The next time someone tells you the Christian faith, this nation’s founding and its form of government had nothing to do with each other just tell him to take a trip to Washington D.C., and be prepared for a shock!
For instance, let’s start at the National Archives building. It’s the repository where any document considered to have some inherent national, historical or research value is preserved. Enter the building and right at your feet is a huge bronze medallion of the Ten Commandments engraved in the floor! Walk around and you’ll see all the great founding documents like the Declaration of Independence with its four references to God, and how man’s rights came directly from God. The original Constitution refers to biblical concepts like the sovereign authority of God, and the rule of law rather than authority of man. The Bill of Rights references the rights of citizens from government interference such as: freedom of religion, not freedom from religion, and private property rights. All of these important documents are sprinkled with Judeo-Christian references.
Visit the Washington Monument. After its completion in 1884, a Holy Bible, and copies of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence were placed inside the cornerstone. On the east side of the capstone, facing the rising sun are the Latin words Laus Deo meaning “Praise be to God” inscribed. Inside the monument is a plaque referencing God and a prayer to Him. As you proceed up into the structure on the twelfth landing is a prayer memorial from the city of Baltimore. On the twentieth is another offered by Chinese Christians. A presentation made by Sunday school children from New York and Philadelphia is on the twenty-fourth. Other inscriptions carved into the inside walls of the monument include “Holiness to the Lord”; “Search the Scriptures”; “The memory of the just is blessed”; “May Heaven to this union continue it beneficence”; “In God we trust”; and “Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old and he will not depart from it.” Yes, this is most definitely a secularist monument isn’t it?
Next, go to the Supreme Court building it’s got an engraving depicting Moses and the Ten Commandments high up in the ceiling inside the courtroom where the justices meet. Another tribute to Moses appears again on the side of the court building in the center of East Pediment at 2nd Street NE, and a relief of him on the southwest corner of the building on 1st Street NE, inside the upper Great Hall. The Court even to this day opens its sessions with the declaration “God save the United States and this honorable court.”
Oh, and by the way, in its only statement on the subject the Court, after a studious seven year investigation scouring every public and private document related to the matter, declared ours is indeed a Christian nation because it undeniably was founded upon Christian principles. Look up Holy Trinity Church vs. U.S. 143 U.S. 457, 2/29/1892. If you can’t visit a law library check it out here.
Visit the Library of Congress, and the White House. They’re full of statues, paintings, murals, etc., all referring to a Christian heritage. Then there are those tens of thousands of grave markers at the Arlington Nat’l Cemetery with all those crosses or Stars of David engraved on them. Or do your eyes just need checking?
In December you can see the White House Christmas tree and witness the prayer services and other religiously themed events they’ve been holding there since the American Civil War. Check out the fireplace mantel in the State Dining Room. On it you’ll see a prayer given by President John Adams in 1800, that President Franklin Roosevelt ordered to be engraved there. “I pray to heaven to bestow the best of blessings on this house and all that hereafter inhabit it. May none but the honest and wise men ever rule under this roof.”
Venture out to the National Mall, (you know taxpayer held real estate) where the National Christmas Tree, and trees from every state, and the National Hanukkah Menorah, are all lite up for the world to see too.
Let’s put the tour on pause and take a look at the American legal principles and laws that sprang from the Holy Bible:
|Sovereign authority of God, not sovereignty of the state, or sovereignty of man||Mayflower Compact, Declaration, Constitution, currency, oaths, mention of God in all 50 state constitutions, Pledge of Allegiance||Ex. 18:16, 20:3, Dt. 10:20, 2 Chron. 7:14, Ps. 83:18, 91:2, Isa. 9:6-7, Dan. 4:32, Jn. 19:11, Acts 5:29, Rom. 13:1, Col 1:15-20, 1 Tim. 6:15|
|Existence of objective moral values, Fixed standards, Absolute truth, Sanctity of life||Declaration (“unalienable” rights—life, etc., “self-evident” truths)||Ex. 20:1-17, Dt. 30:19, Ps. 119:142-152, Pr. 14:34, Isa. 5:20-21, Jn. 10:10, Rom. 2:15, Heb. 13:8|
|Rule of law rather than authority of man||Declaration, Constitution||Ex. 18:24-27, Dt. 17:20, Isa. 8:19-20, Mat. 5:17-18|
|All men are sinners||Constitutional checks and balances||Gen 8:21, Jer. 17:9, Mk. 7:20-23, Rom. 3:23, 1 Jn. 1:8|
|All men created equal||Declaration||Gen. 1:26, Acts 10:34, 17:26, Gal. 3:28, 1 Peter 2:17|
|Judicial, legislative, and executive branches||Constitution||Isa. 33:22 (See Madison)|
|Religious freedom||First Amendment||1 Timothy2:1-2|
|Church protected from state control (& taxation), but church to influence the state||First Amendment||Dt. 17:18-20, 1 Kgs. 3:28, Ezra 7:24, Neh. 8:2, 1 Sam. 7:15-10:27, 15:10-31, 2 Sam. 12:1-18, Mat. 14:3-4, Lk. 3:7-14, 11:52, Acts 4:26-29|
|Republican form of government and warnings against kings but in favor of Godly rulers||Constitution||Ex. 18:21, Dt. 1:13, Jud. 8:22-23, 1 Samuel 8, Pr. 11:14, 24:6|
|Importance of governing self and family as first level of governance||First, Second, Ninth, and Tenth Amendments||Mat. 18:15-18, Gal. 5:16-26, 1 Cor. 6:1-11, 1 Tim. 3:1-5, Tit. 2:1-8|
|Establish justice||Declaration||Ex. 23:1-9, Lev. 19:15, Dt. 1:17, 16:19-20, 24:17-19, 1 Sam. 8:3, 2 Sam. 8:15, 1 Kings 3:28, 10:9, Mic. 6:8, Rom. 13:4|
|Fair trial with witnesses||Sixth Amendment||Ex. 20:16, Dt. 19:15, Pr. 24:28, 25:18, Mat. 18:16|
|Private property rights||Fifth Amendment||Ex. 20:15-17|
|Biblical liberty, Free enterprise||Declaration||Lev. 25:10, Jn. 8:36, 2 Cor. 3:17, Gal. 5:1, James 1:25, 1 Peter 2:16|
|Creation not evolution||Declaration||Gen. 1:1|
|Biblical capitalism not Darwinian capitalism (service and fair play over strict survival of the fittest)||Anti-trust laws||Ex. 20:17, Mat. 20:26, 25:14-30, 2 Thes. 3:6-15, 1 Pet. 2:16|
|Importance of the traditional family||State sodomy laws, few reasons for divorce||Ex. 20:12-14, Mat. 19:1-12, Mk. 10:2-12, Rom. 1:18-2:16, 1 Cor. 7:1-40,|
|Religious education encouraged||Northwest Ordinance||Dt. 6:4-7, Pr. 22:6, Mat. 18:6, Eph. 6:4,|
|Servanthood not political power||Concept of public servant||Ex. 18:21, Rom. 13:4, Php. 2:7,|
|Sabbath day holy||“Blue laws”||Ex. 20:8|
|Restitution||Restitution laws||Lev. 6:1-5, Num. 5:5-7, Mat. 5:23-26|
I know that legal stuff can be pretty dry but I hope it makes a point. If someone wants to toss out the Christian influences on our government we would all have to say goodbye to some pretty important Constitutional legal protections. You see right up to the time of our nation’s founding there was no such thing as a secular nation. There were nations in those days that were based on one religion or another. Some on the Christian faith but none like ours- founded on the Calvinist Reformed Theology.
I could go on with more monuments, statues, paintings, murals, etc., that confirm The Founders and all of the citizenry (until lately) were aware of and thankful for the Biblical roots of the country. It didn’t make things perfect. There were disagreements and set backs and failures over issues like slavery and women’s rights but the Scripture references written in the nations birth documents eventually led to the changes in racial and gender rights.
For some God’s command that all races were created equal just wasn’t enough. It took a bloody civil war before the death of that satanic enterprise of slavery came about. Women’s full rights as citizens didn’t require armed conflict but it was a struggle to say the least. Just like slavery the tap root of change came from the example Christ gave when he walked the earth.
I’ll conclude now but if you have a mind to give yourself a personal assignment check out all 50 of the individual state constitutions. Every one of them has at least one reference to God, Christ, and or the Holy Bible in it! The same goes for the original charters of most every college and university in the nation!
Faithfacts.org, American legal principles and laws from the Holy Bible
Gingrich Newt, Rediscovering God in America, Reflections on the Role of Faith in our Nation’s History and Future, Thomas Nelson Publishers, ©2009.
Images courtesy of wikipedia.org