No! Judge Tammy Kemp did not violate the First Amendment by hugging Amber Guyger and giving her a Bible.
In case you have not heard the story; in a Dallas courtroom, Amber Guyger had just been found guilty of murder and given a ten-year sentence. The brother of the dead man asked to speak to Guyger, a former policewoman. He proceeded to speak forgiveness to her and encouraged her to receive Christ.
He then asked permission to hug Guyger and Judge Kemp gave the OK. The two came together in a very emotional embrace and sobs could be heard throughout the courtroom. Judge Kemp then came down from her seat and gave Guyger a Bible, hugged her, told her to read John 3:16, and prayed with her.
The Freedom from Religion Foundation did not like Judge Kemp’s actions, claiming it violated the separation of church and state. They, however, have chosen to be ignorant of the fact that the phrase “separation of church and state” does not exist in the U.S. Constitution. They are also willingly ignorant about the following facts concerning the Bible and America’s history.
Facts About the Bible and America’s History
1.     The First Continental Congress opened on September 5, 1774 with an extended time of Bible reading and prayer. Bible reading and prayer continued to be an important part of their proceedings.
2.      George Washington, America’s 1st president, said, “It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible.” He set in motion a tradition by insisting on taking the presidential oath of office with his hand on a Bible (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 137).
3.     The first English Bible printed in America in 1782 included a recommendation from Congress, saying “we recommend this edition of the Bible to the inhabitants of the United States and hereby authorize him [the publisher] to publish this recommendation in the manner he shall think proper.”
4.       In 1787 Benjamin Franklin called the Constitutional Convention to prayer and quoted from the Gospels and then the Psalms, saying, “We have been assured, sir, in the sacred writings, that except the Lord build the house they labor in vain that build it (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 144).
5.       A ten-year study to discover where America’s founders got their ideas for the nation's founding documents, found that by far the single most cited authority in their writings was the Bible (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 163).
6.       Andrew Jackson, America’s 7th president, said of the Bible, “That book, sir, is the rock on which our Republic rests.”
7.       Abraham Lincoln, America’s 16th president, said, “I believe the Bible is the best gift God has ever given to man. All the good from the Savior of the world is communicated to us through this Book.
8.       Theodore Roosevelt, America’s 26th president, said of the Bible, “No other book of any kind ever written in English has ever so affected the whole life of a people.”
No Basis for Their Criticism
The claim by the FFRF that Judge Kemp violated the First Amendment is based on a shallow and biased interpretation. The First Amendment was put in place to ban Congress from ever creating an official, state church as had been the case in Europe since the time of Constantine. Nothing more! This was made clear, when the day after ratifying the First Amendment, those same founders proclaimed a national Day of Prayer and Thanksgiving.
Joseph Story, the highly acclaimed Supreme Court justice who served for 34 years from 1811-1845, said of the First Amendment, “We are not to attribute this prohibition to an indifference in religion, and especially to Christianity, which none could hold in more reverence than the framers of the Constitution” (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 153).
The First Amendment gurantees freedom of religion, not freedom from religion, What Judge Kemp did was both godly and American. We should be applauding her and holding her up as an example for other public officials. 

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 is passionate about recovering America's true Christian heritage in spiritual awakening and seeing another natiional, spiriutal awakening in this generation. Inquires for speaking engagements can be sent to dreddiehyatt@gmail.com.



And seek the peace of the city where I have caused you to be carried away captive and pray to the LORD for it; for in its peace you will have peace (Jeremiah 29:7).
The above words to the captive Jews in Babylon must have been a hard pill to swallow. God instructs them to pray for the peace of the city that is home to the people who have slaughtered their fellow Israelites, burned their city, and carried them away captive. The Hebrew word for “peace” in this passage is shalom and it carried meanings of peace, prosperity, and general well-being.
God, however, makes it clear, that in giving this command, He is concerned for their own well-being. They will do themselves a favor by praying for the shalom of Babylon; for if there is peace in Babylon, they will share in that peace. If, however, there is war, bloodshed, and famine, they will also share in the suffering.
In a similar way, we will do ourselves and our families a favor when we pray for President Trump and for the shalom of America. If he is successful in his goal to “make America great again,” every American will benefit. If, however, the nation is plunged into a recession and societal chaos—or even a civil war—we will all suffer. 
Paul made a similar appeal to Timothy who was in the pagan city of Ephesus at the time of writing. He wrote,
Therefore I exhort first of all that prayers, supplications, and giving of thanks be made for all people, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence, for this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth (I Timothy 2:1-4).
The Greek word for king, basileus, was used for the emperor in Rome as well as for lesser rulers. When Paul wrote this letter to Timothy in the pagan, idolatrous city of Ephesus, the wicked Nero was ruling in Rome.
Paul says that the goal of such prayer for governement leaders is that we might lead a “quiet and peaceable” life. The phrase "quiet and peaceable" is translated from the Greek words heremon and hesuchion. In his Word Studies in the New Testament, Marvin Vincent says that heremon “denotes quiet arising from the absence of outward disturbance” and that hesuchion is “tranquility arising from within.” Together, they express the same idea as the Old Testament shalom.
Timothy and the believers in Ephesus are to pray for kings and all that are in authority for the same reason the captive Jews were to pray for the city of Babylon. They will be doing themselves a favor. If there is peace and prosperity in Ephesus and the Empire, Timothy and the believers in Ephesus will share in that peace and prosperity.
The same is true in America today, and would be true even if Hillary Clinton were president. Such prayer transcends politics. Prayer is a powerful force and we, as Christians, have a responsibility to pray for presidents, prime ministers, and governement officials of any and every political persuasion. 

Paul then delineates another great benefit as a result of praying for civil leaders, and it has to do with the freedom to spread the good news of Jesus. This is expressed in the phrase, For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
When a society is at peace and experiencing the shalom of heaven, roads and communication systems are maintained. Hostility toward Christians tend to subside because of God's favor, and this opens the way for the free flow of the Gospel to all the world. This is good and acceptable in God’s sight, says Paul, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth (I Timothy 2:3-4).

These passages clearly show that we are to pray for civil leaders even if we vehemently disagree with them and their policies. Those who hate President Trump and are bent on bringing him down are in violation of a clear Biblical principle. If they succeed, they will hurt themselves and do irreparable damage to the nation. So, do yourself, your family, and the nation a favor: Pray for President Trump and for God's shalom across America.

Dr. Eddie Hyatt is the founder of "America's Reawakening" and has written extensively on America's spiritual birth out of the Great Awakening. Dr. Pat Roberson calls his book, Pilgrims and Patriots, "a must read!" His books are available from Amazon and his website at www.eddiehyatt.com. To schedule a speaking engagement, send an email to dreddiehyatt@gmail.com.



If America’s founders were involved in the current gun debate, they most likely would insist on a moral test for gun owners. John Adams, founding father and the country’s second president, declared, “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other” (Hyatt, Pilgrims andPatriots, 173).
According to Adams, the Second Amendment was not made for the sick, the secularist, the amoral, and the agnostic. It was, as Adams declared, given for a moral and religious [Christian] people. It was made for people with a transcendent moral compass by which they order their lives.
America’s Founders Would Insist on a Moral Test
America’s founders, without exception, believed that Christian teachings provided a moral restraint on evil and was necessary for a stable and prosperous society. George Washington made this clear in his Farewell Address after serving two terms as the nation’s first president. He said, “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports” (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 169).

When the founders use the word “religion” they are referring to Christianity. Note that Washington did not refer to religion and morality as something optional for the new nation. The word he used was “indispensable.” He believed that only Christianity provided the moral restraints and underpinnings for a peaceful and stable society.
The writings of the Founders are filled with such exhortations about the necessity of faith and morality for a stable society. James Madison, the chief architect of the Constitution, wrote,
The belief in a God All Powerful wise and good, is so essential to the moral order of the world and to the happiness of man, that arguments which enforce it cannot be drawn from too many sources nor adapted with too much solicitude to the different characters and capacities impressed with it (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 131).
Thomas Jefferson also believed that Christian teachings were necessary to provide a moral restraint on evil passions. Having read the Koran and the literature of ancient Greece, Rome, and the Enlightenment, he stated, “Of all the systems of morality that have come under my observations, none appear to me so pure as that of Jesus.”
Jefferson’s commitment to Christian values is why he closed all presidential documents with the appellation, “In the year of our Lord Christ.” It is also why he took money from the federal treasury to pay for a missionary to work among the Kaskasia Indian tribe and to build them a building in which to worship. He did this because he believed Christian principles necessary for a stable and happy people.
A Moral Test for Gun Ownership
A moral test for gun ownership would be constitutional and the founders would certainly be on board. Here are some suggested non-sectarian moral questions that could be asked on an application for a gun purchase.
1.       Do you believe in a Supreme Being to whom you are accountable for your words and deeds?
2.       Apart from self-defense, do you believe it is wrong to do bodily or mental harm to another person?
3.       Do you accept the moral teachings of Jesus, such as, “Love your neighbor as yourself” and “Do unto others as you would have them to unto you?”
4.       Do you seek to live a life of integrity, never violating your conscience or internal sense of right and wrong?
The Political Left Opposes Such a Test
Admittedly, in and of itself, such a moral test would have little impact on gun violence in America. What we must have is a general Awakening of Christian morality that touches all segments of American society.

Left-wing politicians, of course, reject any public display of Christian morality. They falsely claim that the First Amendment secularized America and banned public displays of Christian faith. If that is the case, then Washington, Adams, Jefferson, and Franklin did not get the memo. 

In addition to the founders many calls for Christian morality, the day after ratifying the First Amendment, that reads, “Congress shall make no law concerning the establishment of religion or hindering the free exercise thereof,” those same founders proclaimed a national day of Prayer and Thanksgiving. 

Sadly, modern secularist politicians are doing the very things Washington and the founders warned against. They have implemented secularist policies that have left a spiritual and moral void in American society. 

They have pushed for the removal of crosses and displays of the Ten Commandments in all public places. They deny children the right to pray and read their Bibles in their public schools. Heaven forbid that children would be exposed to such moral truths as “Thou shalt not kill” or “Do unto others as you would have them do to you.”
In place of the transcendent morality on which this nation was founded, these politicians insist on an atheistic worldview that logically leads to the conclusion that all truth is relative and “I” can make up my own moral system.
It is this modern, amoral worldview that is opening the way for mass shootings and other atrocities. None other than Benjamin Franklin warned about the social consequences of rejecting Christian morality.
Franklin’s Warning is Being Realized in Modern America
Thomas Paine sent Franklin a manuscript copy of his book, The Age of Reason, in which he attacked orthodox Christianity. Franklin was not pleased. Not only did he refuse to print the book, he suggested to Paine that he burn it so that no one else would ever see it.
Franklin then asked a rhetorical question that is stunningly relative to the present gun debate and America’s moral dilemma. He asked, ”If men are so wicked with religion [Christianity], what would they be if without it” (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 142)?
After sixty years of a war by the left to remove everything Christian from the public life of America, we are beginning to see the answer to Franklin’s question.
This article was derived from the book by Dr. Eddie Hyatt entitled, Pilgrims and Patriots, with the subtitle, The Radical Christian Roots of American Democracy and Freedom. This book and others are available from Amazon and Dr. Hyatt's website @ www.eddiehyatt.com.



The Democrat National Committee unanimously passed a resolution affirming atheists and the non-religious and insisting that neither Christianity nor any religion is necessary for morality and patriotism. In a swipe at evangelical Christians, they condemned those who are, in their words, “loudly claiming that morals, values and patriotism must be defined by their particular religious views.”
Obviously rejecting the First Amendment guarantee of religious liberty, the DNC also accuses Christians of using “misplaced claims of ‘religious liberty’ – to justify public policy that has threatened the civil rights and liberties of many Americans, including but not limited to the LGBT community, women and ethnic and religious/nonreligious minorities.”
With this resolution, the DNC rejected the Christian vision of Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Adams and the entire founding generation.
George Washington Saw the World Very Differently
Enter George Washington and America’s Founders who, without exception, believed that only Christianity provided the moral values that would lead to a stable, free and prosperous nation. Washington made this clear in Farewell Address after serving two terms as America’s first president. He said,
Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion [Christianity]. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 169-70).
Washington clearly contradicts the DNC on three points.
1)  He says that religion and morality are indispensable supports for political prosperity.
2)  He says that anyone who subverts these “great pillars of human happiness” cannot claim the tribute of patriotism.
3)  He says that national morality will never prevail apart from religious principle.
In the same address, Washington again warned the nation to not neglect its duty toward God, saying, “The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the external rules of order and right, which Heaven itself has ordained” (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 174).
Thomas Jefferson Agreed with Washington
Thomas Jefferson was in complete agreement with Washington and he made his Farewell Address required reading at the University of Virginia, which he had founded. Notice that Washington did not call religion optional. The word he used was “indispensable” and Jefferson obviously agreed. It should be remembered that when the Founders used the word “religion” they were referring to Christianity.
Jefferson may have had questions at times about certain aspects of Christian doctrine, but there is no question that he saw Christianity as providing the moral and intellectual system necessary for a stable society. Having read the Koran and the literature of ancient Greece, Rome, and the Enlightenment, he stated, “Of all the systems of morality that have come under my observations, none appear to me so pure as that of Jesus.”
Jefferson’s commitment to Christian values is why he closed all presidential documents with the appellation, “In the year of our Lord Christ.” It is also why he took money from the federal treasury to pay for missionaries to work among the Kaskasia Indian tribe and to build them a building in which to worship.
John Adams Agreed
John Adams, America’s second president, was also convinced that only Christian morality would enable the American Republic to survive. Two weeks before he signed the Declaration of Independence, Adams wrote to his cousin, Zabdiel, a minister of the Gospel and exhorted him about his vital role in the success of the nation, saying,
Statesmen, my dear sir, may plan and speculate for Liberty, but it is Religion and Morality alone, which can establish the Principles, upon which Freedom can securely stand (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 173).
In a 1798 address to the officers of the Massachusetts Militia, Adams again made clear his belief in a national, Christian morality as the only hope for the survival of the American Republic. He declared,
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, 173).
The Catholic scholar, William Novak, commented on why Adams believed Christianity necessary for the survival of a free society. He writes,
Without the existence of an all-knowing Governor of the universe, the Divine Judge and Arbiter, Adams argued, there can be no right or wrong, only subjective opinion, whim, and desire. Turning from God is a recipe for moral chaos which no appeal to reason is efficacious, a world in which brute power decides right and wrong.
James Madison Agreed
The Founders unanimously believed that unless America’s citizens would have a moral sense of obligation to their Creator, they would tend to live self-centered lives, harmful to society. This is why James Madison, the chief architect of the Constitution, wrote,
The belief in a God All Powerful wise and good, is so essential to the moral order of the world and to the happiness of man, that arguments which enforce it cannot be drawn from too many sources nor adapted with too much solicitude to the different characters and capacities impressed with it (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 131).

Good Government and Religion Go Hand in Hand
The same Founders who gave us the U.S. Constitution and the First Amendment, also passed the Northwest Ordinance establishing the Northwest Territory--at the same Constitutional Convention in 1787. Not only did they ban slavery in the territory, they also set aside federal lands and funds for the building of schools in order to promote “religion, morality and knowledge.”
They did this because, in their own words, the promotion of religion and morality are “necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind.” Further demonstrating that the First Amendment had nothing to do with putting restrictions on religious expression, the Founders also proclaimed a day of “Prayer and Thanksgiving” the day after ratifying the First Amendment.
Novak is thus correct in saying, “The founders did not think that the constitutional government they were erecting could survive without Hebrew-Christian faith.” He also says,
Far from having a hostility toward religion, the founders counted on religion [Christianity] for the underlying philosophy of the republic, its supporting ethic, and its reliable source of rejuvenation (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 174).
It’s Time for Another Spiritual Awakening
The DNC has rejected, not only the vision of the Founders, but the Declaration of Independence itself and its insistence that our rights and liberties come from God. For the DNC, God seems to be an unnecessary inconvenience. A comment from Jefferson is stunningly applicable in this regard. 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, 160-61).
We too should tremble at the open rejection of God and His moral laws. American liberty has survived because of periodic, national spiritual awakenings that have renewed the faith of American citizens and strengthened their moral resolve. These include the Second Great Awakening (1800-1840), the Great Prayer Awakening of 1857-58, and other regional and national awakenings.
We must pray for another such awakening that will transform the churches of America and stem the tide of secularism and immorality that is flooding the land. Such an awakening is not a luxury but a necessity if the America of Washington, Jefferson and Madison is to survive. Such an awakening will come, not by instituting a new religious order or program, but by following those same instructions God gave Israel for a national healing.
If My people who are called by name, will humble themselves and pray,
And seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, And I will forgive their sin and heal their land (II Chronicles 7:14).
This article is derived from Dr. Eddie Hyatt’s book, Pilgrims and Patriots, and his soon to be published book, 1726, with the subtitle, The Spiritual Awakening that Defined America. His books are available from Amazon and his website at www.eddiehyatt.com.



“What has happened to the Christians in America?”
That was the response of the mayor of a prominent north Texas city after I handed him a copy of my book, Pilgrims and Patriots, and explained that it documents the role of faith and prayer in the founding of America.
I was momentarily stunned by his question and before I could respond he asked another question, “Do you think the Christians will rise up again?” I replied, “Yes, they are coming out of the closet.” With intensity in his voice, he replied, “I sure hope so.”
In reflecting on the words of this mayor, I realized that he constantly hears the loud demands and protests of liberals, socialists, LGBT activists, and all those who want to destroy the America of our parents and grandparents. In contrast, the voices of Christians seem silent, and he would like to know, “What has happened to the Christians in America?”
I am here reminded of the words of Thomas Jefferson, “All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.” If the America of Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln is to survive, we can no longer remain silent.
We are called to “salt” and “light” in our culture, and this involves letting our voice be heard on our jobs, in public education, and in all public sectors. We can no longer afford to hide in our religious enclaves. For salt to fulfill its purpose it must be shaken out of the saltshaker. 

Nazi Germany came into existence because too many Christians were silent. One German Christian, with great remorse, told how the church he attended was situated next to a railroad over which many Jews were carried to the concentration camps. When a train passed during their church service and they heard screams and cries,  "We sang louder," he said.
There is much hostility toward Bible-believing Christians in contemporary America. People, like Aaron and Melissa Klein of Portland, Oregon, have lost their jobs and their businesses for standing for truth. Nonetheless, we must not be intimidated. This is no time for silence. 
We should follow the example of the early church and pray for boldness. When the religious/political leaders in Jerusalem sought to intimidate those early Christians by threatening them and ordering them not to speak in the name of Jesus, they went to God in prayer.
They did not ask for deliverance from their persecutors, but for boldness to speak God's word. God was obviously pleased with their prayer, for Luke says,
And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and they spoke the word of God with boldness (Acts 4:31).
In its infancy, America was culturally transformed through prayer and the bold witness of God's people. Benjamin Franklin described the transformation that came over his hometown of Philadelphia, saying,
It was wonderful to see the change soon made in the manners of our inhabitants. From being thoughtless or indifferent about religion, it seemed as if all the world were growing religious so that one could not walk through the town in an evening with hearing psalms sung in different families of every street (Hyatt, The Faith and Vision of Benjamin Franklin, 33).

Such cultural transformation also occurred in the Second Great Awakening and the Great Prayer Awakening of 1857-58. It can happen again as God's people make a fresh commitment to be His witnesses and begin praying for a new pentecostal outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the churches of America. (Acts 2:1-4). This is no time for silence!

Dr. Eddie L Hyatt is an author, revivalist and Bible teacher. He is the founder of "America's Reawakening" whose purpose is to call America back to her founding principles of faith and freedom and to pray for another Great Awakening across the land. He has written several books on revival and spiritual awakening available from Amazon and his website at www.eddiehyatt.com.



Modern Socialist Democrats love to claim that America was founded on racism and white supremacy. The problem with their argument is that the concept of race is nowhere to be found in America's founding documents. The Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution are racially inclusive documents.

If a foreign visitor had read the Constitution at the time of its enactment, they would not have known that slavery existed in America. There is no mention of slaves or slavery. There is no reference to individuals on the basis of race, ethnicity, or skin color. Instead of using race classifications, the Constitution speak of “citizens,” “persons,” and “other persons.”
Dr. King and Frederick Douglas Understood This
There is nothing in the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution to indicate that the freedoms guaranteed therein do not apply to every individual. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. understood this, and in his stirring “I Have a Dream” speech, he challenged America, not to dispense with its founding documents, but instead, to live up to them. Speaking from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, he declared his hope,
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."
Showing that he understood these guaranteed freedoms to be rooted 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—regardless of their skin color—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!
Yes, America’s founding principles are colorblind, even if her history has not been. 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).
Understanding the Three-Fifths Clause
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.
The “Moral Outrage” Against Slavery
By the time of the Constitutional Convention of 1787 virtually all the Founders agreed with John Adams who said, “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.”  
The brilliant historian, Dr. Thomas Sowell, who happens to be black, has confirmed this, saying, “Among those who turned against slavery in the eighteenth century were George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry and other American leaders.” 
Nonetheless, at the Constitutional Convention, concessions were made toward the southern states out of concern that a union could not succeed if all Thirteen Colonies were not included. Sowell has said,
But don’t pretend that it was an easy answer—or that those who grappled with the dilemma in the eighteenth century were some special villains when most leaders and most people around the world saw nothing wrong with slavery.
In formulating the Constitution, the Founders were both careful and precise in the use of language. Unlike modern progressive socialists who see everything through the prism of race, they purposely avoided classifications based on race and skin color. Though not banning slavery in the South at the time, they put in place the legal mines that would eventually blow it up.
The Constitution is a Racially Inclusive Document
Yes, modern Socialist Democrats 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).
The Founders did not invent slavery. They were born into a world where slavery already existed. They were not perfect, and it can be argued that they conceded too much at the time. Nonetheless, they did an admirable job of formulating founding documents that would eventually eradicate that horrendous institution and make America "the land of the free and home of the brave," with people of every race and ethnicity wanting to live here.
This article was derived from the book, Pilgrims and Patriots, by Dr. Eddie L. Hyatt. Dr. Hyatt has a passion to see America return to her founding principles of faith and freedom. He has written extensively on America's Christian founding and has created a PowerPoint presentation entitled "America's Reawakening" that he presents throughout the nation. His website is www.eddiehyatt.com.



In his address to the nation after the horrible massacres in El Paso and Dayton, President Trump called for a cultural change in America. For him and many others, those horrific crimes were the most recent reminders that something is disturbingly amiss with our culture.
Who Will Bring Cultural Change?
This then leads to the pressing question, “Who will bring the needed cultural change? Will it come from the stars and starlets in Hollywood? What about the mainstream media or the educational system? Maybe from politicians? Perhaps from the music industry? 
The answer is “none of the above.” All these have miserably failed in this regard and have all contributed to what is wrong in the culture. No, the only hope for positive cultural change lies with the church—the followers of Jesus Christ—whom He called the light of the world and the salt of the earth (Matthew 5:13-14)).
How Will it Occur?
For this to occur, however, the church must recover the Message that was entrusted to her by the Lord. The Message is the key. It was the Gospel Message, in fact, preached without compromise, that gave birth of the United States of America. 
This was confirmed by the late Harvard professor, Perry Miller, who said, “The Declaration of Independence of 1776 was a direct result of the preaching of the evangelists of the Great Awakening.” This was not a reference to the “style” of preaching, for there were varied styles, but to the Message itself that was preached.
Since George Whitefield was the most noted preacher of the Awakening, I will here seek to delineate the Message he preached. There is no question that Whitefield’s preaching brought cultural change to colonial America. Concerning his visit to Philadelphia in 1739, Benjamin Franklin wrote,
It was wonderful to see the change soon made in the manners of our inhabitants. From being thoughtless or indifferent about religion, it seemed as if all the world were growing religious so that one could not walk through the town in an evening with hearing psalms sung in different families of every street (Hyatt, The Faith and Vision of Benjamin Franklin, 32-33).
The Power of the Message Itself
While many in the church are looking for a bigger and better program or a more appealing style, the answer for cultural change lies in the Message itself. This understanding is critical, for in Romans 1:16, Paul speaks of the inherent power of the Gospel Message, saying, For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes . . ..
Paul makes clear that the Gospel is not a conduit or channel for God’s saving power. The power is in the Message itself. Then, in I Corinthians 1:17, he warns that if we go too far in attempting to make the Message “cool, hip and acceptable” to contemporary culture, we run the risk of preaching a message that has been emptied of its power (NIV).
Whitefield’s Message
Whitefield was absorbed with the Message. He lived and breathed God’s Word. Concerning the early days of His ministry after graduating from Oxford, he wrote,
"My mind now being more open and enlarged, I began to read the Holy Scriptures on my knees, laying aside all other books, and praying over, if possible, every line and every word" (Hyatt, George Whitefield, 12).
For his sermons, he did not rely on testimonies or feel-good anecdotal stories. His preaching was Biblical and Christ-centered. He would take a passage of Scripture, such as the healing of blind Bartimaeus, the faith of Abraham in offering up Isaac, or the parable of the ten virgins, and expound on it.
No matter which passage he used, he always made application to mankind’s lost condition and Jesus Christ as the only remedy for sin and the only way to be reconciled to God.
Recognizing the risk of oversimplifying the matter, Whitefield’s message can, I believe, be divided into three distinct categories.
1.       The dire condition of fallen, sinful humanity, separated from God and deserving of eternal damnation.
2.       The wondrous mercy and grace of God shown toward sinful humanity in the person and work of Jesus Christ.
3.     The necessity of a new birth, and the inadequacy of baptism, church membership, and all religious externals in which people have placed their hope.
Humanity’s Fallen Condition
Whitefield emphasized the truth of humanity’s sinfulness and lostness outside of Christ. Benjamin Franklin mentioned this in his Autobiography, telling how he was surprised that the people so admired and respected Whitefield despite the fact that “he commonly abused them, assuring them they were no more than half-devils and half-beasts” (Hyatt, George Whitefield, 51).
When this author first read this statement of Franklin, I assumed he was using hyperbole in speaking of Whitefield’s preaching on the sinful condition of fallen humanity. However, in a later reading of Whitefield’s sermons, I discovered that Franklin was accurately describing Whitefield’s message.
Preaching from the steps of the Philadelphia courthouse to a massive crowd that included Franklin and the leading citizens of that city. Whitfield did not hold back, but in stark terms, and a bit of hyperbole, painted a very unflattering picture of the fallen state of humanity. As the huge crowd stood and listened in rapt silence, Whitefield’s passionate and melodious voice pierced the atmosphere.
But let these modern, polite gentlemen, and my letter-learned brethren, paint man [humanity] in as lovely colors as they please; I will not do it; I dare not make him less than the word of God does. If I was to paint man in his proper colors, I must go to the kingdom of hell for a copy; for man is by nature full of pride, subtlety, malice, envy, revenge and all un-charitableness; and what are these but the temper of the devil? And lust, sensuality, pleasure, these are the tempers of the beast. Thus, my brethren, man is half a beast and half a devil (Hyatt, George Whitefield, 51-52).
Modern ears, use to being tickled with "feel-good" anecdotal soundbites, will react to such preaching, Nonetheless, in light of the cultural corruption we are seeing all around, mankind's fallen state is a Biblical truth that must be reconsidered.

Whitefield understood that humanity had been created a noble creature in the image and likeness of God. He also understood that the image had been marred by the fall and sin as described in Genesis 3. He is here describing, with some hyperbole, the awful condition of mankind in his fallen state, separated from God.

It has been said that the gospel is not really “good news” until we hear and understand the “bad news.” Whitefield was a master at painting the bad news for his audiences, but he was just as adept at presenting the good news of God’s love and grace for humanity. The contrast had a powerful effect on his audiences.
God’s Wondrous Love Revealed in Jesus Christ
After showing their lost, natural state, Whitefield always proceeded to point his audience to Jesus Christ alone as God’s answer for mankind’s dilemma. He made much of the wonderous grace and mercy shown to mankind through Jesus Christ. The contrast with mankind’s rebellious and sinful state provided a stunning comparison, and Whitefield often wept as he talked of the stupendous love and grace of God in coming to this world in the person of Jesus Christ.
In preaching to one large outdoor audience on Abraham’s offering up of Isaac, Whitefield had the crowd in tears as he described the love of Abraham for his son, and the emotions he must have experienced in binding his son and laying him on the altar. He then exhorted,
I see your hearts affected; I see your eyes weep. But behold I show you a mystery, hid under the sacrifice of Abraham’s only son, which, unless your hearts are hardened, must cause you to weep tears of love. How much more ought you to extol, magnify, and adore the love of God, who so loved the world, as to give His only begotten Son, Christ Jesus our Lord. May we not well cry out, “Now know we, O Lord, that you have loved us, since you have not withheld your Son, your only Son from us.
Oh, stupendous love! While we were His enemies, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law, that He might become a curse for us. Oh, the freeness, as well as the infinity, of the love of God our Father! It is unsearchable: I am lost in contemplating it; it is past finding out! (Hyatt, George Whitefield, 53)
The Necessity of a New Birth
Whitefield emphasized that many professing Christians had built their faith on faulty foundations, such as church membership, good deeds, family pedigree, social status, and cultural refinement. He emphasized that these old foundations must be overturned and faith in Jesus Christ alone must be laid as the only foundation for acceptance with God.
He brought this vividly to the minds of a large audience as he preached on the parable of the ten virgins from Matthew 25:1-13. He pointed out that all ten were virgins, and all had lamps, which he said symbolized their outward profession. Only the five wise virgins, however, had oil in their lamps, which Whitfield said symbolized a new heart brought about by a living faith in Christ alone. He told of the five foolish virgins knocking at the door of the wedding but being turned away by the Lord.
“Lord, Lord,” say they, as though they were intimately acquainted with the holy Jesus. Like numbers among us who, because they go to church, repeat their creeds, and receive the blessed sacrament, think they have a right to call Jesus their Savior and dare call God their Father, when they put up the Lord’s Prayer. But Jesus is not your Savior. The devil, not God, is your father, unless your hearts are purified by faith and you are born again from above. It is not merely being baptized with water, but being born again of the Holy Ghost that must qualify you for salvation; and it will do you no service at that great day, to say unto Christ, “Lord, my name is in the register of such and such parish.” I am persuaded the foolish virgins could say this and more (Hyatt, George Whitefield, 54-55).
The Message Impacted America’s Founding
The Message of Whitefield and the Great Awakening transformed the culture of colonial America because it was the Gospel Message infused with God's power. No less a figure than Benjamin Franklin testified to this transformation. Profanity, immorality and drunkenness almost completely disappeared in some areas, and entire towns and villages were transformed.
New England alone saw 30,000 to 40,000 new converts and 150 new congregations. People lived to do good and missionary and humanitarian enterprises were spawned. Colleges such as Princeton, Columbia and Hampden-Sydney were established to equip ministers for the new congregations.
All of America's Founders, to one degree or another, were impacted by the Awakening. Concerning Whitefield’s final visit to America in 1770, historian Benjamin Hart, wrote,
The true Spirit of Christ had dissolved sectarian differences. America considered itself to be a nation of Christians, pure and simple, as Whitefield noted with satisfaction. “Pulpits, hearts and affections,” he said, were opened to him and any preacher of whatever denomination who had a true Christian message to share (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 109).
The Message Will Bring Cultural Change
It has been the Gospel Message that has changed American culture again and again and saved her from ruin. This was confirmed by a visitor whom I believe was Alexis de Tocqueville. Although the quote below is not found in his writings, it has been historically attributed to him and has the Tocqueville feel and sound. It most likely originated in one of the many speeches he gave.
Tocqueville, a young French sociologist, came to America in 1831 to study her institutions to see if he could discover how America had attained such greatness in such a short period of time. He came on the heels of the Second Great Awakening that had just transformed American culture and saved her from the negative influences of Deism and the French Revolution. 
After describing his search for America’s greatness in her great commercial centers, her political institutions, and her educational systems, he said,
Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 178).
May the pulpits of America once again flame with righteousness by recovering the Message of Jesus, the New Testament and the Great Awakening.
This article is derived from Dr. Eddie Hyatt’s books such as, George Whitefield and Pilgrims and Patriots, available from Amazon in both paperback and kindle. To learn more about his vision for “America’s Reawakening," visit his website at www.eddiehyatt.com.