Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Lament for the Protestant Perspective on the Supreme Court

Diana Butler Bass has posted an essay on Belief Net lamenting the loss of a Protestant perspective on the Supreme Court. While attributing it to Protestantism as a whole, she presents a concise summary of the significance of the traditional Baptist perspective on religious liberty:
These three things--individual conscience, the power of symbols to inspire and convince, and the separation of church and state--are not merely areas of law to Protestants. No, these are the things that inflame the Protestant soul--the things we have fought over, left other churches and start new denominations to uphold, teach our children, sing of in our hymnody, of which we write books and hold theological debates, and why we do good on behalf of our neighbors. Protestants do not always agree on how these principles work out in the law, nor have Protestants always followed their own principles to their logical legal conclusions. But these are the things that guide Protestants, the insights that animate the followers of one of Christianity's great traditions.

1 comment:

civic literacy said...

frankly, when I think of symbols and churches, protestantism is not the first thing to come to mind. I agree with points 1 & 3, but the "power of symbols"? there is a parsimony of symbolism in most protestant churches. a suspicion of symbols is more accurate, I would think.