At noon (ET) tomorrow, I will be on the Moody Radio Network program “Up for Debate with Julie Roy” to discuss the question, “Should Christians Be Nationalists?”
The guest taking a contrasting position will be Ken Klulowski who is the Legal Editor at Breitbart News and Senior Counsel & Director of Strategic Affairs at the First Liberty Institute.
I originally wanted to debate whether or not America is a Christian nation.
You can listen online here: https://www.moodyradio.org/upfordebate
As background, see these posts on the subject (here, here, and here)
The show went well I think in that both sides had the ability to make important points. I do want to correct or least amend a couple of Ken Klukowski’s claims.
On one occasion he said he didn’t recognize James Madison from my quote of Madison and then said Madision’s views could be discerned by his vote for chaplains in Congress. He also said most of the founders had seminary degrees.
One. my Madison quote is sound and two, Klukowski did not tell the rest of the story on Madison. Later, Madison forcefully disagreed with the funding of chaplains and said so here.
On the founders and seminary degrees, this is a distortion made famous by David Barton. See this piece about that misleading claim.
See also my daily series on the Constitutional Convention:
1787 Constitutional Convention Series
To read my series examining the proceedings of the Constitution Convention, click here. In this series, I am writing about any obvious influences on the development of the Constitution which were mentioned by the delegates to the Convention. Specifically, I am testing David Barton’s claim that “every clause” of the Constitution is based on biblical principles. Thus far, I have found nothing supporting the claim. However, stay tuned, the series will run until mid-September.
Constitutional Convention Series (click the link)
To follow on social media, click the following links:
Facebook (blog posts and news)
Facebook (Getting Jefferson Right – history news)
Plans are for me to be on Family Research Council’s Washington Watch radio show at 5:20pm today to discuss my reaction to Wayne Grudem’s article on Trump as a moral choice.
The show is live at http://www.frc.org/radio.
Well that was brief.
Out of the entire response to Grudem, Mr. Klukowski wanted to discuss the Iowa Civil Rights Commission situation. He took issue with my description of it but due to the ending of the segment, I did not get to relate my understanding of it. Klukowski is the attorney for one of the churches in Iowa which brought suit against the Iowa Civil Right Commission over a 2007 law in Iowa including sexual orientation and gender identity to the state non-discrimination statute. I wrote several posts about the situation here, here, here, and here.
In essence, the Iowa Civil Rights Commission put out guidance in 2008 which appeared to extend the law’s coverage to churches, even during Sunday services. However, since the law was passed no church had ever been accused by the Commission of violating the law. In fact, the guidance language was not clear and once the lawsuit was filed, the Commission changed the language to better reflect the fact that churches were exempt from the law in their ministry activities. If a church runs a business offering a non-religious good or service to the public (e.g., a day care with no religious purpose), then the law applies. However, church services, religious day cares and/or other ministries are exempt.
In addition to the chair of the Commission, I had contact with the lawyer for the Alliance Defending Freedom legal firm who was also involved in the case. I look forward to carrying on that conversation.
Back to the Grudem article, if I had the opportunity, I wanted to say that there are two broad arguments one can make on behalf of a presidential candidate, one based on moral qualities and the other based on a pro and con policy analysis. Grudem stipulated that Trump was flawed but claimed that he offered the best policies. However, he provided no data. We have a saying around our department at Grove City College:
In God we trust, all others must bring data.
Grudem brought no data.
In my response to Grudem, I wanted to demonstrate, using data, that the case for Trump was not clear cut. In fact, reviewing the analyses from experts of all political persuasions, the case against Trump is stronger than for him.
Making an empirical argument requires evidence and Grudem didn’t specify any evidence. I believe he abused his position by citing the verse in James: “Whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin” (James 4:17). That Grudem believes a vote for Trump is right is on him. I am not responsible to act based on his determination and he is presumptuous to imply that it is sin not to vote for Trump.