In 2026 our nation will celebrate 250 years since the Declaration of Independence leading to the development of our constitution and the formation of our nation. Did our Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ direct our founding fathers? The Declaration of Independence affirmed the founding fathers’ belief and trust in God in these words: “We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.”
Was Christopher Columbus Inspired to Find This Land?
On several occasions Columbus gave credit to the Almighty. In writing to the Spanish leaders, he said, “Our Lord unlocked my mind, sent me upon the sea, and gave me fire for the deed. Who heard of my enterprise, called it foolish, mocked me, and laughed. But who can doubt but that the Holy Ghost inspired me?” (Jacob
Wassermann, Columbus, Don Quixote of the Seas, trans. Eric Sutton, Boston: Little, Brown, and Co., 1930, p. 20.)
“And I looked and beheld a man among the Gentiles, who was separated from the seed of my brethren by the many waters; and I beheld the Spirit of God, that it came down and wrought upon the man; and he went forth upon the many waters, even unto the seed of my brethren, who were in the promised land.” (1 Nephi 13: 12 in the Book of Mormon)
Where else in the world do we find a group of men together in one place at one time who possessed greater capacity and wisdom than the founding fathers—Washington, Jefferson, Franklin, and others? But it was not to their own abilities that they gave the credit. They acknowledged Almighty God and were certain of the impossibility of their success without his help. Benjamin Franklin made an appeal for daily prayers in the Constitutional Convention. In that appeal he said, “If a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid? I believe without His concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better than the building of Babel.” (Mark E. Petersen, The Great Prologue, Deseret Book Co., 1975, p. 88.)
The Constitution a Miracle?
Both Washington and Madison referred to it as such. It was an inspired document, written under the divine guidance of the Lord. James Madison, commonly called the Father of the Constitution, recognized this inspiration, and gave the credit to “the guardianship and guidance of the Almighty Being whose power regulates the destiny of nations whose blessings have been so conspicuously displayed to the rising of this republic.” (Prologue, p. 95.)
The Convention delegates had completed their work. As Gladstone said, it was “the most wonderful work ever struck off at a given time by the brain and purpose of man” (William Gladstone, North American Review, Sept.–Oct. 1878, p. 185),
James Madison also wrote: “It is impossible for the man of pious reflection not to perceive in it a finger of that Almighty hand which has been so frequently and signally extended to our relief in the critical stages of the revolution” (The Federalist, no. 37, ed. Henry Cabot Lodge, New York: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 1983, p. 222).
“I established the Constitution of this land,” said the Lord, “by the hands of wise men whom I raised up unto this very purpose” (Doctrine and Covenants 101: 80)
A Righteous Nation is Required
“I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers, and it was not there; in her fertile fields and boundless prairies, and it was not there; in her rich mines and her vast world of commerce, and it was not there. Not until I went to the churches of America and heard her pulpits aflame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because she is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.” (Jerreld L. Newquist, comp., Prophets, Principles and National Survival, Salt Lake City: Publishers Press, 1967, p. 60.)
John Adams said, “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” (The Works of John Adams, ed. C. F. Adams, Boston: Little, Brown Co., 1851, 4:31).
God inspired fifty-six men represented 2.5 million in 1776 to bring about a new nation that has literally blessed the whole world.
Part of the article was taken from “God’s Hand in The Founding of America”, L. Tom Parry, February 24, 1976 Speech and “our Divine Constitution”, Ezra Taft Benson, October 1989 Liahona Magazine.