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America's Christian Foundation


There are many, many evidences that America was founded on Christian principles, organized around them as a newborn country, and developed ever since, based on the precepts of the Bible and the principles of government and human relations found within it. For example:


Mayflower Compact:


As that ship approached Cape Cod on Nov. 11, 1620, the English Christians on board, intent on separating from England in order to live under their own civil government largely because of a lack of religious freedom, wrote what's now considered the world's first covenant-based social contract. It starts off: "In the name of God Amen." The first paragraph also contains the phrase: "by the grace of God." The next paragraph states: "Having undertaken, for the glory of God, and advancements of the Christian faith and honor of our king & country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the Northern parts of Virginia. . . ."



Isaiah 33:22:


Clearly, the three estates of American government - the judicial, the legislative and the executive - are modeled after the Christian trinity and model of government in this Bible verse.


For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he will save us.

- Isaiah 33:22



Other Biblical principles in our founding documents (source: Christianity and the Constitution: The Faith of Our Founding Fathers, by John Eidsmoe):


The providence of God

The law of God (higher than any laws of man; Romans 2:14-15)

The law of nations

The equality of man (Acts 10:34, Galatians 3:28)

God-given human rights

Governments secure rights, but God gives them

Government is by consent of the governed (God ordains government through people, Romans 13, Daniel 2, 1 Peter 3)

The sinful nature of man (Romans 3:23)

Limited, delegated powers to prevent struggles between rulers and the ruled (Deuteronomy 17:14-20, 1 Kings 12:6-19)

Rights of criminal defendants, with orderly court systems, high ethics for judges (Exodus 23:1-8), two witnesses required for conviction (Deut. 17:6), and severe penalty for perjury (Deut. 19:16-21), because each person was created in the image of God, and human life and dignity are greatly valued

Property rights (Exodus 20:15,17)

The sanctity of contract (Psalm 15:1,4)

No punishment for families of those convicted (Deut. 24:16, in contrast to the way pagans put to death a convicted criminal and his entire family, Daniel 6:24)

Sundays excepted (Art. I, Sec. 7, Paragraph 2 of the Constitution regarding the President's veto power, excludes Sundays from the 10-day period, honoring the Sabbath as commanded in Exodus 20:8-10)

Separation of church and state (both derive their powers from God, but He made it clear he wants them separate; see 1 Samuel 13, 2 Chronicles 26:16-21, and Luke 20:25)



Declaration of Independence:

Excerpts: ". . . to which the laws of nature and of nature's God entitle them. . ." ". . . all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. . . ." ". . . appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world. . . ." and "with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence. . . ."



Quotes from founders:


You will do well to wish to learn our ways of life, and above all, the religion of Jesus Christ. These will make you a greater and happier people than you are . . . Religion and Morality are the essential pillars of civil society.

George Washington, 1732-1799, first president of the United States


And may that Infinite Power which rules the destinies of the universe lead our councils to what is best, and give them a favorable issue for your peace and prosperity.

Thomas Jefferson, 1743-1826, third president of the United States, first inaugural address


The highest glory of the American Revolution was this: it connected in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity.

John Quincy Adams, 1767-1848, sixth president of the United States



Observations of de Tocqueville:

French historian and social scientist Alexis de Tocqueville wrote the 1835 book, Democracy in America, which set down for all time exactly what the character and style of the early United States was all about. Among many other direct observations of the Christian foundation of the country, he wrote, "In America religion is the road to knowledge, and the observance of the divine laws leads man to civil freedom."


Washington Monument:

On the very top are these Latin words, "Laus Deo." Meaning: "Praise be to our God." Several engravings of prayers line the steps. If you've ever doubted that America's first President was anything but a Godly man and a Christian, consider his prayer: "Almighty God; We make our earnest prayer that Thou wilt keep the United States in Thy holy protection; that Thou wilt incline the hearts of the citizens to cultivate a spirit of subordination and obedience to government; and entertain a brotherly affection and love for one another and for their fellow citizens of the United States at large. And finally that Thou wilt most graciously be pleased to dispose us all to do justice, to love mercy, and to demean ourselves with that charity, humility, and pacific temper of mind which were the characteristics of the Divine Author of our blessed religion, and without a humble imitation of whose example in these things we can never hope to be a happy nation. Grant our supplication, we beseech Thee, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen."

For more about the American founders' beliefs in the Judeo-Christian ethic, order the book, "What They Believed," on


Also see:


By Susan Darst Williams Heart Lessons 048 2007


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