What The Founders Knew

In a recent Bible Class  meeting, after I presented the conclusions from our study of ‘What the Founders Knew, I was asked the question ‘What is your vision for America?’

I believe the best way to develop a national vision is to allow God’s vision for nations take center stage. He has a plan and His plans are always good (see Jeremiah 29:11, 12).   In looking at the Bible, particularly at God’s promises to any Nation that will serve Him, in conjunction with what the founders and at the succeeding elected officials actually did, their vision becomes very clear. Their time was very different from ours, but the evidence shows that they actually trusted God to help them. This is not to assume that every generation followed this pattern. Unfortunately, many did not.  


So, what was the vision of the Founders, and would it be relevant to us today?


The following Congressional and Presidential request of the American people shows a unity of thinking, a mind-set or an attitude of expectation of God’s Personal intervention in behalf of the nation. That expectation of Divine Aid is something that we do not see very much in our governing authority today. In fact, by becoming mostly absent in the political process, ‘we The People’ have allowed laws to be passed and implemented that prohibit this approach in solving our nation’s problems today. This must be changed.


1863 Request from Congress and the White House to the People of America:

Return to God – seek His Help

 Whereas, the Senate of the United States devoutly recognizing the Supreme Authority and just Government of Almighty God in all the affairs of men and of nations, has, by a resolution, requested the President to designate and set apart a day for national prayer and humiliation; and


Whereas, it is the duty of nations as well as of 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;


 And, insomuch as we know that, by His divine law, nations like individuals are subjected to punishments and chastisement in this world, may we not justly fear that the awful calamity of civil war, which now desolates the land may be but a punishment inflicted upon us for our presumptuous sins to the needful end of our national reformation as a whole people?


 We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of Heaven. We have been preserved these many years in peace and prosperity. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power as no other nation has ever grown.


 But we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious Hand which preserved us in peace, and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us; and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own.


 Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us!


 It behooves us then to humble ourselves before the offended Power, to confess our national sins and to pray for clemency and forgiveness.


 Now, therefore, in compliance with the request and fully concurring in the view of the Senate, I do, by this my proclamation, designate and set apart Thursday, the 30th day of April, 1863, as a day of national humiliation, fasting and prayer.


 And I do hereby request all the people to abstain on that day from their ordinary secular pursuits, and to unite, at their several places of public worship and their respective homes, in keeping the day holy to the Lord and devoted to the humble discharge of the religious duties proper to that solemn occasion.


All this being done, in sincerity and truth, let us then rest humbly in the hope authorized by the Divine teachings, that the united cry of the nation will be heard on high and answered with blessing no less than the pardon of our national sins and the restoration of our now divided and suffering country to its former happy condition of unity and peace.


In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.


 Done at the city of Washington, this 30th day of March, A.D. 1863, and of the Independence of the United States the eighty-seventh. Abraham Lincoln.


 By the President: William H. Seward, Secretary of State.


Copied from ‘America’s God and Country Encyclopedia of Quotations.’


What a refreshing concept! Our Congress and our President actually looking to our Lord for help in governing. To me, this represents a crystal clear image of what a healed America would begin to look like. It also represents a crystal clear image of why things are in such a mess today in America.


This is not just being nostalgic – longing for the past. This is faith in the One and Only God – looking forward to Him to re-unite the People of America and help us find and elect men and women who actually know Him and who think like Him and like so many of those who have come and gone before us. To me, this is what the founders knew. As President Lincoln and Congress expressed so clearly in their expectations in simply doing what the Bible prescribes:


Whereas, the Senate of the United States devoutly recognizing the Supreme Authority and just Government of Almighty God in all the affairs of men and of nations…


My vision and prayer for “Us the People” is that we continue to arise in unity – Unity in Christ – that we continually seek the ancient pathway, returning to Him Who made us – that we continue to observe the ancient monuments He erected here in our own land – that we continuously look to the only Source of good – to the One Who provides our security, our prosperity, and our peace. We have His word on it!


… for He [God] Himself has said, I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. [I will] not, [I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let [you] down (relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!]     (Hebrews 13:5 Amplified Bible)


I have adopted this early way of thinking as my own and am encouraging others to adopt it also, in order that together we might see our nation healed and united with one Spirit once more. To me, this embodies the true meaning and pathway of “Secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity”, as our Constitution declares.


And by the way, Yes We Can!