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Understanding the Constitution: Ten Things Every Christian Should Know About the Supreme Law of the Land (and the Study Guide) One Nation Under God: Ten Things Every Christian Should Know About the Fo Review by Dr. Anne Margaret WrightDavid Gibbs Jr. and David Gibbs III and
David Gibbs Jr. with Jerry Newcombe
Christian Law Association
PO Box 4010
Seminole, Florida 33775-4010
My husband and I have always cherished the strong patriotism that is so prevalent in the homeschool community. While working on a Generation Joshua Student Action Team last year, we so enjoyed hearing the homeschool teens discussing constitutional issues and deep philosophical ideas with knowledge and passion! David Gibbs Jr., who founded the Christian Law Association to defend our Christian liberties, and his son David Gibbs III, who defended Terry Schiavo's parents in their attempt to save their daughter's life, have written some wonderful resources to help homeschoolers understand more about our government and history. Understanding the Constitution: Ten Things Every Christian Should Know About the Supreme Law of the Land and One Nation Under God: Ten Things Every Christian Should Know About the Founding of America were written to help the average person understand some of the important legal and historical foundations of our country.
Understanding the Constitution caught my attention in the first page by citing a 2006 study showing that only one person in 1,000 was able to name all five of the freedoms guaranteed in the First Amendment. Only "one in four Americans was able to name even one of these five important freedoms (freedom of speech, religion, press, assembly and petition for redress of grievances)!" This book presents a very comprehensive overview of one of the most profound and influential documents ever written, the U.S. Constitution, as well as some important background information on the Declaration of Independence and the Articles of Confederation. It completely dispels many of the misperceptions about the Constitution (which is printed in its entirety as an appendix), such as the "separation of church and state" (which is not a constitutional principle at all) and the notion of the constitution as a "living document" (as it is frequently interpreted by liberal judges today). Another interesting point from the book is that the Declaration of Independence is the "why" of our government and the Constitution is the "how."
One Nation Under God is a wonderful companion to Understanding the Constitution, as it provides a very enlightening discussion of the Christian principles that were pivotal in founding our nation. There has been an unrelenting attempt in recent years to deny the strong Christian faith of the early settlers of America and the founding fathers and to deny that their faith led directly to the underpinnings of the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution. It is not enough for us to believe and feel that ours is a profoundly Christian nation; to be effective in our culture, we need to have a solid, academically relevant means of knowing and proving this important point. If we cede this foundation, then we have lost the core beliefs and principles of our governmental structure. One Nation Under God does a masterful job of refuting these naysayers by providing solid historical proof in an understandable and interesting manner. Through careful research, the authors meticulously demonstrate important facts such as the following:
- Biblical Christianity was the driving force behind the desire for independence and played a leading role in the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution.
- Christopher Columbus, the Pilgrims, and the Puritans came to the New World to glorify God and advance His kingdom.
- America was largely founded as a sanctuary for religious dissidents.
A Study Guide is available for both Understanding the Constitution and One Nation Under God. These guides utilize a variety of exercises (fill-in-the blank, true-false, and essay questions) to help the student review the important material from the book.
I love that both Understanding the Constitution and One Nation Under God are unapologetically Christian and patriotic! The authors have given us some invaluable tools to push back the tide of revisionist and politically correct history, and to prepare us to defend the fact that the true greatness of America comes from our deep Christian heritage. Important concepts are clearly defined, such as the oft-used historical phrase "the laws of nature and of nature's God" and the understanding that our legal system is only adequate for a moral and religious people. I would highly recommend these books for high school students, parents, and anyone who wants to better understand the foundational principles of our government and the unique Christian heritage of our great nation!