|"WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO
'GOD AND COUNTRY'?"
From E-Bulletin of
Bayshore Baptist Church
Something has drastically changed in our country. It no longer can be said that we believe in God and country. In our day and time to believe in one means denying the other. It was not always that way and unless we return we will die, spiritually, morally and finally completely.
Our country is unique in that it alone is a Gentile country founded upon the principles of God's Word. A nation and a people carved out of the wilderness to create a place for the free worship of the Almighty.
It has been this founding, and the subsequent revivals which returned us as a nation to that foundation, that has been the major reason for the prosperity and blessings in our country.
The evidence is throughout our history. It is written into the documents that brought us to life and even now sustains that life. The Declaration of Independence speaks of being "endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights." The Colonial Congress and the Constitutional Convention were opened daily in prayer.
The motto of our country imprinted upon our coins is "In God We Trust."
At least 50 out of the 55 men who framed the Constitution of the United States were professing Christians. (M.E. Bradford, A Worthy Company,Plymouth Rock Foundation, 1982).
Benjamin Franklin, speaking at the Constitutional Convention, "I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth: "that God governs in the affairs of man." And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid?
We have been assured, Sir, in the Sacred Writings that except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it. I firmly believe this. I also believe that without His concurring aid, we shall succeed in the political building no better than the builders of Babel; we shall be divided by our little, partial local interests; our projects will be confounded; and we ourselves shall become a reproach and a by word down to future ages. And what is worse, mankind may hereafter from this unfortunate instance, despair of establishing government by human wisdom and leave it to chance, war or conquest.
I therefore beg leave to move that, henceforth, prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven and its blessing on our deliberation be held in this assembly every morning before we proceed to business."
After this speech the convention was then adjourned for three days of prayer, Bible reading and special church meetings, following which the Constitution was discussed and adopted.
James Madison the primary architect of the Constitution said, "We have staked the future of government not upon the power of government, far from it. We have staked the future of all of our political institutions on the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God."
The first chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, the Honorable John Jay, had also served as governor of New York. He wrote:
"Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty ... of our Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers." --1816.
In 1892, Justice David Brewer, writing for the majority in the case of the Church of the Holy Trinity vs. the United States, said this: "This is a religious people. This is historically true. From the discovery of this continent to the present hour, there is a single voice making this affirmation . . . . We find everywhere a clear recognition of the same truth . . . . 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. --1892
One of our more liberal Supreme Court chief justices, Earl Warren, left no doubt about what he believed in 1954: "I believe no one can read the history of our country without realizing that the Good Book and the spirit of the Savior have from the beginning been our guiding geniuses ... Whether we look to the first Charter of Virginia ... or to the Charter of New England ... or to the Charter of Massachusetts Bay ... or to the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut ... the same objective is present ... a Christian land governed by Christian principles. I believe the entire Bill of Rights came into being because of the knowledge our forefathers had of the Bible and their belief in it: freedom of belief, of expression, of assembly, of petition, the dignity of the individual, the sanctity of the home, equal justice under law, and the reservation of powers to the people ... I like to believe we are living today in the spirit of the Christian religion. I like also to believe that as long as we do so, no great harm can come to our country."