restoring our biblical and constitutional foundations


Why Do Conservative Christians Uphold the Scriptures Yet Compromise on the Constitution?

 David Alan Black

Last January I issued a call to Christians for renewed fidelity to the two foundational documents of our great nation, the Bible and the U.S. Constitution. My friends, let me reissue that call and invite you to join a crusade to change the culture and stop the present trend into moral and political chaos.

The Bible is our only reliable guide in matters of faith, and the Constitution, itself rooted in biblical law, is the best expression of man’s aspirations for freedom. Both are inspired documents: the Bible uniquely so as the inerrant and infallible word of God, and the Constitution as the greatest document ever penned by human hand other than the Scriptures.

These documents are inseparably linked in our history. The men who wrote our Constitution knew all too well that there was only one source of our liberty:

  • Our First President declared: “Reason and experience forbid us to expect public morality in the absence of religious principal.”
  • Our Second President, John Adams, said: “We have not government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”
  • And our Third President, Thomas Jefferson, the author of our Declaration of Independence, gave us this solemn warning: “And can the liberties of a nation be thought secure, when we have removed their only firm basis—a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are the gift of God? And they are not to be violated but with His wrath.”

These men knew that freedom does not come from government; it does not come from social position; it does not come from wealth. Freedom comes from the direct creative act of a Sovereign God—a truth Jefferson said was “self-evident.”

Ironically, the very same conservative Christians who follow the Scriptures when it comes to matters of morality (e.g., same-sex marriage, the ordination of homosexuals, abortion) fail to uphold the Constitution when it comes to matters of freedom. The Neocon-Christian Right alliance, which came to power during the Reagan era, now controls the conservative movement, wielding its influence through such mouthpieces as the Weekly Standard, the National Review, and the New Republic.

Say what they may, but adherents to this alliance are completely out of sync with the Constitution. Our politicians may assert that all Americans have the “right” to free health care, education, and retirement benefits, but none of these so-called rights is supported by the Constitution, and hence the case is closed—or ought to be. The Republican Party calls itself the party of limited government, but after three years of George W. Bush can anyone name a single regulation that has been repealed or a single agency that has been abolished? Even the National Endowment for the Arts, which is perhaps the most unconstitutional establishment in America, struts along exuberantly. And the problem is not just the Republican Party. On matters of foreign policy, trade policy, immigration policy, and socialized medicine, the two major parties have become inseparable twins.

The American people have a right to demand from their president that he lead the nation in the direction our Founding Fathers pointed us. In his Farewell Address, our first president implored us to stay out of Europe’s endless quarrels: “Why quit our own to stand upon foreign ground?” Washington asked. “Why ... entangle our peace and prosperity in the toils of European Ambition, Rivalship, Interest, Humour, or Caprice?” The Founding Fathers did not dedicate their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor to the cause of liberty so that the U.S. could emulate the empire they overthrew!

If we as a nation do not reassess our global commitments and our endless entanglements in social welfare as we march toward a one-world government, economic law will one day force us to do so anyway. It is my personal opinion that we will never restore the constitutional republic unless we come to terms with the judicial dictatorship in America led by the U.S. Supreme Court. I am also convinced that we need a new occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, one who doesn’t just read the Constitution and the Bill of Rights but one who understands them and is fully committed to following them as well.

In conclusion, America today faces a choice of destinies. On moral issues, we can go “back to the Bible”—or we can continue “slouching toward Gomorrah,” as Robert Bork has put it. And on national issues, we can decide to get “back to the Constitution” and live under the rule of law instead of the rule of expediency and compromise. In such a world, there is no need for Big Brother to “take care of us”—and no sophistry like a “living” Constitution.

August 7, 2003

David Alan Black is the editor of

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