Constitution Alive, Section 5 , Part 3 – Our Duty To Country: What is your part of saving our God-given Constitutional Republic? Why didn’t the Founders want a standing military? How do we reign in a Congress who is trying to reign in areas not under their jurisdiction? How does a country get truly healthy? Does God expect us to be involved in government?Our Constitution is still alive and applicable today! As citizens, we all have a duty to study the Constitution, to understand where our rights and our freedoms are laid out in that document, and how our government structure should work. The reason our government continues to overstep its boundaries is because, “We the People” don’t know what those boundaries are! Tune in now for the last part of our three-part series!
Air Date: 9/15/2023
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
Welcome to the intersection of faith and the culture. This is WallBuilders Live! Where we’re talking about today’s shottest topics on policy, faith, and the culture, always doing that from a Biblical, historical, and Constitutional perspective.
We’re here with David Barton, America’s premier historian and the founder of WallBuilders. Also, Tim Barton, national speaker and President of WallBuilders, and my name is Rick Green, I’m a former Texas state legislator, national speaker, and author.
We’ve got a special conclusion today of a three-part series out of Constitution Alive. So, if you missed yesterday and the day before, don’t worry. You’re still going to learn a lot and enjoy today’s program, but then you’re going to want to go toWallBuildersLive.com, click on the archives section, and grab those other two programs yesterday and the day before because this is a three-part series. Today is the conclusion.
What’s the series about? It’s about the enumerated powers of Congress, actually diving into Article 1, Section 8, and helping to illuminate what those constitutional jurisdictions are for the Federal Government. We all know they’re outside those jurisdictions. We all know that each branch operates outside their jurisdictions, but the only way we’re going to put them in check and restore the constitutional republic is if we the people get educated on these things.
So, we’re sharing with you a Constitution Alive—section 5 of Constitution Alive, right here on WallBuilders Live. If you’d like, you can get the entire thing, the full DVD set and the workbooks, at our website WallBuilders.com. We encourage you to get it and share it with your friends and family. Let’s jump in where we left off yesterday for the conclusion of Constitution Alive.
The First War on Terror
Alright, David, I never asked you. You heard me talking about how I learned about the first War on Terror with you during that radio program. Could you tell that I had no idea what you were talking about?
I was trying to bluff my way through that. So, seriously, about that first War on Terror?
The first War on Terror changed the Founding Fathers’ view on a lot of things, one of which was the fact that, “Hey, we don’t negotiate with terrorists, and we will take care of them.”
This is really where we came to understand something the Founders opposed, because we look back in the Declaration and one of the things that ticked them off with the king was the keeping of a standing army among the people back at the time of the revolution. For a number of years thereafter we didn’t have forts, we didn’t have bases, we didn’t have places where we kept troops all the time. Our belief was, if anybody was dumb enough to come to America, we would call out the people again. We’ll grab our squirrel guns off the mantel. That is our army. We’re ready for this.
That’s what we’d done in the revolution. We don’t want a standing army because, throughout Europe, wherever we had standing armies, they oppressed the people. Part of the way we took care of that in the Constitution was we made sure the Commander-in-Chief was civilian, not military.
No Standing Army
So we have total control of the military, not with military folks, but with civilian folks. And I will go back to part of, even a previous President, the second president where there was an actual impeachment proceeding, President Clinton. At the time they were talking about, “ You know what he did in the White House, and what he did with sexual relations and all these things?”
He would kick people out of the military for that, because the Uniform Code of Military Justice says, “You cannot fraternize with people,” and that means sexual relations.
I stood up and defended him said, “Whoa, time out. He is not a military guy. You cannot use military standards on him. He is actually a civilian, and you can’t use the U.C.M.J with him because that’s how we separated the military from civilian.”
I was actually offended—
I was about to say that this doesn’t match your integrity, because regardless of who it is, you stick with the principles. You apply the principles fairly to everybody.
And it’s got to work across the board that way. So, with that being said, the Founding Fathers did not want a standing military because they’d seen all the abuses. Part of keeping their standing military gone is you put limits on it, and one is you put it under civilian control so that you can’t have the kind of coups other nations have. You can’t have what happened throughout the revolution with billeting, the billeting of British troops in American homes.
But what they hadn’t thought about was, “We’ll take care of you if you come here, but how do you protect your citizens that are abroad?”
The Muslim War on Christianity
And that’s what the First War on Terror revealed, because that was actually happening about three or four years before they met in Philadelphia for the Constitution.
But at that point it wasn’t a big issue yet. We sent out our first three diplomats to negotiate, which was Franklin, Jefferson, and John Adams. They went to negotiate with five Muslim nations we were having trouble with that were attacking, and the Muslim nations had a thing that, “If we see a flag on a ship of one of what we call the “Christian nations”, there were nine nations that were called Christian nations, America is one of them, we will attack them because we’re Muslims and we attack Christians. That’s what gets us to heaven, etc..”
So you have international law that says, “Wait a minute, a certain amount of miles offshore is international waters. You can’t mess with anybody’s ship, and you all agreed,” except the terrorists.
What would happen is our guys would go sailing into these areas. We were good partners with Russia as far as economic trade went. We would sail all over the Mediterranean and the various coasts, with the shipping and we’d send stuff overseas, bring it back, and you know. So all this stuff is going on, and every time these Muslim terrorists see an American flag, they attack the ship.
Well, because there is international law, your merchant ships aren’t outfitted with guns. They’ll have maybe two or three cannons on them so if you get in a fog and fire one off, people hear the cannon they know there’s a ship, but no way to defend.
You’ve got a few small cannons usually two or three, but these Muslim terrorists are coming against them with 64 gun Briggs.
Now you put that up against the merchant ship, and there’s no chance. So what you do is you capitulate, and at that point Muslims first were killing the Americans, but then they had a better idea.
“Let’s ransom them. We’ll sell them back.”
Bring A Speaker To Your Area
Hey, this is Tim Barton with WallBuilders. And, as you’ve had the opportunity to listen to WallBuilders Live, you’ve probably heard a wealth of information about our nation, about our spiritual heritage, about the religious liberties, and about all the things that make America exceptional.
And, you might be thinking, “As incredible as this information is, I wish there was a way that I could get one of the WallBuilders guys to come to my area and share with my group.”
Whether it be a church, whether it be a Christian school, or public school, or some political event, or activity, if you’re interested in having a WallBuilders speaker come to your area, you can get on our website at www.WallBuilders.com and there’s a tab for scheduling. If you’ll click on that tab, you’ll notice there’s a list of information from speakers bio’s, to events that are already going on. And, there’s a section where you can request an event, to bring this information about who we are, where we came from, our religious liberties, and freedoms. Go to the WallBuilders website and Bring a speaker to your area.
1.25 Million Sailors Enslaved
We have a number of letters from guys who are captive of the Muslims, who wrote back home saying, “Here’s what’s happened to us and what they’re doing to us.”
One guy wrote his wife and said, “This is probably the last word you’ll ever hear from me because of the way they treat us. That’s alright. I’ve made peace with Jesus. I’m ready to go.”
It’s a very, very compelling letter. So this is going on. What happens is, over that period of time, Muslims took about 1.25 million slaves, and not just Americans, these other eight nations as well, over a period of over 30 years with nine nations.
What they generally would do is say, “OK, if you’re a sailor on a ship, we’ll sell you back to America for $1,500. If you’re an officer we’re gonna get $4,500 for you. If you’re a captain, we’ll get $6,500 for you.”
So they will sell these crews back to America. Essentially, we’re financing their war against America. We’re giving them all this money, and that’s where we start saying, “Hey, we’ll give you a million a year and give you three ships if you stop attacking us.” And that’s where, as you mentioned, Jefferson had it.
He was not going to put up with that anymore.
It was Washington who first came to grips that we never wanted a standing army. We didn’t want a permanent navy. But we didn’t think about having to defend our people over at other places. By 1795, Washington calls for Congress to appropriate money to build a permanent navy, and John Adams executed that plan. That’s why he’s called the father of the American Navy.
How We Controlled the Army
Jefferson gets that, and he takes those new ships, loads the Marines on. They head, as you point out, not from the halls of Montezuma, but to the shores of Tripoli, and the Marines go there. The belief was we now have to be able to defend our people anywhere in the world. This is the first time we get a standing military. But it’s still not standing.
I get what you were saying earlier, though. That’s why, even though some of these things were started in 1784, they hadn’t escalated to the level that, when those guys met in Philadelphia, they would say, “Actually, we do need a standing army.”
So once they got it, and once Washington proposed that, is that why now, even though you still have to go back every two years because of that?
That’s the other thing that prevents a standing military. Even though we have a standing military, because after that with all the Muslim stuff that went through, about 1816, that’s when we started building bases and forts, and arsenals, and permanent military bases like West Point. We have permanent staff there. That had not been policy before. But the other requirement the Constitution has is you have to fund the military from ground zero up every two years. In other words, if you don’t, it goes away. It’s not going to be a permanent institution that goes through. We call that the National Defense Authorization Act. Every two years. It’s a big deal.
What Do We Do?
Every two years we start with nothing for the military and the funding. What we’re doing now is we’ve said, “Hey, we started building battleships last year. We’re going to keep building that and keep funding that, but you have to refund everything every two years.”
That’s the other thing that prevents a standing military. So you have civilian controlled military that you have to refund every two years. But in the meantime, as long as we can do that, then it’s not a permanent institution that threatens the liberties of its citizens, and we can go overseas and places and defend Americans. We’re supposed to go and defend Americans, but that all came from the Founding Fathers and the view they had of having no standing army. They had to modify it once we started defending Americans overseas.
Makes sense. Alright. What do we then—if we’re going to restore our constitutional republic, we’ve got to start thinking about our duty as its citizens and fulfilling that role. There’s a lot of areas in the Constitution that speak to what the people are supposed to do, whether it’s choosing your leaders, that sort of thing, and we’ll get to a lot of those specific duties later, but these guys specifically told us that, “If you don’t do your job, you’re going to lose all these liberties.”
So when people are at home, or in their churches, or wherever they are studying this, they need to think about it in terms of, “This is doing my part to literally save the nation.”
God Gave Us a Great System
It’s not a small thing when you’re studying the Constitution you’re planning to save the country.
Well, the question was asked, since God’s gonna do all this, why do we have to get involved?
There’s always that fun story that’s out there about a flood. A guy crawls up on top of his house and prays, “God, deliver me from the flood.”
Here comes a helicopter, “Hey, come on. We’ll get you out.”
“No. God’s going to save me.”
Here comes a guy in a rowboat.
“Climb in my boat.”
Three of those things come, and then finally the waters come and the guy drowns. Then in heaven he says, “God, I prayed for You to save me. What happened?”
“I sent you a helicopter and a boat, and you did nothing with it.”
This notion that, “Because God’s in charge we have to do nothing,” is absolute heresy from a faith perspective. There is nothing in the Scriptures that justifies you sitting on your tail and doing nothing.
He had sent us a great Declaration of Independence, a great Constitution, a great system—
Even from a religious standpoint, if everybody in the world is going to come to Christ, why do we need missionaries? Why give us the Great Commission. Just say, “You guys don’t do it. I’ll just do it from heaven”?
All of that is pure stupidity.
But I love the way the Founding Fathers dealt with this. John Witherspoon, he himself was a minister of the Gospel, and these are his original writings. He deals with this issue. This mentality has been there forever. He deals with this.
Just Because You’ll Die One Day, Doesn’t Mean Don’t Take Care of Yourself
“Hey look, God’s in charge of government. Why should we get involved?”
Now, in our particular case, we’re a stewardship government, but I just want to read you some of the logic that he applied here.
People say, “We don’t need to get involved. God’s in charge.”
He says, “Shall we establish nothing good because we know it can’t be eternal?”
Your house is going to fall over eventually, so why even build one at all?
I remember this one.
“Why should I clean my room, mom? It’s gonna be dirty again anyway.”
He says, “Shall we live without government because every constitution has its old age period? Because we know that we shall die, shall we take no pains to preserve or lengthen our life?”
Now, I’m going to die someday, so I’ll never see a doctor my life. I’ll never go see a dentist.
I’ll eat all the junk food I want.
Something’s wrong there, but I don’t care what it is. I’m going to die anyway.
We don’t think like that in any other area in life, why would we think like that in government?
And that’s what he says.
“This is far from it, sir. It only requires the more watchful attention to settle government, upon the best principles and the wisest manner, that it may last as long as the nature of things allows.”
I love that, “the more watchful attention.”
That’s what we’re doing.
Comedy and the Constitution at Front Site
Hey friends, Rick Green here. Have you ever wanted to laugh while learning? Would you like to actually have some humor included in your education about the Constitution? Well, that’s what Brad Stine and myself do in what we call Comedy and the Constitution.
We do it all over the country and can bring it to your community. But, we’re doing something we’ve never done before. We’re taking the Comedy and the Constitution Front Site in Nevada, and we’re going to combine it with the Constitutional Defense Program we’ve been doing for a couple of years.
Now, the Constitutional Defense Program is where you actually get some constitution training and some handgun training to you learn how to defend yourself and your family. You’re going to get all of it: the constitutional training; the opportunity to laugh with Brad Stine, God’s comic comedian, and you’re going to the handgun training at Front Site.
This is a one-time event happening June 3rd and 4th. There’s still time to sign up; but, space is very limited. So, if you want to be on the range with us, then you’ve got to get signed up right now at RickGreen.com. Find out more; it’s going to be a great event on June 3rd and 4th. So, get signed up today at RickGreen.com.
Long Lasting Stability V.S. Short Lasting Anarchy
Because it is going to someday die, you pay more attention right now because it won’t last forever, but you do want it.
I’m going to die someday, but I’d rather it be when I’m in the 90s than in my teens. So I’m going to do some things.
Same with government. Government is not eternal. It will not be eternal. But wouldn’t you rather have a government that lasts over two centuries, maybe three centuries, maybe four centuries, then being like France, who had 15 constitutions in the same time we’ve had one.
In South Korea they’ve had six constitutions since 1948.
If you’re 90 years old in Poland, you’ve lived through seven revolutions and seven constitutions.
Wouldn’t you rather have it last? That means we’ve got to get involved.
You used the term duty of men, and go and talk about the founders, and founders on duty, and that is a term from a faith perspective.
That question was asked, “Well, since God’s going to do it, why do we need to do anything?”
It is interesting, the term duty is something that is specifically addressed in the Bible. Jesus Himself, when his disciples were having trouble doing what He was doing, performing the same miracles, they came to Him, and in Luke 17 said, “Lord, increase our faith. We just can’t do it.”
And his answer to them, to increase our faith, was he told them a whole parable about learning to do your duty. If you want to be mature, you learn to do your duty. This is a word the Founding Fathers used repeatedly time and again.
Let me just give you some of their quotes here.
Do Your Duty
Sam Adams says, “The man who is contentiously doing his duty,” and by the way, the easiest way to define duty is that which you ought to do, whether you feel like it or not, duty is doing the right thing whether it’s convenient, whether it’s easy, whether you want to, it’s just doing the right thing, period.
So he said, “The man who is consciously doing this, is doing the right thing, will ever be protected by that righteous and all powerful being, and when he’s finished his work, he’ll receive an ample reward.”
In other words, God’s given you a country.
He said, “You’re the stewards over this country. You guys take care of it till I get back.” Luke 19:13 says, “Occupy until I come.”
So do it. And if you do your duty, if you’re conscientious in doing what you can do to make this thing last as long as it can, then he says, “When you finish your work, you’ll receive an ample reward.”
And that is what we know out of passages, particularly in Luke and Matthew, where the servants were called before the master, he said, “I gave it to you, what did you do to it?” They said, “We didn’t do anything with it.”
“You’re in serious trouble.”
We’ve been given a country. If we decide we’re going to check out, we’re in trouble. Here’s another founding in those principles.
John Hancock, he says, “And having secured the approval of our hearts, by a faithful and unwearied discharge of our duty to our country,” and this is interesting, he says, “If you’ll do what’s right, your heart will approve it.”
Duty is Ours, Outcomes are God’s
Your heart will say, “You know, nobody bought into that. You lost the election, but you did the right thing and so your conscience says you did everything you could.”
He says, “And having secured the approbation of our hearts by a faithful and unwearied discharge of our duty to our country, let us joyfully leave our concerns in the hands of Him who raises up and pullet down the empires and kingdoms in the world as He pleases…”
We don’t do our duty because it turns out right. God’s going to worry about how it turns out. Every constitution is eventually going to die, but that’s all right.
I tried to keep it as long as I could. Tried to keep it alive as long as I could. We’re going to let God worry about when it all dies.
That’s our part. We do that.
Here’s another good quote from John Jay, author of The Federalist Papers, the Chief Justice U.S. Supreme Court.
He said, “All that the best men can do is to persevere in doing their duty to their country and leave the consequences to Him who made it their duty.”
You just do it right. God will worry about how it works out.
He says, “Being neither related by success, however great, nor discouraged by disappointment, however frequent or mortified.”
We need to hear that. Whether the election goes great, or goes terrible. You’ll keep on keeping on.
What we’ve been saying for a long time, “The problem with conservatives is if they lose an election, they’ll pick up the ball and go home. But the problem with conservatives is if they win an election, they’ll pick up the ball, and go home.”
It Doesn’t End in One Battle
They think it’s all over in one battle.
But I love what he said, “f you’re doing your duty, then you’re not going to have the highs and lows.”
You’re not going to be elated by the best success. You’re not going to be disappointed by frequent and mortified lawsuits.
Back up to the first part of that quote again. So what you started with earlier, a lot of people, the question we got there in Independence Hall is “If God’s gonna take care of everything anyway, I don’t do anything?”
That’s the opposite concept. If we do everything we can to do the best man can do, we do our duty, we persevere knowing He is going to, in the end, take care of everything, but in the meantime, right now, I’m supposed to do everything He’s called me to do.
Well, we get rewards and punishments from Him based on what we do, not what everybody else does. If everybody else screws up the nation and it goes under, that’s their problem, but I’m not going to be part of that. I’m going to at least get some kudos from Him.
“Well done good and faithful servant,” because I’ve gotten there and tried to do something, as opposed to the slothful servant.
“You did nothing with what I gave you.”
No. That’s not what I want to hear.
That’s what they understood.
Until God Discharges Us from Our Duty, We Must Do Our Part
By the way, He said, “We must go home to be happy, and our home is not in this world.” Then that’s why people say, “Oh, God’s going to take care of it. I’m heaven bound.”
He says here we have nothing to do but our duty, and by it to regulate our business and our pleasures. If you’re looking to be happy and uninvolved, maybe in heaven, but not here, here you’ve got to regulate what you do by your duty.
Witherspoon said it this way, “The sum of the whole is that the blessing of God is only to be looked for by those who are not lacking or wanting in the discharge of their own duty.”
Alright. God’s gonna take care of it. I don’t know how it’s going to turn out. In the meantime, I’ve got to bust my tail to do everything I can.
The doors are open for an election? You show up. Right now in city elections and school board election, only three to six percent of Americans show up. Three to six percent.
We think, “Every four years, I’ll vote for President.”
Out of one hundred, three to six percent.
All this wacky stuff that’s going on, and people wrongly think we get healthy from the top down. No, you don’t. You get healthy from the bottom up.
Have you ever wanted to learn more about the United States Constitution but just felt like, man, the classes are boring or it’s just that old language from 200 years ago or I don’t know where to start? People want to know. But, it gets frustrating because you don’t know where to look for truth about the Constitution either.
Well, we’ve got a special program for you available now called Constitution Alive with David Barton and Rick Green. It’s actually a teaching done on the Constitution at Independence Hall in the very room where the Constitution was framed. We take you both to Philadelphia, the Cradle of Liberty and Independence Hall and to the WallBuilders’ library where David Barton brings the history to life to teach the original intent of our Founding Fathers.
We call it the QuickStart guide to the Constitution because in just a few hours through these videos you will learn the Citizen’s Guide to America’s Constitution. You’ll learn what you need to do to help save our Constitutional Republic. It’s fun! It’s entertaining! And, it’s going to inspire you to do your part to preserve freedom for future generations. It’s called Constitution Alive with David Barton and Rick Green. You can find out more information on our website now at WallBuilders.com.
You Get Healthy From the Bottom Up
You go take the local school boards, you go take the city councils, and mayors races, and your public position seats. From that you create a farm team, whereby you start getting good state Reps. in, good state senators, who will eventually run for governor, in Congress.
It takes a while to get healthy from the bottom up, but it works and it works well.
And we see it happen. We’ve seen seeds of this.
Your commitment should be, “I will do this. I’m going to vote every time there’s an election. I’m going to find out about it. It’s a constitutional amendment election, I don’t know what’s on the ballot, I’m going to find out.”
But the other thing is read, study, teach, know, defend, and assert. That’s our duty to do that. If we do that, it will make a big difference.
Can I see that Witherspoon quote again? The quote that you gave earlier, there was this phrase where he was talking about being watchful. What was it?
“It only requires a watchful attention.”
- Watchful attention. That’s what we’ve got to have more of in every single area of our game.
He said, “Because it is going to come to an end someday, we should have the more watchful attention.”
So he’s admitting the fact that it’s not permanent, but that’s why we’re more diligent, and more watchful, and that watchful attention.
Study the Constitution
That’s a good one. Well, there you have it folks. We are going to have more watchful attention in every area of our government in our next chapter here in Constitution Alive. We’re going to get into the presidency.
How can we have more watchful attention to the presidency, and make sure it’s constitutional? By studying what Article 2 in the Constitution says about it. When we come back here on Constitution Alive with David Barton and Rick Green.
Well friends, that is the conclusion of Section 5 out of Constitution Alive with David Barton and Rick Green. If you joined us today in the middle of the program, what you have been listening to is a portion of Constitution Alive. It’s actually one chapter, if you will, section 5. we call it, out of this eleven-part section of Constitution Alive.
So it’s a full DVD set.
It’s about eleven or twelve hours where we actually walk you through the entire Constitution, and we do part of that at Independence Hall. So we’re actually in the room where the Constitution was framed, teaching on what happened when they framed the Constitution and what they intended for each of those clauses and the different phrases. Then we actually go to David Barton’s library, and we pull all these incredible documents off the shelf, and David explains what the intent was. It’s just amazing.
So you get all of that in Constitution Alive.
Learn the Enumerated Powers of the Government with Constitution Alive!
Periodically, we bring you pieces of that here through WallBuilders Live, and give you a chance to learn those things. We really want you to learn it and pass it on.
Yesterday, the day before, and today, those three days make up Section 5 of Constitution Alive.
Right now you can go to WallBuildersLive.com. You can grab all three of those programs in the archives section and send them to your friends and family. Get them educated. Even better, go to WallBuilders.com and get the DVD set and the workbooks, open up your home, your Sunday school classes, at your local school, wherever, and teach people the Constitution.
Use the material that we’ve given to you. We want to equip you to be able to help your fellow citizens learn their duty under the Constitution. That’s how we’ll restore this constitutional republic. Thanks so much for listening. You’ve been listening to WallBuilders Live.