Your belief about where you came from will influence future choices that set your destiny. This simple idea applies in the short term, with respect to what you believe about the foundations of our country, and in the long term, with respect to what you believe about the origins of all mankind. The latter determines the former. How so?
If you believe that the earth and all that is in it was developed over billions and billions of years, your worldview will, no doubt, be existentialist – you will see yourself as “a free agent in a deterministic and seemingly meaningless universe”. As it was with the people of Israel in the days when there was no king, no absolute authority, in Israel, “every man did that which was right in his own eyes.” Your sense of right and wrong follows your desires. To you, homosexuality is okay. What can be wrong with loving someone? Abortion, destruction of a child in the womb, will be “a woman’s right to choose.” Last of all, you will want others to accept your worldview even if it takes the force of government to coerce them into acceptance.
However, if you believe that an omnipotent, ever-existing, all-wise God created the earth and all that exists in the cosmos, your worldview will be very different from the existentialist. Truth will not be relative to your thoughts and desires. Truth, you will accept, is the way things really are: an unfathomable order expressed in all nature, infinitely calculable, expressed in fractals and Fibonacci sequences that go beyond the limits of human imagination. If a biologist, you will come to understand this profound truth: there are no simple life forms and all life, all environments were seemingly engineered to live in perfect harmony by an infinite intelligence. If this is your worldview, life is precious, a gift from God and not something to casually destroy. To you, there is absolute authority and thus you come to recognize how our founding fathers were moved to craft a framework of government based on divine principles. There is an absolute right and there is an absolute wrong.
Initially, our nation was forged as a confederacy of states, each doing right in their own eyes. That confederate government was a dismal failure. And, so it was the states convened a constitutional convention to “fix” the confederacy. Naturally, self-serving carnal thinking left the convention a hopeless, fruitless failure. It was elderly Benjamin Franklin – “the least religious founding father” – that reminded the others how it was that our nascent country defeated the mightiest military force the world had ever known up to that time to win our independence.
Franklin reminded the others how their decisions during the Revolutionary War were the products of divine inspiration, divine revelation. He chided them for “groping as it were in the dark to find political truth, and scarce able to distinguish it when presented to us”.
Delegates to that convention followed the advice of their elder and turned to Bible study, prayer, praise and worship of our Creator. Out of those Bible studies and worship services came divine inspiration for our present Constitution.
President Calvin Coolidge said, “The foundations of our society and our government rest so much on the teachings of the Bible that it would be difficult to support them if faith in these teachings would cease to be practically universal in our country.”
In a 1926 speech, Coolidge remarked: “Things of the spirit come first. Unless we cling to this notion, all our material prosperity … will turn to a barren scepter in our grasp. If we are to maintain the great heritage which has been bequeathed to us …. we must not sink into a pagan materialism.”
Today, we as a nation are mired in incalculable debt that is at this writing 106% of gross domestic product (GDP). Our unfunded long-term obligations exceed $86 trillion, overshadowing our immediate national debt of $17 trillion.
Back at the Constitutional Convention, Benjamin Franklin said, “To that kind providence we owe this happy opportunity of consulting in peace on the means of establishing our future national felicity. And have we now forgotten that powerful friend? or do we imagine that we no longer need his assistance? I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth- that God Governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the sacred writings, that “except the Lord build the House they labour in vain that build it.”
The worldview under which this nation was founded was the creationist worldview. Our founders established the longest lasting constitution of any country in all world history by following the teachings of the Bible and yielding to the grace of God manifested through God’s Holy Spirit.
Should we at this time in history do otherwise?