At the beginning of 2024, I asked God if He had something new for the coming year. I immediately heard the words, "Save America." I am  still praying and working through the ramifications of this, but I am convinced that one important aspect of "saving America" is to save her true history from the Marxists and secularists who are seeking to destroy it.

Why this is Important

The question of America's true heritage is of critical importance for her survival, for as George Orwell said, "Whoever controls the past, controls the future." The Marxists/socialists understand this, which is why they are hell-bent on convincing this generation that America was founded by power-hungry, racist slave owners who only wanted to protect their power and property. 

The goal of the secularist historian is to destroy America's Christian heritage and thereby prepare this generation for radical political change. Karl Marx was referring to this when he said, "People without a heritage are easily persuaded." If they are successful in destroying our heritage, it will be the end of America as we have known her. Carl Sandburg, winner of two Pulitzer Prizes, warned, 

When a nation goes down, or a society perishes, one condition may always be found; they forgot where they came from. They lost sight of what had brought them along (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 11).

The Truth About America's Heritage

It was the most radical elements of the Protestant Reformation that provided the philosophical and theological principles on which America was founded. They were called called Dissenting Protestants, Nonconformists, and Radical Reformers, and they were the ones who emphasized religious liberty and freedom of conscience and insisted that governmental force should never be used in matters of faith.

In this, they differed from the Catholics, Anglicans and Lutherans of that era who held to the Constantinian merger of the church with the state. This merger had led to an imperial church that used the power of the state to enforce its doctrines and advance its cause. This use of political power in matters of faith became characteristic of the medieval Roman Catholic Church.

The reforms of Martin Luther were very important, but in the area of church-state relations, he miserably failed for he retained this Constantinian idea of a state-sanctioned church. These state-churches became oppressive and persecuted those Christians who refused to conform. Laws were passed in England and other European nations outlawing so-called “clandestine” religious gatherings. 

These “clandestine” religious groups included the Pilgrims and Separatist Puritans who settled New England, Quakers who settled Pennsylvania, Baptists who settled Rhode Island, and other freedom-minded groups scattered throughout the colonies. Back in the Old World, they had been hounded and oppressed by the state churches. One historian has said,

The Separatists were hounded, bullied, forced to pay assessments to the Church of England, clapped into prison on trumped-up charges, and driven underground. They met in private homes, to which they came at staggered intervals and by different routes, because they were constantly being spied upon (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 16).\

According to Benjamin Franklin, his father was a “Dissenting Protestant” who fled England in 1685 to escape persecution from the state-sanctioned Church of England, also known as the Anglican Church. Although influenced by Deism in his teenage years, Franklin’s mature thinking was primarily shaped by his "Dissenting Protestant" upbringing and his friendship with George Whitefield, the most famous preacher of the Great Awakening.

Not the Catholic Church, nor the Anglican Church, nor the Lutheran Church could provide the philosophical and theological constructs for the founding of America, for their approach to faith and church was based on power, not faith and freedom. This is why the historian, Benjamin Hart, wrote,

It was Protestants of the most radical stripe, most zealous in their religious convictions (those whom the American 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 (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 42).

This Historical Context Sheds Light on America's Founding Documents

Understanding this historical context gives understanding to the first clause of the First Amendment, which reads, “Congress shall make no law concerning the establishment of religion nor hindering the free exercise thereof.” This was not an embrace of secularism; this was a rejection of the use of governmental force in matters of conscience and faith.

The First Amendment was written to keep the government out of the church, not the other way around. This becomes even more obvious when we consider that the day after ratifying this Amendment, those same Founders proclaimed a National Day of Prayer and Thanksgiving.

America was Christian in its origins, but not by political, legislative action or judicial decree. America was Christian in its origins because the Dissenting Protestants stood strong for individual and religious liberty by rejecting the Constantinian concept of a politicized church and insisting on a free church that changes hearts and minds by the preaching of the Gospel.

America was Christian in its origins because a Great Awakening (1726-70) had turned the masses to faith in Jesus Christ and impacted every Founding Father, as I document in my book, 1726: The Year that Defined America. This is why John Marshall, America’s 2nd Supreme Court Chief Justice, who served in that capacity for 34 years, from 1801 to 1835, could say,

The American population is entirely Christian, and with us Christianity and religion are identified. It would be strange, indeed, if with such a people, our institutions did not presuppose Christianity, and did not refer to it, and exhibit relations with it (Hyatt, 1726: The Year thatDefined America, 169).

Christian Revivalism Played a Pivotal Role in America's Founding

It was Christian revivalism that emphasized a personal, living faith that could be known, not only “in the head,” but also experienced “in the heart,” that transformed colonial America and prepared her for statehood. This was expressed in the Great Awakening in which entire towns along the eastern seaboard were transformed through the preaching of the evangelists of that Awakening.

As documented in my book, 1726: The Year that Defined America, it was the Great Awakening that ignited moral outrage against slavery that eventually led to its abolition on this continent. America's history has been far from perfect, but it is obvious that it has been the influence of Christianity that has enabled her to defeat slavery and Jim Crow and provide a stability and prosperity that has attracted immigrants from all over the world.

America's Founders believed the Bible, and especially the teachings of Jesus, to contain the moral basis for a stable society. This is why Benjamin Franklin shut down Thomas Paine and refused to print his manuscript in which he attacked Biblical Christianity. With his typical wit, Franklin said to Paine, "If men are this wicked with Christianity, what would they be if without it," Dr. Michael Novak was right when he said, 

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).

If we are to save America, we must save her from the secularist revisionists who are hell-bent on changing her past. The evidence is on our side. To cite just one example: In the 1892 case of Church of the Holy Trinity vs The United States, the U.S. Supreme Court, after examining thousands of historical documents, declared,

From the discovery of this continent to the present hour, there is a single voice making this affirmation. These, and many other matters which might be noticed, add a volume of unofficial declarations to the mass of organic utterances that this is a Christian nation (Hyatt, 1726: The Year that Defined America, 170),

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