By Rev. Zechariah Isaiah Newton, guest columnist

Since it was first written by the Reverend Francis Bellamy in 1892, the Pledge Of Allegiance has been a great way for good Americans to show their devotion to this blessed nation. He wrote it to commemorate the four hundredth anniversary of Columbus' discovery, which made our nation's founding possible. The Pledge has also been a highly effective tool for weeding out undesirables. The original wording was I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. This simple and clear loyalty oath was enough to weed out unrepentant confederates who would divide the country again, as they believed in a voluntary confederation of sovereign states that could secede if they so chose, not one nation, indivisible. At some point, "and the Republic" was revised to "and to the Republic" for clarity.

The Pledge was promoted by groups like The American Legion and the Daughters of the American Revolution until it became popular, but some saw that further change was needed. In 1923 at the National Flag Conference, it was pointed out again and again that immigrants could be pledging allegiance to the flags of their old country, not the Stars and Stripes, so the wording was changed from "My Flag" to "The Flag of the United States". That was sure to trip up any immigrants who weren't really loyal to this nation. A year later, the words "of America" were added for clarity.

On June 22 1942, Congress officially recognized the pledge of allegiance for the first time, with this wording: I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. Finally our country had its official loyalty oath.

During World War II, another change was required. We noticed that The Bellamy Salute, done when reciting the pledge, looked just like the one Nazis were doing in Germany, so we stopped doing it. Instead, just putting our right hand over our hearts became the rule. After the war, another change to the pledge became necessary.

Communism, specifically the godless Soviet Union's communism, became a problem after the war. The reds could be anywhere, and we had to weed them out. From hearings in Congress to barring the reds from Hollywood, to putting "In God We Trust" on our money, we did whatever we could. Again, the Pledge came into play as a way to weed out undesirables. On June 14, 1954 Congress added the words "Under God". Surely, a godless communist would balk at saying these words, and his refusal would out him as a Soviet sponsored subversive. This wording served us well until recently.

On September 11, 2001, it became clear who our new enemy was: The Muslim Arab terrorist. It is now time to revise the pledge again to deal with them. A Muslim terrorist can say "One Nation Under God" without batting an eye, because to him, God means Allah. We need to make it clear that all good Americans pray to Jesus. Here is the new wording we need as soon as possible:  I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under Christ, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

Surely, a Muslim terrorist hiding in our midst will balk when asked to pledge allegiance to "One Nation Under Christ." We will be able to confidently know who is a Muslim terrorist by this refusal, and can then deal with them appropriately.