America is rooted in belief in God’s word

The recent letter to the editor “Our Founders Advocated a Natural Religion” by Borden Applegate missed one thing: proof. A letter extolling the opinions of the forefathers of this nation as devoid of religious mooring possesses no founding. Ignorance is promoted when one talks about history without reading the original documents. The Pilgrims suffered extensive religious persecution from state churches in Europe. America became the opportunity they longed for to worship God and raise their children as they saw fit.

In 1620, the Pilgrims established the Mayflower Compact, a precursor to the Declaration of Independence. Notice how many times references to God occur in this little document.

“In the name of God, Amen. We, whose names are underwritten, the loyal subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord King James, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, King, defender of the Faith, etc.

“Having undertaken, for the Glory of God, and advancements of the Christian faith and honor of our King and Country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the Northern parts of Virginia, do by these presents, solemnly and mutually, in the presence of God, and one another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil body politic; for our better ordering, and preservation and furtherance of the ends aforesaid; and by virtue hereof to enact, constitute, and frame, such just and equal laws, ordinances, acts, constitutions, and offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the colony; unto which we promise all due submission and obedience.”

Perhaps this was only the opinion of the Pilgrims. One might assume this until the words of these following leaders receive review:

Thomas Jefferson — “Political interest [can] never be separated in the long run from moral right. Can the liberties of a nation be sure when we remove their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people, that these liberties are a gift from God?”

Fisher Ames, author of the final wording for the First Amendment, wrote, “[Why] should not the Bible regain the place it once held as a school book? Its morals are pure, its examples captivating and noble. The reverence for the Sacred Book that is thus early impressed lasts long; and probably if not impressed in infancy, never takes firm hold of the mind.”

John Jay, original chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, “The Bible is the best of all books, for it is the word of God and teaches us the way to be happy in this world and in the next. Continue therefore to read it and to regulate your life by its precepts.”

James Wilson, signer of the Constitution, U.S. Supreme Court Justice, “Human law must rest its authority ultimately upon the authority of that law which is divine. … Far from being rivals or enemies, religion and law are twin sisters, friends, and mutual assistants. Indeed, these two sciences run into each other.” Patrick Henry — “It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religions, but on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. For this very reason peoples of other faiths have been afforded asylum, prosperity, and freedom of worship here.”

Concerning the Constitution, the founding fathers wrote:

John Adams — “Our constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

Patrick Henry — “The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government — lest it come to dominate our lives and interests.”

Benjamin Franklin — “The Constitution only gives people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself.”

Alexander Hamilton — “The Constitution ought to be the standard of construction for the laws, and that wherever there is an evident opposition, the laws ought to give place to the Constitution.”

Thomas Jefferson — “The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first.”

It might also be a surprise to many today that the founding fathers also had an opinion concerning the right to bear arms.

Thomas Jefferson — “No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.”

Patrick Henry — “Those that hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not.”

Patrick Henry — “The great object is that every man be armed.”

Alexander Hamilton — “The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed.”

Samuel Adams — “The Constitution shall never be construed to prevent the people of the United States from keeping their own arms.”

George Mason — “To disarm the people — that was the best and most effectual way to enslave them.”

George Washington — “Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people’s liberty teeth and keystone under independence … From the hour the pilgrims landed, to the present day, events, occurrences, and tendencies prove that to ensure peace, security, and happiness, the rifle and pistol are equally indispensable … The very atmosphere of firearms everywhere restrains evil interference — they deserve a place of honor with all that is good.”

The men and women who sacrificed so much on our behalf should receive the respect of reading their words. True freedom is only something God can give. May God bless America. No one else has the power to do so.

The Rev. Ernest Brodie Jr.
Senior Pastor
Robertsville Bible Church