Over the last several months, we have written a series of posts highlighting the various social, cultural, and governmental institutions that David Barton claims are directly rooted in the Bible. For Barton, any parallel he can discover between a provision in the Constitution and language in the Bible can only mean that the latter was the cause for the former, often going so far as to falsely claim that the Constitution quotes the Bible “verbatim.”
Now Barton has produced a new book called “The Founders’ Bible” which is designed to help readers “discover the Scriptures that the Founders used as the basis for our original founding documents, see what chapters inspired them in the fight for independence, understand the sacrifices they made because of their Biblically-based beliefs and learn about America as a Christian nation.”
We received our copy of the book today and we were not at all surprised to discover that it is full of the sorts of absurd claims we have come to expect from Barton. In essence, the book is a Bible interspersed with long explanatory articles written by Barton explaining how the adjoining passages served as the foundation for America and our form of government.
Many of the claims we have heard from Barton before, but the book also to contain several new ones, such as the statement that Independence Day was based on Biblical precedent.
As Barton explains it:
The turning point for the independence of the Jews … was the Passover, when God, in a miraculous demonstration of power, struck down the firstborn of the Egyptians. Out of all the amazing things along Israel’s lengthy road to becoming an independent nation and people, God commanded them to remember that one particular event and to celebrate the anniversary of that one particular day every year thereafter (Exodus 13:10.) And not only were they to honor that day, but they were also to use it to teach the rising generation about what God had done in birthing their nation (Exodus 13:8.)
Barton then explains that some of the Founding Fathers “saw a correlation between the account in Exodus and the American experience,” prompting him to declare that “the Fourth of July is an annual day of celebration and remembrance like that in Exodus 13 – one of the many American practices with Biblical precedents.”
Later in the same chapter, Barton declares that the Second Amendment is rooted in Exodus 22 which says that “if a thief is caught breaking in at night and is struck a fatal blow, the defender is not guilty of bloodshed” (though Barton conveniently edits out the rest of the line, which says “but if it happens after sunrise, the defender is guilty of bloodshed.”) For Barton, this is proof that “the Second Amendment’s ‘right to keep and bear arms’ is the constitutional embodiment of the Biblical right to self-defense found in Exodus 22 (and other passages) – another of the many American rights rooted in Biblical teachings.”
These are just a few examples that jumped out at us in just the first two chapters of Barton’s book, which contains several dozen of these sorts of explanatory articles through out its 2000+ pages; so undoubtedly this is merely the first in a series of posts highlighting the various claims Barton makes about how our social, cultural, and governmental institutions are all rooted in the Bible.