John Adams (1735 – 1826)
Served eight years as Vice President under George Washington, second President of the United States, member of the Continental Congress, and signer of the Declaration of Independence.
“Suppose a nation in some distant region should take the Bible for their only law book, and every member should regulate his conduct by the precepts there exhibited! Every member would be obliged in conscience, to temperance, frugality, and industry; to justice, kindness, and charity towards his fellow man; and to piety, love, and reverence toward Almighty God…What a Eutopia, what a Paradise would this region be.” ~In is diary entry dated February 22, 1756
“I always consider the settlement of America with reverence and wonder, as the opening of a grand scene and design in Providence for the illumination of the ignorant, and the emancipation of the slavish part of mankind all over the earth.” ~In his notes for A Dissertation on the Canon and Feudal Law, 1765
“It is religion and morality alone which can establish the principles upon which freedom can securely stand.” ~Wrote to Zabdiel Adams, June 21, 1776
“Religion and virtue are the only foundations…of republicanism and all free governments.” ~Wrote in June of 1776
“We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” ~In letter addressing the First Brigade of the Third Division of the Militia, October 11, 1798
“If it be the pleasure of Heaven that my country shall require the poor offering of my life, the victim shall be ready, at the appointed hour of sacrifice, come when that hour may. But while I do live, let me have a country, and that a free country.” ~In a speech before the Continental Congress to the delegates from the Thirteen Colonies on July 1, 1776
“I have thought proper to recommend, and I hereby recommend accordingly, that Thursday, the twenty-fifth day of April next, be observed throughout the United States as a day of solemn humiliation, fasting, and prayer; that the citizens on that day abstain, as far as may be, from their secular occupation, and to devote the time to the sacred duties of religion, in public and in private;
that they call in mind our numerous offenses against the most high God, confess them before Him with the sincerest penitence, implore his pardoning mercy, through the Great Mediator and Redeemer, for our past transgressions, and that through the grace of His Holy Spirit, we may be disposed and enabled to yield a more suitable obedience to his righteous requisitions in time to come; that He would interpose to arrest the progress of that impiety and licentiousness in principle and practice to Himself and so ruinous to mankind;
that He would make us deeply sensible that ‘righteousness exalteth a nation but sin is a reproach to any people.’” ~He wrote on March 6, 1799 while calling for a National Fast Day.
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Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826)
Penned the words of the Declaration of Independence. He was an author, architect, educator, and scientist. The third President of the United States of America.
“And can the liberties of a nation be thought secure if we have lost the only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are the gift of God? That they are not violated but with His wrath? Indeed, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that His justice cannot sleep forever.” ~Notes about slavery on the State of Virginia, 1781
“I am for freedom of religion, and against all maneuvers to bring about a legal ascendancy of one sect over another.”
“The Bible is the cornerstone of liberty…Students’ perusal of the sacred volume will make us better citizens, better fathers, and better husbands.”
“The practice of morality being necessary for the well-being of society, He has taken care to impress its precepts so indelibly on our hearts that they shall not be effaced by the subtleties of our brain. We all agree in the obligation of the moral precepts of Jesus and nowhere will they be found delivered in greater purity than in His discourses.” ~The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, September 27, 1809
“The precepts of philosophy, and of the Hebrew code, laid hold of actions only. Jesus pushed his scrutinies into the heart of man, erected his tribunal in the region of his thoughts, and purified the waters at the fountain head.” ~From the papers of Thomas Jefferson entitled, “Syllabus of an Estimate of the Merit of the Doctrines of Jesus, Compared with Those of Others.” April 23, 1803
“Almighty God, Who has given us this good land for our heritage; We humbly beseech Thee that we may always prove ourselves a people mindful of Thy favor and glad to do Thy will. Bless our land with honorable ministry, sound learning, and pure manners.
Save us from violence, discord, and confusion, from pride and arrogance, and from every evil way. Defend our liberties, and fashion into one united people the multitude brought hither out of many kindreds and tongues.
Endow with Thy Spirit of wisdom to whom in Thy Name we entrust the authority of government, that there may be justice and peace at home, and that through obedience to Thy law, we may show forth Thy praise among the nations of the earth.
In time of prosperity fill our hearts with thankfulness, and in the day of trouble, suffer not our trust in Thee to fail; all of which we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.” ~His National Prayer for Peace on March 4, 1805.
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George Washington (1732-1799)
Commander-in-Chief in the Revolutionary War, President of the Continental Congress, first President of the United States of America, known as “The Father of His country,” eulogized by Henry Lee as, “First in War, first in peace, first in the hearts of his countryman.”
“No country upon Earth ever had it more in its power to attain these blessings…Much to be regretted indeed would it be, were to neglect the means and depart from the road which Providence has pointed us to, so plainly; I cannot believe it will ever come to pass. The Great Governor of the Universe has led us too long and too far…to forsake us in the midst of it…We may now and then, get bewildered; but I hope and trust that there is good sense and virtue enough left to recover the right path.” ~In Washington’s letter to General Benjamin Lincoln, his deputy in the War, who accepted British General Cornwallis’ sword at his surrender.
“I am sure that never was a people, who had more reason to acknowledge a Divine interposition in their affairs, than those of the United States; and I should be pained to believe that they have forgotten that agency, which was so often manifested during our Revolution, or that they failed to consider the omnipotence of that God who is alone able to protect them.” ~In his letter written to John Armstrong, 1792
“Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morals are indispensable supports…Let it simply be asked, ‘Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instruments of investigation in courts of justice?’ And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar stature, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.”
“The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained.”~In his Inaugural Address, April 30, 1789
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