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Just dropping by... The Founding Fathers were Christian

Yevet Tenney Published on 25 February 2009

There is a movement afoot in America to discredit the Founding Fathers and to spread the pernicious lie that this nation was not founded on Christian principles.

If you Google the words “Founding Fathers were not Christian,” you will find 10 pages of sites that promote the idea that this nation is not Christian.



The absurdity of the whole business of changing history for political or other gain is appalling. Our Founding Fathers were Christian; they came to this country for the very purpose of worshiping a Christian God, and building a nation to honor Jesus Christ.

They did not want a state-run religion, but they did not want to abandon Christianity altogether. The Pilgrims left England where all citizens were bound by a state-run religion. They broke from the Church of England to espouse Christian principle found in the Bible.

The whole Protestant movement came about because men like Martin Luther and Calvin did not go along with the idea that the lay man should be subject to a King’s view, but rather be ruled by the Bible. This attitude is evident in the following passage from the Mayflower Compact:

“In the name of God, Amen. We, whose names are underwritten, the Loyal Subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord, King James, by the Grace of God, of England, France and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, e&. Having undertaken for the Glory of God, and Advancement of the Christian Faith, and the Honor of our King and Country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the northern parts of Virginia; do by these presents, solemnly and mutually in the Presence of God and one of another, covenant and combine ourselves together...” (

This passage unequivocally states that they were going to “advance the Christian faith.” The document didn’t say Muslim, Deism or Atheism. The founding fathers who fought for our independence, drafted our Constitution, and set up our government were grandchildren of these Pilgrims. There is no evidence that these people changed their views, but there is overwhelming evidence that these men were Christian.


“John Adams – one of America’s founding fathers and its second president... said, ‘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.’” (

Years later, Adams said this to the people in Newburyport, Massachusetts, “Why is it that, next to the birthday of the Savior of the world, your most joyous and most venerated festival returns on this day [the Fourth of July]? Is it not that, in the chain of human events, the birthday of the nation is indissolubly linked with the birthday of the Savior? That it forms a leading event in the progress of the Gospel dispensation? Is it not that the Declaration of Independence first organized the social compact on the foundation of the Redeemer’s mission upon earth? That it laid the cornerstone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity?” (

In his farewell address, George Washington expressed the same sentiments as John Adams. These men recognized the importance of the Bible and its teachings in bringing up moral people and governing them. Not as power in themselves, as leaders, but as in power in the people. In our modern society with all its social ills and corruption, it is obvious the Founding Fathers knew what they were talking about.

Washington said: “It is impossible to govern the world without God and the Bible. Of all the dispositions and habits that lead to political prosperity, our religion and morality are the indispensable supporters. Let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Reason and experience both forbid us to expect that our national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.” (George Washington, Farewell Address, 1796.)

If there still needs to be evidence that our Founding Fathers were Christian, look at the traditions they set up. From the first Continental Congress to our last President’s inauguration, a minister has given a prayer to invoke the blessings of a Christian God. This is a prayer that was said in the first Congress on Sept. 7, 1774 given by Jacob Duche. Notice the prayer addresses the Lord, and it closes in Jesus’ name:

“O – Lord our Heavenly Father, high and mighty King of kings, and Lord of lords, who dost from thy throne behold all the dwellers on earth and reignest with power supreme and uncontrolled over all the Kingdoms ... This we ask in the name and through the merits of Jesus Christ, Thy Son and our Savior. Amen” (


Why in the world would Deists or Atheists allow a Christian tradition of prayer to get started? If these men were starting a brand new government, certainly they would have set it up the way they wanted to. These were rebels, not conformists. They had just won their independence from an unpopular government, a Christian one at that. They could have set up any kind of government they desired; furthermore, they could have forced the people to obey. That is not what they wanted. They wanted freedom to worship the way they chose, and they chose to be Christian.

“They prayed fervently ‘for America, for Congress, for the Province of Massachusetts Bay, and especially for the town of Boston,’ and who can realize the emotion with which they turned imploringly to Heaven for Divine interposition and – ‘It was enough’ says Mr. Adams, ‘to melt a heart of stone. I saw the tears gush into the eyes of the old, grave, Pacific Quakers of Philadelphia.’” ( Congress-and-the-Founding-Fathers-Pray&id=340141)

These men were Bible scholars not fair-weather Christians. They lived what they taught. Jefferson went so far as to condense the Bible into a small book of Christian principles. He took out the histories and the stories, keeping just the doctrines and Christian principles.

“In a letter dispatched from Monticello to John Adams in 1813, Jefferson said his “wee little book” of 46 pages was based on a lifetime of inquiry and reflection and contained “the most sublime and benevolent code of morals which has ever been offered to man.”

He called the book “The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth.” Friends dubbed it “The Jefferson Bible.” It remains perhaps the most comprehensive expression of what the nation’s third president and principal author of the Declaration of Independence found ethically interesting about the Gospels and their depiction of Jesus.

Why would an atheist spend the time condensing the principles of the Bible? He did not have a computer with the “cut and paste” option. He had to do all of his writings by hand. It took valuable time and energy. Someone less committed to Christianity would have given up the project before it commenced.

I don’t know how modern so-called scholars can look at the evidence and still think that the Founding Fathers were not Christian. They must not be connected to reality. They don’t understand how traditions are passed from one generation to another. The Pilgrims were Christian and they passed those teachings on to their children. They used the Bible to teach their children how to read and write. They heard it from the pulpit and talked about it around the dinner table and the fireplace at night. They spent their Sabbath Day in prayer and meditation. The children of the Pilgrims passed the teachings on to their children, and their children passed it on.

It wasn’t until the 60s and the Hippie movement, the drug culture and the hedonistic people took prayer and Bible study out of the schools, when people began to abandon Christian principles and society commenced to break down. Now we have schools where classmates murder their peers. We have suicides and fornication committed on the Internet. We have pornography in rampant proportions and unparalleled rudeness from the rising generation.

Liars are more numerous than the honest man. Corruption fills the halls of Washington and America is on a downward spiral economically and spiritually. No wonder the scholars want to rewrite history. People judge from their own perspective. Because they are decadent, it is hard for them to see men of integrity. It is hard for them to hold the mirror up to their own tattered conscience so they shrink the picture to fit their own selfish motives. They don’t have the backbone to follow Christian principles. It is easier to say that all men are like them. It is easier because they don’t have to face moral midgets in the mirror.

Our Founding Fathers were Christian. They were men of sound integrity, who by the grace of God, created a Constitution that made America the greatest nation in the world. Christian principles brought independence into existence, and the abandonment of Christian values will be its downfall. PD