Red, white, and blue are the ONLY colors I’m flying in any flag to represent the United States of America. Our nation’s title has become quite the oxymoron in these recent days of manipulated divisions and contrived crisis. Helter-skelter headlines have eroded hard won foundations by the first “greatest generation” of American Christian men and women in the 18th century. Their blood, sacrifices, and precious legacies has been dissed and distorted in contemporary classrooms and media. Where are the likes of such leaders in classically trained minds who can critically think and reason from the firm foundation of historical and moral absolutes, rather than the shifting sands of relativism and the arbitrary deceptions of human feelings?
Noah Webster spent twenty years meticulously researching every word defined in his 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language, the foundation for the first American textbooks used to educate American citizens. He defined terms the way our Founding Father’s generation understood them to be defined. The way they used such terms in conversation and written documents. Noah Webster was part of that generation of classically trained thinkers and educators. Do not be deceived–not one of them would condone much of what is currently passing for new laws of the land. Their words leave behind a different story than what is being conveniently rewritten of late.
Education is useless without the Bible.
Patriot Samuel Adams, most notable to this present generation for the beer that’s named after him, echoes Webster with a more wordy dissertation:
“Let divines and philosophers, statesmen and patriots unite their endeavors to renovate the age by impressing the minds of men with the importance of educating their little boys and girls in inculcating in the minds of youth the fear and love of the Diety and universal philanthropy . . . and in subordination to these great principles, the love of their country, of instructing them in the art of self-government of societies, great or small. In short, of leading them in the study and practice of the exalted virtues of the Christian system.”
For my part, as a lover of history, I never tire of reading the primary source historical record of our nation. There are so many amazing documented words left to posterity for us to KNOW the minds and purposes of our Founding Fathers. It always amazes me to see how contemporary spin doctors want to twist their words to match the prevailing departure from moral absolutes and solid rock reasoning. In doing so, they negate, if not erase, the predominant place that Christian precepts, character, and biblical morality have played in the formation of our American government and society.
“The highest, the transcendent glory of the American Revolution was this – it connected, in one indissoluble bond, the principle of civil government with the precepts of Christianity.”John Adams, Letters
The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights, were written in keeping with a decidedly Christian worldview. This does not impede upon the idea of separation of church and state. The term “religion” was often used interchangeably with the term “Christian” at the time, in conversation and personal writings. Saying that government will “not make any laws respecting the establishment of a religion” or give preference to, initially revolved around the idea of diverse denominations having the freedom to worship as they choose. Something forbidden to the English Christians under the monarchy. That is why so much of the Christian faith is etched in stone on our national monuments and in the documented historical record of our government and leadership. Understood and practiced correctly, Christianity was key to the establishment of true liberty sought by our Founders–an authoritative standard for law and liberty in a new country.
Flawed men as they were, and prone to error, the Founders knew from history that the heart of man is not to be fully trusted. Hence the three divisions of power drafted in government–a wise choice in light of the lessons of history and past civilizations. They professed a deep dependence upon God, and held a core belief that He would ultimately guide and direct this nation, via faith and biblical principles, so long as we remained humble in our acknowledgement of His Lordship in all our ways.
Sadly proven by our own history, when we blow it, God lets us eat the consequences of poor national choices.
So, once again on this 4th of July weekend, here is my annual re-posting of a piece I compiled a couple of years ago. I only scratch the surface of words from of a plethora of primary source material on the topic. May we remember our Lord, apart from Whom our nation would not exist, and mark this 4th of July weekend as John Adams hoped we would:
“It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.”John Adams
Sharing American Foundations for the 4th of July this week with:
Tell His Story with Jennifer Dukes Lee
Lyli at Thought Provoking Thursdays at 3D Lessons 4Life
Fellowship Fridays at Christian Mommy Blogger
Beverly’s Pink Saturday at How Sweet the Sound
Charlotte at Spiritual Sundays