Opinion

SOUNDOFF: Founders gave thanks to God

Since this is the week of Thanksgiving, the recent letter entitled, “American does not equal Christian” (by Basil Debnekoff, Whidbey News-Times Nov. 20) requires a response. While the writer recognizes the division which exists, he apparently doesn’t understand that part of the reason is the Christian foundation on which our nation was built, a fact which he denies and derides. He states our founders would not countenance religious outbursts which acknowledge God. He suggests if we would but research the writings and history of our founders, we would see they were not Christians. Apparently, he has not done that himself.

Research will show that most of our early settlers were entire Christian congregations which came to this country for freedom from persecution, which apparently has followed us here, and to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Over 150 years later, at the time of the Revolution, about 95 percent of the population was Christian. It was not very long ago that the U.S. Supreme Court, in rendering a decision, stated that this is a “Christian nation.”

Every meeting of our founders, between the Revolution and the adoption of the U.S. Constitution, recorded reference to prayer, seeking guidance from God and giving thanks to Him. The writer states that the “creator,” (purposely not capitalized) mentioned in the U.S. Constitution, is some abstract force. But every reference to Creator, Nature’s God, Laws of Nature in those documents is capitalized and used only when referring to the proper name of a person. Our founders would have taken this writer’s words as blasphemous. I invite you to research, dear reader. Know the truth.

As to our nation, our most popular holiday is Christmas, which celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ, Lord and Savior of those that accept Him as such. Thanksgiving was begun by the Pilgrims and reinstated years later by our government as a time to thank the Almighty God for His blessings. Easter is the time we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ, His conquering death so that we may live with Him eternally. On the Fourth of July, we celebrate our independence, a victory for which God was given all the credit.

The writer certainly is entitled to his opinions, wrong as they may be. But the rest should understand why we celebrate Thanksgiving, and to whom it is that is due our thanks. As Christians, we thank God, and if you cannot do that, then yes, I guess we are divided.

Oak Harbor resident Barney Beeksma is a retired banker and former State Representative.

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