"I have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream."
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

In his fight for racial equality in America, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. found an ally in America’s founding documents, and they became foundational to his cause. This is because America’s founding documents are colorblind. Neither the Declaration of Independence nor the U.S. Constitution make any reference to individuals on the basis of race, ethnicity, or skin color.
Instead of race classifications, the Constitution speaks of “citizens,” “persons,” and “other persons.” No mention is made of slaves or slavery. There is nothing in these documents to suggest that the freedoms they guarantee do not apply to every person. Yes, America’s founding principles are colorblind, even though her history has not been.
Dr. King Understood America’s Founding Documents.
Dr. King understood this, and in his stirring “I Have a Dream” speech, he challenged America, not to dispense with her founding documents, but to live up to them. Speaking with passion from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, he declared,
When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men, yes, black men as well as white men, would be guaranteed the "unalienable Rights" of "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."
Then quoting from the Declaration of Independence, he proclaimed,
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal” (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 158).
Showing that he understood these freedoms to have roots in the country’s Christian origins, Dr. King, who was a devout Christian, went on to say that he had a dream that one day all Americans—whether white or black—would be able to sing together the words of that Christian, patriotic hymn,
My country 'tis of Thee,
Sweet land of liberty, of Thee I sing.
Land where my fathers died,
Land of the Pilgrim's pride,
From every mountainside,
Let freedom ring!
Other Black Intellectuals Have Understood This
The famous abolitionist, Frederick Douglas, understood this and argued that the language of the founding documents must be understood as applying to everyone. “Anyone of these provisions in the hands of abolition statesmen, and backed by a right moral sentiment,” he declared, “would put an end to slavery in America” (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 159).
Walter Williams, the brilliant, black Professor of Economics at George Mason University, points out that slavery is not unique to the Western world but was practiced by Egyptians, Greeks, Babylonians, Assyrians, Armenians, Persians and many other ancient people. He notes that large numbers of Christians were enslaved during the Ottoman wars in Europe and that, “It was only after the year 1600 that Europeans joined with Arabs and Africans and started the Atlantic slave trade.” He then says,
While slavery constitutes one of the grossest encroachments of human liberty, it is by no means unique or restricted to the Western world or United States, as many liberal academics would have us believe. Much of their indoctrination of our young people, at all levels of education, paints our nation’s founders as racist adherents to slavery, but the story is not so simple.
Understanding the Three-Fifths Clause of the Constitution
One of the most misunderstood sections of the Constitution is the “three-fifths clause” in which only three-fifths of the slave population of southern states would be counted for representation. This had nothing to do with assigning value based on race. This was related to keeping the southern states from gaining too much power in the new Congress where the number of representatives from each state would be tied to the population of that state.
The southern states wanted to include their slave populations to gain more representatives and more power, even though slaves could not vote. The three-fifths compromise was a way of diminishing their influence in the new Congress in that it counted only three-fifths of the slave population for purposes of representation.
Even here, the Founders did not use the word "slaves" or slavery," but "other persons." Abraham Lincoln described this refusal of the Founders to acknowledge slavery in the Constitution as being like a man who hides an ugly, cancerous growth until the time comes that it can be eradicated from his body.
That the three-fifths clause had nothing to do with assigning value based on race is confirmed by the fact that, at the time of the Constitutional Convention, there were at least sixty-thousand free blacks in northern and southern states who counted the same as whites when it came to determining the number of representatives to Congress. Additionally, it is important to note that there were as many as ten states where blacks had full voting privileges.
At the Constitutional Convention, concessions were made toward the southern states because of concern that a union could not succeed if all Thirteen Colonies were not included. The Founders, however, were both careful and precise in the use of language. They referred to slaves as “persons” and never used the words “black” or “white,” “slave” or “slavery.” Though not banning slavery outright at the time, they purposely put in place the legal instrument and language that would eventually eradicate the institution of slavery.
The Biblical & Moral Outrage Against Slavery
Many, however, argued against such concessions and pushed for the immediate outlawing of slavery. One of these was George Mason of Virginia who warned of the judgment of God if slavery were allowed to continue. He declared,
Every master is born a petty tyrant. They bring the judgment of Heaven upon a country. As nations cannot be rewarded or punished in the next world, they must be in this. By an inevitable chain of causes and effects, Providence punishes national sins by national calamities (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 160).
Many see the Civil War, with the loss of 700,000 lives, as the judgment predicted by Mason. Thomas Jefferson shared Mason’s concern, for it was in the context of the continued existence of slavery that he wrote,
God who gave us life, gave us liberty. And can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are a gift from God? That they are not to be violated but with His wrath? Indeed, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just and that His justice cannot sleep forever (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 161).
With this sort of Biblical and moral opposition to slavery at the time of the nation’s founding, its days were obviously numbered. Williams says, in fact, that the most unique characteristic of slavery in America was the “moral outrage” against it, and this moral outrage was a product of the Great Awakening (1726-1770) that spiritually and morally transformed colonial America, as I have shown in my book, Pilgrims and Patriots.
Because of the Great Awakening, the consciences of many whites were awakened to the sin of slavery, slaves were humanized and spiritual and moral forces were unleased that would spell its doom. Historian, Benjamin Hart, says, “Among the most ardent opponents of slavery were ministers, particularly the Puritan and revivalist preachers” (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 97).
Franklin and Washington Deal with Slavery
America’s Founders in general found slavery to be abhorrent and would agree with John Adams, the nation’s second president, who wrote,
Every measure of prudence . . . ought to be assumed for the eventual total extirpation of slavery from the United States. I have throughout my whole life held the practice of slavery in abhorrence.
This abhorrence to slavery was put into action by many. Two years before the Constitutional Convention, Benjamin Franklin set his two slaves free and began to advocate for abolition.
George Washington’s situation was more complex, for he had inherited a large plantation with a number of slaves and to thrust them suddenly and unprepared out into the world would have been unwise, perhaps harmful to them. Washington, therefore, set in motion a compassionate program to disentangle Mt. Vernon completely from the institution of slavery.
Those slaves who wanted to leave were free to do so. Those who chose to remain were paid wages, and he began a program to educate and prepare the children of slaves for freedom. He declared,
I clearly foresee that nothing but the rooting out of slavery can perpetuate the existence of our union by consolidating it in a common bond of principle (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 161).
Dr. King Loved America
Secularists love to insist that America was founded on racist principles. They are wrong. David Azerrad was correct when he said, “The argument that the Constitution is racist suffers from one fatal flaw: the concept of race does not exist in the Constitution” (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 161-62). Dr. King obviously understood this.
America's Founders were flawed individuals, born into a world of sin where slavery was already in existence. Nonetheless, with God's help, they did a marvelous job of formulating documents that brought into existence a powerful and prosperous nation, as Abraham Lincoln said, "conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal."
No one was more aware of America's flaws and her strengths than Dr. King. Despite the flaws, he loved America, admired her founding documents and wanted her to succeed. He made this clear when, after being maligned, attacked and jailed, he stood on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and declared,  
“I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream."

This article was derived from Pilgrims and Patriots by Dr. Eddie Hyatt, a book that documents America’s overt Christian origins. Dr. Hyatt also conducts “America Reawakening” events in which he shows how America was birthed out of a Great Spiritual Awakening, and explains what must be done for another reawakening in the land. 



Was America founded on a covenant with God? There is no question that the earliest immigrants to America, especially in New England, built their communities on the belief that they, as a people, had a sacred covenant with God. They believed that if they kept their part of the covenant, they would be blessed; but if they broke the covenant they would not be blessed and probably suffer irreparable harm.
This was clearly expressed by John Winthrop who, in 1630, led a flotilla of eleven ships with 700 passengers to New England where they founded the city of Boston and the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Winthrop wrote,
We have entered into an explicit Covenant with God. We have drawn up indentures with the Almighty, wherefore if we succeed and do not let ourselves be diverted into making money, He will reward us. Whereas if we fail, if we fall to embrace this present world and prosecute our carnal intentions, the Lord will surely break out in wrath and make us know the price of the breach of such a Covenant.
The Truth About the Mayflower Compact
Ten years before Winthrop and his company arrived, the Pilgrims had landed at Cape Cod. Before disembarking, they drew up a written document patterned after the church covenants that were common among Separatist churches in England. Being part of a Separatist congregation, they were very aware of such documents, which knit the signees together in a solemn contractual agreement with God and one another.
In this situation, the Pilgrims realized they were more than a church for there were “strangers” on board the Mayflower who were not a part of their congregation, but had been recruited by the businessmen who funded the voyage. They, therefore, used the words “civil body politic” to describe this new community they were forming.
Each signee promised “solemnly and mutually in the presence of God” to “covenant together” for the better ordering and preservation of their community. This covenant also stated that their purpose in coming to the New World was to glorify God and advance the Christian faith. The late Harvard professor, Perry Miller, said, “The Separatists aboard the Mayflower found a covenant the obvious answer to the first problem of political organization.”
Some have called the Mayflower Compact America’s founding document. That is going too far, but there is no question that it set the stage for succeeding communities and colonies that would base their existence on written documents—covenants--that gave recognition to God and prioritized the Gospel of Jesus Christ as the reason for their existence. 
New England Covenants with God
As we have seen, this idea of a social covenant with God was expressed, not only by the Pilgrims, but also by John Winthrop in the founding of Boston and Massachusetts. It was also clearly expressed in the 1639 founding document of Connecticut, entitled “The Fundamental Orders of Connecticut,” which states,
We, the inhabitants and residents of Windsor, Hartford, and Wethersfield, knowing where a people are gathered together the word of God requires that to maintain the peace and union of such a people there ought to be an orderly and decent government established according to God . . . we do for ourselves and our successors enter into combination and confederation together, to maintain and preserve the liberty and purity of the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, which we now profess. (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 48-49).
With thousands of new immigrants arriving in New England and new towns springing up, there arose a felt need for some sort of centralized government to facilitate mutual defense and to arbitrate land disputes. The United Colonies of New England was, therefore, formed and a constitution patterned on the idea of covenant was formulated. Dated May 19, 1643, the opening statement of the constitution expressly states why they had all come to the New World. It reads,
Whereas we all came into these parts of America with one and the same end and aim, namely to advance the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ and enjoy the Liberties of the Gospel in purity and peace (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 52-53).
The constitution provided that each colony would choose two representatives who would form a council of eight. This council of eight was invested with power to arbitrate boundary disputes, coordinate mutual defense, and facilitate mutual advice and support. It was clearly stated that this council was also brought into existence for “preserving and propagating the truth and liberties of the Gospel (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 53).
There is no question that this constitutional system wherein each individual colony retained its autonomy, and the powers of government were limited by the constitution, was a forerunner of the federalist system that would be created at Philadelphia in 1776 and 1787. The United Colonies of New England clearly foreshadowed the United States of America in both its form of government and in its Christian character.
The Puritans clearly saw these written statements as covenants, not only between themselves, but also between their society and God. They believed that God dealt, not only with individuals, but also with social units, including families, churches and nations. According to Perry Miller, “The central conception in their thought is the elaborated doctrine of covenant.”
The Blessing & Responsibility of Covenant
The Puritans saw Israel in the OT as a pattern for their social covenant with God. Like Israel, they believed that if they, as a people, kept their part of the covenant, which was to walk uprightly and make His name known, they would be blessed. If, on the other hand, they lost their sense of purpose and began to live selfish and sinful lives, they would suffer God’s wrath because of their rejection of the covenant. During the voyage to New England, Winthrop warned,
Now if the Lord shall please to bear us, and bring us in peace to the place we desire, then hath He verified this Covenant and sealed our commission . . . but if we fail to perform the terms of the Covenant, we shall perish out the land we are crossing the sea to possess.
This sense of social responsibility to God is the reason the Puritans tended to hold one another accountable. They pointed out that since communities and nations cannot be rewarded in the next world, they must necessarily be rewarded in this one, according to their deeds. The sin of one or a few could, therefore, bring down God’s judgment on the entire community. This is also the reason that laws were passed outlawing adultery, fornication, profanity, drunkenness and Sabbath breaking.
Virginia Covenants with God
Although New England was where the writing of constitutions was profoundly developed, all the colonies were founded on similar social compacts with God. Take Virginia, for example. When the Jamestown settlers disembarked at Cape Henry, VA, their first act was to erect a seven-foot oak cross they had brought from England. They then gathered around the cross for a prayer service in which they dedicated the land of their new home to God. In his dedicatory prayer, their chaplain, Rev. Robert Hunt, declared, “From these very shores the Gospel shall go forth to not only this New World but to the entire world.”
This act was in line with the official Virginia Charter, which recognized “the Providence of Almighty God” and expressed the desire that the establishment of the colony would “tend to the glory of His Divine Majesty.” This document also expressly stated that the purpose of the colony was to propagate the “Christian religion to such people as yet live in darkness and miserable ignorance of the true knowledge and worship of God.”
There are amazing similarities between the Virginia Charter, the Mayflower Compact and other founding documents of New England. This led Perry Miller to suggest that Virginia and New England were not that different. He pointed out that both communities were children of the Reformation, “and what we consider distinctively Puritan was really the spirit of the times.” The same could be said of Rhode Island, Pennsylvania and other colonies that were founded on written documents that gave honor to God and expressed the reason for their existence.
These early immigrants were not perfect and they obviously made human mistakes. However, there is no question of the sincerity of their vision to establish a Christian society based on a covenant with God. And there is no question that their covenants were precursors to the founding documents of the United States of America. Gary Amos and Richard Gardiner are thus correct to say, “The early New England constitutions were covenants. These covenants clearly foreshadowed the United States Constitution.”
God and America’s Founding Documents
The Declaration of Independence begins with an acknowledgement that human rights come from God. Three names for God drawn directly from the Judeo-Christian tradition were used. They are "Creator," "Supreme Judge," and "Divine Providence." The Declaration ends with the signees expressing a reliance on "Divine Providence," a common expression of that era for the God of the Bible. It was commonly used by revivalist ministers, such as George Whitefield, in their sermons and writings.
Concerning the Constitution, it is obvious that the Founders saw the Constitution as a sacred document, and they treated it as a covenant. That is why George Washington took the oath of office with his hand on a Bible, and with his hand on the Bible, solemnly swore "to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, so help me God." It was also Washington who said, “It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible.”
Indeed, many of those who were part of the Constitutional Convention, saw the hand of God in the formulation of the Constitution. James Madison, the Constitution’s chief architect, declared, “It is impossible for the man of pious reflection not to perceive in it a finger of that Almighty hand which has been so frequently and signally extended to our relief in critical stages of the Revolution.”
Benjamin Rush, a signer of both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, was even more blunt, declaring that the Constitution was a work from heaven. A physician from Philadelphia, he asserted that he “as much believed the hand of God was employed in this work as that God had divided the Red Sea to give a passage to the children of Israel, or had fulminated the Ten Commandments from Mount Sinai.”
This sacred view of the Constitution was obviously inherited from those early Puritans who considered their covenants to be sacred oaths between their communities and God. This covenantal attitude became a part of the psyche of colonial America and was clearly present in the attitude of the Founders toward America’s founding documents. Historian, Benjamin Hart says,
The U.S. Constitution has worked because there has been a sacred aura surrounding the document; it has been something more than a legal contract; it was a covenant, an oath before God, very much related to the covenant the Pilgrims signed. Indeed, when the President takes his oath of office he places his hand on a Bible and swears before Almighty God to uphold the Constitution of the United States. He makes a sacred promise; and the same holds true for Supreme Court justices who take an oath to follow the letter of the written Constitution. The moment America’s leaders begin treating the Constitution as though it were a mere sheet of paper is the moment the American Republic—or American Covenant—ends.
Where We Stand Today
America’s covenant with the Almighty has been sustained by periodic spiritual awakenings that have swept across the land, renewing faith and virtue in her inhabitants. This is what the Founders had counted on, for they all agreed that only a vibrant Christian and virtuous people could sustain the Constitutional Republic they had formed. 
John Adams, America’s second president, made this clear in an address to the officers of the Massachusetts Militia in 1798. He said,
We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion . . .  Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious [Christian] people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 172-73).
America is at a critical juncture in her history. Powerful forces reject the notion of God having any role in the nation’s founding and they consider the Constitution to be a useless, outdated document—a mere sheet of paper, as Hart warned. Professor Steven Hayward also warned, “Is there any doubt that if liberals had their way, they would junk the U.S. Constitution and install one that enshrines liberal ideology?”
America is at a tipping point where the scales could be tipped in either direction. If the church continues to embrace a self-serving, comfortable Christianity, America will go down the path of so many once great nations of history. For make no mistake about it, it was not human pedigree, ingenuity or superiority that made America great; it was God’s blessing through the covenant our forefathers and foremothers made with Him.
The election of Donald Trump was an act of Divine Providence that opened a narrow window of opportunity for the church in America. Will we make the most of this opportunity and maximize this moment? Will we let go of our comfortable Christianity and become serious about being His covenant people?
The ball is in our court. The decision is ours. Will "we the people" renew the covenant in 2018? If we respond in sincere faith with corresponding acts, 2018 could be a very powerful year for the church in America.
This article was derived in part from Dr. Eddie Hyatt's book, Pilgrims and Patriots, with the subtitle, The Radical Christian Roots of American Democracy and Freedom. Dr. Hyatt has a vision for another Great Awakening in America. Check out his website at www.eddiehyatt.com and if you would like to schedule him to speak in your church or city, contact him at dreddiehyatt@gmail.com.



While conducting a Revive America event at Abounding Grace Church in Schenectady, NY, I heard the Holy Spirit instruct me to have the audience repeat after me the two reasons the Pilgrims gave for coming to the New World. I did so, and one could sense the life and energy of the Holy Spirit as we all repeated their own words for why they had come to America.
After the meeting, a young man came up to me very excited. He explained that he was attending the community college in that area and taking a course on American history. “Just this week,” he said, “The professor told us that the Pilgrims did not come here for religious reasons but for monetary reasons.” With his face glowing, he exclaimed, “But there it is in their own words.”
The Reasons They Came
The words we had repeated are part of the opening statement of the Mayflower Compact, which had been projected on the large screen. It reads, “Having undertaken for the glory of God and the advancement of the Christian faith . . . a voyage to plant the first colony in northern Virginia.” They came to America, they said, for two reasons: (1) for the glory of God and (2) for the advancement of the Christian faith.
William Bradford, who served as governor of Plymouth for over thirty years, stated this same vision in his memoirs written later in life. He shares this as part of his explanation as to why they decided to leave Holland and come to the New World.
First of all, he tells how they were not satisfied with their lot as foreigners and second-class citizens in Holland. They were also concerned that many of their children were being led astray by undesirable influences in the Dutch culture. He then said,
Lastly (and which was not least), a great hope and inward zeal they had of laying some good foundation, or at least to make some way thereunto, for the propagating and advancing of the gospel of the kingdom of Christ in those remote parts of the world; yea though they should be but even as stepping-stones unto others for the performing of so great a work.
Although we have often heard that the Pilgrims came to escape religious persecution in the Old World, that is only part of the story. The rest of the story is that they were drawn here by a proactive missionary vision to take the gospel where it had not been heard.
Others Came for the Same Reason
The thousands of Puritans that followed the Pilgrims to New England over the next twenty years came with a similar vision. This is obvious from the constitution of the United Colonies of New England formed in 1643 to arbitrate land disputes and provide a system of mutual defense for the many towns that were springing up. The opening statement of the constitution reads,
Whereas we all came into these parts of America with one and the same end and aim, namely to advance the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ and enjoy the Liberties of the Gospel in purity and peace.
These New England Puritans had a similar missionary vision as the Anglicans who first settled Virginia. On April 29, 1607, the Jamestown settlers disembarked at Cape Henry, near modern day Virginia Beach, and erected a seven-foot cross they had brought from England.
They then gathered around the cross for a prayer service in which they dedicated the land of their new home to God. In his dedicatory prayer, their chaplain, Rev. Robert Hunt, declared, “From these very shores the gospel shall go forth, not only to this New World, but to all the world.”
Original Vision in the Founding Fathers
It is clear that the earliest immigrants to America came with a vision for a land of liberty from which the gospel would be taken to the ends of the earth. That vision did not die but is clearly seen in statements by many of the Founding Fathers. Consider the following.
 “Might it not greatly facilitate the introduction of pure religion among the heathen, if we could, by such a colony, show them a better sample of Christians than they commonly see.”
Benjamin Franklin in a 1756 letter to George Whitefield, the most famous preacher of the Great Awakening, in which Franklin proposed that they partner together in founding a Christian colony on the Ohio frontier.
“Pray that the peaceful and glorious reign of our Divine Redeemer may be known throughout the whole family of mankind.”
Samuel Adams, Founding Father and Governor of Massachusetts. This call to prayer was part of a proclamation for a Day of Prayer that he issued as Governor of MA in 1795.
“Pray that all nations may bow to the scepter of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and that the whole earth may be filled with his glory.”
John Hancock, Founding Father, President of the Continental Congress and Governor of Massachusetts. This statement was part of a call for prayer he issued while Governor.
“The policy of the bill is adverse to the diffusion of the light of Christianity. The first wish of those who enjoy this precious gift ought to be that it may be imparted to the whole race of mankind.”
James Madison, chief architect of the Constitution and America’s fourth president, voicing his opposition in 1785 to a bill that he perceived would have the unintended consequence of hindering the spread of the Gospel.
“The philosophy of Jesus is the most sublime and benevolent code of morals ever offered man. A more beautiful or precious morsel of ethics I have never seen.”
Thomas Jefferson, Author of the Declaration of Independence and America’s third president, who took money from the federal treasury to send missionaries to an American Indian tribe and to build them a chapel in which to worship.
 “Bless, O Lord, the whole race of mankind, and let the world be filled with the knowledge of Thee and Thy Son, Jesus Christ.”
From a public prayer prayed by George Washington, America's first president.
May the Vision to be Restored
This Thanksgiving we can be thankful for the vision and sacrifice of those early pilgrims and patriots. We are enjoying liberties and blessings today because of their utter commitment to a Christian vision.
Yes, the original American vision was that it be a land of individual and religious liberty and a place where the gospel would have free course and would spread from here to the ends of the earth. This Thanksgiving let’s pray for that Original American Vision to be restored.

Dr. Eddie Hyatt conducts Revive America events throughout the nation in which he presents a PowerPoint presentation documenting how America was birthed out of a Great Spiritual Awakening and founded on Christian principles and values. He is also the author of numerous books on revival, including Pilgrims and Patriots from which this article was derived. Check out his website at www.eddiehyatt.com



I recently awakened with a distinct, internal conviction that God has given us a key to America’s future. As I thought on this, I instinctively knew that the key to America’s future is a recovery of America’s past, for as George Orwell said, “Whoever controls the past, controls the future.”
The anti-Christian forces in America have been very busy taking control of America’s past and purging everything Christian from her founding and history. School children and college students are now taught that those first immigrants to America came for adventure and gold and that her founders were a bunch of wealthy, Deistic slave owners who were seeking more power.
These historical revisionists have known exactly what they were doing, for as Alexander Solzhenitsyn said, “To destroy a people you must first sever their roots.”  
Robbed of its Christian heritage, America’s populace seems vulnerable, as never before, to being shaped into an amoral, secularist society. We have reached the place of which Karl Marx spoke, when he said, “People without a heritage are easily persuaded.”
If we are going to take control of America’s future, we must use the key and take control of her past. We must restore her true heritage as a nation birthed out of great, spiritual awakening.
I was drawn into this in 2010 at a time when I had given up hope of America ever seeing another national, spiritual awakening. I was surprised by the Holy Spirit that day and for several hours my heart and mind were flooded with thoughts of hope and faith that America "could" see another great, spiritual awakening that would stem the tide of secularism, immorality and false religion that is flooding our land.
The other thing with which the Holy Spirit surprised me that day was the understanding that there was a direct link between the First Great Awakening and the founding of America. I had researched and written about the Great Awakening, but for the first time I saw that it had a direct bearing on the founding of this nation.
I knew instinctively that I was to put in writing what I was seeing. So, after more research and writing, my book, Pilgrims and Patriots, came into existence. Pat Robertson read the manuscript and called it “a must read!”
I have since created a PowerPoint presentation from the book that I call “Revive America.” In it I show how America was birthed out of great spiritual awakening and I call those present to begin praying for another such Awakening to rock our land.
This is the key to America’s future. We must take control of our past if we are to have any hope of taking control of our future for the next generation.
I am ready to take this message across America. If you would like to discuss hosting a “Revive America” event in your church or city, send me an email at dreddiehyatt@gmail.com.

A recent "Revive America" Event at
 Christ for the Nations Institute in Dallas, Texas



NBC stalwart, Chuck Todd, recently went on a rant against the idea that our rights as American citizens come from God. He played a recording of Judge Roy Moore, the Republican nominee for senator from Alabama, in which Moore declared, “Our rights don’t come from government; they don’t come from the Bill of Rights; they come from Almighty God.”
Todd appeared flabbergasted at such an “ominous” idea and suggested that Judge Moore, “Doesn’t appear to believe in the Constitution as it’s written.” Todd obviously does not understand that the idea of God as the Source of our rights comes directly from the Declaration of Independence. But what is disconcerting is that he describes those who think this way as dangerous and almost un-American.
But if our rights do not come from God, from whence do they come? A king? A pope? The news media? Whoever happens to hold governmental power at a given time? Some might answer, "the democratic majority." History, however, has shown that without transcendent moral restraints the majority can become a mob that runs roughshod over the rights of those in the minority.
This is why the book, Pilgrims and Patriots, is so vital at this time in our nation’s history. It is why “Revive America” events are so important for they have the potential to unleash another Great Awakening that turns this nation back to God.
Here is a quote from page 130 of Pilgrims and Patriots concerning the Founders' view on this matter of the Source of our rights.
“Jefferson, Franklin and the other Founders saw human rights as having a transcendent source, that being, God Himself. They and their forebears had suffered the loss of their rights, and their being given or taken at the whim of a monarch, pope or bishop. In this new nation, they were determined to fix them in a place beyond human reach. Government, they insisted, did not exist to give or take away rights, but to protect those rights already given by God."
Eddie Hyatt



October 31, 2017 will mark the 500-year anniversary of Martin Luther nailing his 95 Theses to the Wittenberg church door and igniting the Protestant Reformation. Luther, a Catholic priest and University professor, was challenging his church’s practice of selling indulgences that offered forgiveness of sins and freedom from purgatory, all for a price.
From there, Luther went on to challenge papal authority and the sacramental system of the Catholic Church with his teachings on justification by faith, the priesthood of all believers and the ultimate authority of Scripture. Ordered by the Roman Church hierarchy to stop teaching these doctrines, Luther decided that he could not sacrifice truth for a superficial unity.
Luther’s Bold Stand for Freedom
He was, therefore, ordered to appear before a tribunal of cardinals, bishops and the Roman Emperor. Held in the city of Worms, it was known as the Diet of Worms. Standing alone before this imposing body of religious and civil authorities, Luther was ordered to recant his teachings or suffer excommunication, which could also mean death.
Luther told this court that he was willing to recant but only if he could be convinced by reason and the Scriptures that he was in error. The Roman hierarchy, however, was not in the habit of “reasoning” with those who challenged their authority, and they demanded that Luther admit his error there on the spot.
In his famous reply, which struck a blow for individual freedom and religious liberty, Luther refused to back down even though he knew his very life was at stake. He boldly concluded his defense of freedom with these words.
I consider myself convicted by the testimony of Holy Scripture, which is my basis. My conscience is captive to the Word of God. Thus I cannot and will not recant anything, because acting against one's conscience is neither safe nor sound. Here I stand! God help me! I can do no other! Amen!
The Radical Reformers
Luther, however, was a man of his times and in later life, physically ill and frustrated with the multitude of hindrances to the Reformation, he advocated the use of force in dealing with those he considered enemies of the Gospel, which included Catholics, Muslims, Jews and Anabaptists.
It was the more radical, pacifist groups of the Reformation—the Anabaptists, Separatist Puritans and Quakers--who took Luther’s early stance on freedom of conscience and religious liberty to its logical conclusion and applied it to all areas of life, even when it meant suffering and death.
Like the early Luther, these groups considered the ideal of individual freedom and religious liberty to be tied to their Christian faith. This is clearly borne out in the opening statement of the Constitution of “The New England Confederation,” formed in 1643, which reads,
Whereas we all came into these parts of America with one and the same end and aim, namely to advance the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ and enjoy the Liberties of the Gospel in purity and peace (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 52-53).
Yes, it was these so-called “radical” Reformation groups, the Separatist Puritans, the Baptists and the Quakers, that brought Luther’s original ideas of freedom of conscience and religious liberty to the New World and further developed them on American soil. This is what historian, Benjamin Hart, was referring to when he wrote,
It was Protestants of the most radical stripe, most zealous in their religious convictions (those whom the America Civil Liberties Union would like to see outlawed from the public discourse) who were in fact the greatest proponents of religious liberty as codified in America’s governing charter 200 years later (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 66-67).
These American Liberties are Under Attack
Today those radical ideas of individual freedom and religious liberty, on which our nation was founded, are under attack. Christian bakers, florists and other Christian artisans are being told they "must" provide their services to same-sex weddings, irrespective of the fact that it violates their conscience and sincerely held religious beliefs. This is un-American!
Christians are being told they have no right to make their views known in public. Senators Diane Feinstein and Bernie Sanders have recently challenged the fitness of judicial and cabinet nominees to serve because of their open Christian testimony. A recent “chilling study” revealed that a majority of college students believe it is OK to disrupt and shout down a [Christian] speaker with whom they disagree. This is un-American!
Yes, it is time for Christians in America to take a cue from Luther and once again make a stand for individual freedom of conscience and religious liberty. Like Luther we must be fully convinced by the word of God that ours is the true and righteous position. And then, we must not waver.
A Time for Truth and Boldness
“Remember George, this is no time to go wobbly,” Margaret Thatcher is reported to have said to George H.W. Bush as he mulled over what to do in response to Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait in August of 1990. This is an appropriate word for American Christians in 2017 when the ideals that made America and the Western World are under attack.
Yes, this is no time for Christians in America to go wobbly. We must, like Luther, take a stand for individual freedom and religious liberty. If we don’t take this stand, this unique liberty, that has been enjoyed by generations of Americans, will be lost to the next generation. It is that serious.
But if we take this stand in the spirit of Christ, we can count on the Holy Spirit to empower us afresh with another Great Awakening and these freedoms will be preserved for coming generations. Just look at how far-reaching was Luther’s uncompromising stand that day. It changed the Western World and provided an ideal for the founding of the United States of America.
This article was derived from Dr. Eddie Hyatt's book, Pilgrims and Patriots, available from Amazon and his website at www.eddiehyatt.com. Dr. Hyatt presents "Revive America" events in which he documents how America was birthed out of a Great Spiritual Awakening and shows why he believes another Great Awakening is immanent. He can be contacted at dreddiehyatt@gmail.com