Many were surprised when the well-known former Muslim, turned atheist, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, recently announced that she has become a Christian. I was not surprised for I have prayed for that very thing. I also wrote about her, without mentioning her name, in the Foreword of Susan Hyatt's latest book, In the Spirit We're Equal, Second Edition. Ali ties her decision to become a Christian with her concern about the decline of Western Civilization.

Only a Judeo-Christian Worldview Can Produce a Free and Civil Society

Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, recently described the war with Hamas as a war between “good and evil” and between “civilization and barbarism.” I agree with him but with a very important clarification. A just war may protect a good and civil society from a barbaric attack, but war can never produce a good and civil society. Such a society will only emerge from the moral commitment and worldview of its inhabitants.  

This is the insight that led to Ayaan's conversion. The civilization of the West has produced the safest and freest societies in human history, and this has been the direct result of the teachings of the Bible, especially those of Jesus. The noted Yale University historian, Jaroslav Pelikan, has said, “Regardless of what anyone may personally think or believe about Him, Jesus of Nazareth has been the dominant figure in the history of Western culture for almost twenty centuries” (Hyatt, Discovering the Real Jesus, 9).

The Morals of Jesus Urged by America's Founders

America’s founders urged the populace of the new nation to make Jesus their role model for life. In a 1783 letter to the governors of the various states, George Washington exhorted them to make Jesus their pattern for civility and morality, saying, “Without a humble imitation of His example in these things, we can never hope to be a happy nation” (Hyatt, 1726: TheYear that Defined America, 172). Thomas Jefferson agreed with Washington, and wrote, “Of all the systems of morality that have come under my observations, none appear to me so pure as that of Jesus” (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 150).

It was a moral system based on the Bible, and particularly the teachings of Jesus, that provided the moral basis for ending slavery in America and the Western world. This occurred at a time when slavery was accepted and practiced in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and most of the world. The distinguished historians, Elizabeth Fox-Genovese and Eugene Genovese, wrote,

Europeans [and Americans] did not outdo others in enslaving others or treating slaves viciously. They outdid others by creating a Christian civilization that eventually stirred moral condemnation of slavery and roused mass movements against it (Hyatt, America’s Revival Heritage, 2nd Edition, 57).

The brilliant Black scholar, Dr. Thomas Sowell, has also written about the unique contribution of Western civilization in ending slavery. He wrote, “Slavery was just not an issue, not even among intellectuals, much less among political leaders, until the 18th century–and then it was an issue only in Western civilization.” (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 90). In my book, 1726, I have documented how this movement against slavery was ignited by the Great Awakening that swept Colonial America in the early 18th century.

Ayaan Sees Christianity as the Only Hope for Western Civilization

Ayaan became a Christian because she came to the realization that only Christianity embodies the moral truths and philosophical structure that can save the freedoms that Western civilization gave to the world. She points out that cherished Western freedoms of speech, of the press, and of conscience, all have their roots in Christianity. She also sees these freedoms being undermined and threatened by woke ideology, Islamism, and authoritarian regimes such as China and Russia. She writes,

We endeavor to fend off these threats with modern, secular tools: military, economic, diplomatic, and technological efforts to defeat, bribe, persuade, appease or surveil . . . But we can’t fight off these formidable forces unless we can answer the question: what is it that unites us? The only credible answer, I believe, lies in our desire to uphold the legacy of the Judeo-Christian tradition . . . Christianity has it all.

Yet I would not be truthful if I attributed my embrace of Christianity solely to the realization that atheism is too weak and divisive a doctrine to fortify us against our menacing foes. I have also turned to Christianity because I ultimately found life without any spiritual solace unendurable — indeed very nearly self-destructive. Atheism failed to answer a simple question: what is the meaning and purpose of life  (UnHerd, Nov. 11, 2023)?

Only a Christian Awakening Will Preserve Our Freedoms

When we as evangelical Christians talk about praying for revival or a Great Awakening, we must realize what is at stake. It is not just the success of our individual churches or personal ministries that are at stake. Western civilization itself is at stake. Freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and freedom of conscience to worship as one chooses are all by-products of Western civilization, and only a true “Christian Awakening” will preserve these freedoms for the next generation.

Dr. Eddie L. Hyatt is a Bible teacher, church historian and ordained minister. This article was derived from his books, 1726: The Year that Defined America and America’s Revival Heritage, 2nd Edition, both available from Amazon and his website at www.eddiehyatt.com.



Modern secularists have rewritten the Pilgrim's story and completely left out their faith in God as a motivating factor for them coming to the New World. Others have highlighted that they were fleeing religious persecution; and while this is true, it is only one side of the coin. There was another compelling reason for this small band of devout Believers leaving everything and coming to America. 

This untold reason came to the forefront when I was presenting a “Revive America” event at Abounding Grace Christian Church in Schenectady, NY.  As I was preparing for an evening session, I sensed the Holy Spirit instructing me to have the audience repeat aloud after me the two reasons the Pilgrims gave, in the Mayflower Compact, for coming to America. 

Later that evening, at the appropriate moment, I had the words of the Mayflower Compact flashed on the large screen and asked the audience to read with me their two reasons for coming to the New World. We read aloud together: "(1) For the glory of God and (2) the advancement of the Christian faith." We then read it a second time.

At the end of the service, a young man, who looked to be about twenty years of age, approached me with his face glowing and a note of excitement in his voice. He said,

I am attending a local community college and taking a course in American history. Just this week the professor told us that the Pilgrims did not come here for religious reasons. He said they came for monetary reasons.

He paused and then exclaimed, “But there it is in their own words!” He then stated how he was now inspired to study and teach America’s true origins. I then understood why God had instructed me to have everyone speak aloud the two reasons the Pilgrims gave for coming to America.

But even before the Mayflower Compact, while still in Holland, their missionary vision was clearly stated. William Bradford, who served as governor of Plymouth Colony for over thirty years, explained why they made plans to come to America. He said that they had "a great hope and inward zeal for the propagating and advancing of the gospel of Jesus Christ in those remote parts of the world" (Hyatt, The Pilgrims, 25).

The Pilgrims practiced what modern missiologists would call “friendship evangelism.” They made friends, not only with Squanto, but with countless other individuals and tribes. They established a treaty with the Wampanoag tribe in which they promised to defend each other if either was attacked by an outside aggressor. Dr. Samuel Eliot Morison says the Pilgrims treated the natives with, “A combination of justice, wisdom and mercy” (Hyatt, The Pilgrims, 38).

Their friendship evangelism bore fruit. Bradford told of Squanto falling sick and dying. The Pilgrims cared for Squanto in his sickness, and Bradford said that before he passed, Squanto asked him to pray for him that he would go to the God in heaven he had learned about from the Pilgrims. Bradford described Squanto’s death as "a great loss.”

The Pilgrims’ commitment to missions contributed to the fact that the first Bible published in the New World was not an English language Bible. The first Bible published in America was in the Massachusett language. It was published in 1660 for the purpose of reaching natives with the gospel of Jesus Christ.

The Pilgrims’ commitment to missions has had far-reaching ramifications and contributed to America becoming a great missionary-sending nation. This missionary vision, that began with the Pilgrims, became so pronounced that it caught the attention of the U.S. Supreme Court. In the 1892 ruling of “Church of the Holy Trinity vs. the United States,” the nation’s highest court stated,

The churches and church organizations which abound in every city, town, and hamlet . . . and the gigantic missionary associations, with general support, and aiming to establish Christian missions in every quarter of the globe add a mass of unofficial declarations to the mass of organic utterances that this is a Christian nation (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 170).

 Yes, the Pilgrims were fleeing persecution in England, but that was only part of the story. They had a proactive missionary vision that was pulling them forward. They clearly stated that they had come to America, “For the glory of God and the advancement of the Christian faith.” 

In retrospect, it is obvious that they were successful in their mission. It is also obvious that the modern, self-obsessed American Church needs to acquire a missionary vision of its own. After all, the Great Commission, which commands us to "go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature" (Mk. 16:15) has never expired.

Dr. Eddie Hyatt is an author and ordained minister with a commission to remind America of  her radical Christian roots in the Great Awakening. This article was derived from his books, 1726: The Year that Defined America and The Pilgrimsboth available from Amazon and his website at http://eddiehyatt.com.



Before Marx, the Soviet Union, Cuba, and Venezuela, socialism was tried here on American soil by the Pilgrims, and it miserably failed.

The Pilgrims were funded in their journey by a group of English businessmen, who required them to live communally for seven years until their debt was repaid with interest. This meant that there was no private ownership and there were no rewards for individual labor.

Instead, everyone worked fields owned by the plantation. The harvest went into a common fund from which each family received an equal portion for their sustenance. The remainder was used to pay their debt. The same was true of goods and money obtained by fishing and trapping furs. The wealth was spread around and evenly distributed. THEY WERE ALL EQUAL!

The Pain of Socialism

William Bradford, who served as Governor of Plymouth for over thirty years, told of the challenges of this socialist system. Young men, he said, resented getting paid the same as older men when they did so much more of the work. As a result, they tended to slouch and give only a half-hearted effort since they knew they would receive the same, no matter how hard they worked.

The older men felt they deserved more honor and recompense because of their age and resented getting paid the same as the youngsters in their midst. Bradford said that the women often refused to go to the fields to work, complaining of headaches, and to have compelled them to go would have been considered tyranny and oppression.

This socialist system discouraged work and innovation. It also produced strife and dissension, which further robbed the inhabitants of energy and output. The system almost destroyed the colony.

When it became obvious that lack and, perhaps, starvation would be their lot, Bradford and the leaders of the colony decided to make a change. After much prayer and discussion, they decided to dispense with that part of the agreement that required them to live communally and to replace it with a free enterprise system.

The Gain of Free Enterprise

According to Bradford, they then divided the land around them, allotting to each family a certain portion that would be theirs to work and use for their own needs. Bradford said there was an immediate change. The young men began to work much harder because they knew they would enjoy the fruit of their own labors. There were no more complaints from the older men for the same reason. And now the women were seen going into the fields to work, taking the children with them, because they knew that they and their families would benefit personally.

Instead of lacking food, each family now grew more food and corn than they needed, and they began to trade with one another for furnishings, clothes, and other goods.

They also had enough excess to trade with the Indians for furs and other items. In short, the colony began to prosper when it got rid of its socialist form of government and implemented a free, entrepreneurial system. Of their experience with socialism, Bradford wrote,

This [socialist] community was found to breed much confusion and discontent and retard much employment that would have been to their benefit and comfort . . . and showed the vanity of that conceit of Plato's, and applauded by some of later times, that the taking away of property and bringing in community into a commonwealth would make them happy and flourishing; as if they were wiser than God.

We Must Learn from History

Bradford believed that socialism did not work because it runs counter to human nature as created by God. In Scripture, God rewards individuals for their labor and good works. Capitalism works because it is compatible with the reality of human nature and the world in which we live.

Whether the Soviet Union, Cuba, Venezuela, or New England, socialism has failed wherever it has been tried. We should, therefore, remember the words of Winston Churchill, “Those who do not learn from history, are doomed to repeat it.”

This article was derived from 1726: The Year that Defined America and The Pilgrims, both by Dr. Eddie Hyatt and available from Amazon and his website at www.eddiehyatt.com.