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The Bloody Trees of Benny Tate

Every morning that the U.S. House of Representatives is in session, it opens its day with a religious prayer. Those who promote this mixture of Church and State claim that these prayers provide much needed guidance to members of Congress.

If that’s so, what kind of guidance was provided by yesterday’s official government prayer? It was delivered by Pastor Benny Tate of the Rock Springs Church in Milner, Georgia. In the middle of the prayer, out of the blue, Tate declared,

benny tate bloody trees“We acknowledge that freedom is not free and the trees of every generation are watered with the blood of its sons and daughters.”

What does that mean? Did Tate mean that the sons and daughters of trees engage in a blood sacrifice to feed their parents, once every generation? It’s more likely that Tate was trying to create a metaphor that justifies going to war at least once a generation.

But what do the trees have to do with it? Are American soldiers out there on the battlefield, killing and being killed for the sake of trees? Who collects their blood to water the trees, and how come I’ve never seen anyone watering the trees on my street with soldier blood? Do they do it at night?

How, then, do these trees provide the freedom that we need to pay for? Does freedom grow on trees?

If anyone can show me how the wisdom of Benny Tate’s prayer became manifest in the work of Congress yesterday, I’d appreciate it. Even more, this weird prayer has me wondering what kind of bizarre religious rituals are they doing down there at Tate’s church. Blood spilling tree worship? If any whistle blowers from the Rock Springs Church are ready to spill the juice, so to speak, I promise to protect their identities – and the identities of their trees.

19 comments to The Bloody Trees of Benny Tate

  • ReMarker

    I expect the good pastor may be paraphrasing a Thomas Jefferson statement.

    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from
    time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”

    The pastor’s words, “We acknowledge that freedom is not free and the trees of every generation are watered with the blood of its sons and daughters.” are eeriely similar.

    Timothy McVeigh, the Oklahoma bomber, was wearing a tee shirt with the Jefferson quote when he was arrested.

    Here is a Huff Post article that explains and references Thomas Jefferson’s words in their full context. Please know he (Jefferson) was NOT suggesting attacks on his fellow Americans as many anti-government types say.

    I wonder if the pastor is making a covert suggestion.

  • connie

    your article bashing my Pastor is highly offensive to me!!!! maybe you are one of those people that dont believe in prayer…i can honestly assure you that as a member of Rock Springs Church we do nt worship trees or watering them with blood!! your statemnts make me sick and people that make comments such as this , and believe them, are the reason this country is in a complete shambles!! i am a member of Rock Springsand there are NO strange or bizarre ritua

  • connie

    your article bashing my Pastor is highly offensive to me!!!! maybe you are one of those people that dont believe in prayer…i can honestly assure you that as a member of Rock Springs Church we do nt worship trees or watering them with blood!! your statemnts make me extremely upset and people that make comments such as this , and believe them, are the reason this country is in a complete shambles!! i am a member of Rock Springs and there are NO strange or bizarre rituals going on!! maybe i am totally missing your point but Pastor Benny is in my eyes the best Pastor around! he speaks his mind whether everyone likes it or not. but it comes right from the Word.
    p.s the last posting was accidently sent before i had edited it.

    • ReMarker

      connie, as a result of your comment, I got a copy of the full prayer.

      Pastor Benny Tate said,
      “Our Heavenly Father, we bow our heads in Your presence.

      Today, we are reminded of the prayer of President Lincoln, who said, “I have been driven many times upon my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere to go. My own wisdom, and that of all about me, seemed insufficient for that day.” This morning, we also come to You, realizing we are insufficient and incapable.

      We come asking for divine protection for our men and women serving in Iraq, Afghanistan and all over Your world. We acknowledge freedom is not free and the trees of every generation are watered with the blood of its sons and daughters. We ask You to preserve us and protect them.

      We lift up our Congress, Senate and our President. May our leaders acknowledge their dependence upon You and seek wisdom and direction from You.

      We pray this prayer, respecting all faiths, but pray it in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.”

      I now clearly see Pastor Tate was NOT making a “covert suggestion” (my words) in his reference to trees being watered with the blood of our sons and daughters. In the full context of his prayer, he clearly was refering to our “sons and daughters” in Iraq.

      My previous comment was unfair to Pastor Tate. I’m sorry.

  • blair

    I attend Rock Springs at least twice a week, and I can assure you that nothing such as “worshipping trees” is going on there.
    I agree with ReMarker that he was merely referring to the blood spilled not only by our Savior but by those fighting abroad to protect us.
    Benny stated this past Sunday that he had had to edit his prayer because “They make you keep it under 150 words, and they tell you not to say this or not to say that”…. if anything in this prayer were deemed inappropriate by our government officials, it certainly would not have made it to the level of being heard before Congress.

  • Jane Newton

    This makes me sick to hear someone critize Bro. Benny Tate. He is God’s man. I just take this, the story Fitzer wrote about Bro. Tate, is not of someone that beleives in Christ. We love you Bro. Tate and most of all, my Father, in heaven loves you too.

  • Jonathan

    I just came across a message given by Pastor Benny Tate on youtube earlier today, and I had never heard of him before, (but I thoroughly enjoyed his preaching.) In fact, I googled him tonight, to see if I could find any more of his sermons online. Two of the results were his church website http://www.rockspringsonline.com & this website about his prayer before the U.S. House of Representatives. So, I came here to see what the fuss was all about. It is interesting to see that F.G.Fitzer (whoever he is,) would attempt to decry a supposed violation of “separation of church and state,” a phrase mentioned once in a letter written by Thomas Jefferson, (but nowhere mentioned in the Constitution, by the way,) by highlighting a portion of Pastor Tate’s prayer which is obviously a paraphase of yet another famous Thomas Jefferson quote… Wow! Liberals. Ya gotta love ‘em…

    • The separation of church and state is embodied in the Constitution, and the concept is mentioned twice in it. Theocracy, on the other hand, is never endorsed at all and twice rejected.

      • Jonathan

        I’m not advocating a theocracy by casually mentioning that the phrase “separation of church & state” does not appear in the Constitution. If you are so fearful that a prayer respecting all faiths, but asked in the name of Jesus, before a session of the House of Representatives opens is a slippery slope toward a theocracy, you are either an extremely paranoid Atheist, or a Christian with more faith than the rest of us… If so, keep right on prayin’, brother!

  • As a retired Law Enforcement officer from Georgia, now living in Alabama I would like to say I do not know Dr. Benny Tate nor have I ever heard of him until this morning.
    The Message is quiet clear to anyone with a brain, even a Atheist or a Kenite should have known what he was talking about. Going further even a child would had known if the child would had heard it.
    It simply says that Freedom is not Free. Our sons and daughters has paid the price of their Earth Live’s fighting for our freedom. Nothing more, nothing less…..
    God Bless them all and God Bless Pastor Tate for telling it just like h sees it.

  • Mary Vaughn

    I have heard Dr. Benny Tate preach on various occasions over the period of 11 years and I find him a minister who is Biblically accurate, and who has a mission to help mankind in many ways. How anyone could take that prayer and find fault in it is very surprising. I have the highest respect for Dr. Tate and what he has accomplished in his church and community. I wish I lived close to his church so I could attend there.

    • For those out there who know of Pastor Benny Tate I thought I would share this great new information…………his services will be streaming on his churchs website by middle of next month…….what a huge accomplishment.

  • Lisa

    Sounds like you my friend need some prayer. Making a mockery out of a godly man and his prayer is totally moronic. I will begin praying tonight.

  • You are an idiot

    Do you not have anything better to do? ??? Seriously.

  • Hopeful Cynic

    If you’re going to complain about the Tate’s words, find some better way of doing it then whining and taking his metaphor seriously. I mean, why go and point out the fact that it’s a metaphor, then turn around and take the metaphor seriously? Regardless of whether you’re doing so for the sake of sarcasm or not, it’s just a bad way to structure an argument, or any sort of intelligent commentary whatsoever.

    The quote of the exaggerated literalist interpretation of Tate’s words, by the author here:
    [But what do the trees have to do with it? Are American soldiers out there on the battlefield, killing and being killed for the sake of trees? Who collects their blood to water the trees, and how come I’ve never seen anyone watering the trees on my street with soldier blood? Do they do it at night?

    How, then, do these trees provide the freedom that we need to pay for? Does freedom grow on trees?]

    Your ignorance is staggering. If you really wanted to whine and complain about Tate, then hit the issue you’re really against. And argument like the one can never be taken seriously by anyone with a fraction of intelligence (hence, the many replies by the overly religious). I’ve listened to the man preach, and I assure you, there are far more issues to take up with his and the rest of Christianity’s so-called doctrine than a simple quote about war and sacrifice or whatever. What about the Bible’s contradictions? Its antagonism of the human notions of free thought? The obvious hypocrisy of many in higher authority in religious organizations?

    No, if you were really against the ignorance of such people, you wouldn’t be responding with the same level of insipid, blighted “commentary” that you provide here. No, your true goal is simply to whine and complain to anyone who will listen, rather than spend a five second span of rational thought to consider the real issues at hand. Do yourself and rational people everywhere a favor and sit and watch while others do the real talking.

  • Beth

    I can’t help but notice that after the Remarker apologized, derogatory emails kept coming. What would Jesus do? All of us have said things we regret and make mistakes. We should all forgive others’ mistakes as well.

  • dawn journey

    Wow. For a writer, you know nothing of investigative journalism. Even your attempt at wordsmith influence is elementary. Get a day job.

  • dawn journey

    “Touch not mine anointed, and do him no harm.”

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