Is America a Christian nation?
The question itself is ambiguous. Are we talking about the founding of America? The people of America? The government of America? The morality of America? We're weighing in on this important debate by reprinting The United States: A Christian Nation, written by Supreme Court Justice David Brewer and published in 1905. This pocket-sized, clearly written and inspiring book also includes a modern-day foreword and afterword by CAN founder Martin Mawyer.
So are we a Christian nation?
President Barack Obama narrowed it down to “the people of America” whe he said on June 28, 2006: “Whatever we once were, we are no longer just a Christian nation; we are also a Jewish nation, a Muslim nation, a Buddhist nation, a Hindu nation, and a nation of nonbelievers.”
Under Obama’s logic, America is no longer a Christian nation because other faiths, beliefs and non-beliefs are represented in the land.
Carrying the Obama logic further, it can then be said that we are also a Satanic nation, witchcraft nation, voodoo nation and a nation of Nuwaubians (those who believe that white people were created to serve blacks). These too live in America and practice their religions freely.
Obama is not alone in his simplistic logic. Secularists, humanists and atheists also point to the diversity of religious belief in America to support the notion that the country is no longer a Christian nation, “whatever it once was.”
This argument is irrational and farcical. There are child molesters in America, and we have rapists, thieves and murderers among us, but does that mean we are no longer a law-abiding nation? Should we concede that we’re no longer a nation of laws?
The answer, obviously, is “No.” We were founded in law. Law shapes all of our lives. The vast majority of Americans respect and obey the law. Never could it be said that, because some choose to follow another course, we are no longer a law-abiding nation.
Did the Obama administration suddenly become “no longer a Democratic administration” simply because Ray LaHood (a former Republican congressman from Illinois) was appointed as Secretary of Transportation in 2009? Hardly.
Is the New York Times “no longer a liberal newspaper” just because George Will’s column appears in it? Of course not.
The mere presence of a person, or a group of people, does not change the history and distinctive nature of an entity. FOX News certainly isn’t considered a left-wing news organization just because Juan Williams, Geraldo Rivera and Alan Colmes appear on camera.
According to a 2015 Pew Research Center survey, the Muslim population in America is 1 percent. The Hindu: .07 percent. Jews were only slightly ahead of both minorities at a meager 1.8 percent. Buddhists weren’t even numerous enough for the Pew Research Center to sample.
Christians, however, represent 75 percent of Americans. And of those Americans who claim any sort of religious belief, a commanding 94 percent identify themselves as Christian.
I understand why Jesus-haters cannot stomach these numbers, but for the vast majority of Americans, the national figures answer the burning question:
Is America a Christian nation?
Of course it is.
The Pew Research Center is unabashed in saying, “American remains a predominantly Christian nation.”
Predominant means to be “present as the strongest element, exertion or power.” So the strongest element in America, according to the Pew Research Center, is Christians. More Americans read the Bible than any other book ever published.
Even the liberal Huffington Post has admitted, “The Bible is the biggest bestseller in history.”
No other book resides in more American homes than the Bible, with 88 percent of households owning at least one. Most Americans own multiple copies, on average 4.4.
Bolstering the reality that the United States is a Christian nation are two U.S. Supreme Court rulings:
In 1892, Justice David Brewer wrote a majority opinion that asserted, “This is a Christian nation.” (Holy Trinity Church v. United States)
Again in 1931, the Supreme Court said, “We are a Christian people.” (U.S. v. Macintosh)
Neither of these rulings has been challenged or overturned.
Some will argue that referring to ourselves as a Christian nation is living in the past, and that it’s a notion too archaic and old-fashioned for modern civilization.
Tell that to the prime minister of England, who this past Christmas Eve referred to Britain as “a Christian country.”
“As a Christian country,” Prime Minister David Cameron said in his national address, “we must remember what His birth represents: peace, mercy, goodwill and, above all, hope.”
This coming July 25, Poland will hold a public celebration in the western city of Poznań marking its 1,050th anniversary of becoming a Christian nation.
These nations can look at themselves and see their true identity: Christian.
Meanwhile, in America these days, some look at a boy and call him a girl, look at a baby and call it a tissue mass, look at creation and call it random chance, look at Islam and call it a religion of peace ...
… Or look at a Christian nation and call it secular.
Not me. Americans should never forget or be ashamed of our historic relationship with Christ and what His message has done for all Americans, as expressed so wonderfully in the words of The Battle Hymn of the Republic.
In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea,
With a glory in His bosom that transfigures you and me.
As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free
While God is marching on.
What has Christianity done for America?
“It has stood for liberty and the rights of man,” Justice Brewer wrote in his 1905 book The United States: A Christian Nation.
“And the more thoroughly this republic is filled with the spirit of the gospel, the more universal the rule of Christianity in the hearts of our people, the more certainly will she ever be the welcome leader in movements for peace among the nations.”
Christianity has always represented the best things in the world: Justice, truth, free will and equality, to name a few. Whenever these great social gifts were torn apart, Christianity put them back together, sometimes through great sacrifice of human lives.
If anyone is turning the clock back, it’s the secularists and humanists who would throw us into the Age of Babylonianism – in which babies can be sold as spare body parts.