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Biblical Citizenship in Modern America, Week 2 – Understanding Your God-Given Rights: Are the amendments in the Constitution really based on God-given rights? Why should you know your Constitutional rights? What moment marked the birth of America for John Adams and why should it matter to you? How does a nation maintain their freedom? Most Americans have been indoctrinated into a state of ignorance concerning our Biblical foundations; or worse, are being fed lies from sources such as the 1619 Project. Tune in to hear some true history and understand why the Bible is more relevant than ever, as we continue with Week 2 of Biblical Citizenship in Modern America!

Air Date: 03/01/2022

Guest: Various Guests: Mat Staver, George Barna, Rabbi Daniel Lapin, Rob McCoy, Jack Hibbs, Bob McEwen

On-air Personalities: David Barton, Rick Green, and Tim Barton


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Transcription note:  As a courtesy for our listeners’ enjoyment, we are providing a transcription of this podcast. Transcription will be released shortly. However, as this is transcribed from a live talk show, words and sentence structure were not altered to fit grammatical, written norms in order to preserve the integrity of the actual dialogue between the speakers. Additionally, names may be misspelled or we might use an asterisk to indicate a missing word because of the difficulty in understanding the speaker at times. We apologize in advance.

Faith and the Culture

Rick:

Welcome to WallBuilders Live. You have found the intersection of faith and the culture. And today we are in the second part of a four-part series on Biblical Citizenship in Modern America. Now don’t worry if you missed yesterday, it’s available at our website, wallbuilderslive.com. 

But even if you missed it, you can just dive right in because the information is so powerful and so useful and so applicable. And I promise you, you’re going to find hope, you’re going to find that the principles of liberty still work when we try them and when we implement them in our communities. The Bible has the answers for everything in life, including how our politics and our government work.

So we’re listening this week to Biblical Citizenship in Modern America. It’s actually the second week of the class. I know it sounds a little confusing, but it’s an eight-weeks course called Biblical Citizenship. And this week here on WallBuilders Live, we wanted to bring you the second week of that eight-weeks course. 

There’s so much powerful material throughout the eight-weeks, but at least we can give you a taste of it during this week’s WallBuilders Live. programs. If you missed yesterday, again, it’s available on our website at wallbuilderslive.com. But right now, let’s jump right back in where we left off yesterday. You’re listening to Biblical Citizenship in Modern America.

BIBLICAL CITIZENSHIP IN MODERN AMERICA

David:

James Wilson, who was a Founding Father who signed the Declaration and the Constitution and was on the original Supreme Court and started the first law school in America and actually wrote the first law books, his lectures, he says, “Every man’s house is deemed by the law to be his castle, and the law invest him with the power and places on him the duty of the commanding officer of his house”.

Alright now, grab this. He said your house is your castle, and if it’s your castle, you’re the commanding officer of your house, you have a duty to defend your castle. And that’s why he said every man’s house is his castle. And if anyone be robbed in it, it shall be esteemed his own default and negligence. In other words, my house is my castle. If I get robbed in my castle, it’s not the police fault for not being there, it’s my fault for not defending it. God put it in my hands.

So this is the phrase that we sometimes hear called “The Castle Doctrine”, I have no duty to retreat in my home. That’s a God-given right, comes out of the scriptures, comes out of the law of nature. You find it in nature. If you attack the home of any creature in nature, they’re going to defend that home, they’re going to defend their young and their property in their life. That’s a law of nature and it’s a law of nature is God. But the castle doctrine we hear associated with this, we need to go back and understand where that castle doctrine came from. It is a biblical concept, but it’s not limited just to the Second Amendment.

I want to take you back to a guy named James Otis. James Otis was a founding father to the Founding Fathers, a number of the big name Founding Fathers, John Adams and Sam Adams and John Hancock, they were mentored by this man right here. He was a great attorney. He was in the years leading up to the American Revolution. And one of the most notable things he did was an argument in front of the British courts in 1761 here in America.

1761 here in America, it dealt with what were called Writs of assistance. Now, we don’t really know what that is today because we don’t study it much. This is super, super important, because a Writ of assistance was very much like a search warrant, except it was blank, there was nothing filled in on it. So what happens is if I’m a British official, and I say, I want a Writ of assistance, I’m going to your house, I walk into your house with a blank search warrant. And I start going through all the closets and cupboards, and I pull out all the drawers and I look under all the mattresses, and I keep looking till I find something that I think is illegal. And once I find it, then I will fill out that search warrant and say this is what I was looking for. I was looking for whatever you had over here in the third drawer down in the chest of drawers.

And then I filled out and I go give it to a judge and said I found something illegal in his home. And the Judge says well, go arrest him he had something illegal. That Writ of assistance allowed anybody to come into your home at any point in time look for anything that they might consider to be legal, whether they actually knew something was there or not. So what happened was he argued against this in the courts. This is what he told the Judges. He said, “I will to my dying day oppose with all the powers and faculties God has given me all such instruments as slavery and villainy as a Writ of assistance is.” To him, there was nothing more low than those Writs of assistance.

So he’s arguing against it to the British courts and he’s a British attorney. He said “It is the worst instrument of arbitrary power, and it’s destructive of liberty and the fundamental principles of law. One of the most essential rights is the freedom of one’s house. A man’s house is his castle. These Writs totally annihilate this rights.” Now, notice this phrase “A man’s house is his castle.” This is where it gets used in American history. This is where it pops up. A lot of the other founding fathers quoted it later. But it goes back to this argument right here “A man’s house is his castle.” He said “It’s a power that places the liberty of every man in the hands of every petty officer. In other words, any government bureaucrat can now come in and take my liberty way, my house is no longer my castle who may reign secure in his petty tyranny and spread terror and desolation around him. Both reason and the Constitution are against such writs.”

Now I mentioned that he had a huge impact on a number of founding fathers and one was a young John Adams, who saw all the arguments that went with this. Because this was British policy at the time, it was being done by the British. But John Adams heard this “A man’s house is his castle.” And he thought about that for the next 15 years leading up to the American Revolution. And as we got close to the revolution, this is what John Adams recalled looking back. He said “That regarding that 1761 cases that American independence was then and there born.” Where? “In that courtroom when he argued that a man’s house is his castle. Every man in the crowded audience went away as I did ready to take arms against Writs of assistance. This kind of tyranny we won’t tolerate. There, and then was the first scene of the first act of opposition to the arbitrary claims of Great Britain. Then and there were the child of Independence was born. In 15 years, namely in 1776, he grew up to manhood and declared himself free.”

So he says, everything we did in American independence movement goes back to the Writs of assistance in 1761, which was based on the doctrine that every man’s home is his castle. Now, let’s take that concept for a bit that a man’s home is his castle. And it’s interesting that when you look at several members of the Constitution, remember amendments to the Constitution are given to protect God-given rights. This is the constitution saying government, you can’t touch these rights, they come from God to us.

Rick:

Hey, friends, quick interruption here, we’re going to take a quick break, we’ll be right back. You’re listening to WallBuilders Live. We’re airing Biblical Citizenship in Modern America.

AMERICAN HISTORY

This is Tim Barton from WallBuilders with another moment from American history. The Second Amendment to the Constitution, which guarantees to every individual the right to keep and bear arms has been targeted for years now by those who are determined to dismantle the individual right to self-protection. Opponents argue that only the militia, the military, and law enforcement are to have and use firearms.

But those who wrote the Second Amendment strenuously disagreed, including Founding Father Richard Henry Lee, a signer of the Declaration, a president of the Continental Congress, and one of those who actually frame the Second Amendment. He declared “To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young how to use them.”

For more information about Richard Henry Lee, in the history of the Second Amendment, go to wallbuilders.com.

Rick:

Welcome back to WallBuilders Live, good to have you back with us. Thanks for staying with us. We’re going to jump right back into our special for this week called Biblical Citizenship in Modern America.

BIBLICAL CITIZENSHIP IN MODERN AMERICA

David:

When you look at the Second Amendment, we talked about that, that’s the castle doctrine. You have the right to defend your home and your property. You have your right to defend life. We don’t have to back away from that. That’s a God-given right that God gives us and the laws of nature and nature’s God. So that’s a man’s house is a castle.

But let’s go to the Third Amendment for a minute. Because the Third Amendment seems a little unusual; it deals with the quartering of British troops in private homes. When the British were over here, we’d never needed the British military before, we did all of our own fighting. And suddenly we find ourselves to the American Revolution with 25,000 soldiers at a time coming to America. They don’t have a place to stay because there’s not British forts here. So they start putting British soldiers in the homes of private citizens. And they say, ma’am, we’re here in Boston, you take four of these soldiers, Mr. you take these eight, ma’am, you take these seven. And suddenly, we’re quartering troops in our homes.

Now, this is a real problem from the standpoint of man’s home is his castle, which is why we have the Third Amendment of the Constitution that says you can’t quarter military troops in private homes. But it’s not just military troops. Remember the concept that’s underlying all this. What’s underlying this is a man’s home is his castle. We don’t let government come into our castle and start doing what they want. And that doesn’t matter, whether it’s with the fence or with our own property, stepping into our homes, making it like the government’s home.

You’ll find in the Bible in Deuteronomy 24 there’s this passage, very interesting, this goes back to the castle doctrine. It says when you make a loan of any kind to your neighbor, so I’m making a loan to my neighbor, I’m going to get collateral from him. Do not go into that man’s house to get what was offered to you as a pledge. In other words, don’t go collecting the collateral by going into his house, stay outside his house and let the neighbor to whom you’re making the loan bring the pledge out to you.

I don’t even get to go into my neighbor’s house to pick up collateral that he’s putting down on loan. I stay outside his house and he brings it to me. Why is that? Because a man’s house is his castle. This is a biblical teaching. That’s why over the castle, the parents are in charge of the children, not the government’s in charge of children. The parents are because it’s our castle. So this is part of the Third Amendment.

Even if you look at the Fourth Amendment, Fourth Amendment, very interesting. Fourth Amendment says “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” This is all about Writs of assistance.

Now notice what it says here. If I just read that and don’t think about the modern era, if I just read it for what it says, I’m going to say you know what, IRS audits and bureaucratic agency searches of my receipts or papers, you can’t do that. IRS can’t demand to audit me. Here’s why. Because what does it say? It says, you cannot search my papers, that would be my check stubs. That’d be my business receipts. You can’t search my papers unless you have a warrant issued by a Judge on probable cause. Somebody has to swear to a Judge, yeah, I saw him and he’s got all sorts of corrupt stuff in his books.

Somebody has to swear to a Judge probable cause, then they have to do an oath or affirmation. They’re swearing under the law of perjury. If they’re telling a lie, then they’re in trouble. And it has to particularly describe the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized. In other words, if the IRS wants to do an automate, they have to say we have a warrant from a Judge. These are the witnesses that saw you do illegal things with your books and we want to see check stub number 478-941. That’s what they got to do. They can’t just come in and search my papers because my house is my castle. That’s a biblical doctrine.

And that’s why when you look at the Bill of Rights, and the scope and reach of government, because you remember back in the beginning, God gives certain jurisdictions to each form of government. There’s only certain things they can do. But you know what, if we as Christians don’t understand that, we’ll let those lines get all melted, and government will get into doing stuff the family should do or that the church do. Everything gets mixed up. So, biblical citizenship starts with understanding biblical lines of jurisdiction, and even our own history.

So a man’s house is his castle. That’s where we get the due process and the right to privacy we have in the Constitution. All the stuff is in there and it comes out of the Castle Doctrine, which is a biblical doctrine, is part of the laws of nature, nature’s God, which is what the Declaration guarantees to each of us. So there is indeed a biblical responsibility and even a biblical mandate for us to be active and informed and aware citizens in all that goes on around us with civil government.

Guest 1:

It is astounding to me how many people in America have been indoctrinated into a condition of complete ignorance, completely unaware of the extent to which the Bible and ancient Jewish wisdom shaped the founders. You know, again, as David Barton has pointed out so brilliantly, and it’s not an accident that the crests of these old schools like Yale and Harvard contain Hebrew words, because to these people who came here and set things up, the people we think of as the founders, Hebrew was something they knew.

The second governor of the Plymouth colony was Sir William Bradford. The first 19 pages of his manuscripts, his history book, the history of the Plymouth Plantation is actually in his own handwriting in Hebrew. So it’s really rather remarkable. But yes, I don’t doubt for a moment that if any of the founders came back to life, they will be much more comfortable sitting down over lunch with you and me, that they would sitting down over lunch in any government university campus in the country.

Guest 2:

You know, if you really contrast how citizens and other countries that don’t have the freedom that we have live out their religion, you begin to realize how much we have and we take for granted. For example, Harry Mahat, who is one of our legal counsel at Liberty Counsel, our chief litigation counsel, he was raised in communist Romania. And in communist Romania, his dad was arrested, other pastors were arrested for bringing Bibles into then communist Romania.

He has a situation once where the secret police came in with the German Shepherd sniffing dogs, they were trying to find contraband, the contraband were Bibles that the missionaries smuggled in. Fortunately, they never found them. In those kinds of countries, when you see the lack of religious freedom, the lack of freedom of expression, and then you see it here, we take it for granted. And so we have to realize how precious the freedom is that we have. And it is the ability, the freedom, frankly, the duty, the opportunity to be able to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with our friends, with our families, in our churches, in our homes, and in the public square. And so that’s really how you exercise it. That’s how you preserve your freedom as you exercise your freedom.

Rick:

Alright, friends, got to interrupt for just a moment. We’re going to take a quick break, we’ll be right back. You’re listening to WallBuilders Live.

PATRIOT ACADEMY

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Visit patriotacademy.com for dates and locations. Our core program is still for young leaders 16 to 25 years old, but we also now have a citizen track for adults, so visit the website today to learn more. Help us fill the void of leadership in America join us in training champions to change the world at patriotacademy.com

Rick:

We’re back here on WallBuilders Live, jumping right back into Biblical Citizenship in Modern America.

BIBLICAL CITIZENSHIP IN MODERN AMERICA

George:

A few years ago, David Barton and I had written a book called U-Turn. And one of the things that we did was we looked at the values of people in colonial days and then move through history and compared it with the values that people have today. Values are just one indication of the worldview that people possess because your values come out of that worldview. And one of the things that we discovered is that back in the late 1700s to early 1800s, the values of Americans were very distinct.

But when we compared that distinct list of primary values, and there were about nine of them, to the primary values that people hold today, there isn’t one value that overlaps from colonial America today. And that’s just one of a number of indications we have that our worldview has radically shifted. What we believed back during the founding years of the country, and the years and decades immediately after that bears no resemblance to the values and the morals and the mores, the traditions, the lifestyles that people choose today. And it all comes back to this issue of worldview.

Guest 2:

I think a lot of people today want to talk about authenticity and us being relatable, and yet we’re missing it. Our nation was founded upon the pulpits that were ablaze. Alexa de Tocqueville talked about that, where pastors spoke to the issues of the day and that caught the attention of the people. Instead of us trying to make our ministry relevant today, all we need to do is rely upon the word of God and speak the Word of God into the issues of life. That makes us relevant. The Holy Spirit, the Bible is relevant.

And I think we’ve lost that in the last 60-80 years in America. If we get back to doing that, I think we’ll see our nation recover both in our cultural awareness and certainly our biblical relatability where Christians are speaking into the culture truth. People resonate to truth if they’re hungry for it. They need to see it.

Rick:

Rick Green coming to you live from the Lone Star State of Texas. I’m really excited today because our family just got back from one of the coolest celebrations in the country. Paul Revere ride the Battles of Lexington and Concord on the anniversary of the shot heard around the world. And that begs the question, who fired that first shot?

Guest 3:

There’s a lot of mystery around the question of who shot first.

Guest 4:

I have a feeling that dad has some evidence.

Guest 5:

Somebody has got to know.

Guest 4:

It’s an opportunity to relive that special day.

Guest 3:

Black powder, fire, explosions.

Rick:

It feels like we have stepped back in time.

Guest 5:

Two of the greatest men our nation has ever known right here.

Guest 3:

Watching a reenactment is really cool, but being a part of it is even that much cooler.

Guest 6:

That’s why Paul Revere was coming to this house.

Guest 7:

The British had [inaudible 18:48] their head all the while.

Guest 8:

You could hear the drums of the British, fight is coming. We still had one looming unanswered question. Who fired for shot?

Guest 9:

During this critical time, when people are questioning about what America is or where it’s headed, I think it’s appropriate just to stop and ask why is America different from someplace else? 4% of the population in the world call themselves Americans. And yet every year they write more books, more plays, more symphonies, more copyrights. Inventions for thousands of years, people had hope to someday fly, it was the Americans invented the airplane, and the light bulb and the telegraph, the telephone, the Global Positioning System, put men on the moon.

Right now there’s a ship parking in the Hong Kong harbor or in Singapore using a Global Positioning System conceived, embedded, maintained by Americans. A Mercedes dealer in Buenos Aires is ordering apart in Stuttgart using an internet conceived, invented, maintained. No nation in the world has ever bless the world like America does, 4%. And yet, that which secure as the rest of the world.

You know for hundreds of years, Britannia ruled the waves. When a British ship was overrun in the Persian Gulf, has happened over 300 times last year, where can a ship or a person turn on the high seas? Only to the 327,000 Americans that wear the uniform of the United States Navy. The United States is a standard for righteousness and stability in the world and it’s been entrusted to us. And if we dare let somebody else take it, it is those that hate freedom, those that hate abundance, want to destroy our country. And now you and I have to make sure that that doesn’t happen.

Rick:

Alright, we are in the WallBuilders collection, this amazing place of founding fathers documents in American history. Tim Barton, David Barton, thanks for having us in. Man, this place is incredible.

David:

Great to have you here. And it’s really cool because this is history that really belongs to all of us, whether we know it or not. I mean, this is our heritage. Our history is so much good stuff here to be uncovered and revealed.

Rick:

Well, you say good stuff, but then there’s been a major attack on American history. So is our history good or bad or ugly or all of the above? We’ve really got to defend the American story. If we’re going to talk about defending freedom, we’re going to talk about we want to revive freedom, well, is it even worth reviving? Is the American story actually good or bad? Tim, you’ve been digging into this over the last year, so specifically to respond to this accusation that America is just evil at its core, and not even worth preserving. So take us down that road of history.

Tim:

Yeah. So it’s a crazy assumption, crazy statements. And obviously, we know from Scripture that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Therefore, we know America is not perfect, and nobody has ever lived in America has been perfect. With that being said, the fact that now most students can say more bad things about America than good things about America is a reflection that we’ve done a very bad job.

Rick:

Sorry to interrupt, folks, we got to take a quick break here on WallBuilders Live, we’ll be right back. You’ve been listening to Biblical Citizenship in Modern American and we’ll pick up after the break.

AMERICA’S HISTORY

This is David Barton with another moment from America’s history. Christians have always believed that the greatest life-changing experience available to any individual is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. And the testimonies of numerous converts confirmed the dramatic changes which often accompanies salvation.

One such testimony of change comes from founding father Noah Webster, who explained, “I was led by a spontaneous impulse to repentance, prayer, and entire submission and surrender of myself to my Maker and Redeemer. I now begin to understand and relish many parts of the scriptures, which before appeared mysterious and unintelligible. In short, my view of the scriptures of religion, of the whole Christian scheme of salvation, and of God’s moral government are very much changed.” The power of God to change a life yielded to him was just as evident at the time of the founding fathers as it still is today.

For more information on God’s hand in American history, contact WallBuilders at 1808REBUILD

Rick:

Welcome back to WallBuilders Live. Thanks for staying with us today. We are listening to Biblical Citizenship in Modern America here on WallBuilders Live. And if you missed any part of it, you can get it all at biblicalcitizens.com. The course is free and you can host it in your home or at your church. Check it out at biblicalcitizens.com. Let’s jump right back in where we left off before the break.

BIBLICAL CITIZENSHIP IN MODERN AMERICA

Tim:

This is where you can know that there’s been a lot of bad history has been taught. One of the places where a lot of has been learned was the 1619 project. And this was done by Nikole Hannah-Jones, at least she was the chief editor of this. And the New York Times wanted people to learn about how bad America was. And actually, the premise was that America was not founded in 1776, as the Declaration of Independence was done, and we separated from Great Britain and America actually became her own nation. No, that’s not when America was founded. America was founded, the argument is in 1619 when the first shipload of slaves arrived in America in Jamestown.

Now, with that being said, if you look at the original statement, the mission statement, the statement of purpose from the 1619 project, here’s the reason they said they existed. “The 1619 project is a major initiative from the New York Times observing the anniversary of the beginning of American slavery. It aims to reframe the country’s history. Understanding 1619 as our true founding and placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the very center of the story we tell ourselves about who we are.”

So the idea that we want to retell the American story and make sure that we highlight slavery and 1619 as the origins of the story, well, throughout the New York Times project, throughout the New York Times articles in 1619, actually on their website, you can go and see these articles. This is the title of the article “Our democracies founding ideals were false when they were written, black Americans have fought to make them true.” Now, it absolutely is accurate that black of Americans have fought throughout American history as patriots promoting American ideals and visions.

Biblical Citizenship in Modern America, Week 2 – Understanding Your God-Given Rights

But the notion that our founding ideals were false, well, the founding ideals were from the declaration. We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men were created equal; they were endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights that among these are life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness. And now to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men. Those were the founding ideals. And actually, the notion that there is a God and He gave rights to man and government’s main job is to protect our God-given rights, those ideals are true now, and they were true then.

But this notion that black Americans are the ones that fought to make them true, well, that would discount all of the abolitionists who were not black, that would discount all of the heroes throughout American history. Not only that weren’t black, many who weren’t even white men and women, but we don’t know those stories. But this is the accusation.

Another article says “American holds an undemocratic assumption from its founding that some people deserve more power than others”. Now, America’s founding, I would argue was 1776, when America actually separated from Great Britain and a combination, the premise of separating from the king was the king thought he had all the power in the people didn’t have power and there wasn’t a quality. And so the American said, we were against the notion that some people should have more power than others. This is the exact opposite of how we were founded.

Another article says “Slavery gave America a fear of black people and a taste for violent punishment, both still define our prison system.”

Rick:

Alright, friends, we’re out of time for today. We’ll pick up where we left off again tomorrow. This is going to be a four part series, so today was part two. Tomorrow, we’ll jump right in where we left off. Everything is available for free at biblicalcitizens.com. Thanks so much for listening today. You’ve been listening to WallBuilders Live.