I recently came across an article on the Americans United for Separation of Church and State’s website, https://www.au.org/resources/publications/is-america-a-christian-nation. Its article starts off, “Is the United States a “Christian nation”? Some Americans think so. Religious Right activists and right-wing television preachers often claim that the United States was founded to be a Christian nation. Even some politicians agree. If the people who make this assertion are merely saying that most Americans are Christians, they might have a point. But those who argue that America is a Christian nation usually mean something more, insisting that the country should be officially Christian. The very character of our country is at stake in the outcome of this debate.” I look around the nation today at the chaos in the streets charged by groups of individuals espousing everything and anything but Christian tenets or philosophy, and with the decline of Christianity and the growth of the so-called religiously unaffiliated, and the virtual absence of Christian symbolism or expression from the public square I can see how this question may be legitimate and worth asking. And deserves answering. So here ya go.
Historian, author, and political activist, David Barton has some of the most defined research on American history and our Christian foundings. He fervently believes, as I do, that though the nation’s Founders never sought to codify, or put into law, that the nation is officially a Christian nation, those who established and created this great nation and every thread that was woven into and through it was certainly Christian. In his book America’s Godly Heritage, he points out that the Continental Congress had 15 prayer proclamations, days of prayer and fasting, and days of Thanksgiving. To me, that certainly gives the presumption that they were followers of Christianity. Founding Father John Adams even said, “The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were …the general principles of Christianity.” If you were to look at and examine the United States Constitution and the Declaration of Independence you would know that Biblical influence is undeniable. According to Mr. Barton in his book, he states in the book called The Origins of American Constitutionalism by Donald S. Lutz, the most cited sources in the Constitution came from the Bible. Thirty-four percent of the quotes came from the Bible. Let’s start with the Ten Amendments; the framework for having 3 Branches of government can be found in Isaiah 33:22; Separation of Powers can be found in Jeremiah 17:9: and the foundation of tax-exempt churches in Ezra 7:24, just to name a few.
It was clearly understood by the majority of early Americans that this nation was guided by what George Washington referred to as “Devine Providence”. But, there have been challenges by those who sought to cut the cord between our nation and the Bible. In 1892 the Supreme Court case Holy Trinity Church v. the United States it ruled unanimously, “But, beyond all these matters, no purpose of action against religion can be imputed to any legislation, state or national, because this is a religious people…This is historically true. From the discovery of this continent to the present hour, there is a single voice making this affirmation.” The Congress answered the question in 1854, after deliberating over it over a year, it said, “Had the people [the Founding Fathers], during the Revolution, had a suspicion of any attempt to war against Christianity, that Revolution would have been strangled in its cradle. At the time of the adoption of the Constitution and the amendments, the universal sentiment was that Christianity should be encouraged, but not any one [denomination]…. In this age, there is no substitute for Christianity…. That was the religion of the founders of the republic, and they expected it to remain the religion of their descendents.” It was not until 1945 that the notion that the Founders intended that there be a separation of church and state was taken seriously due to a liberal activist Supreme Court ruling that totally ignored all of the previous decades of Supreme Court rulings and decided to pull its ruling from between its legs. And that action was by way of a grossly exaggerated misinterpretation of a private letter that Thomas Jefferson in 1802 wrote to the Danbury Baptist Association of Connecticut in which he wrote, “No man ought to suffer in Name, person or effects on account of his religious Opinions—That the legitimate Power of civil Government extends no further than to punish the man who works ill to his neighbour… Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should “make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.” He was referring to the federal government intervening in an individual’s religious matters within the several states, creating a theocracy. There could not be anything further from any of the minds of the Founders after seeing how destructive that form of government was in Europe. But this is what the Progressive Left has used to bludgeon Americans to surrender Christian religious ground until the point that those of us of the Christian belief barely have room to turn around.
The Fathers were Christian fervently. Early laws of the nation emphasized religion, morality, and knowledge. America’s first public schools were from the churches [remember the T.V series Little House on The Prairie], with the first school book being Biblically based, the New England Primer. The first universities Yale, Harvard, and Princeton all were established by missionaries. As early as 1647 The Old Deluder Satan Act was passed as the nation’s first public education law intended to keep Americans learned in the Scriptures. If you were to visit the Library of Congress you would see that every column is embossed with a Biblical Scripture. In fact, is nearly impossible to avoid a building or monument built by the Founders or for them, particularly in the District of Columbia, or anything written by the Founders that does not express Biblical teachings or grounding. It has been as recent as 1971 that Dallas Public Schools had Bible Studies as a graduation credit. Biblical grounding of the nation and its people was of paramount importance to the individuals that established this great nation. Benjamin Rush said, “Contemplating merely the political institutions of the United States, I lament that we waste so much time and money in punishing crimes and take so little pains to prevent them. We profess to be republicans, and yet we neglect the only means of establishing and perpetuating our republican forms of government; that is, the universal education of our youth in the principles of Christianity by means of the Bible; for this divine book, above all others, favors that equality among mankind, that respect for just laws, and all those sober and frugal virtues which constitute the soul of republicanism… By removing the Bible from schools we would be wasting so much time and money in punishing criminals and so little pains to prevent crime. Take the Bible out of our schools and there would be an explosion in crime.” Daniel Webster said, “The moral principles and precepts contained in the Scripture ought to form the basis of all our civil constitutions and laws. All the miseries and evil men suffer from vice, crime, ambition, injustice, oppression, slavery, and war, proceed from their despising or neglecting the precepts contained in the Bible.” John Jay said, “Almost all nations have peace or war at the will and pleasure of rulers whom they do not elect, and who are not always wise or virtuous. Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty as well as the privilege and interest of our Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers. It is to be regretted, but so I believe the fact to be, that except the Bible there is not a true history in the world.” And George Washington said of the Bible’s connection to the nation’s prosperity, “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible.”
The mere fact that we are even having this question or misconstrued belief can be brought up today and that so many laws have been enacted in support of and based on a notion that our nation was not intended to be Christian-based for the very sake of our national prosperity and that is so detached from historical fact is evidence of the success of the enemies of this nation have had in depriving us of the knowledge and history of our nation. Too many of us do not know our history. So we are truly like a leaf so detached that we do not know that we come from a tree. All that one has to do is take a glancing look at the chaos and destruction that is occurring in our streets and the cratering moral and academic levels in our society you will quickly see that it is not the good side that is winning. We are a Christian nation. It is what birth us, gave us life, and fed us. Officially, Christianity is still the dominate religion, by far. For the sake of our nation’s posterity, we have to reclaim our rightful heritage and reverence for our nation’s magnificent past and act accordingly.