Were our forefathers deists or did they believe the Bible?

Update:

My understanding is that they had great respect for and faith in the Bible. That means they believed in the God of the Bible.

Update 2:

duckphup - Many of the so called deists, believed in and loved the Bible.

14 Answers

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  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Many of them were apparently deists. It's certain that Thomas Jefferson and John Adams were deists. It's certain that very few of them would recognize current fundamentalist Christianity.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Some were devout fundamentalist protestants, some were deists, some expressed ideals that were downright atheistic (Ben Franklin, for example, attended the Noir Masse, 'the Black Mass', during his trips to Paris).

    One must remember that the founding fathers were a large group of varied backgrounds.

    The big ones who set up the important documents though? Washington, Jefferson, Franklin? Deists or atheists.

  • 1 decade ago

    Most of the signers of the Declaration of Independence had been through a seminary. Most people who do that believe. People have tried to rewrite history to say that some were deist because at some point in their life they may have gone through a crisis in their faith. To judge a person's lifelong faith by only considering their weakest moments, is not an honest way to look at someones faith.

  • Phil
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Depends on what forefathers you mean. Looking into the history of science, my field, a number of the great thinkers were deists. I don't know their opinion of the Bible. So in my case, I'll say yes.

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  • 1 decade ago

    The first people who settled in New England, the Puritans, believed the Bible. They were so fundamentalist that they burned women alive.

    The people who formed our system of government were largely deists, although many at least claimed Christianity. Thomas Jefferson even wrote his own version of the Bible, removing a lot of what he considered to be unimportant to Jesus' teachings. It's called the "Jefferson Bible". (Of course, he could write and read in Latin and Greek, I believe.)

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I presume that what you menat to ask about was the 'Founding Fathers', rather than 'forefathers'. If that is the case, then your understanding is quite wrong. You need to do a little research. For the most part, the people that we regard as the founding fathers were Diests. Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Paine, in particular, despised Christianity. The 'values' that established the philosophical underpinnings of the new republic were NOT 'Christian' values... they were the secular humanist values that emerged from the Age of Enlightenment, in Europe... and were an ESCAPE FROM the 'Christian' values of terror and enforced ignorance that had dogged humanity for nearly 1,500 years.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States...

    ** Baptist **

    Warren Harding

    Harry Truman

    Jimmy Carter (raised Southern Baptist, later left the denomination)

    Bill Clinton (Southern Baptist)

    ** Congregationalist **

    Calvin Coolidge

    ** Deist **

    George Washington

    Thomas Jefferson

    James Madison

    James Monroe

    John Tyler

    Abraham Lincoln (also listed as without affiliation)

    ** Disciples of Christ **

    James Garfield

    Lyndon Johnson

    Ronald Reagan

    ** Dutch Reformed **

    Martin Van Buren

    Theodore Roosevelt

    ** Episcopalian **

    (the first 7 listed below were all from Virginia, where the Episcopal Church was the state church until 1786.)

    George Washington (primarily Deist)

    Thomas Jefferson (primarily Deist)

    James Madison (primarily Deist)

    James Monroe (primarily Deist)

    William Henry Harrison (planning on joining?)

    John Tyler (primarily Deist)

    Zachary Taylor (Deist?)

    Franklin Pierce

    Chester A. Arthur

    Franklin D. Roosevelt

    Gerald Ford

    George H. W. Bush

    ** Methodist **

    James Polk (originally Presbyterian)

    Ulysses Grant (also listed as without affiliation)

    William McKinley

    George W. Bush (originally Episcopalian)

    ** Presbyterian **

    Andrew Jackson

    James Polk (later Methodist)

    James Buchanan

    Grover Cleveland

    Benjamin Harrison

    Woodrow Wilson

    Dwight D. Eisenhower (originally Jehovah's Witnesses)

    ** Quaker **

    Herbert Hoover

    Richard Nixon

    ** Roman Catholic **

    John F. Kennedy

    ** Jehovah's Witnesses **

    Dwight D. Eisenhower (later Presbyterian)

    ** Unitarian **

    (Unitarian Universalism is the religion generally associated today with those whose ideology developed from Deism.)

    John Adams

    John Quincy Adams

    Millard Fillmore

    William Howard Taft

    ** Presidents without affiliation **

    Abraham Lincoln (also listed as Deist)

    Andrew Johnson

    Ulysses Grant (also listed as Methodist)

    Rutherford Hayes

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Some were deists, some were devote Christians, some I believe were non-believers.

    It's a mixed bag! It's a great study...Washington

    had lot's of Pro-Christians views

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Both. Deists read the Bible, Quran, and Torah.

  • 1 decade ago

    Some did, some didn't. I know that Thomas Jesserson, for one, was a deist.

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