The unique thing about America is that it was founded on the principle of honest men of high character being placed in office.  Comments from the Founders have made it quite clear that our rights come from God and the people that we put into places of authority must adhere to the precepts of the Bible or we will not maintain the freedoms that were established under our Constitution.  I could give more examples but the evidence is clear as to the major influence the

Pastors had on the type of governments that were established in the Colonies.  This is a comment that Founding Father Noah Webster stated concerning the pastor’s great influence:

The learned clergy . . . had great influence in founding the first genuine republican governments ever formed and which, with all the faults and defects of the men and their laws, were the best republican governments on earth. At this moment, the people of this country are indebted chiefly to their institutions for the rights and privileges which are enjoyed.29

Daniel Webster, the great Defender of the Constitution, reiterated this belief of the role that the pastors played in developing the representative type of government that has made America the greatest nation on earth:

[T]o the free and universal reading of the Bible in that time men were much indebted for right views of civil liberty.

The Christian ministers of the late 1600’s and early 1700’s were not the weak preachers that we see today.  They stood their ground under all conditions unrelenting in their fight for justice and resisting encroachments on the civil and religious liberties that they had helped secure.[1]

It was the intent of the Framers to have men in places of authority that operated in the authority of God’s Word.  They believed that our rights came from God and that those in authority, politicians as we know them today, were to ensure that those rights were enforced:  Romans 13:3  For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: (4)  For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.[2]

John Adams was a man that lived according to his beliefs. He believed that it was the Christian beliefs and principles which led to and achieved America’s independence: The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity. I will avow that I then believed, and now believe, that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God.[3]  Most of the Founders believed in the practice of their Christian faith in all areas of life, personal, business and public because it would assist in making America a strong and prosperous nation.  Patrick Henry stated: Righteousness alone can exalt America as a nation. Whoever thou art, remember this; and in thy sphere practice virtue thyself, and encourage it in others.[4] He got this principle from Proverbs 14:34  Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people.  Henry also commented: The great pillars of all government and of social life [are] virtue, morality, and religion. This is the armor, my friend, and this alone, that renders us invincible.[5]  To say that America was not founded as a Christian nation is ignorance at its best.  One cannot read the writings of the Founders and declare that Christianity had little to no effect on how they established our nation, government and laws.  John Jay even confirms that the Founders believed the command of Exodus 18:21-22 – Moreover thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them, to be rulers of thousands, and rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens: (22)  And let them judge the people at all seasons: and it shall be, that every great matter they shall bring unto thee, but every small matter they shall judge: so shall it be easier for thyself, and they shall bear the burden with thee.[6],  stating: Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty as well as the privilege and interest of our Christian nation, to select and prefer Christians for their rulers.[7]

Even our laws are based in scripture.  The man who developed our legal training, James Wilson, an original Justice on the United States Supreme Court, believed that man’s laws must correspond with God’s laws: Our Founders incorporated Christian principles into our laws and our Constitution.  James Wilson, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and a signer of the Constitution (there were only 6 who signed both), was the second most active member at the Constitutional Convention speaking 168 times.  After the signing of the Constitution, President Washington placed him as an original justice of the Supreme Court.  This was a wise decision to have someone that helped draft the Constitution be a member of the Court that interprets the Constitution’s intent.  He was the first one that came up with the idea of formal legal training in America.  Up to this time you simply worked with an attorney as an apprentice and after a few years, you took the bar exam. Justice Wilson wrote the first legal texts that were used in the first legal schools in America.  In his writings he taught that you not only had to understand civil law, you had to understand the basis of civil law.  He states that civil law must rest on that law which is divine.  Wilson concluded that:  “All [laws], however, may be arranged in two different classes. 1) Divine. 2) Human. . . But it should always be remembered that this law, natural or revealed, made for men or for nations, flows from the same Divine source: it is the law of God. . . Human law must rest its authority ultimately upon the authority of the law that which is Divine.” [8]

The fact that our political system, from start to finish, has a biblical foundation that cannot be denied.

© 2017 Roger Anghis – All Rights Reserved

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  1. Roger Anghis, Defining America’s Exceptionalism, pp. 159-160, (Westbow Press, 2012)
  2. KJV
  3. Thomas Jefferson, The Writings of Thomas Jefferson (Washington D. C.: The Thomas Jefferson Memorial Association, 1904), Vol. XIII, p. 292-294. In a letter from John Adams to Thomas Jefferson on June 28, 1813.
  4. Patrick Henry, Patrick Henry: Life, Correspondence and Speeches, William Wirt Henry, editor (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1891), Vol. II, p. 592, to Archibald Blair on January 8, 1799.
  5. Patrick Henry, Patrick Henry: Life, Correspondence and Speeches, William Wirt Henry, editor (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1891), Vol. II, p. 592, to Archibald Blair on January 8, 1799.
  6. KJV
  7. William Jay, The Life of John Jay (New York: J. & J. Harper, 1833), Vol. II, p. 376, to John Murray Jr. on October 12, 1816
  8. Roger Anghis, Defining America’s Exceptionalism, p. 12, (Westbow Press, 2012)
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