Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Warning! It is Unlawful to . . .


John 5:10
So the Jewish leaders said to the man who had been healed, "It is the Sabbath; the law forbids you to carry your mat."

Every society has laws. Some guarantee our protection and safety. Others serve to maintain a semblance of civility and respect within a culture. However, there are those laws, to many in the United States, which infringe upon a person's individual right to choose.

Too many which contradict our Declaration of Independence's guarantee of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Too many that assume morality can be legislated . . .

Georgia, the state in which I reside, has a law on the books, time out of mind, which makes it illegal to sell liquor on Sundays. The origin? State law makers whose staunch Christian upbringings view drinking as sinful.

While they can't control what their constituents do the other six days of the week, they can, by glory, make them tow the line when it comes to keeping the Sabbath sanctified.

How crazy is this? If a person desires to drink on Sunday, all he has to do is stock up the Saturday before. It's a no-brainer.

The law, essentially, is ineffective.

It needs to be repealed.

After many long years of debate in the state legislature, it is decided, over the loud and raucous protests of the die-hards, that the state will vote, county by county, town by town, on whether to allow the sale of alcohol on Sunday.

The vote takes place in November of 2011.

My town votes in favor of repeal. 76% for and 24% against.

Quite a margin. Quite a message.

Did I vote for it?

Yes. Because morality cannot be legislated.

It is a choice.

And, as Christians, if we truly follow Jesus' commandments to love our God and our neighbors as ourselves, we won't be breaking any laws.

We will be fulfilling them.
~
Are there any laws in your community that are antiquated or ineffective? Are there those which limit a person's freedom to choose?

Will you pray with me?
You have given to all of us, Father, the gift of free will; to walk with You in true freedom or turn away and become incarcerated by the laws of darkness. Let us seek Your truth and wisdom in all things and live the abundant life promised to us through Your Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Readings
Psalms 45 or 47, 48
Genesis 15:1-11, 17-21
Hebrews 9:1-14
John 5:1-18

22 comments:

  1. We're the only state that does not allow gambling and don't some churches drink wine on Sundays? Honestly i'm really against drinking in general.
    : )

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi, Joseph, and thanks for dropping by today!
    In which state do you live? Yes, many churches have wine at communion, but no one is forced to partake if he/she has an objection to it.
    I attended the Episcopal Church for years; we always had wine at communion. At the Methodist Church I now belong to, it's grape juice. It's all blessed!
    Blessings to you!

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  3. Delaware used to have the same "can't buy alcohol on Sunday" law as well. What they realized after a while was that it was hurting the livelihood of the merchants who sell liquor, and that people were simply spending their "booze money" in Maryland instead; as you noted, an ineffective law. Legislating morality has never been effective in controlling how people act... in the end, if they choose to follow immoral or destructive paths, it's between them and God to seek remedy and forgiveness.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for stopping by today, Phather Phil!
      We had a similar situation in the Atlanta area when dry counties bordered "wet" ones. It was seeing all those tax dollars going to the neighboring county that finally compelled the commissioners to repeal that law.
      And, yes, it is between people and God - always!
      Blessings!

      Delete
  4. Thanks Martha!! Preach it sister!! :-))

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    Replies
    1. Glad you liked it, Bernie. Thanks for stopping by!
      Blessings!

      Delete
  5. I know from our own Indian experience that prohibition in certain states led to a lot of crime. Let's pray that we all make the right choices in life with the grace of God.

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    Replies
    1. Hi, Corinne, and thanks for dropping in today!
      Isn't it a shame that prohibition usually does lead to crime. The same thing happened in the States in the 1920s when the government banned legal sale of alcohol. Everything just went "underground".
      And, yes, our right choices are between us and the Lord.
      Blessings!

      Delete
  6. I think in this day and age laws like that are ridiculous, you say if someone wants it they only have to go buy it the day before but the law is about buying it not drinking it! So if they stock up the day before they aren't breaking the law. My other thought is that certain religions view the consumption of alcohol as illegal but then should religion really have 'laws'? Moral and ethical guidelines maybe but actual laws on top of the standard civil/legal practices? We have laws to prevent crime, yes but to keep religion on track. Oh I don't know certainly gives plenty of food for thought.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Sarah-Jane, thanks for visiting today!
      You bring up several great points here. Laws, like the one described here, are simply ineffective. I believe the religious beliefs of all should be protected and respected for what they are, but, no one group should dictate government decisions. That's up to the voters.
      Blessings!

      Delete
  7. Nice post again. Morality is a choice indeed.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Janu, for dropping in today!
      Yes, morality is a choice - always! I pray everyone chooses rightly.
      Blessings!

      Delete
  8. I agree with you on this one Martha. I also believe in the separation of church and state, and that our forefathers set up our government like they did for a reason. Unfortunately, time goes on, and people dabble in things they should leave well enough alone. Good post.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Cathy, and thanks for stopping by!
      It's commonly believed that the phrase "separation of church and state" is in the Constitution. It's not. Our Constitution merely states that the government will NOT establish a national religion (as there was in Britain at the time) and people are free to worship without government interference.
      And, good laws or bad, local jurisdictions who feel certain ways are free to establish local laws and ordinances. That's the way it rolls!
      Blessings!

      Delete
  9. Good job, Martha! You know how I feel about this. I've shared this post on twitter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Ann, and thanks so much for stopping by!
      I thought of you when I was writing this post. :)
      Thanks so much for sharing on Twitter. I'm honored!
      Blessings!

      Delete
  10. Great post, I agree with you and Cathy. We as a people can't seem to leave well enough alone.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for stopping by, Jan!
      So true! Seems like someone needs to "pass a law" for just about everything. Sad!
      Blessings!

      Delete
  11. There is still a little town In New Jersey where no alcohol is allowed on sunday and you can't even park your car in town on sunday..it;s just ridiculous...As always...XOXOXOXOX

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for coming by, Bonnie!
      Yes, that is truly absurd! I guess nothing will change unless the voters want it to.
      Blessings!

      Delete
  12. Ooo well, I stayed in one country who's religion prohibited alcohol consumption...it's not whether they keep it or not but 'why' they observe it that makes the law more meaningful.

    When people hear us preaching 'do not do this'...'do not do that' ~ it makes them think that God punishes instead of loves.

    I think the challenge here is to see the heart of the law and keep it in our hearts.

    I pray with you...

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    Replies
    1. Hi, Melissa!
      Oh, I love your "do not" comment! As Christians, we need to model the love of God, not a punishing one. You are so right here!
      And, yes, we need to keep the law in our hearts, not just in our minds.
      Blessings!

      Delete

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