The Founding Fathers understood the sovereignty of God and his grace toward men, along with the call to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
1 "Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them"
While every person who wrote and signed the Declaration of Independence may not have been a Christian, many were. In fact, it is believed that up to 27 of the 56 Founding Fathers were trained as ministers. Either way, they recognized God's blessings, the laws of the world that God had put in place, and had a strength of conviction of knowing right from wrong and wrong from right. They called a spade a spade and understood the systems that God had put in place.
"America has been blessed as the longest on-going Constitutional Republic in the history of the world. These blessings are not accidental, they are blessings of God" - David Barton.
2 "Endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights"
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."
The writers and leaders of this new nation, the United States of America, recognized God's design and plan for mankind - a plan to prosper people and not to harm them, to give them hope and a future. This included life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. These God-given, sacred rights were being infringed on, snuffed out, and oppressed. Recognizing this basic human need and right of every person, our Founding Fathers put action behind their faith and beliefs and did something.
3 "With a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence"
The Founding Fathers understood that to do something as significant as breaking free from Great Britain, they would need God's divine protection and providence. For what they were doing, they could have been charged with treason. Yet, this group of righteous rebels against the King of England trusted in God's protection and providence.
David Barton writes, "The 56 Founding Fathers, 27 of whom were trained as ministers, took their pledge seriously. On the morning of the signing, there was silence and gloom as each man was called up to the table of the President of Congress to sign the document, knowing that it could mean their death by hanging."
4 "The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States."
Our Founding Fathers were men of conviction who knew they could not sit idly by hoping for someone else to be bold, to be strong, and to take a stand. They knew times like this call for action and that my friend is what our faith is really all about - taking action to do what is right. There are sins of commission - sins you consciously or unconsciously do - lie, cheat, steal. Then there are sins of omission, things you should have done but didn't do - help someone in need, give to the poor, share food, practice hospitality. For these men at this time, it would have been a sin of omission to not take action and do something.
5 An Expressed Desire for Justice & Righteousness
Our Founding Fathers acted on their knowledge of Scripture and their conscience before God. It is believed that John Adams said, "The general principles on which the Fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity." Christianity is founded on the need for freedom and the actions of Jesus to bring liberty to the nations. Likewise, Adams recognized the work of these men in founding our great nation was inspired by the general principles of Christianity.
6 "We mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor."
There is a blessing and a strength in unity. Our Founding Fathers understood the principles of agreement, faith, and the strength of standing as one. Psalm 133 reads, "How good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity." There was a solemnity amongst these men that set them free to serve this new nation and one another, laying down their lives for one another, preferring one another, this all sounds familiar doesn't it.
7 Proclaiming liberty throughout the land
4 days after the Declaration of Indepence was signed on July 4, it was then read in Philadelphia on the steps of Independence Hall, and the Liberty Bell was rung. The inscription on the bell - Leviticus 25:10, "Proclaim liberty throughout the land and to all the inhabitants thereof."