separation of church and state may be ideal, giving to Caesar what is his and allowing God to freely rein his flock, there are instances in which the two factions will inevitably have to work together.
The author presents the big cheese embedded with the words "Rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God" and sent to Jefferson by evangelical ministers as evidence of how much church-state separation is deeply favored by both political and religious big-wigs (33). According to him, the Evangelical Christians placed a strong conviction “that the greatest flowering of Christianity occurs without government support.” Madison and his influential paper on the issue “Memorial and Remonstrance” have also been cited by the author and how this received support from the Baptists and religious radicals (36). This faith-supported political advocacy on religious freedom was countered by John Adams and his followers who vied for an institutionalized American church and imposed mandatory church contributions on citizens (37). Finally, over the years, religious freedom and church-state separation have become vague in American society. Indeed, the once radical evangelicals are now one of the most politically involved denominations. The author cites among others the surprising evangelical support for Bush and how it led to his victory in the presidential race as evidence of how church and state eventually converged because of moral erosions (37-38). Christians have been compelled to “dive aggressively into the public realm in order to promote Christian values” which declined after religious freedom was instituted (Falwell et al. qtd. in Waldman 38).
The strengths of the article include an extensive and somewhat accurate historical knowledge. These greatly help aid readers in visualizing the struggle between church and state. Furthermore, the article does not air out claims without citing statements from authoritative sources like Benjamin Franklin, Madison himself, Baptist