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America's Departure from the Truth

America was founded on the Bible, and people used to depend upon God. Some say that they came here in search of religious freedom. Where do you think America stopped taking a stand?

This is a good question, but I am not sure that I have the qualifications to answer it. However, I will give you an answer and it may surprise you. I think America first turned around in the first half of the 19th century when first, the Bible ceased to be the primary text for teaching reading in the schools, and then, the King James text was retreated from because of Catholic pressure. Some quotes from "An American Bible: A History of the Good Book in the United States, 1777-1880" by Paul C. Gutjahr may help you understand what I mean.

  • The "Bible was long used as a primary text in schools in the years leading up to the American Revolution." (p.118)
  • "The conviction that all people should be able to read the Bible was a commonly held conviction among a large percentage of early Americans. It led several states to pass laws as early as 1642 requiring literacy education. Consequently, the emphasis on personal Bible reading under girded much of early American education." (p.118)
  • "By the 1820's, the Bible had almost completely receded from its role as pivotal text in teaching reading and had been relegated to a spot of daily or twice-daily devotional reading." (p.119)
  • "One of the major turning points in this decision of heavily religious, doctrinal material in the classroom came in 1827 when Massachusetts passed a textbook law prohibiting sectarian books in the classroom." (p.119)
  • By "the outbreak of the Civil War, there was a pronounced lack of doctrinal material in American classrooms." (p.119)
  • "The long-range consequences, however, of the...struggle to keep classrooms nonsectarian would eventually lead to the Bible being banned from school curricula." (p.120)
  • In the 1840's, Roman Catholics began to challenge the use of the King James Bible in the schools. Though they lost the early battles, legal rulings eventually succeeded in removing the ability of schools to require use of the Reformation Bible. (see p.120-140)
  • "A widespread familiarity with the King James text, partly propagated by the nation's schools, gave the United States a shared text from which to speak and anchor a common memory...As the Bible receded from the nation's schools and other public institutions, so did its power as a binding force for American linguistic practice, narrative convention, and national self-perception. A text that had provided the nation with a source of shared cultural memory and language for nearly two centuries would find itself increasingly 'ghetto-ized' among specific more Protestant segments of the nation's population." (p.141)

We retreated from the Bible as our major textbook at this time. It has been downhill ever since. But we must fight on. God bless. Thank you for your question.