who needs reason when there’s personal revelation: god speaks to pat robertson?

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: a society and government that is based upon personal revelation (that is, the belief that God speaks directly to people, as opposed to, let’s say, a society and government that is based upon logic and reason that is repeatable, testable, and subject to peer-review and critical scrutiny to determine the veracity of claims) is doomed to be disproportionately influenced by religious charlatans and charismatic preachers with money like Pat Robertson.

For what is to stop a wealthy preacher with cable access to claim, for instance, that God has given him a direct, word-for-word revelation?

And in a world based upon revelation (as opposed to reason and rationality) who are you to dispute him? Does God speak to you, and if so, why are you at your desk fuming while Pat Robertson is on TV prophesying?

The Founders had a good idea: separate religion completely from the secular administration of federal government. Anything shy of this is a quasi-theocracy at the mercy of the one whom a religious majority happens to believe is in personal communication with the divine.

3 Responses

  1. While I agree with your view on personal revelation at least as it pertains to public discourse. (I believe it happens but in a personal relationship NOT meant for public distribution). I do have to disagree slightly on your bend of the constitution. It NEVER says religion is to be separate but to never have one religion “established” over another. A fine line that makes all the difference.

    In other words “religion” CAN be a part of government but government cannot impose one or another religion upon the governed. Actually, it is impossible NOT to have one or another religion (belief system) to be a part of government.

    All depends on your definitions of course.

  2. Steve, I’d agree with you that the Constitution certainly does not ‘prohibit’ religion. Obviously, it protects religious freedoms of individuals to practice and worship as they see fit.

    Let us remember that the US Founders went out of their way to *not* base the US and its Constitution on Christianity. This is why there only mentions of a general ‘Creator’, a ‘Supreme Judge of the world,’ and ‘Nature’s God’ (note, no mention of ‘Jesus’, ‘Jesus Christ,’ ‘Our Lord and Savior’, or ‘God the Father’, etc.) in the Declaration of Independence. And to again correct a common misconception, there is absolutely *no* mention whatsoever of Jesus or God in the US Constitution and/or the Bill of Rights. A Deistic ‘Creator’ in invoked in the Declaration of Independence, but is left out of the Constitution.

    To argue that the Founders were establishing the US government of “Christian” principles is a complete falsehood perpetuated by modern Christians who *want* it to be so.


  3. How does that opinion line up with historic quotes of the authors of the founding documents?

    Patrick Henry, for example, specified that our country’s foundation was “the Gospel of Jesus Christ”.

    That said, long ago I quit paying attention to Pat Robertson.

    Given the time (and, perhaps, some dramamine…), I could watch his program and even find wrong applications of Scripture. Not always, but often enough for him to lose credibility in my eyes.

    To someone that does not read the Bible for themselves, he seems to be a genius and a scholar.

    That said, if he were more consistently right, and not so focused upon money, then I would not have a problem with someone leading our country as a result of divine revelation.

    (True revelation from God, while not necessarily “repeatable” in performance, is definitely reasonable and verifiable. Elijah pouring water upon the wood of the sacrifice was not “logical” at first glance, but it made perfect sense after God consumed even the rocks with fire.)

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