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Freedom Forum #14 (distributed on the internet as one of a series by Andre Weisbrod)
(Author's Note: Joe Amy forwarded the following. I am sure that these quotes may upset some, especially those who believe religion has no place in government. But at least we should get our history correctly recorded and disseminated. I have taken time to read many of Patrick Henry's and others' speeches in context. Context is something I rarely received in my schooling. And my children received even less. As we become more and more secular, the more our histories become selectively edited to agree with the anti-church sentiment. We may disagree with our founders and their successors, but we should not misrepresent them. This is true of their strengths and their weaknesses. The facts include that most were very Christian. The facts also include that some owned slaves. Neither should be glossed over or emphasized simply to make political and ideological points. At the heart of this country was a Bible that was real to its leaders. It is hard to imagine them having a problem with the Ten Commandments located on public property. Those of you who know me know that I can be among the Christian churches' harshest critics. Terrible things have been said and done in the name of God or Christ in this country and others. Religious fanaticism is dangerous in most of its forms, whether it is here or Ireland or the Middle East. Indeed, many of this country's founders had experienced religious persecution first-hand. But they did not see this as an excuse to do away with religion. Simply they wanted the practice of religion to be free and unhindered. They didn't want to keep religion out of government. They wanted to keep any one religion from taking over. That's a big difference from complete separation of church and state. It is so simple that we miss it.)
~~~ What Our Forefathers Believed ~~~
(Since removing the Ten commandments from the Alabama courthouse, we thought it appropriate to publish this now. This is rather lengthy, but think it is worth reading or even saving to your hard drive.)
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 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 current textbooks the context of these words is deleted. 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. 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."
Consider these words that Thomas Jefferson wrote on the front of his well-worn Bible: "I am a real Christian, that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus. I have little doubt that our whole country will soon be rallied to the unity of our Creator. " He was also the chairman of the American Bible Society, which he considered his highest and most important role.
On July 4, 1821, President Adams said, "The highest glory of the American Revolution was this: it connected in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity."
Calvin Coolidge, our 30th President of the United States reaffirmed this truth when he wrote, "The foundations of our society and our government rest so much on the teachings of the Bible that it would be difficult to support them if faith in these teachings would cease to be practically universal in our country."
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."
Listen to these words of Mr. McGuffey: "The Christian religion is the religion of our country. From it are derived our notions 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 our new nation not upon the power of government; far from it. We have staked the 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."
Today, we are asking God to bless America. But, how can He bless a Nation that has departed so far from Him? Prior to September 11, He was not welcome in America. Most of what you read in this article has been erased from our textbooks. Revisionists have rewritten history to remove the truth about our country's Christian roots.
You are encouraged to share with others, so that the truth of our nation's history will be told.
(Author not identified)