Was This, And Is This, A Christian Nation?


Was This, And Is This,  A Christian Nation?

Contrary to President Obama’s statement to the contrary, the U.S. remains predominantly a Christian Nation. There is much research to support this assertion.

However, the truth is that the higher percentage of Christians is in decline, and that it appears that the fastest growing religion in the U.S. is among Muslims.

Still, however, this nation remains predominantly a Christian Nation.

See the following reference:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_the_United_States

Others go so far as to question that  this nation founded predominantly by Christians. I believe it was. Admittedly, however, I  am no expert on such matters–but,  nor are most of those who argue for this assertion.

The naysayer’s argument often presents  that our historical documents only reference God, with little mention of Christ. Therefore, we are to assume that the prevailing religion during the course of this nations early development was not  Christian.

It is true that references to God are everywhere in our history, and the evidence is indelibly present in our historical artifacts. However, Christians know, while naysayers may not, that for the great majority of Christians God is a Triune God. When Christians refer to God, they simultaneously refer to The Father, The Son (Jesus), and The Holy Ghost (The Spirit). To most Christians these three parts of God are inseparable.

It is a common practice for Christians to simply speak of God and they often speak of God’s laws and dictates without reference to God or Christ at all. It is important to note that the near universal Christian prayer, The Lord’s Prayer, does not mention God or Christ. Nor does a favorite Christian prayer, the 23rd Psalm (“The Lord is my Shepherd: I shall not want”, etc.). My beloved Christian grandmother taught me both of these prayers  when I was a little boy. Also, the other of the main statements of Christian values, The Golden Rule and the Ten Commandments do not mention Christ.

The relative  lack of references, specific to Christ, in our historical documents clearly proves noting.

Also, nothing is proved by the observation that some of our founding fathers were Deists, when the majority of our founders belonged to Christian churches.

I believe that  there is strong evidence that Christian’s (and other minority religion’s) teachings and values/ethics that made this nation great. As these influences diminish, so will our greatness.

V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D.      9/10/10

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5 Responses to “Was This, And Is This, A Christian Nation?”

  1. Was This, And Is This, A Christian Nation? | Cultural Survival Skills Says:

    Gino Ulbrich

    Was This, And Is This,  A Christian Nation? Contrary to President Obama

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  2. Brice Petgen Says:

    Just to add a bit of clarification to this debate, a good friend of mine pointed this out to me and I would like to share it. I agree this is a nation of Christians, but not a Christian nation.
    Thomas Paine was a pamphleteer whose manifestos encouraged the faltering spirits of the country and aided materially in winning the war of Independence:
    I do not believe in the creed professed by the Jewish church, by the Roman church, by the Greek church, by the Turkish church, by the Protestant church, nor by any church that I know of…Each of those churches accuse the other of unbelief; and for my own part, I disbelieve them all.”

    From:
    The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine, pp. 8,9 (Republished 1984, Prometheus Books, Buffalo, NY)

    George Washington, the first president of the United States, never declared himself a Christian according to contemporary reports or in any of his voluminous correspondence. Washington Championed the cause of freedom from religious intolerance and compulsion. When John Murray (a universalist who denied the existence of hell) was invited to become an army chaplain, the other chaplains petitioned Washington for his dismissal. Instead, Washington gave him the appointment. On his deathbed, Washinton uttered no words of a religious nature and did not call for a clergyman to be in attendance.

    From:
    George Washington and Religion by Paul F. Boller Jr., pp. 16, 87, 88, 108, 113, 121, 127 (1963, Southern Methodist University Press, Dallas, TX)

    John Adams, the country’s second president, was drawn to the study of law but faced pressure from his father to become a clergyman. He wrote that he found among the lawyers ‘noble and gallant achievments” but among the clergy, the “pretended sanctity of some absolute dunces”. Late in life he wrote: “Twenty times in the course of my late reading, have I been upon the point of breaking out, “This would be the best of all possible worlds, if there were no religion in it!”

    It was during Adam’s administration that the Senate ratified the Treaty of Peace and Friendship, which states in Article XI that “the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion.”

    From:
    The Character of John Adams by Peter Shaw, pp. 17 (1976, North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill, NC) Quoting a letter by JA to Charles Cushing Oct 19, 1756, and John Adams, A Biography in his Own Words, edited by James Peabody, p. 403 (1973, Newsweek, New York NY) Quoting letter by JA to Jefferson April 19, 1817, and in reference to the treaty, Thomas Jefferson, Passionate Pilgrim by Alf Mapp Jr., pp. 311 (1991, Madison Books, Lanham, MD) quoting letter by TJ to Dr. Benjamin Waterhouse, June, 1814.

    Thomas Jefferson, third president and author of the Declaration of Independence, said:”I trust that there is not a young man now living in the United States who will not die a Unitarian.” He referred to the Revelation of St. John as “the ravings of a maniac” and wrote:
    The Christian priesthood, finding the doctrines of Christ levelled to every understanding and too plain to need explanation, saw, in the mysticisms of Plato, materials with which they might build up an artificial system which might, from its indistinctness, admit everlasting controversy, give employment for their order, and introduce it to profit, power, and pre-eminence. The doctrines which flowed from the lips of Jesus himself are within the comprehension of a child; but thousands of volumes have not yet explained the Platonisms engrafted on them: and for this obvious reason that nonsense can never be explained.”

    From:
    Thomas Jefferson, an Intimate History by Fawn M. Brodie, p. 453 (1974, W.W) Norton and Co. Inc. New York, NY) Quoting a letter by TJ to Alexander Smyth Jan 17, 1825, and Thomas Jefferson, Passionate Pilgrim by Alf Mapp Jr., pp. 246 (1991, Madison Books, Lanham, MD) quoting letter by TJ to John Adams, July 5, 1814.

    James Madison, fourth president and father of the Constitution, was not religious in any conventional sense. “Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprise.”
    “During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What have been its fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the Clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity, in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution.”

    From:
    The Madisons by Virginia Moore, P. 43 (1979, McGraw-Hill Co. New York, NY) quoting a letter by JM to William Bradford April 1, 1774, and James Madison, A Biography in his Own Words, edited by Joseph Gardner, p. 93, (1974, Newsweek, New York, NY) Quoting Memorial and Remonstrance against Religious Assessments by JM, June 1785.

    Ethan Allen, whose capture of Fort Ticonderoga while commanding the Green Mountain Boys helped inspire Congress and the country to pursue the War of Independence, said, “That Jesus Christ was not God is evidence from his own words.” In the same book, Allen noted that he was generally “denominated a Deist, the reality of which I never disputed, being conscious that I am no Christian.” When Allen married Fanny Buchanan, he stopped his own wedding ceremony when the judge asked him if he promised “to live with Fanny Buchanan agreeable to the laws of God.” Allen refused to answer until the judge agreed that the God referred to was the God of Nature, and the laws those “written in the great book of nature.”

    From:
    Religion of the American Enlightenment by G. Adolph Koch, p. 40 (1968, Thomas Crowell Co., New York, NY.) quoting preface and p. 352 of Reason, the Only Oracle of Man and A Sense of History compiled by American Heritage Press Inc., p. 103 (1985, American Heritage Press, Inc., New York, NY.)

    Benjamin Franklin, delegate to the Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention, said:
    As to Jesus of Nazareth, my Opinion of whom you particularly desire, I think the System of Morals and his Religion…has received various corrupting Changes, and I have, with most of the present dissenters in England, some doubts as to his Divinity; tho’ it is a question I do not dogmatize upon, having never studied it, and think it needless to busy myself with it now, when I expect soon an opportunity of knowing the Truth with less trouble.” He died a month later, and historians consider him, like so many great Americans of his time, to be a Deist, not a Christian.

    From:
    Benjamin Franklin, A Biography in his Own Words, edited by Thomas Fleming, p. 404, (1972, Newsweek, New York, NY) quoting letter by BF to Exra Stiles March 9, 1970.

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    • vtmawhinney Says:

      Brice, Thanks for this information. I have reread it several times.

      I hope you will review the quotes and information that disputes the main thesis of your freinds info.

      Frankly, I do not care about the matter of Christian or not…the majority believed in God and thought that without a population of God fearing individuals that the Republic would fail. I think they were right.

      Anyway check this out:

      http://www.faithofourfathers.net/index.html

      VTM

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  3. Frank Fujita Says:

    Hi Tom,

    No argument about the demographics of the county — the US has always been majority Christian and will be for some time. My point — was that legally, this country wasn’t created as a Christian nation.

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    • vtmawhinney Says:

      At the present, I know of no arguement that would support that this country was legally born a Christian country.

      With regard to the guiding values and principles that have made this country great, and the demographics, and the spiritual energy and focus of intended goals and outcomes, I believe it was predomenantly Christian in origin.

      I will be happy to leave it at that.

      Thanks, Frank

      Tom

      Like

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