Positive Atheism Forum
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Preacher: Bible Mandates
Execution Of Rebellious Children
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From: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
To: <Undisclosed.Recipients>
Subject: PosAth/ PA Preacher: Rebellious Children Must Get Stoned
Date: Monday, February 22, 1999 3:03 AM

Here's a wild one from Americans United. Don't think these people are just nuts. They believe in it, and are working hard toward accomplishing some semblance of it. Dust off your copy of The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood (or get it from the library) and realize that it can happen here -- if we let it.

Bible Requires Death by Stoning
for 'Rebellious' Teenagers,
Says PA. Preacher

Mercersburg Activist Insists
Bible Mandates Execution
by Susan Hansen
Americans United for
Separation of Church and State

The Bible mandates death by stoning for rebellious teenagers, according to a Pennsylvania preacher and Religious Right activist.

The Rev. William O. Einwechter's article, "Stoning Disobedient Children," appeared in the January issue of Chalcedon Report, a monthly journal published by the Chalcedon Foundation in Vallecito, Calif.

In the article, Einwechter cites Deuteronomy 21:18-21, which advises parents to take "a stubborn and rebellious son" before city elders to be stoned to death if he will not change his ways.

Einwechter's viewpoint drew criticism from church-state separationists.

"Rev. Einwechter reminds us all of why we need a clear separation between religion and government," said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, a Washington, D.C.-based watchdog group. "I doubt if most Americans think we should turn America into a fundamentalist Christian version of Iran."

Einwechter says the death penalty should be applied to "a grown son (and by extension to a daughter as well) who, for whatever reason, has rebelled against the authority of his parents and will not profit from any of their discipline nor obey their voice in any thing."

Writes Einwechter, "[T]he execution of the rebel in view is just, merciful, and preventive. Just, in that the transgressor deserves to die; merciful, in that his quick death prevents the destruction of the family, society, and others; preventive, in that it strikes fear in the heart of other would-be rebels and restrains them from taking a similar ruinous course."

The Chalcedon Report is the leading publication of the "Christian Reconstructionist" movement, the most extreme contingent of the Religious Right. Reconstructionists reject democracy and believe Christians should take "dominion" over American society. Under their version of "biblical law," the death penalty would be required for over a dozen offenses, including adultery, homosexuality, witchcraft and spreading "false" religions.

Although the movement's numbers are relatively small, its ideas have often filtered into other Religious Right groups.

Einwechter, a Mercersburg, Pa., resident, is vice-moderator of the Association of Free Reformed Churches. He also serves as vice president of the National Reform Association, a Pittsburgh-based group that advocates Christianity in government.

Susan Hansen
Americans United for
Separation of Church and State
1816 Jefferson Place, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20036
202/466-2587 (fax)

Cliff Walker
"Positive Atheism" Magazine

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From: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
To: "Bill Garrett"
Subject: Re: Forum:_Death_By_Stoning_For_Naughty_Kids_9673
Date: Thursday, August 03, 2000 11:55 AM

Even the Pharisees of Jesus's time squirmed with the wording on this one, falling over themselves to try to mitigate this law's meaning and impact. This prompts me to believe that "adult children" is not the obvioius reading in any sense.

Now, do we sit and wait for the Twelve Steppers and co-dependency people to try to mitigate the "adult child" aspect of the new reinterpretation?

Cliff Walker
"Positive Atheism" Magazine

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