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For too many years the politicians and courts of this country have been able to perpetrate the false idea of "separation of church and state". They claim that they founding fathers of this nation designed this to be a basis for our form of government. Nothing could be further from the truth. They did intend to keep government out of the religious arena by disallowing a national religion such as existed in England with the Church of England; however the intent was never to keep the church out of government. Please consider my statement in light of these quotations from a few people you may have heard of:
Benjamin Franklin at the Constitutional Convention June 28, 1787:
"I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proof I see of the truth - that God governs in the affairs of men. 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; and I also believe that without this concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better, than the Builders of Babel: We shall be divided by our partial local interests; our projects will be confounded, and we ourselves shall become a reproach and bye 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 and conquest. I therefore beg leave to move - that henceforth prayers imploring the audience of Heaven, and its blessings on our deliberations, be held in this assembly every morning before we proceed to business, and that one or more of the clergy of this city be requested to officiate in that service."
"And 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 of 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."
Alexis de Tocqueville:
"Religion in America ... must nevertheless be regarded as the foremost of the political instituions of that country ... I do not know whether all the Americans have a sincere faith in their religion, for who can search the human heart? But I am certain that they hold it to be indispensable to the maintenance of republican institutions. This position is not peculiar to a class of citizens or to a party, but it belongs to the whole nation, and to every rank of society ... Christianity, therefore, reigns without any obstacle, by universal consent."
"Upon my arrival in the United States, th religious aspects of the country was the first thing that struck my attention; and the longer I stayed there, the more did I perceive the great political consequences resulting from this state of things, to which I was unaccustomed. In France I had almost always seen the spirit of religion and the spirit of freedom pursuing courses diametrically oppposed to each other; but in America I found that they were truely united, and that they reigned in common over the same country."
US Supreme Court - Church of the Holy Trinity vs US 1892:
"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 ..... These are not individual sayings, declarations of private persons: they are organic utterances, they speak the voice of the entire people .... 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."
North Carolina Constitution 1876
"No person who shall deny the being of God, or the truth of the Protestant religion, or the divine authority of the Old or New Testaments, or who shall hold religious principles incompatible with the freedom and safety of the State, shall be capable of holding any office or place of trust in the civil department within this State."
John Jay - First Chief Justice US Supreme Court:
"Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty as well as the privilege of our Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers."
George Washington - Inaugural Speech to Congress April 30, 1789:
"No people can be bound to acknowledge and adore the the Invisible Hand which conducts the affairs of men more than those of the United States. Every step by which they have advanced to the character of an independent nation seems to have been distinguished by some token of providential agency ... We ought to be no less persuaded that the propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a Nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained."
"It is the duty of nations as well as men to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God, to confess their sins and transgressions in humble sorrow yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon, and to recognize the sublime truth, announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history: that those nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord."
"All the good from the Saviour of the World is communicated through this Book; but for the Book we could not know right from wrong. All the things desirable to man are contained in it."
"The Bible ... is the one supreme source of revelation of the meaning of life, the nature of God and spiritual nature and need of men. It is the only guide of life which really leads the spirit in the way of peace and salvation ... America was born a Christian nation. America was born to exemplify that devotion to the elements of righteousness which are derived from the revelations of the Holy Scripture."
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion ... Our constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."
Judge Joseph Story - 19th Century Supreme Court Justice:
"The real object of the First Ammendment was not to countenance, much less to advance, Mohammedanism, or Judaism, or infidelity, by prostrating Christianity, but to exclude all rivalry among Christian sects, and to prevent any national ecclesiastical establishment which would give to an hierarchy the exclusive patronage of the national government."
"We are not to attribute this prohibition of a national religious establishment [in the First Ammendment] to an indifference to religion in general, and especially to Christianity, which none could hold in more reverence than the framers of the Constitution .... Probably, at the time of the adoption of the Constitution, and of the Ammendments to it ... the general, if not the universal, sentiment in America was, that Christianity ought to receive encouragement from the State."
House Judiciary Report in 1854:
"Chistianity must be considered as the foundation upon which the whole structure rests. Laws will not have not permanence or power without the sanction of religious sentitment, without a firm belief that there is a Power above us that will reward our virtues and punish our vices. In this age there will be no substitute for Christianity: that, in its general principles, is the great conservative element on which we must rely for the purity and permanence of free institutions. That was the religion of the founders of the Republic, and they expected it to remain the religion of their descendants. There is a great and very prevalent error on this subject in the opinion that those who organized this Government did not legislate on religion."
"The great vital and conservative element in our system is the belief of our people in the pure doctrines and divine truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ."
"It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religions, but on the gospel of Jesus Christ! For this very reason people of other faiths have been afforded asylums, prosperitity and freedom of worship here."
Supreme Court of Pennsylvania - Updegraph vs The Commonwealth 1824:
"No free government now exists in the world unless where Christianity is acknowledged and is the religion of the country ... Its foundations are broad and strong, and deep .... It is the purest system of morality, the firmest auxialry, and the only stable support of all human laws."
"Christianity, general Christianity, is and always has been a part of the common law ... Thus this wise legislature framed this great body of laws, for a Christian country and Christian people ... No society can tolerate a willful and despiteful attempt to subvert its religion, no more than it would to break down it laws - a general, malicious and deliberate attempt to overthrow Christianity, general Christianity."
"The foundations of our society and our government rest so much on the teachings of the Bible that it would be difficult to support them if the faith in their teachings would cease to be practically universal in our country."
Continental Congress - May 16, 1776:
"The Congress ... desirous ... to have people of all ranks and degrees duly impressed with a solemn sense of God's superintending providence, and of their duty, devoutly to rely ... on His aid and direction ... Do earnestly recommend ... a day of humiliation, fasting and prayer; that we may, with united hearts, confess and bewail our manifold sins and transgressions, and, by a sincere repentance and ammendment of life ... and through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ, obtain His pardon and forgiveness."
"When you become entitled to exercise the right of voting for public officers' let it be impressed upon your mind that God commands you to choose for rulers just men who will rule in the fear of God. The preservation of a republican government depends upon the faithful discharge of this duty; if the citizens neglect their duty and place unprincipled men in office, the government will soon be corrupted ... If a republican government fails ... it must be because the citizens neglect the divine commands, and elect bad men to make and administer the laws."
Charles Finney - 19th Century Minister and Lawyer:
"The Church must take right ground in regard to politics ... The time has come that Christians must vote for honest men, and take consistent ground in politics or the Lord will curse them ... God cannot sustain this free and blessed country, which we love and pray for, unless the Church will take the right ground. Politics are a part of religion, in such a country as this, and Christians must do their duty to their country as a part of their duty to God."