“We hold these truths to be self-evident …” Declaration of Independence
“Tis substantially true that virtue or morality is a necessary spring of popular government. Who that is a sincere friend to it, can look with Indifference upon attempts to shake the foundation of the fabric?” George Washington, Farewell Address, September 19, 1796
The Founding Fathers wrote God-honoring natural-law philosophy into the Declaration of Independence. Morality inherent in natural law is the underpinning of the Constitution. Persistence in upholding this perspective separates the Constitution as a tool from defilement by the adherents of man-made law (Alexander Hamilton, Tully Papers, in Philadelphia newspapers 1794).
Natural law reflects the common-sense separation of wrong from what is right, as does man’s God-given conscience. In 2 Corinthians, Chapter 1, Paul rejoices in “the testimony of our conscience, that in simplicity and godly sincerity, not with fleshly wisdom, but by the grace of God, we have had our conversation in the world, and more abundantly to you-ward.”
Provisions that distinguish the application of American constitutional law include not destroying innocent life, not stealing and not being untruthful. Following through on an example, lying when a person gives evidence in a court of law is the crime of perjury. Liberal law professors avoid discussions about the origin of natural law because that requires an acknowledgment that the predicate for Constitutional interpretation–“government of laws, and not of men”– resides in higher biblical authority.
The impartial “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God“* are the moral connectors that uphold the work ethic, prosperity, and civil community. When we speak of morality here, we are speaking of what John Marshall wrote in the Marbury v. Madison opinion. He said, “The government of the United States has been emphatically termed a government of laws, and not of men.”
It is this bold rejection of the foundational history of law by atheistic-secular authoritarians and the elevation of natural-law philosophy that caused immigrants, by countless millions, to come to America. And it is the ironclad benefit resulting from applying the impartial “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God” that cause them to stay in America.
*Note: The phrase “Nature’s God” used in the Declaration of Independence did not originate with Americans. The Laws of Nature’s God include biblical standards of morality. When the bond between God and man was broken in the Garden of Eden, the forces of evil that seek to defy creation’s nature were unleashed. “The law of nature was a common term used by historic legal writers such as Grotius, Burlamaqui, Blackstone and others. The law of nature’s God, a lesser used term, was more commonly called the divine law, or the revealed law” (Loning Historical Reference Works).
~ David Norris