Here’s an amusing blog post by Bryan Fischer arguing that Christmas is actually in the Constitution. I’m sure you missed it, as did most of us. It’s in there, he argues, because of the entirely perfunctory and irrelevant dating of the document “in the year of our Lord,” which was the norm on all official documents at the time.
Well, they can save their breath, for Christmas is clearly, flatly, unequivocally and unambiguously constitutional.
Uh, who claims that Christmas is unconstitutional?
In fact, Christmas itself is in the Constitution.
This is not even a matter for debate, for the Framers themselves dated this document, one of the two most important political documents in human history (along with the Declaration of Independence) from the very first Christmas. You could look it up.
In fact, I’ll look it up for you. Here’s how the Framers concluded:
“…done in Convention by the Unanimous Consent of the States present the Seventeenth Day of September in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and Eighty seven and of the Independence of the United States of America the Twelfth. In witness whereof We have hereunto subscribed our Names…” (Emphasis mine.)
By dating the foundational document of the greatest nation in history to the birth of Jesus Christ, the Founders essentially celebrated Christmas as they signed their names. Since the Declaration was also dated from the first Christmas, you can even say that the two most important political documents in history are in the nature of Christmas cards from the Founders to us.
Seriously? As Chris Rodda has pointed out, Thomas Jefferson signed documents all the time that contained the date in that same manner, yet he rejected completely the idea that Jesus was the lord of anything, saying he was nothing but a man and that the gospel writers were a “band of dupes and impostors.” It was just a standard way to end a document, just as we still often write dates as a certain year “A.D.” which means “anno domini” or — yes — in the year of our lord. Even atheists frequently use such dating. It says absolutely nothing about what someone believes.
It’s worth noting how deliberate and how majestic this all is. Jesus is referred to as “Lord.” They were acknowledging Jesus Christ as the true and rightful sovereign of this fledgling nation.
And they did not identify Jesus as “the” Lord, but rather as “our” Lord, each signer acknowledging his own submission to him as master over their own lives. And since they were acting on behalf of the whole American people, the Founders in essence were entering into a covenant with Jesus Christ as our rightful lord and liege.
Really? Even the ones who did not believe that he was anyone’s rightful lord and liege? And why didn’t they say anything remotely like that in the documents themselves? They left this “flatly, unequivocally and unambiguously” true fact to a cryptic interpretation of a single perfunctory line? Seems an odd thing to do. And why didn’t they bother to mention this in the Federalist Papers when explaining and defending the Constitution to urge its ratification?
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