Matt Barber on the Tami Jackson Show: Debunking Separation of Church and State


Last night Matt Barber, Editor-in-Chief of, was a guest on my show on The 405 Media and we discussed the First Amendment, in particular the Establishment Clause.

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Matt’s article, Myth Busted: ‘Separation of Church and State’, prompted the conversation and the timing could not be better with a critical election on the horizon.

People of faith must be engaged, indeed, believers are not precluded from political activism simply because:

But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ. Philippians 3:20

So many Christians, Jews, and other conservative Americans of faith must not forget that this is a Constitutional Republic, and as such “Caesar” (“Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s..”) is “We the People.”

Listen as Matt and I discuss the true intent of the Founders in writing the First Amendment, and the truth about churches and tax exempt status.

Tami: You begin your article, “The American church has a problem. It’s one part fear, one part confusion and one part apathy. Pastors, priests and rabbis have long swallowed the false notion that all things religious and all things political are somehow mutually exclusive – that never the twain shall meet.”

And a little further down you write, “Indeed, it is not just within the church’s purview, but it is the church’s duty to insert itself into state matters relating to morality, public policy and culture at large.”

That famous saying, the wall of separation, actually comes from a letter that Jefferson wrote, correct Matt?

Matt: That’s right. Thomas Jefferson wrote a letter to the Danbury Baptists to reassure them that there was a wall of separation between church and state protecting the church from state control and state intervention.

And that letter was taken completely out of context and turned on its head in the 1947 Everson v. the Board of Education decision and the Supreme Court at that time twisted it to say that there was a separation of church and state. That somehow the church cannot have any kind of affirmation…there can be no religious activity, no church activity in any kind of public forum.

And that’s just nonsense. Even Thomas Jefferson agreed that the Bible should be one of the premiere textbooks in the public schools at the time. The New England Primer, that students read from…they learned to read in first grade from Bible verses…