Founding Father’s ‘Faith and Freedom’ Principles Unrecognizable Today
This article is an opinion piece from Bill Lockwood. Catch American Liberty with Bill Lockwood weekly at 11 a.m. Saturdays on NewsTalk 1290.
Nearly every Founding Father who spoke about the basis of political freedom connected it to Christianity. Liberty in a nation is the result of Christian principles imbedded in the foundation. To modern ears, this sounds strange.
But to reach back to the founders themselves, who were well-educated in history and philosophies of the world, and hear their statements, is quite shocking to the modernist. The normal conventional teaching takes us in the opposite direction, and wrongly supposes that liberty is a by-product of secular thought. None of the Founding Fathers were so misled.
For example, John Adams, the second president of the United States, and a principal thinker in the Declaration of Independence as well as the Constitution itself, stated it this way in a letter to Thomas Jefferson in 1813 as he reflected upon the course of American history: "The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were … the general principles of Christianity … I will avow that I then believed, and now believe, that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God; and that those principles of liberty are as unalterable as human nature."
Even Thomas Jefferson, who has been continually maligned as a deist, agreed with Adams: "Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis — a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with His wrath. Indeed, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that His justice cannot sleep forever."
The last line referred to the institution of slavery which he sought to eradicate.
Benjamin Rush, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, a supporter of the Constitution and good friend of both Adams and Jefferson, stated: "The only foundation for a useful education in a republic is to be laid in religion. Without this there can be no virtue, and without virtue there can be no liberty, and liberty is the object and life of all republican governments."
These types of statements from that generation can be multiplied many times over because this was the near universal sentiment of the crafters of our state. For this reason, Supreme Court decisions freely referred to America as a "Christian nation."
On the other end of the spectrum is situated atheism or secularism. Godlessness always begets a totalitarian state. Every single governing system in history, without exception, that was not founded upon Christian principles, was despotic in nature.
The reasons for this are not hard to find. Without a clear, unambiguous, eternal standard of right and wrong, every action of man is subjected to the changing whims of the populace. In turn, without a solid standard of truth and error, there is no basis upon which to ground the dignity and value of the individual. And, where the eternal value of every person is not upheld, there is no reason for the state not to become coercive.
This is exactly what is occurring in America. Coercion is becoming the norm precisely because the leadership has rejected a God-centered worldview.
For example, President Joe Biden signed an Executive Order during Pride Month this summer "advancing LGBTQI+ equality." According to the whitehouse.gov website this in includes "banning conversion therapy."
What is conversion therapy? Remove the word "therapy" from it and one can see more clearly what is at stake — conversion to Christianity. In other words, Biden directs the Federal Trade Commission, the Secretary of State, the Secretary of the Treasury, and Health and Human Services to develop a plan to ban this type of speech or teaching when homosexuals are the subject.
Dr. Robert Gagnon, who is a professor at Houston Baptist University, lists several potential outcomes of a California state bill that banned "conversion therapy." In effect, the bill boils down to this: "To sell any materials or offer any counseling for a fee that present homosexual practice and transgender identity as wrong or a sin, including commentaries on the Bible and … exegetical treatments that affirm the biblical position on these matters (perhaps even the Bible itself) is to incur criminal sanctions in the state of California."
American governmental leaders have moved us very quickly to a dictatorial-style government where free speech is being curtailed. This is the kind of freedom that is lost when biblical faith is "cast behind our back."