By Pastor Roger Anghis
July 25, 2010
Discovering America’s Christian Heritage
Faith of the Founders Pt1
Hosea 4:6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.
When looking at the document that declared our freedom and is the foundation for the government we have enjoyed for the last 234 years it can only be described as a miracle. Not a natural, as in man made, but a divine miracle. It is the most successful document in the recorded history of man. No other document has held a nation together like the Declaration of Independence has held the United States together. Looking at other nations constitutions we see that France, who had their revolution just ten years after the American Revolution and they are now on their 15th constitution; Brazil has had 7 constitutions since 1822; Poland has had 6 constitutions since 1921; Afghanistan has had 5 since 1923; Russia has had 4 since 1918. This is common throughout Africa, Europe and the rest of the world.
In 1831 Alexis De Tocqueville travelled throughout America and wrote about how our nation operates and commented that he could go nowhere where Christianity wasn’t in the forefront of the people’s actions, how they lived and governed. He also stated that he believed that Christianity was the reason that America was as prosperous as it was. This accolade was accepted in humility by America believing that if America was blessed, it was because of the hand of God. President John Adams issued a proclamation stating; “As the safety and prosperity of nations ultimately and essentially depend on the protection and blessing of Almighty God; and the national acknowledgment of this truth is not only an indispensible duty which the people owe to Him, but a duty whose natural influence is favorable to the promotion of morality and piety.”
This is an example of American exceptionalism. No other nation has lasted as long as we have on the same founding document. This exceptionalism in not a basis of pride but of humility. We have things in our Constitution that no other nation has in theirs. No other nation calls for inalienable rights. We have drawn a line between government and the people where areas of our life the government cannot touch such as life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. We have the consent of the governed. This was unheard of in their day. The ruler, king, whoever was in power, told the people what to do. In our form of government WE tell the government what to do. We have seen a movement away from that concept in the last 50-75 years where the government feels it has the right to tell the people what to do and we, the church, must act to reverse that. Our separation of branches of government was unheard of in the days of our Founding Fathers. The judiciary and the legislative arms of government were under the control of a king. We separated them and put all of them under the control of the people. We have elections at the local, state, and federal levels. Never before in history had that concept been tried. No king would allow that type of governance.