Where did we go wrong? What has happened to the foundations of this nation? A little over a month ago we celebrated Independence Day – July 4th, in case you forgot. I was reading an article and doing a little research on the people who worked, sacrificed, and even died for the freedom we now have and throughout it all, there was one common thread – this nation was founded on Christian principles! But today, I would ask, where did they go? When did this decay from Christian principles and teaching begin? I think, from what I’ve learned, we can say it probably began in the early 1960’s. Most notable, was the loss of prayer in schools and later in sporting events, but perhaps less noted were the changes being made in textbooks. So let’s go back and look at some changes and at the same time look at some historical events that are no longer taught in schools. What I’m about to present to you, a part of this nation’s history, is worth remembering, because it is true. It’s familiar history to some of us, but most who graduated from school after the early 60’s were probably never taught this. And our liberal courts, the ACLU, and a small, but vocal minority have seen to that!
Did you know that 52 of the 55 signers of “The Declaration of Independence” were orthodox, deeply committed, Christians? The other three all believed in the Bible as the divine truth, the God of scripture, and His personal intervention.
It is the same Congress that formed the American Bible Society, immediately after creating the Declaration of Independence. The Continental Congress then voted to purchase and import 20,000 copies of Scripture for the people of this nation.
Patrick Henry, who is called the firebrand of the American Revolution, is still remembered for his words, “Give me liberty or give me death”; but in many current textbooks, the context of these words is omitted. Here is what he actually said:
“An appeal to arms and the God of hosts is all that is left us. But we shall not fight our battle alone. There is a just God that presides over the destinies of nations. The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone. Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God. I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death.” These sentences have been erased from our textbooks. When I was in school, we had to memorize his speech; it was a most important part of American history.
Was Patrick Henry a Christian? The following year, 1776, he wrote this: “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 that reason alone, people of other faiths have been afforded freedom of worship here.”
A recent survey showed that 86 percent of this nation had some belief in God and that the Ten Commandments should be displayed on government property. The remaining 14 percent is the very vocal minority. Another survey taken by the CBS network showed slightly different numbers – 83 percent and 17 percent, not a significant difference.
In 1782, the United States Congress voted this resolution: “The Congress of the United States recommends and approves the Holy Bible for use in all schools.”
William Holmes McGuffey is the author of the McGuffey Reader, which was used for over 100 years in our public schools with over 125 million copies sold until it was stopped in 1963. President Lincoln called him the Schoolmaster of the Nation.” Read carefully these words of Mr. McGuffey: “The Christian religion is the religion of our country. From it are derived our nation, on the character of God, on the great moral Governor of the universe. On its doctrines are founded the peculiarities of our free Institutions. From no source has the author drawn more conspicuously than from the sacred Scriptures. From all these extracts from the Bible, I make no apology.”
Of the first 108 universities founded in America, 106 were distinctly Christian, including the first, Harvard University, chartered in 1636. In the original Harvard Student Handbook, rule number 1 was that students seeking entrance must know Latin and Greek so that they could study the Scriptures: “Let every student be plainly instructed and earnestly pressed to consider well, the main end of his life and studies, is, to know God and Jesus Christ, which is eternal life, John 17:3; and therefore to lay Jesus Christ as the only foundation for our children to follow the moral principles of the Ten Commandments.”
James Madison, the primary author of the Constitution of the United States, said this: “We have staked the whole future of all our political constitutions upon the capacity of each of ourselves to govern ourselves according to the moral principles of the Ten Commandments.”
We all know of the issues over the display of the Ten Commandments and that it will be taken up by the Supreme Court in the near future, but should it have really been necessary? I don’t think so. We are allowing it to happen.
Today, we are asking God to bless America. But, how can He bless a Nation that is moving from Him? Prior to September 11, He was not welcome in America. Most of what you read in this column has been erased from our textbooks. Revisionists have rewritten history to remove the truth about our country’s Christian roots.
When are we, the 86 percent, going to tell the 14 percent to sit down and shut up!!