America's Christian Heritage



In contrast to Amy Saxonmeyer’s assertion that “The United States of America was never intended to be a Christian nation…”; In 1867 the North American Review declared that, “The American government and Constitution is the … political expression of Christian ideas.”[1] And, on February 29, 1892 the United States Supreme Court’s decision stated: “Our laws and our institutions must necessarily be based upon and embody the teaching of the Redeemer of mankind. It is impossible that it should be otherwise, and in this sense and to this extent are civilizations and other institutions are emphatically Christian.”[2] Our founding fathers were universally convinced of this truth. America is a Christian nation because our form of government is shaped by Biblical ideas of man and government.


                The ideas embodied in our constitution without a doubt, stems primarily from the Bible. Our founders reasoned from the Bible far more than any other source. Dr. Donald Lutz, a professor of political science from the University of Houston conducted an exhaustive ten-year research of about 15,000 political documents from 1760-1805, and recorded every quote or reference to written sources. This list of 3,154 citations of the founders was analyzed and published in volume #78 of the “American Political Science Review” in 1983. Over one-third of their quoted sources of political ideas were from the Bible another 60% of all references can be attributed to authors who derived their ideas from the Bible. Therefore it can be said that 94% of the ideas in our constitution are based either directly or indirectly on the Bible.[3] “Newsweek” on December 26, 1982, acknowledged after a major analysis of the Bible’s influence in America, that, “Now historians are discovering that the Bible, perhaps even more than the consitution is our founding document.”[4]


                 The preamble to the constitution, which Amy Saxonmeyer quoted, provides evidence that it is the production of Christianity and its ideals of man and government. The Preamble lists five basic functions of civil governments which are revealed in scripture as legitimate. The first is “To establish justice.” The Bible says in I Peter 2:14 that civil rulers exist, “for the punishment of evil doers and the praise of those who do right,” this is justice. The second purpose of civil government is, “To ensure domestic tranquility.” This is found in I Timothy 2:1,2, where Paul urges Christians to pray for civil rulers “In order that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all Godliness and dignity.” Third, government is “to provide for the common defense.” In Romans 13:4, it is affirmed that civil government, “does not bear the sword for nothing.” “The sword,” is equivalent to any military weapon used today. Fourth, government should, “promote the general welfare.” Romans 13:4, says civil rulers are servants, “to you for good.” The common good of all classes of citizens must be promoted by passage of laws guaranteeing equal opportunity. Notice the choice of words here: Promote, not provide. Scripture makes it clear that God is the provider, not the state and that needy individuals are to be cared for by private acts of charity. Lastly, civil government exists to, “secure the blessings of liberty.” “Blessings,” are a gift of ones’ creator, not a privilege granted by government. The most basic of these creator-endowed blessings defined in the fifth amendment of the Constitution which mention, “Life, liberty … private property.” Scriptures define God as the source of life, Genesis 1:27 “And God created man in His own image” God is the author of liberty as well, 2 Corinthians 3:17 says, “where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” And Leviticus 25:10 says, proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants.” Scripture also defines God as the source of private property and, “The pursuit of happiness” as expressed in the Declaration of Independence. Ecclesiastes 5:19 states, “For every man to whom God has given riches and wealth, he has also empowered him to eat from them … and rejoice in his labor, this is the gift of God”[5]


                 God, His word, His will and His providence permeates every word, sentence, paragraph, and article of The Constitution of the The United States of America. And in the last sentence just above the signatures of men who signed the Constitution we find these words,” … in the year of our Lord one thousand, seven hundred and eighty-seven …” A clear and distinct reference to their God and Savior, the Lord, Jesus Christ.




[1] The Declaration of Independence and The Constitution,” The Freedom Council, 1984, p.8

[2] United States Supreme Court case of Church of the Holy Trinity v/s United States 143 457-458, 465-471, 36 L ed 226

[3] Mark A. Beliles and Stephen K. McDowell, “America’s Providential History.” (Virginia 1989) p.186

[4] Newsweek, Dec 26, 1982.

[5] Mark A. Beliles and Stephen K. McDowell p. 186-188.