When was the last time you read the Declaration Of Independence? Perhaps the most famous words contained in that document are found in its second paragraph in the preamble.”We hold these truths to be self evident, that 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.”
While much has been written in recent history about equality it seems as if many have skipped over an important aspect of this document. That is, the words found prior to the mention of equality.
So what does it say? What does it mean? Firstly, understand that the Declaration Of Independence was a founding document. It formally declared our rights to be a sovereign nation. However before the reader gets to that part of the document it establishes and important concept than men were created by God. In fact, the authors and those who signed the Declaration went out of their way to acknowledge God. They even made a bold statement making clear that what they were about to say consisted of truths so great that they were obviously self evident to everyone. Those truths were so majestic they simply could not be ignored.
Those majestic self evident truths reside in the words that immediately followed the preamble and are clearly applicable to the Bill Of Rights contained within the U.S. Constitution. The principle that was established in the preamble was that government did not bestow rights upon it’s citizens but rather certain rights as outlined further in The Bill Of Rights were ordained by God.
The rights to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness were bestowed by God and no government and no man had the right to infringe upon them. The words “unalienable rights” spoke to the iron clad meaning. In other words, they were immutable. They could not be taken away or withdrawn because they were given by God.
This speaks to the fact that not only did the founding fathers believe in God, they depended on Him for the very authority from which our nation began. There was no misunderstanding of the concept of separation of church and state as there currently exists today.
What follows in the words of The Constitution Of The United States Of America is a natural extension of the Declaration Of Independence and it’s authority derives from the same preamble in that declaration. The United States Of America was founded on principles ordained by God and the rights bestowed as outlined in The Bill Of Rights were granted and stemmed from divine authority, not mere man.
Think about that for a while. A nation founded on rights granted by divine authority!
I bring all of this up because the citizens of our country seem to have forgotten these important points. Our political leaders seem to have forgotten them or are ignoring them. And, there are even those in leadership positions who are actually fighting against them and God Himself.
The concept of the “separation of church and state” is not found in the U.S. Constitution. It was only a concept. And, while Thomas Jefferson spoke of it, today it is being abused and misunderstood.
The main thrust of the concept of separation of church and state was only that the government could not have any particular “official” religion like England had in order to prevent our government from choosing a particular one and forcing adherence by decree upon us. It does not, and never did require us to remove God from our government as far as acknowledging the reality of His existence . Today there are those who deviously distort and abuse the concept of separation of church and state for evil purposes such as the eradication of the knowledge of God.
When The Declaration Of Independence and The U.S. Constitution was written within the perspective of western civilization it was the accepted norm that The God of The Bible was the creator of all men and that the rights endowed unto man were given by that only one and true God. In order to properly understand you must realize the founding fathers intent. We were not to be forced to become Baptists, or Presbyterians, or Lutherans, or Pentecostals. It was not envisioned that religions from outside western civilization would displace these various religions nor was there any intent to disallow belief in the God of Christianity. It was never a consideration.
One must understand that the term “Christian” is a broad loose term that applies to the adherents of various protestant and catholic religions. While it is naturally a term that hopefully means those adherents or “believers” are followers of Christ it also is non specific as it relates to each of the religions under it’s umbrella. You may accept Jesus as Lord but it is from within the framework of your chosen religion that you learn and seek to follow Him. “Christian” is a widely varied general non specific term in that it does not define the broader tenets of any particular religion except that it has something to do with Christ. The term “Christian” is to religion what the term ” Food” is to hamburger. That is to say “Christian” is a broad term like ” food” is. Whereas one’s “religion” is much more specific. ( i.e “Hamburger” is a type of food.) The founding fathers were attempting to protect it’s citizens from its government, and wanted to prevent that government from interfering with belief in God and any particular religion of western civilization relative to the practical application of religion itself. The term God and the term “religion” are not synonymous.
My final point here is rather simple. The founding fathers believed in the God of The Bible and fully expected that that same God would be the God of our nation. God and religion are not the same thing! Religion is a contrivance of man and is the practical means by which we work out our understanding of God despite how flawed it may be. It is the process of religion and choosing one that the founding fathers wanted to leave up to individual conscience. They also did not want to let our government intrude upon our choice of religion. It never occurred to them from their perspective that there even was any other God than the God of The Bible. We know this because of all the historical data we have regarding their adventures, progress, and actions. In fact, it was quite apparent that they believed it obvious that the God of The Bible was the God one was expected to accept because in their minds there was no other God. This was also the view of other western cultures.
Today we have those who have expanded and distorted the founding fathers beliefs and applied a strong arm approach in an attempt to eradicate the knowledge of God from our country and its citizens. This was not the intent of the founding fathers.
I have included this dissertation because it is important to understand we as a nation have prospered precisely because it was founded on the principles of God as found in The Bible. How then could we ever imagine the founding fathers really wanted to eradicate God? It is sheer nonsense to think it was their intent to separate us from the God of The Bible.