Many Americans do not seem to realize that the First Amendment does not include the phrase “Separation of Church and State.” It reads: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
The idea that Christianity cannot be promoted and preached in the public square is not a part of that great document. Yet, the left and some on the right contend that religion must be excluded from all public facilities. I argue that the Founders wanted to ensure that the Government would not establish a State Religion and favor it above any other belief or church. Many of the founders encouraged and actively engaged in preaching, teaching, and promoting the Bible in governmental functions and deliberations. I truly wish that Mr. Jefferson, Franklin, Rush, Paine, Washington, and others could speak to us in the flesh today and clear the air on that subject once and for all!
The first public school law was passed in 1642. In the past 350 years plus, a biblical world view was taught in public schools. Science, Law, History, Theology all conformed to God’s standard. In 1963 the beginning of the end for a moral America came when God was officially removed from the public schools. Would the founding fathers of America agree with this? Why don’t we go to the Bible and see what it has to say about governments and rulers?
Isaiah, Prophet of God, 700 B.C. “For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee (God) shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted.” Isaiah 60:12
Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, A.D. 57 “Let every soul be subject unto the higher power. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.” The epistle of Paul to the Romans.
David, King of Israel, 980 B.C. “The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God.” 2 Samuel 23:3
Documents like the Mayflower Compact included God and the Bible intricately in their construction. Christopher Columbus in 1492 continually referred to God in what he said and in the naming of places he discovered. William Bradford, a governor of the Plymouth colony said: “They (the Pilgrims) had a great hope and inward zeal of laying some good foundation or at least to make some way thereunto for the propagating and advancing of the gospel of the kingdom of Christ in those remote parts of the world, yea though they should be but even a stepping stone unto others for the performing of so great a work.” In his later years he wrote with “grief and sorrow” of the growing secularism and the loss of “constant faithfulness”.
Even more compelling is the author of the First Amendment, Fisher Aimes. He wrote an article called “School Books” in the Palladium magazine in January 1801, “We have trouble in the classrooms, we are putting in new textbooks. Nothing wrong with new books but we are spending more time on them than the Bible; it is drifting to the back of the classroom. We cannot tolerate this in American education. The Bible’s morals are pure; its examples are captivating and noble.”
The list goes on and on with their repeated desire to have God deeply involved in the lives of the people and the construction of the government. Our Founding Fathers and the Framers of the American Constitution believed that without God as the foundation our Republic was doomed to failure. How does that compare with today’s political climate?
We allowed politicians and activists to take God out of the public schools, ban Him from our public institutions and facilities, and making it known that His influence was not welcome in government deliberations. That has brought us to the brink of losing this country! Does that suggest that we made a big mistake and need to have God restored to every facet of our lives including government? I don’t think so, I know so!
Let me offer a few of the many declarations of some of the Founding Fathers and Early Statesmen regarding, Jesus, Christianity, and the Bible. The Founding Fathers clearly believed that the Bible, Religion, and God were of indispensable importance in governmental deliberations is clear from their writings.
Let’s consider some of their declarations:
Josiah Bartlett, Military Officer; Signer of the Declaration of Independence; Judge, Governor of New Hampshire. He called upon the people of New Hampshire to “confess” before God their aggravated transgressions and to implore His pardon and forgiveness through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ. He contended that the knowledge of the Gospel of Jesus Christ may be made known to all nations, pure and undefiled religion universally prevail, and the earth be filled with the glory of the Lord.
Gunning Bedford, Military Officer; Member of the Continental Congress; Signer of the Constitution; Federal Judge. He declared the need to recognize the Triune God – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost and that to God be ascribed all honor and dominion, forevermore – Amen.
Elias Boudinot. President of Congress; Signed the Peace Treaty to End the American Revolution; First Attorney Admitted to the U.S. Supreme Court; Framer of the Bill of Rights; Director of the U.S. Mint, pleaded: “Let us enter on this important business under the idea that we are Christians on whom the eyes of the world are now turned… [L]et us earnestly call and beseech Him, for Christ’s sake, to preside in our councils. . .. We can only depend on the all-powerful influence of the Spirit of God, Whose Divine aid and assistance it becomes us as a Christian people most devoutly to implore. Therefore, I move that some minister of the Gospel be requested to attend this Congress every morning . . . in order to open the meeting with prayer.”
In a letter to his daughter, he said, “You have been instructed from your childhood in the knowledge of your lost state by nature – the absolute necessity of a change of heart and an entire renovation of the soul to the image of Jesus Christ – of salvation through His meritorious righteousness only – and the indispensable necessity of personal holiness without which no man shall see the Lord.” [Hebrews 12:14]. He continued, “You are well acquainted that the most perfect and consummate doctrinal knowledge is of no avail without it operates on and sincerely affects the heart, changes the practice, and totally influences the will – and that without the almighty power of the Spirit of God enlightening your mind, subduing your will, and continually drawing you to Himself, you can do nothing.”
Still, further, he said, “And may the God of your parents (for many generations past) seal instruction to your soul and lead you to Himself through the blood of His too greatly despised Son, Who notwithstanding, is still reclaiming the world to God through that blood, not imputing to them their sins. To Him be glory forever!”
In concluding he said, “For nearly half a century have I anxiously and critically studied that invaluable treasure [the Bible]; and I still scarcely ever take it up that I do not find something new – that I do not receive some valuable addition to my stock of knowledge or perceive some instructive fact never observed before. In short, were you to ask me to recommend the most valuable book in the world, I should fix on the Bible as the most instructive both to the wise and ignorant. Were you to ask me for one affording the most rational and pleasing entertainment to the inquiring mind, I should repeat, it is the Bible; and should you renew the inquiry for the best philosophy or the most interesting history, I should still urge you to look into your Bible. I would make it, in short, the Alpha and Omega of knowledge.”
Jacob Broom. Legislator; Signer of the Constitution in a letter to his son, James, attending Princeton University said: “I flatter myself you will be what I wish, but don’t be so much flatterer as to relax of your application – don’t forget to be a Christian. I have said much to you on this head, and I hope an indelible impression is made.”
Charles Carroll. Signer of the Declaration of Independence; Selected as Delegate to the Constitutional Convention; Framer of the Bill of Rights; U.S. Senator “On the mercy of my Redeemer, I rely for salvation and on His merits, not on the works I have done in obedience to His precepts. Grateful to Almighty God for the blessings which, through Jesus Christ Our Lord, He had conferred on my beloved country in her emancipation and on myself in permitting me, under circumstances of mercy, to live to the age of 89 years, and to survive the fiftieth year of independence, adopted by Congress on the 4th of July 1776, which I originally subscribed on the 2d day of August of the same year and of which I am now the last surviving signer.
I, Charles Carroll. . .. Give and bequeath my soul to God who gave it, my body to the earth, hoping that through and by the merits, sufferings, and mediation of my only Savior and Jesus Christ, I may be admitted into the Kingdom prepared by God for those who love, fear and truly serve Him.”
The Congressional Declaration in 1854 declared, “The great, vital, and conservative element in our system is the belief of our people in the pure doctrines and the divine truths of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”
Congress, U. S. House Judiciary Committee, 1854 offered this statement, “Had the people, during the Revolution, had a suspicion of any attempt to war against Christianity, that Revolution would have been strangled in its cradle… In this age, there can be no substitute for Christianity… That was the religion of the founders of the republic and they expected it to remain the religion of their descendants.”
Therefore, it is beyond my comprehension and rational consideration to believe that the vast majority of our founders considered anything more powerful or germane to the development of the Constitution, Bill of Rights, and the core principles upon which this country was established and their vision for perpetuity.
We have lost sight of our original founding and the desire of those men and it may have cost us the Republic.
God bless you and God bless America!