Franklin, Jefferson, & Washington and Christianity / by kevin murray

Historians would have us believe that Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson weren't Christians, and that George Washington was a Deist.  These beliefs are wrong and they therefore send the wrong message to posterity.  Franklin, Jefferson, and Washington were all good Christians in the most meaningful sense of the word.  A true Christian believes in a Higher Benevolent power and is therefore a brother to all men, as Christ said, "Love your neighbor as yourself," and these gentlemen embodied this sentiment to the utmost.


In 1790, Benjamin Franklin wrote in a letter explaining his Creed the following: "I believe in one God, Creator of the Universe…  That the most acceptable Service we can render to him, is doing Good to his other Children."  These weren't just idle thoughts of Franklin, he practiced what he preached by accomplishing or helping to implement:


            Street cleaning, street paving, street lighting

            Fire insurance company

            Public library

            Petition for the abolition of slavery

            Mapping the gulfstream

            First volunteer fire department

            Inventor of the stove

            Bifocal glasses

            Printer and writer

            Public servant


            Electric experiments

            First Hospital in America

            Proponent of frugality


            Signed the Declaration of Independence, Treaty of Paris, and U.S. Constitution


Franklin's life was devoted to his fellow man; his pursuit of excellence, his integrity, and his industriousness were seldom matched by any other man.  Franklin is the quintessential American man, self-made, self-educated, universally respected and loved, and successful both here and abroad.


In 1789, Thomas Jefferson wrote about the importance of each generation paying its own debts as follows: "What is true of generations succeeding one another at fixed epochs… The conclusion then, is, that neither the representatives of a nation, nor the whole nation itself assembled, can validly engage debts beyond what they may pay in their own time."  His wise words have been ignored by our present generation whose imprudent government passes onto future generation's deficits that they did not incur, which is an irresponsible and un-brotherly act of selfishness.  Jefferson was known for being:


            Author of the Declaration of Independence

            Public servant

            Founding the University of Virginia




            Author of Statue of Virginia for Religious Freedom


            Governor of Virginia

            President of the USA


Jefferson's authorship of the Declaration of Independence, is the most important founding document of this great nation, in which Jefferson states that our rights are unalienable and come from the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God, and that all men are created equal, and therefore our rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness come from our Creator. 


George Washington wrote in 1790 the following: "For happily the Government of the United States, which gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance, requires only that they who live under its protection, should demean themselves as good citizens." Washington was:




            Commander of the Continental Army

            Defeated Cornwallis at Yorktown

            1st President of the United States

            Freed his slaves upon death


Washington was in a uniquely powerful position upon the completion of our successful revolutionary war against Britain, but after the signing of the Treaty of Paris, he resigned his commissioned and retired to Mount Vernon.  When his country called on him to become our first President, he completed two terms and once again retired to Mount Vernon.  Washington's actions of walking away from power were virtually unparalleled and unheard of.  This was indeed a man of real principle.


Each of these great men, Franklin, Jefferson, and Washington were not only our Founding Fathers but men of the utmost respect, accomplishments, courage, industriousness, and scruples. There are great Christians in the finest meaning of its designation and our country would not well exist without their accomplishments.