HomeChurch and StateMUST READ Amazing Op-Ed: ‘One Nation, Divisible By God’

MUST READ Amazing Op-Ed: ‘One Nation, Divisible By God’

Jim Spence: One nation, divisible by God

By Jim Spence

Of all the things dividing our nation, rending the very cloth of our society from its bones, nothing is more polarizing than religion. Name any action by any group in the history of this country, whether it be a minority, or (as is most often the case) the majority, and you’ll be able to traces its roots back to a god.

Prove me wrong; prove to me slavery wasn’t a direct result of Puritanical beliefs by whites that blacks were inferior, as their god had set examples of slavery in the Bible (read Exodus, if you dare). Convince me the civil rights battles fought in this country weren’t a result of religious persecution by white Evangelical Christians over people of a different color. Gay marriage, abortion, prohibition, stem cell research, wars on foreign soil and domestic terrorism, all because someone’s god said, “No!”

God and religion (actually, the removal of both) formed this nation in the late 1700s, and have been a constant thorn in its backside ever since.

In 1954, our federal government inserted the words “Under God” into our Pledge of Allegiance. By this time, “In God We Trust” had been inscribed on coins for a century, with paper money soon to follow. As a “Christian Nation,” we allowed a vocal minority to imprint these words onto our currency, and then insert the same praise into the pledge we offer our nation:

“I pledge allegiance to the flag, of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

Magnificent words.

Is it any wonder this praise lifts the spirits of every man, woman and child who recites it? “With liberty and justice for all.” This is who we are. We are Americans, and we believe in the rights of every individual to live as they see fit.

As long as they believe in the Christian god.

And even though our country was founded on the principle of separation of church and state, of the idea that no entity can force its religious beliefs upon another, our money, and our pledge carry the name of this same Christian god.

The irony of the inclusion of this phrase into our national fabric is thick, indeed.

But most ironic of all, the most incredibly astounding fact about this inclusion, is not the words themselves; it is the location of that inclusion.

Of all the places our government could have put these divisive words into our Pledge, they chose to place them between “One Nation” and “Indivisible.”

In the history of the written word, nothing is more inaccurate than this placement; because nothing has divided this great country more than this god.

The god we’re told to praise with every utterance of our pledge, whose name we see every time we open our wallets and our purses, is the single biggest dividing force in the history of America.

One nation.

The moment “god” was imprinted into public imagery, we lost our cohesiveness. We gave up our brotherhood, we forgot about our fight from tyranny, we no longer believed in the “One.” Instead, it’s “us” and “them.”


We banded together and fought a superior force, winning our independence. We became America. No country, no force, could divide us. We were too mighty to be split apart by other people. But one mention of a deity and our country was torn apart.

One nation, under God, indivisible.

The irony is so thick it’s suffocating.

Jim Spence lives in South Charleston.

This piece first appeared in the Charleston Gazette.



About Bob Cull

I'm retired and live in the Finger Lakes region of Upstate NY. I have strong opinions and my political bent has not changed since I was in high school. Most of my family thinks that I need to find a "real" hobby to fill my time in retirement, but I am content to share my opinions with others and exercise my "right" as a cranky old retired dude to express my views--which are based on many years of real world experience.


  1. Thank you, Jim Spence, for that wonderful editorial!!

  2. This one is definitely a keeper! With proper credit asserted. Thank you, Mr. Spence!
    George M Melby, M.Div. Pastor/Chaplain (Ret.)

  3. Dear Mr Spence
    If you have at some time been hurt, criticized or otherwise wounded by a Christian, please let me apologize to you on their behalf. People can claim to be Christians but are not so. True Christians are commissioned to do good works and that is why it is they that founded universities, began hospitals and orphanages, and yes, began the movement to end slavery. True Christians are law-abiding, good citizens. My prayer is that you will hear the irresistible call of God on your life so that you can discern between true Christians and those that masquerade as such.
    Sandy Sawyer

    • Sandy, thank you for a very important, succinct post! As an ordained Christian minister I am at various times extremely embarrassed by these christian extremists (I call them the American christian Taliban-AcT) who are no more an example of Christ, his love, or his teachings than Madelyn O-Hair. I will not rest until these faux christians are either re-educated or detained for the rest of ther lives and for the good of our country as a multi-religion nation! God bless ALL of American and its religiously diverse communities!

      • What paper mill did you get your ordination from? A Christian cannot get into heaven on the basis of “good works”(so why do you support a fraudulent statement?). Christians are only commissioned to spread the gospel. The only law Christians are prescribed to obey is the law of God. Christians who cannot do that, or think themselves wiser then the God of Abraham, the living God, know not the Messiah nor the father.

        You are as Christian as the Christian killer Paul was.


        America is not a religiously diverse nation, homosexuals, atheists and other marxists wish it was. So any display of spirituality and religion, other than Christianity is celebrated by the left as a kind of psychological attack on Christians. An attempt at psychological abuse to “knock Christians down a peg”. Akin to how people with certain mental disorders try to use psychological abuse to engage in a kind of “leveling” of others.

        God will bless that which is worthy of blessing and curse that which is worthy of cursing.

        • “America is not a religiously diverse nation, homosexuals, atheists and other marxists wish it was.”

          The day has just begun and I believe we have a winner for the most ignorant statement of the day in that one.

          Contrary to what zealots (read cultists) such as yourself would like to believe this is NOT, never was and never will be a “Christian” nation. The founders gave us the First Amendment to guarantee that could never happen.

          Keep your religion to yourself, your freedom to practice it does not include the freedom to impose it on others.

        • KW, even though I owe you no explanation, I shall gladly give you my life history in one short paragraph.
          If you even knew how fantastically I’ve been blessed by God, you would vomit on your own comment. I can’t imagine what life would be like without my Christian friends and the good Lord of Life! I’ve had more opportunities in life (AND taken advantage of them!) then many people and I will always be grateful. I am sorry you’ve been short changed in life. How do I know? Because you sound like the same old christian “victims” that I hear from every day where I live. The rest of us just laugh at them and shake our heads.
          I graduated from a fully accredited Baptist Seminary in the Midwest and was know as an independent thinker, leaning to the center. I accept ALMOST all people but I do not tolerate well the uncommonly stupid among us, especially when they are comfortable in their own ignorance, which leads to arrogance!
          I do so hope you can get out into life and experience its great abundance before it is too late. There is a beautiful world out there with ALL SORTS of wonderful children of God. You might even find your ‘self’ out there somewhere. I hope you get to know ‘you’ before you die. It is so exciting!

  4. Thank You

  5. What about the battle FOR civil rights? What about the battle AGAINST abortion, the taking of a human life? What about “we shall overcome?” Get over yourself, will ya’?

    • The churches of the Southern Baptist Convention fought long and hard AGAINST civil rights for blacks, Jim. The battle against abortion is NOT a battle against the “taking of a human life” what it really is is the battle to assert dominance over others, a common theme in all religions. As for the “get over yourself” remark, that brings to mind the old adage, “physician heal thyself.”

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