I know of no way of judging of the future but by the past."
Patrick Henry: "Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Death"
How deep was the rift between Protestantism and Catholicism at that time, how fundamental to the patriotism of an Englishman was his long defense of a Protestant church settlement against the threat of Catholic Spain, and how largely the issues of religious life still claimed the first thoughts of men.
Letters Patent to Sir Humfrey Gylberte June 11, 1578.
"It shall be neeessarie for the safetie of all men that shall adventure themselves in those journeys or voiages, to determine to live together In Christian peace and civil quietnesse each with other, whereby every one may with more pleasure and profit, enjoy that whereunto they shall attaine with great Paine and peril."
Humphrey Gilbert, Knight, (my 11th great grand uncle) founded the first English colony in America. Gilbert, with other gentlemen assisting him in that action (among these, my 11th & 12th great grandfathers) took possession of the island of Newfoundland in 1583, and the first of the laws promulgated was that the religion of the colony should be "in publique exercise according to the Church of England."
From the beginning of this nation, as formed on this continent, God was recognized as being the sovereign ruler. On June 23, 1579 - the first Protestant service held in North America service in the New World was performed by Sir Francis Drake (my 1st cousin 11x removed) when his ship landed in Northern California. The same worship prevailed at Roanoke in Virginia and at Jamestown. The Puritans established the first educational systems in America to teach reading so every man and woman could read the Scriptures for themselves. Today, public education suppresses Biblical learning. But the pedagogical texts in the modern schools of education recognize that public education in early America had a godly purpose.
When the Founding Fathers of this country established our present form of government, they acknowledged that all right and authority came from Almighty God. They so stated in the Declaration of Independence. After all, European civilization had accepted the God of the Bible for the last 1700 years, recognizing that the creation of the Israelite theocracy under the divine law established the cornerstone and rationale for all government. Through the generations of European immigrants, the Divine law and the authority of our Creator in the affairs and destiny of the nation were always accepted and seldom questioned. For more than two hundred years the American government has moved in the direction of the Christian ideal that God is no respecter of persons. That is, that all men are equal before the law as the body politic strives for equal justice, righteousness, and fairness. The particulars of regulatory law in the Books of Moses were incorporated where they applied into the laws of the land.