"Let every student be plainly instructed and earnestly pressed to consider well the main end of his life and studies is to know God and Jesus Christ which is eternal life (John 17:3)."
- - - The Laws and Statutes of Harvard College in 1643
"All scholars shall live religious, godly, and blameless lives according to the rules of God's Word, diligently reading the Holy Scriptures, the fountain of light and truth; and constantly attend upon all the duties of religion, both in public and secret."
- - - Two central requirements in Yale College 1745 charter
The Roman emperor Diocletian, following an edict in 303 A.D., failed to stamp the Bible out. The French Revolution could not crush it with secular philosophy (Rousseau, one of its heroes, converted to Christianity). The Communists failed to stamp it out with atheism and political ideology. One might well ask why this book has been banned, burned, and bludgeoned with such animosity and scorn. The great Reformation hero John Calvin responds in this way: "Whenever people slander God's word, they show they feel within its power, however unwillingly or reluctantly." - Joe Boot
"I believe the Bible is the best gift God has ever given to man. All the good from the Savior of the world is communicated to us through this book." -- President Abraham Lincoln
We can all pray. We all should pray. We should ask the fulfillment of God’s will. We should ask for courage, wisdom, for the quietness of soul which comes alone to them who place their lives in His hands. -- President Harry Truman
When there is a lack of honor in government, the morals of the whole people are poisoned. There is no such thing as a no-man's land between honesty and dishonesty. Our strength lies in spiritual concepts. It lies in public sensitiveness to evil. Our greatest danger is not from invasion by foreign armies. Our dangers are that we may commit suicide from within by complaisance with evil, or by public tolerance of scandalous ehavior. --President Herbert Hoover
Our faith teaches that there is no safer reliance than upon the God of our fathers, who has so singularly favored the American people in every national trial, and who will not forsake us so long as we obey His commandments and walk humbly in His footsteps. -- President William McKinley
Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," thus building a wall of separation between Church and State… --President Thomas Jefferson
The Bible is the one supreme source of revelation of the meaning of life, the nature of God and spiritual nature and needs of men. It is the only guide of life which really leads the spirit in the way of peace and salvation. America was born a Christian nation. America was born to exemplify that devotion to the elements of righteousness which are derived from the revelations of Holy Scripture. -- President Woodrow Wilson
In tendering this homage to the Great Author of every public and private good, I assure myself that it expresses your sentiments not less than my own; nor those of my fellow-citizens at large, less than either. No people can be bound to acknowledge and adore the Invisible Hand which conducts the affairs of men more than the people of the United States. -- George Washington
There are two prayers that I love to say—the first is the Lord’s Prayer, and because the Lord taught it; and the other is what seems to be a child’s prayer: “Now I lay me down to sleep,” and I love to say that because it suits me. I have been repeating it every night for many years past, and I say it yet, and I expect to say it my last night on earth… --President John Quincy Adams
Our strength lies in spiritual concepts. It lies in public sensitiveness to evil. Our greatest danger is not from invasion by foreign armies. Our dangers are that we may commit suicide from within by complaisance with evil, or by public tolerance of scandalous behavior. --President Herbert Hoover
We are all called upon by the highest obligations of duty to renew our thanks and our devotion to our Heavenly Parent, who has continued to vouchsafe to us the eminent blessings which surround us and who has so signally crowned the year with His goodness. If we find ourselves increasing beyond example in numbers, in strength, in wealth, in knowledge, in everything which promotes human and social happiness, let us ever remember our dependence for all these on the protecting and merciful dispensations of Divine Providence. --President John Tyler, December 7, 1841
Statesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for liberty, but it is religion and morality alone, which can establish the principles upon which freedom can securely stand. The only foundation of a free constitution is pure virtue; and if this cannot be inspired into our people in a greater measure than they have it now, they may change their rulers and the forms of government, but they will not obtain a lasting liberty. They will only exchange tyrants and tyrannies. --President John Adams
Whereas, it is the duty of nations, as well as of men, to owe their dependence upon the overruling power of God, to confess their sins and transgressions, in humble sorrow, yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon… --Abraham Lincoln
Without the assistance of the Divine Being who ever attended him, I cannot succeed. With that assistance I cannot fail. Trusting in Him who can go with me, and remain with you, and be everywhere for good, let us confidently hope that all will yet be well. To His care commending you, as I hope in your prayers you will commend me, I bid you an affectionate farewell. --Abraham Lincoln
Without God, there is no virtue, because there's no prompting of the conscience. Without God, we're mired in the material, that flat world that tells us only what the senses perceive. Without God, there is a coarsening of the society. And without God, democracy will not and cannot long endure. If we ever forget that we're one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under. --President Ronald Reagan
Mighty God…I yield Thee humble and hearty thanks that thou has preserved me from the danger of the night past, and brought me to the light of the day, and the comforts thereof, a day which is consecrated to Thine own service and for Thine own honor. Let my heart, therefore, Gracious God, be so affected with the glory and majesty of it, that I may not do mine own works, but wait on thee, and discharge those weighty duties thou requirest of me. --George Washington, in his prayer journal
No country has been so much favored, or should acknowledge with deeper reverence the manifestations of the divine protection. An all wise Creator directed and guarded us in our infant struggle for freedom and has constantly watched over our surprising progress until we have become one of the great nations of the earth. --President James K. Polk
Looking for the guidance of that Divine Hand by which the destinies of nations and individuals are shaped, I call upon you everywhere, to unite with me in an earnest effort to secure to our country the blessings, not only of material prosperity, but of justice, peace and union—a union depending not upon the constraint of force, but upon the loving devotion of a free people; and that all things may be so ordered and settled upon the best and surest foundations that peace and happiness, truth and justice, religion and piety, may be established among us for all generation. --President Rutherford B. Hayes
I only look to the gracious protection of the Divine Being whose strengthening support I humbly solicit, and whom I fervently pray to look down upon us all. May it be among the dispensations of His Providence to bless our beloved country with honors and length of days; may her ways be pleasantness, and all her paths peace. --President Martin VanBuren
Every thinking man, when he thinks, realizes that the teachings of the Bible are so interwoven and entwined with our whole civic and social life that it would be literally—I do not mean figuratively, but literally—impossible for us to figure what that loss would be if these teachings were removed. We would lose all the standards by which we now judge both public and private morals; all the standards towards which we, with more or less resolution, strive to raise ourselves. --President Theodore Roosevelt
The year that is drawing towards its close has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God. --Abraham Lincoln
The men who established this government had faith in God and sublimely trusted in Him. They besought His counsel and advice in every step of their progress. And so it has been ever since; American history abounds in instances of this trait of piety, this sincere reliance on a Higher Power in all great trials in our national affairs. --President William McKinley
“Finally, it is my fervent prayer to that Almighty Being…that He will so overrule all my intentions and actions and inspire the hearts of my fellow-citizens that we may be preserved from dangers of all kinds and continue forever a united happy people.” --President Andrew Jackson
"When I left Springfield I asked the people to pray for me. I was not a Christian. When I buried my son, the severest trial of my life, I was not a Christian. But when I went to Gettysburg and saw the graves of thousands of our soldiers, I then and there consecrated myself to Christ. Yes, I do love Jesus." --Abraham Lincoln
Oh! Almighty and Everlasting God, Creator of Heaven, Earth and the Universe: Help me to be, to think, to act what is right, because it is right; make me truthful, honest and honorable in all things; make me intellectually honest for the sake of right and honor and without thought of reward to me. Give me the ability to be charitable, forgiving and patient with my fellowmen - help me to understand their motives and their shortcomings -- even as Thou understandest mine! Amen, Amen, Amen. --President Harry Truman
"For we must consider that we shall be as a City upon a hill. The eyes of all people are upon us. So that if we shall deal falsely with our God in this work we have undertaken, and so cause Him to withdraw! his present help from us, we shall be made a story and a byword throughout the world." --John Winthrop, Governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, 1630
"It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible." - President George Washington
"The Bible is no mere book, but a Living Creature, with a power that conquers all that oppose it." - Napoleon
"That Book accounts for the supremacy of England." - Queen Victoria
"If there is anything in my thought or style to commend , the credit is due my parents for instilling in me an early love of the Scriptures. If we abide by the principals taught in the Bible, our country will go on prospering and to prosper; but if we and our posterity neglect its instructions and authority, no man can tell how sudden a catastrophe may overwhelm us and bury all our glory in profound obscurity." - Daniel Webster (Founding Father)
"The Bible is worth all other books which have ever been printed." - Patrick Henry (original member of the Continental Congress)
"The Bible is the anchor of our liberties." - President U.S. Grant
"It is impossible to enslave mentally or socially a Bible-reading people. The principals of the Bible are the groundwork of human freedom." - Horace Greeley (Editor)
"That Book is the rock on which our Republic rests." - President Andrew Jackson
"In all my perplexities and distresses, the Bible has never failed to give me light and strength." - Gen. Robert E. Lee
"Bible reading is an education in itself." - Lord Tennyson (Poet)
"So great is my veneration for the Bible that the earlier my children begin to read it the more confident will be my hope that they will prove useful citizens of their country and respectable members of society. I have for many years made it a practice to read through the Bible once every year." - President John Quincy Adams
"The existence of the Bible, as a Book for the people, is the greatest benefit which the human race has ever experienced. Every attempt to belittle it is a crime against humanity." - Immanuel Kant (Philosopher)
"The New Testament is the very best Book that ever or ever will be known in the world." - Charles Dickens (Author)
"All human discoveries seem to be made only for the purpose of confirming more and more strongly the truths contained in the Sacred Scriptures." - Sir William Herschel (Astronomer)
"There are more sure marks of authenticity in the Bible than in any profane history." - Sir Isaac Newton (Scientist)
"Let mental culture go on advancing, let the natural sciences progress in even greater extent and depth, and the human mind widen itself as much as it desires; beyond the elevation and moral culture of Christianity, as it shines forth in the Gospels, it will not go." - Goethe (Author)
"I have known ninety-five of the world's great men in my time, and of these eight-seven were followers of the Bible. The Bible is stamped with a Specialty of Origin, and an immeasurable distance separates it from all competitors." - W.E. Gladstone (Prime Minister)
"Whatever merit there is in anything that I have written is simply due to the fact that when I was a chile my mother daily read me a part of the Bible and daily made me learn a part of it by heart." - John Ruskin (art critic and social commentator)
"The Bible has been the Magna Charta of the poor and oppressed. The human race is not in a position to dispense with it." - Thomas Huxley (Author & Scientist)
"The whole hope of human progress is suspended on the ever growing influence of the Bible." - W.H. Seward (Secretary of State)
"America was born a Christian nation. America was born to exemplify that devotion to the elements of righteousness, which are derived from the revelations of Holy Scriptures. Part of the destiny of Americans lies in their daily perusal of this great book of revelations. That if they would see America free and pure they will make their own spirits free and pure by this baptism of the Holy Spirit." --President Woodrow Wilson
For Christians, the life and death of Jesus are the ultimate expressions of love, and the supreme demonstrations of God's mercy, faithfulness, and redemption. Since Christ's miraculous Resurrection on Easter, more than 2,000 years ago, Christians have expressed joy and gratitude for this wondrous sacrifice and for God's promise of freedom for the oppressed, healing for the brokenhearted, and salvation. --President George W. Bush
"It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religions, but on the gospel of Jesus Christ. For this very reason peoples of other faiths have been afforded asylum, prosperity, and freedom of worship here." --Patrick Henry (original member of the Continental Congress)
In 1796 the US Supreme Court issued this ruling, "By our form of government, the Christian religion is the established religion, and all sects and denominations of Christians are placed on equal footing." Some 57 years later, after Congress was petitioned to separate Christian principles from government, in 1853 the House Judiciary Committee issued their formal report, including these words: "In this age there is no substitute for Christianity. This was the religion of the founders of the republic, and they expected it to be the religion of their dependents. The great vital, conservative elements in our system is the belief of our people in the pure doctrines and divine truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ." - - - Dr. Gerald Beavan
"It is the duty of nations, as well as of men, to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God and to recognize the sublime truth announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history, that those nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord." -- President Abraham Lincoln
Trust in yourself and you are doomed to disappointment; trust in money and you may have it taken from you; but trust in God, and you are never to be confounded in time or eternity. - D.L. Moody
Faith and love are apt to be spasmodic in the best of minds. Men and women live on the brink of mysteries and harmonies into which they never enter and with their hand on the doorlatch they die outside. GK Chesterton
In the West, especially in the United States, not enough attention is paid to symbols and their cultural importance. We pay attention to status symbols, but we totally ignore cultural symbols. We live in the world of the bottom line. We have little time and even less patience for nuance. The value of terms and the symbolic value of actions are almost totally lost on contemporary western culture.
Not so in the Middle East!
In Arabic a metaphor is more than a collection of words. It can be a prophecy or a blessing. It can be a curse. In Arab cultures a symbol speaks volumes, only wordlessly. Symbols are ideas, they dictate behaviors, they tell stories.
The new and improved Iranian missile that Hezbollah is shooting at Israel, a missile that goes further and causes more damage than any missile that has come before it, is named the Khaibar. Why has the Hezbollah chosen to name a missile Khaibar? Because Khaibar is not merely a name, Khaibar delivers a message. When the Arab and Muslim worlds hear the word Khaibar a story of mythical proportions is conjured up before them. Israel is familiar with the story.
Khaibar was the name of an ancient town. According to the Koran, it was a town predominantly inhabited by Jews. Mohammed targeted Jews, trying to convert them in order to show off the supremacy of his new revelation and establish himself as "the" new prophet above Moses and all other Jewish prophets.
Mohammed gave the Jews of Khaibar the option to leave the town taking with them all their belongings. The Jews declined to leave. Mohammed gave the Jews of Khaibar a second option - just leave. Again, the Jews declined. Mohammed massacred the Jews of Khaibar. All of them.
The name Khaibar resonates with hatred and the mass murder of Jews.
Every Arab and every Muslim who has read the Koran realizes the true meaning behind this choice of name. Naming a missile Khaibar is a metaphor for the struggle between the Arab world and Israel. It is a metaphor suggesting the ultimate end to this struggle. The Arab world is telling Israel and the West, that this battle is not about Southern Lebanon, it is about the very destruction of Israel. We must not miss the symbolic value of this message.