Author Ava Pennington
Author Ava Pennington

As we prepare to celebrate Independence Day, the birthday of our nation, a familiar question begs our attention:

On what foundation did the founding fathers build when they formed the United States of America?

Fourth of July

Christians will say the United States was formed as a Christian nation. Others deny this assertion as fanciful. Who is right?

Before you answer that question, consider the following quotes culled from Wallbuilders.

John Adams 
(Signer of the Declaration of Independence, second president of the United States)

“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.”

John Quincy Adams
(Sixth president of the United States)

“In the chain of human events, the birthday of the nation is indissolubly linked with the birthday of the Savior. The Declaration of Independence laid the cornerstone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity.”

Samuel Adams
(Signer of the Declaration of Independence)

He called on the State of Massachusetts to pray that:

“The peaceful and glorious reign of our Divine Redeemer may be known and enjoyed throughout the whole family of mankind.”

“We may with one heart and voice humbly implore His gracious and free pardon through Jesus Christ, supplicating His Divine aid . . . [and] above all to cause the religion of Jesus Christ, in its true spirit, to spread far and wide till the whole earth shall be filled with His glory.”

Josiah Bartlett
(Signer of the Declaration of Independence, governor of New Hampshire)

He called on the people of New Hampshire:

“to confess before God their aggravated transgressions and to implore His pardon and forgiveness through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ . . . [t]hat the knowledge of the Gospel of Jesus Christ may be made known to all nations, pure and undefiled religion universally prevail, and the earth be fill with the glory of the Lord.15

Elias Boudinot
(President of Congress, framer of the Bill of Rights)

“Let us enter on this important business under the idea that we are Christians on whom the eyes of the world are now turned… [L]et us earnestly call and beseech Him, for Christ’s sake, to preside in our councils. . . . We can only depend on the all powerful influence of the Spirit of God, Whose Divine aid and assistance it becomes us as a Christian people most devoutly to implore. Therefore I move that some minister of the Gospel be requested to attend this Congress every morning . . . in order to open the meeting with prayer.”

Congress, 1854

“The great, vital, and conservative element in our system is the belief of our people in the pure doctrines and the divine truths of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”

Congress, U. S. House Judiciary Committee, 1854

“Had the people, during the Revolution, had a suspicion of any attempt to war against Christianity, that Revolution would have been strangled in its cradle… In this age, there can be no substitute for Christianity… That was the religion of the founders of the republic and they expected it to remain the religion of their descendants.”

John Dickinson
(Signer of the Constitution)

“[Governments] could not give the rights essential to happiness… We claim them from a higher source: from the King of kings, and Lord of all the earth.”

Based on the above quotes, what is your conclusion?

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  1. Ellen Frogner

    Yes, we are a Christian nation founded on Biblical principles. However we have strayed far. We have a God whose forgiveness and lovingkindness is infinite. I am always reminded of II Chronicles 7:14 “If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from Heaven and will forgive their sin and I will heal their land.”

    There were also two or more of the DOI that identify as Unitarian – which to me means God, but maybe whatever God you know…. seek your own spiritual path is what I recall. Not good with that. And Thomas Jefferson although Episcopalian also identified as a Deist – and there is a Jefferson Bible that is a cut and paste version of the parts he believed. Again, not okay with that.

    But I recommit to II Chron 7:14 and pray that our country will do that as a nation!

  2. VickiSibert

    We see and hear it commonly spoken GOD BLESS AMERICA
    God has always blest us mightily. It is most certainly the
    Time for us Americans to begin in earnest to bless God,
    As our forefathers did faithfully!

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