David Barton: In their words, did the Founding Fathers put their faith in Christ? (Part 3)

America’s Founding Fathers Deist or Christian? – DavidBarton 3/6

There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at war with religion in our public life. WERE OUR FOUNDING FATHERS BELIEVERS IN CHRISTIANITY OR SECULAR HUMANISTS THEMSELVES?

I had a chance to take my kids to hear Ken Ham speak one time in Little Rock because I really respect him a lot. Evangelical leader Ken Ham rightly has noted, “Most of the founding fathers of this nation … built the worldview of this nation on the authority of the Word of God.” 

Dr. Michael Davis of California has asserted that he has no doubts that our President is a professing Christian, but his policies are those of a secular humanist. I share these same views. However, our founding fathers were anything but secular humanists in their views. John Adams actually wrote in a letter, “There is no authority, civil or religious – there can be no legitimate government – but that which is administered by this Holy Ghost.”

David Barton has put together a great collection of quotes from the founding fathers about their faith in Christ:

The Founders As Christians  

Robert Treat Paine
Signer of the Declaration of Independence

I desire to bless and praise the name of God most high for appointing me my birth in a land of Gospel Light where the glorious tidings of a Savior and of pardon and salvation through Him have been continually sounding in mine ears.

Robert Treat Paine, The Papers of Robert Treat Paine, Stephen Riley and Edward Hanson, editors (Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 1992), Vol. I, p. 48, March/April, 1749.

[W]hen I consider that this instrument contemplates my departure from this life and all earthly enjoyments and my entrance on another state of existence, I am constrained to express my adoration of the Supreme Being, the Author of my existence, in full belief of his providential goodness and his forgiving mercy revealed to the world through Jesus Christ, through whom I hope for never ending happiness in a future state, acknowledging with grateful remembrance the happiness I have enjoyed in my passage through a long life. . .

Will of Robert Treat Paine


Charles Cotesworth Pinckney
Signer of the Constitution

To the eternal, immutable, and only true God be all honor and glory, now and forever, Amen!. . .

Will of Charles Cotesworth Pinckney


Rufus Putnam
Revolutionary War General, First Surveyor General of the United States

[F]irst, I give my soul to a holy, sovereign God Who gave it in humble hope of a blessed immortality through the atonement and righteousness of Jesus Christ and the sanctifying grace of the Holy Spirit. My body I commit to the earth to be buried in a decent Christian manner. I fully believe that this body shall, by the mighty power of God, be raised to life at the last day; ‘for this corruptable (sic) must put on incorruption and this mortal must put on immortality.’ [I Corinthians 15:53]

Will of Rufus Putnam


Benjamin Rush
Signer of the Declaration of Independence

My only hope of salvation is in the infinite, transcendent love of God manifested to the world by the death of His Son upon the cross. Nothing but His blood will wash away my sins. I rely exclusively upon it. Come, Lord Jesus! Come quickly!

Benjamin Rush, The Autobiography of Benjamin Rush, George Corner, editor (Princeton: Princeton University Press for the American Philosophical Society, 1948), p. 166, Travels Through Life, An Account of Sundry Incidents & Events in the Life of Benjamin Rush.


Roger Sherman
Signer of the Declaration of Independence, Signer of the Constitution

I believe that there is one only living and true God, existing in three persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. . . . that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are a revelation from God. . . . that God did send His own Son to become man, die in the room and stead of sinners, and thus to lay a foundation for the offer of pardon and salvation to all mankind so as all may be saved who are willing to accept the Gospel offer.

Lewis Henry Boutell, The Life of Roger Sherman (Chicago: A. C. McClurg and Company, 1896), pp. 272-273.


Richard Stockton
Signer of the Declaration of Independence

I think it proper here not only to subscribe to the entire belief of the great and leading doctrines of the Christian religion, such as the Being of God, the universal defection and depravity of human nature, the divinity of the person and the completeness of the redemption purchased by the blessed Savior, the necessity of the operations of the Divine Spirit, of Divine Faith, accompanied with an habitual virtuous life, and the universality of the divine Providence, but also . . . that the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom; that the way of life held up in the Christian system is calculated for the most complete happiness that can be enjoyed in this mortal state; that all occasions of vice and immorality is injurious either immediately or consequentially, even in this life; that as Almighty God hath not been pleased in the Holy Scriptures to prescribe any precise mode in which He is to be publicly worshiped, all contention about it generally arises from want of knowledge or want of virtue.

Will of Richard Stockton

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