Pushing Back Against Dismantling Christianity in America

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I do not support an Americanized Christianity, but I am passionately contending for a Christianized America. It was the influence of Christianity that gave America the prosperity and freedoms that have been the envy of nations all over the world. The same can be true of any nation, for as the psalmist declared, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord” (Ps. 33:12a).

America is now in trouble because there has been a decades-long war to dismantle Christianity in America. When President Joe Biden declared March 31, which happened to  be Easter Sunday, “Transgender Visibility Day,” it was not done in a vacuum. Neither was the White House ban of any messages about Jesus or His Resurrection on children’s eggs at the annual White House Easter Egg Roll. 

These were merely the fruit of this 60-plus year push to de-Christianize America. We have now reached a defining moment in our history, and it is time for all freedom-loving Americans to push back with the truth about the positive, life-giving role of Christianity in America.

America Was Known as a Christian Nation From Its Inception

For the first 150 years of America’s existence, no one questioned the axiom, “America is a Christian nation.” This did not mean that the nation officially sanctioned any church, sect or denomination. America was considered Christian because the vast majority of its citizens identified as Christian, and its laws and institutions were founded on Christian principles and values. 

John Marshall, who served as America’s second chief justice of the Supreme Court from 1801-35, made this point very clear when he wrote,

“No person, I believe, questions the importance of religion in the happiness of man, even during his existence in this world. The American population is entirely Christian, and with us Christianity and religion are identified. It would be strange, indeed, if with such a people, our institutions did not presuppose Christianity, and did not refer to it, and exhibit relations with it” (Hyatt, “1726: The Year that Defined America,” 169).

This fact was also stated by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1892 in the case of Church of the Holy Trinity vs The United States. After examining thousands of historical documents, the nation’s highest court declared,

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There is no dissonance in these declarations. There is a universal language pervading them all, having one meaning. They affirm and reaffirm that this is a religious nation . . . From the discovery of this continent to the present hour, there is a single voice making this affirmation. These and many other matters which might be noticed, add a volume of unofficial declarations to the mass of organic utterances that this is a Christian nation (Hyatt, 6-7).

This reality was expressed in American culture by Bible reading and prayer being common occurrences in all kinds of public settings since the nation’s founding. Until the 1960s, it was common for school days, school activities, sporting events, city council meetings and other public events to be opened with prayer. Bible verses, crosses and Ten Commandment displays were common on public property.

The War Against Christianity in America Begins

The nation was shocked, therefore, when, in two Supreme Court rulings, Engel vs. Vitale (1962) and Abingdon School District vs. Schempp (1963), the nation’s highest court banned school-sponsored prayer and Bible reading in the public schools of America. This ruling was based on a contorted and novel interpretation of the First Amendment that reads, “Congress shall make no law concerning the establishment of religion, or hindering the free exercise thereof.”

This ruling opened the floodgates of anti-Christian activism. Since that time, lawsuits filed by atheist/secularist organizations have resulted in the removal of crosses, Ten Commandment displays and other Christian expressions from public property. Veterans groups and military chaplains have been told they cannot pray in the name of Jesus.

A high school band in Mississippi was ordered by a judge to remove “How Great Thou Art” from the repertoire of songs they played at football games and other school events. The ACLJ, a law firm that defends many of these cases, has said, “Atheists and anti-Christian extremists continuously rush to court, claiming to be offended.”

This crusade to de-Christianize America came starkly out into the open when President Barak Obama announced to a Turkish audience on April 6, 2009, “America is not a Christian nation.”

Rewriting America’s History

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In addition to the attack on Christian speech and symbols, there has been a purposeful revising of America’s history, eliminating the stories of faith that are so common in the nation’s founding. This attempt to redefine America by rewriting her history is a vital part of the secularist goal to fundamentally transform the America of Washington, Jefferson, Madison and Lincoln.

Nations derive their sense of identity from their history. Remove or revise a people’s history and those people are then vulnerable to be molded into something new and different. This is what Karl Marx was referring to when he wrote, “People without a heritage are easily persuaded.”

The most recent attempt to dismantle Christianity in America by rewriting her past is the 1619 Project of The New York Times. Supposedly instituted to commemorate the arrival of the first African slaves to America in 1619, its stated goal is to “reframe” American history by claiming that 1619, not 1776, represents the country’s true founding. According to the 1619 Project, America is racist and corrupt at its core and in need of fundamental change.

The Truth Will Make Us Free

Slavery, to be sure, is a blight on America’s history. However, because of 1726, America is not defined by what happened in 1619. The Great Awakening that began in 1726 broke down racial and cultural barriers and unleashed the spiritual and moral forces that eventually brought an end to slavery in America. It also had a direct bearing on the founding of this nation.

Proclaiming this truth about America’s history is critical, for as George Orwell said in his classic book “1984,” “Whoever controls the past, controls the future.” And commenting on the demise of nations in world history, Carl Sandburg, winner of two Pulitzer Prizes, said, “When a nation goes down, or a society perishes, one condition may always be found; they forgot where they came from. They lost sight of what had brought them along” (Hyatt, 11).

Proclaiming the truth of how America was birthed out of a great, spiritual awakening is of paramount importance. This “Great Awakening,” which began in 1726, gave birth to an anti-slavery movement and resulted in America’s founders turning against slavery at a time it was accepted and practiced in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and most of the world (Hyatt, 90). 

As a result, America’s founding documents are colorblind, with no classifications based on race, ethnicity or skin color. It was the influence of Christianity that made this possible and also enabled the nation to abolish slavery and defeat Jim Crow, segregation and so many other societal ills.

Yes, it is time to push back against the dismantling of Christianity in America. I, therefore, invite you to join thousands of others and me in this fight for our heritage of faith and freedom. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, Frederick Douglass, Abraham Lincoln and Dr. Martin Luther King would all agree.

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Dr. Eddie Hyatt has over 50 years of ministry experience as a revivalist, pastor and professor of theology. He is on a mission, along with many others, to “save America” by pointing the nation back to her founding principles and praying for another Great Awakening to sweep across the land. His numerous books are available from Amazon and his website at http://eddiehyatt.com.

This article was derived from his book, 1726: The Year that Defined America,” available from Amazon and his website at http://eddiehyatt.com.

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