Gary discusses the book, The Christian Life and Character of the Civil Institutions of the United States.
Benjamin Franklin Morris’s deep concern about the loss of our Christian heritage in civil government and the threat of the de-Christianization of our nation’s civil government, law, and public life led him to write the Christian Life and Character and is evident in his introduction to the book. The combination of failing health, full-time work for the Federal Government, active promotion of the establishment of a church, and the labor of study and writing these two books greatly weakened him. The very existence of the War Between the States—he would have called it the Civil War—and the subsequent assassination of Lincoln distressed him.
The things which led Morris to compile and write the Christian Life and Character of the Civil Institutions of the United States have had a much more extensive development since 1864. Late nineteenth century and twentieth century American thought, following the main currents of modern thought, became more man-centered, intellectually and morally relativistic, more openly rebellious against God and His law-word. American educational thought and practice followed suit, and became “progressively” more secularist, relativistic, manipulative, and anti-Christian. American political and legal thought and practice became increasingly more secularist, socialistic, and antinomian. In short, Americans rebelled against God and His holy word.
While this was occurring, American Christians continued to retreat from Bible-based involvement in social action, education, intellectual pursuits, the shaping of culture, and political thought and action. Many in the old “main-line” Protestant denominations abandoned belief in the full inspiration and inerrancy of the Bible in favor of faith in science, belief in the unscientific, false claims of evolutionism, and credence in various bodies of modern man-centered thought. Many followed baptized versions of modern pagan social and political thinking and programs. On the other hand, many who believed the truth of the Bible retreated from social and political involvement because those who had abandoned belief in the truth of the Bible were involved in politics. Meanwhile, many Bible-believing Christians became so convinced that the return of Jesus Christ was so close at hand that they forgot—or abandoned—the Biblical duty to occupy until He comes (Luke 19:13). Forsaking Bible-based educational thought and action, they allowed their children to be miseducated in “public schools” and secularist colleges (including nominally Christian institutions). Forsaking Bible-based social, cultural, and political action, they increased the size of the vacuum which their parents had created.
Consequently, the foundation of a godly nation was not maintained: indeed, it was permitted to be well-nigh destroyed. So the Constitution and its Christian principles were increasingly ignored in practice. Hence, the size and scope of civil government was increased; power was centralized in the national government; and the rule of law was abandoned in favor of the arbitrary rule of men.
Thus, presidents, congresses, and federal courts have made multitudes of decisions which have undermined not only the Constitution’s principles but also Christian morality, the family, the social fabric, law and order, the safety of the individual and his property, economic freedom, liberty, and even domestic tranquility.
The Christian Life and Character of the Civil Institutions of the United States
Christian Life and Character could very well be responsible for the rediscovering of the truth of America's foundation in Christianity. This book should be the cornerstone of any personal, professional, church or school library for as Chaplain Sunderland (1819-1901) of the 37th Congress stated: ‘It may become the morning star of the mightiest day of national regeneration the world has yet beheld!’Buy Now
In this first part of an interview with Luke and Joy from Apologia Radio, Gary discusses the book, The Christian Life and Character of the Civil Institutions of the United States. While the influence of Christianity on the founding of America is undeniable, this book collects so much of that history into one volume that it is something of a library itself.
Click here for today’s episode