What is happening to America? Another tragic mass shooting occurred this weekend at a shopping mall in Allen, Texas, just a few miles from where Sue and I live in Grapevine. How many more tragedies must be suffered before we wake up to what is really happening? We are in the midst of a spiritual and moral battle for the soul of this nation. We are in a war of good vs. evil. We are in a war of God’s way vs. man’s way.
The Root of the Problem
We are suffering because as a nation we have turned against the very principles of faith and morality on which this nation was founded. It can be said of America what Alexander Solzhenitsyn said in explaining why 60 million had perished under Marxist rule in his home country of Russia. He said, “I could not put it more accurately than to repeat, ‘Men have forgotten God,’ that is why all this has happened.”
In the past sixty years, prayer and Bible reading have been outlawed in our schools. Ten commandment displays have been removed. Liberals and secularists decided that children should not be exposed to prayer, Bible verses, and moral laws such as “Thou shalt not kill.” Instead, they are taught that there are no moral laws or objective truths to which they must adhere. They are told that they are free to create their own moral world of right and wrong with no fear of Divine retribution.
This anti-Christian activism is based on what is, perhaps, the most destructive lie ever foisted on the American populace. The lie is that America's Founders secularized the American system and banned expressions of faith from the public square when they implemented the First Amendment. Nothing could be further from the truth!
What the Founders banned was a national, state church, which is what the nations of Europe had known since Constantine. They knew from experience that such coercive faith does not produce real Christians. They had learned that faith, imposed by civil government, can never produce a moral and virtuous people, and such a people, they believed, would be necessary for a free and stable nation.
America’s Founders were also aware of the history of spiritual awakenings in Colonial America, including the big one, the Great Awakening, which had impacted all of them. They had seen the populace morally transformed by that Awakening. They believed such an organic faith of the people to be true to real Christianity and capable of producing the kind of national morality necessary for a peaceful and prosperous society.
The Founders are Clear on the Key for National Stability
In the quotes below, remember that when the Founders use the word "religion," they are referring to Christianity. Christianity was their religion. Without exception, they believed that only a moral and virtuous people could maintain the Republic that had formed. And notice that they consistently couple "morality" with "religion" for they believed that morality could not be had without religion.
This is why, two weeks before signing the Declaration of Independence, John Adams wrote to his cousin, Zabdiel Adams, a minister of the Gospel, and said,
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, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 164).
Twenty-two years later in 1798, Adams gave a speech to the officers of the Massachusetts Militia in which he clearly stated his belief that only a Christian morality could maintain the free Republic he had helped establish. 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 people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other” (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 164),
We now have a generation that, in the words of Adams, is “unbridled by morality and religion.” The blame must be laid at the feet of far-Left extremists who have done everything in their power to purge America of her Christian roots. Because of this loss of morality, our nation is becoming chaotic and our liberties are rapidly slipping away, as many push for more government control.
Benjamin Rush, a Philadelphia physician, member of the Continental Congress, and signer of the Declaration of Independence, warned of this, saying,
The only foundation for a republic is to be laid in Religion. Without this there can be no liberty, and liberty is the object and life of all republican governments (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 163).
George Washington gave the same warning in his 1796 Farewell address after serving two terms as the nation’s first president. He urged the new nation to maintain "religion" and "morality," which he called "indispensable" supports for national prosperity. Interestingly, he did not say that religion should be "tolerated," but that it is "indispensable" for the life of the nation.
He also warned against the false supposition, entertained by so many today, that morality can maintained apart from religion [Christianity]. He called religion and morality “the great pillars of human happiness” and then said,
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, 1726:The Year that Defined America, 165).
Thomas Jefferson was so impressed with Washington’s speech that he made it required reading at the University of Virginia, which he had founded. This should not be surprising for despite his questioning of certain aspects of Christian doctrine, Jefferson was convinced that only by embracing the moral teachings of Jesus and the New Testament could a nation enjoy both stability and freedom.
This is why John Dickinson, chairman of the committee that produced the Articles of Confederation, warned that “when states lose their liberty, this calamity is generally owing to a decay of virtue.” And commenting on this fact, Michael Novak is correct in declaring,
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, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 171).
The Way Forward from Here
Fast forward to 2023 and we find ourselves with a government that is openly hostile to the Christian faith. We have an administration that plants its agents in Christian churches to spy on them and their activities. We have people in government who believe more government is the solution to every problem and believe the church should be under the power of the state. This is totally antithetical to the vision of the Founders. It is a very serious time.
Thomas Jefferson said, “The only thing necessary for evil to prevail is for people of good conscience to remain silent.” It is time to reject this destructive lie of the Left that has been used to silence Christian voices in the public arena, and is leading to societal chaos. Let your voice be heard and join me and thousands of others in praying for another Great Awakening to sweep across this land.