Two-Hundred and Thirty-Four years ago, our Founding Fathers pledged their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor -- putting literally their lives, their wealth, and their reputations on the line --- to guarantee freedom for future generations. Because of their sacrifices, America is still the longest on-going constitutional republic in the history of the world. This is a blessing that we too often take for granted, states historian David Barton of Wall Builders < www.wallbuilders.com >
During his appearance Friday on Fox News Channel's "Glenn Beck Show," Barton revealed the names and deeds of African-Americans who contributed to the fight for American independence. Barton lamented the fact that many children -- both white and black -- are never taught the fact that there were people of color -- brave men and women -- who helped to liberate this nation from the oppression of a tyrant in the Old World.
What American children are force-fed by the government schools is a steady diet of omission of historical facts and the denigration of our Founding Fathers as slaveowners and cynical businessmen.
Each year, Americans celebrate the Fourth of July with barbeques, firework displays, fun filled times at amusement parks, or frivolous activities.
However, according to Barton, when the Founders reflected on what they felt upcoming Fourth of July celebrations might -- and should -- look like, John Adams said it should also be a day when we remember God's hand in deliverance and a day of religious activities when we committed ourselves to Him in "solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty."
Barton points out that the importance of remembering God's Hand in American independence has been passed on from one generation to next generation, which was illustrated by President John Quincy Adams' famous 1837 oration in which he reminded Americans:
"The birthday of the nation is indissolubly linked with the birthday of the Savior. It forms a leading event in the progress of the Gospel dispensation. The Declaration of Independence laid the cornerstone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity."
Many religious leaders, both past and present assert that in order to protect this nation's founding documents -- Declaration of Independence, U.S. Constitution, Federalist Papers -- one must recognize that the Bible's Old and New Testaments, as well as Judeo-Christian beliefs, must be the underpinnings of the founding documents. Otherwise, we are faced with decisions by judges and government officials that are adverse to Constitutional principles and our individual freedoms.
David Barton and Wall Builders suggest that as this Fourth of July approaches, we should break ranks with those who only participate in "traditional" activities and remember to:
- Take time to honor and thank God on the Fourth - make it a day celebrated "with solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty."
- Read the Declaration of Independence. Knowing the reasons for our founding is no less important today than it was 234 years ago.
- This is a flag-waving time of the year, so review the fascinating account surrounding Francis Scott Key's writing of the Star-Spangled Banner. (You can view a 7-minute video of that inspiring narrative, or download it -- www.wallbuilders.com -- to show at your church over the next two Sundays .
- Read John Quincy Adams' famous 1837 Fourth of July oration.
- With your family and/or friends, go online and learn about two Founders that you've never heard of or aren't familiar with. A great site to visit for more information about the founders is www.colonialhall.com.
If you are interested in reading other famous patriotic orations about the Fourth of July, or if you want to know mo re about each of the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence, you can order our two books on these subjects visit the Wall Builders web site (www.wallbuilders.com).
Enjoy your Fourth of July!