founding documents mention God. One would have to re-write history to post foundational documents void of any mention of God. Maybe this is acceptable in other countries, but not in America!
The ACLU is maniacally committed to marginalizing America’s religious heritage and routinely attempts to bully public school administrations into rolling over for their agenda. Our Giles County case is typical of their pattern of litigation.Gina, again, I’m asking you to do two things…
FIRST, please pray – especially over the next several weeks as we continue this case in mediation.
The Liberty Counsel Litigation Team and I need prayer for wisdom and strength to do the best possible job. EVERY fight with the ACLU is crucially important because any ground they get will make them stronger in our next confrontation.
SECOND, will you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible gift right now so our team can continue to fight in defense of the Ten Commandments in Giles County, Virginia, and wherever else these bullies take the battle?
This case may well be intentionally dragged out or stalled – a tactic which the ACLU has strategically used in many of our previous confrontations.
++Our God is far greater than any of His adversaries!
The ACLU spent over 100 million dollars on their misguided mission last year alone. By way of contrast, Liberty Counsel spent less than 4% of that amount advancing liberty, life, and family in 2011.
But Liberty Counsel WILL NOT BACK DOWN from the ACLU in doing what God has called us to do! That is especially true when it comes to confronting the overt intimidation campaigns they attempt to perpetrate on America’s public school systems.
We never forget that prayer has been a vital part of Liberty Counsel’s litigation successes – especially against the ACLU. I never take any outcome for granted, even though the law is clearly against the ACLU’s twisted position on this issue.
Please, commit to pray for my staff and me over the next several weeks and also consider what the Lord may be asking you to do to help us financially in overcoming this misguided assault on the Ten Commandments – and our religious liberty.http://www.libertyaction.org/7082/offer.asp
God Bless You,
Mathew Staver, Founder and Chairman
P.S. The ACLU is once again using manipulative tactics against a public school system – and once again we are in defense of the school system’s right to display this privately supported display of the Ten Commandments as an element in the formation of United States law and government.