I’m a member of the Family Christian Bloggers and they provided me with an appreciation certificate to purchase a free copy of The Faith of American’s Presidents for this review.
To celebrate President’s Day, I decided to share some of the things I learned while reading The Faith of American’s Presidents. This book was released in 2007 and it covered 42 presidents. It explored which presidents had faith in God and which didn’t believe in the Christian faith. I have chosen three presidents to share about in this blog post.
Woodrow Wilson was elected to be the 28th president of the United States in 1912. A little background about President Woodrow Wilson, his father, Joseph was a Presbyterian preacher. He believed strongly that Sunday school wouldn’t be beneficial to his family and he thought parents were supposed to be teaching their own children about the word of God. Woodrow even continued this legacy when he raised his own three daughters. At age 17, he accepted Christ after attending a service where Frank J. Brooke preached. He joined the First Presbyterian Church in Columbia, South Carolina. This book included a journal entry from this time and it showed that he was upset about how he felt he sinned and how he wants to receive grace where he can serve Jesus more fully from now on. Wilson attended Davidson College and he took Bible courses in order to grow in his faith and he strived in becoming a professor. The book even revealed that he prayed and believed in reading the Bible regularly and he attended church every week. On the Sabbath though he sturdily refused to even read a newspaper. He married his wife, Ellen Louise Axson in 1885. In 1902, Wilson become president of Princeton University.
The book shared a speech he made regarding Christian education and parents key role. Some of his important points included teaching your children about being a Christian and we can’t expect them to be a Christian if we don’t act like Christians. He believed that the home was the foundation for children learning about Christ. He also felt Christians were placing too much emphasis on trying to scare our children into receiving salvation for the fear of going to hell. He felt we need to teach our children about having a true relationship with Christ. Throughout his presidency, he stayed connected to his Heavenly father. In his second inaugural address speech, he admitted to praying to God for wisdom and for the strength to be the leader he needed to be. He also felt there needed to be unity in the United States. He was also quoted at a speech in North Carolina saying, “our country cannot survive materially unless it be redeemed spiritually”.
The book also covered President James Abram Garfield. In 1831, he was elected the 20th president of the United States. Let’s take a look at a little background, he was saved when he was 19 years old at a camp meeting when William Lillie was preaching. He became a member of Disciples of Christ and they focus primary on the Bible’s teachings and they believe you can only join the church when you receive Jesus and you get baptized. In 1853, he began preaching in churches and the majority of his messages was centered on God’s love for His people. He strongly believed we need to have a relationship with Christ and seek to be good and we must find our purpose in life. He loved debating about God and religion during his college years. He was quoted as stating, “Christians have no right to participate in human governments.” This is something Disciples of Christ firmly believed against. He later changed his mind and ran for president. He was the only preacher who have ever been a president. During his presidency, he felt strongly that slavery was sin and the United States paid for that sin with the Civil War. As we all know, an assassin, Charles Guiteau shot the president in 1881. They discovered a letter from Charles explaining why he did it. He felt that the president would be happier in Heaven than here and he said he had no hard feeling towards the president.
Ronald Wilson Reagan was elected president of the United States in 1981. He was raised a Protestant and a book written by Harold Bell Wright, “The Printer of Udell’s” and it had such an impact on his life that he decided to get received salvation and get baptized. He even did some preaching in his teens and he taught Sunday school. He also chased his dream of being in movies and he was the leader of the Screen Actors Guild and he tried to prevent Communists from controlling Hollywood. He also hosted his own radio commentary for several years. He talked mostly about political issues and occasionally about Jesus. He also admitted that he believed the Bible was divinely written and he wholeheartedly believed in it. When he made his inaugural speech he expressed that this nation was one nation under God and God has allowed us to free. It declared that it was essential to make Inauguration Day a day of prayer.
During his first year at being president he had an assassination attempt and it caused him to lean more on God and he knew he owed everything to God. He had to quit attending church while in office but he had communion at the White House. During his term, he tried passing an amendment that allowed voluntary school prayer and it was reject. Reagan also was very vocal against abortion. He stated, “Our Constitution guarantees life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” And used his phase to try and protect unborn children. He also declared January 17 to be “Sanctity of Human Life Day”. He even declared May 7 to be the “National Day of Prayer”. He believe it was time for us to pray and seek God’s guidance.
I would recommend this interesting book to anyone who has an interest in discovering what our leaders believed in and what they stood for. I felt this book was very well written and thoroughly researched. Even though I have taken many history courses in school, this book taught me many different things about our presidents and their faith or lack of faith in Christ. I also strongly believe if we would seek God first in our lives and turn back as a nation and worship Christ for the loving Creator he truly is, we would see the nation radically change for the better! If you’re looking for a Christian historical book to read about our presidents, then read this book!
If you would like to purchase a copy of The Faith of American’s Presidents, then check it out at Family Christian.com: