The Declaration of Independence:
A Traditional Catholic Perspective
In the 16th century there was the revolution against Christ the King and His Catholic Church, known as the Protestant Revolt (the so-called ‘Reformation’). In the 17th century there was the revolution against the unity of God’s truths between the supernatural (revelation) and the natural (science). This unholy division which separated science from the Faith would provide a revolutionary view of the universe contrary to traditional Church teaching. It is known as the Copernican Revolution. (Since God is the Author of both natural and supernatural truth, one cannot –without severe distortion to one or the other- study either divorced from God and His Church.) By the middle of the 18th century one of the most significant changes in the entire history of the world, the so-called “Enlightenment,” became the dominant ideology among many philosophers and political figures. These all were primarily rebellions against traditional authority.
In the 18th century the war between the kingdom of God and that of Satan continued in the social-political realm, with Satan inspiring men to think in new ways in order to rebel against God’s established order. It was now a revolution in how man would think about himself and his function in society. These new ideas, in which men thought they were now enlightened, began a series of revolutions against the traditional Christian social and moral order throughout the western world: the American Revolution, the French Revolution, the revolutions in Europe in the 1830s and 1840s, the Revolution in Italy in 1870, and so on into the 20th century, which itself had over a dozen revolutions. The idea’s of the so-called "Enlightenment" paved the way for rationalism, naturalism, revolution against the traditional Christian social and moral order, Marxism, and Communism, and are still the dominant ideas among men and nations today. No one will have a proper understanding of not only American history, but western history of the past 300 years, if he neither recognizes nor understands the revolutionary and anti-Christian ideas of the "Enlightenment." Though somewhat varied and multi-layered, we will provide a precise and concise look at these ideas.The "Enlightenment"
Around the middle of the 18th century these new ideas, and a new false religion born of them, took root in the minds and hearts of many of the leaders of the American colonies as well as many in Europe. The new ideas arose from a movement called the “Enlightenment.” Basically the ideas spawned by this rebellious way of thinking were the following:
1. that human reason was the most trustworthy source of knowledge, not Faith, nor the authority of God’s revealed Word and His Church. Thus the social and physical sciences and the natural virtues, were emphasized over revealed religion and the supernatural virtues (in fact, the concept –and fact- of a divinely revealed religion was rejected). Thus, the laws of nature were held and promoted over the laws of God and His Church. 2. the belief that man was not fallen (hence the assertion of the supremacy of human reason), that there was no Original Sin, and thus no need of a Savior and a divinely revealed religion. (Jesus was simply "respected" as a great moral teacher.) Man and his own human interests became more important than knowing God, loving Him and serving Him. Thus, "rights" became more important than duty. 3. that the concept of freedom would no longer be defined as primarily the freedom from sin, freedom from falsehood and error, which includes the power to over come sin to do God’s will, and know the truth, for, as they held, there was no such thing as original sin and fallen human nature. Rather, freedom was redefined as the freedom to believe and live the way one wants. Freedom also was redefined to mean liberty from authority outside one’s self, liberty from the Church and the King. Hence, the concept of "self-government." 4. that politics and social life would no longer be governed by the laws of God and the Church (most had already rejected the Catholic Church by now anyway). Thus men could “invent” their own laws, their own morals, their own beliefs. Freedom was now understood as the liberty to decide for themselves how they will live according to what they think and feel is best, not according to what God has decreed and His Church teaches.
Many history books call this period the “Age of Reason,” or the “Age of Enlightenment.” A typical example of this is a work by Thomas Paine, a colonial leader, who wrote a much-read and blasphemous work entitled, The Age of Reason. In one place he wrote:
"I do not believe in the creed professed by the Roman Church, by the Greek Church, by the Protestant Church, nor by any church that I know of. My own mind is my own Church."Such claims were (and still are!) attractive to the rebellious minds of fallen men. In essence, this movement was nothing but rationalism, the very basis of liberalism. It is the rejection of the authority of God, of the authority of His revealed Word, and the teachings (and authority) of His Church.
Men thought they were now "enlightened" by these new ideas. Many made these new ideas appear attractive by saying that men had now learned to be free from the control of religion, which (they said) sought to enslave them. But this is exactly how Satan deceives. What this age really was, was the Age of Revolution, of a revolt against God, His laws, His revealed truths, and the rights of His One True Church. Therefore, it was a false enlightenment. This is what Catholics should call it. We say that this "Enlightenment" was false also because, as God inspired St. John to write, Jesus Christ is “the true light which enlighteneth every man that cometh into this world” (Jn.1:9). Unfortunately, as St. John goes on to relate, "the world knew Him not"(vs.10), for "men loved the darkness rather than the light" (Jn.3:19). It is from this failure of the world to recognize Jesus Christ and His teachings as its true Light (Jn.8:12) that any other so-called 'Enlightenment,' like the one that arose in the 18th century, was bound to be false. This is why we call it false, for one can only authentically be enlightened by holding the true Faith in Christ.
As we shall see, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States both presume and promote the ideas of the false "Enlightenment." The new religion that resulted from the false “Enlightenment” ideas is called Deism. Leaders of the Colonies like John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Paine, James Madison, Benjamin Franklin and others were all deists and promoted the false “Enlightenment” ideas. For deists, God was not a Personal God who cared for each of us by being involved in our daily lives (i.e., no particular Providence of God). God did not reveal truths which men must believe (i.e., no Divine Revelation). Theirs was a different God than the true God of Christianity, for Deists rejected the divinity of Christ and the Blessed Trinity. Deism also rejected completely the truth of religion as supernaturally revealed by God. There was no place for miracles and sacraments; there was no place for Church authority, for men chosen by God to teach and rule.
In the place of the true God was placed instead the idea of the “Great Architect” or “Watchmaker-God” who set Creation going and then left everything and everyone alone. Thus, men could decide for themselves what they were to believe and what not. The over-strictness of Puritanism in the north, the passiveness of the Quakers in the central colonies and the tolerance of the Southern Anglicans all resulted in the rapid spread of the religion of Deism and its errors.
Already the Protestant colonists rejected the authority of the Catholic Church, and hated anything that resembled Catholicism. So it was easy for the new ideas and the new religion to spread. The political institution that most resembles Catholicism is a monarchy. The Church is a monarchy, with Christ the King as its Head, and with the Pope His Vicar (representative) on earth. Because of the resemblance between a monarchy and the Catholic Church, the idea of a monarchical government had become more and more disliked by the colonists. The dominant attitude among them increasingly involved a rejection of both throne and altar. With Deism, all authority, political as well as religious, came to be rejected. It had no place in politics and government anymore than religion. Men who believed there should be no pope to tell them what to believe and govern over their souls now believed there should be no king to govern over their lives, either.
What may come as a shock to many Americans is the fact that Colonial leaders such as Adams (both Samuel and John), Franklin, Hamilton, Jefferson, Madison, and others, all denied the divinity of Christ our Lord, and they denied the truth of the Holy Trinity. (Thus, they did not believe in the One True God.) To deny the divinity of Christ is to deny Christ. Yet in America these men are held up as men of virtue and as our heroes. But no faithful Christian can honestly hold this. God has revealed that “whoever denies the Son, does not have the Father” (1 John, 2:23); therefore “anyone who does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God” (2 John. 9). In the final analysis, these men “did not have God.” Therefore, they were Godless, even though they may have used God’s name -or the term 'Providence'- in speeches and letters. (Such a practice continues even to this day -a much more secular and anti-Christian age than was the late 18th century.)
Freemasonry has been one of the chief means by which the ideas of the false “Enlightenment” were promoted. Freemasonry promotes naturalism over God’s divine religion and revelation –the Catholic Religion. What Masons call “God” is not the One True God of Christianity. It is the false god of Deism. Freemasonry and its "enlightenment" ideology and praxis puts man in place of God, reason in place of faith, nature in place of grace, and the state in place of the Church. Freemasons are in reality tools of the Devil, and this makes them enemies of Christ the King, His Church, and all forms of Christian social and moral order.
This is the heresy of Naturalism. It is what Liberalism is based upon. As with Deism, Naturalism denies Divine Revelation, supernatural grace, the divine foundation (and thus authority) of the Church, and also the source and power of the sacraments. One result of this is that the laws of men and society would no longer be based upon the laws of God and His Church. Their basis would be the ideas of rationalism. In other words, men would simply decide for themselves how they would live and what laws to make. As a result, there would no longer be a universal basis for law, but only man's own (fallen) rational mind as the basis.
Many of the leaders of the Colonies (and thus this nation’s Founding Fathers) were Freemasons. Masons had been busy spreading their ideas in America for some time. For example: James Oglethorpe of Georgia, who, if you recall, attacked Catholic missions and butchered both missionaries and Indian converts while enslaving others, was a Freemason. He was the first “worshipful master” of the King Solomon Lodge #1 in Savannah, Georgia (See Catholics: The First in Georgia and the Carolinas). The first Masonic lodge was established in Canada (Acadia) after the French-Catholic Acadians were sent into exile. (See U.S. History Myth Busters 2, #21)
It was clear to faithful Catholics that Freemasons were enemies to the Church. In 1738, Pope Clement XII condemned Freemasonry and all secret societies. Thirteen years later, in 1751, Pope Benedict XIV also condemned Freemasonry. In fact, every pope from Pius VI (1775) to Pius XII (1954) has condemned Freemasonry and its beliefs.(What follows may be quite difficult for many to swallow, and for others to digest, and this is so precisely because we have been so deeply soaked in the ideology of the so-called "Enlightenment" and unknowingly have been conditioned to view everything through its lenses and by its categories.) Declaration of Independence
On May 4, 1776, in a provincial congress, Rhode Island declared its independence from England. Then, in June, 1776, the Continental Congress declared that all colonists who were loyal to or fought for England were guilty of treason and should be punished. This was quite unjust, since to be guilty of treason one must be a traitor to an established political state or government to which one belongs. But the thirteen colonies were not a political state with a single government. In fact, they still belonged to England. So how could one wanting to be loyal to England at this time be guilty of treason? The answer is, one could not. This accusation also was ironic, since England considered the American colonists who were revolting of being guilty of treason.
With encouragement and approval from the other leaders of the revolt, Thomas Jefferson set to writing a declaration of independence. The Declaration begins by stating that “We the People” were establishing a new government. But the fact is the vast majority of the people knew nothing about it at the time, and had to be convinced of the idea only after the fact. Others, nearly half of the colonist population, wanted to remain loyal to their “rightful sovereign King George III,” as the Continental Congress of May, 1775, recognized. Thus, it was nothing but a usurpation of authority, and it should have stated, “We the self-proclaimed leaders assert on our own authority…”
In forceful language it is declared in this document that all men are created equal; that authority comes from the people; that the governed have a right to alter or abolish their government, in accordance with the ideas of the so called “Enlightenment.” It went on to describe what the rebels considered to be the crimes of King George III. These supposed crimes were called the “intolerable acts” of the King, which, as shown elsewhere (see U.S. History Myth Busters 2, #23), included the granting of religious freedom to Catholics in Canada and its territories west of the colonies (viz., northern Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, and northern Maine). King George was no evil tyrant as the rebel colonists made him out to be. But they had to portray him in such a way as an attempt to justify their rebellion against his proper authority, which they, as we have already seen, did recognize.
The Declaration of Independence has been revered throughout America ever since 1776. However, it is based on those very ideas discussed before under the (false) “Enlightenment.” One of those ideas was the belief that men can revolt (or rebel) against those who have proper authority over them. These are among the very ideas promoted by Freemasons and all revolutionaries.
Christians must recognize that these ideas, though appearing to be good, are in fact contrary to God’s order. To revolt against a properly established authority is a sin. It goes against what God has decreed. God has declared that ALL authority and power comes from above, from God, and that it is wrong to revolt against those above us. If we revolt against those over us, who have received their authority and power from God, then we are in this way revolting against God and His order. The Christian student of American history needs to recognize this. Here is what God has revealed in His Holy Word:
Let every person be subject to the higher authorities. For there is no authority [or power] except from God, and those that exist are instituted by God. Therefore, he who resists authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will receive condemnation. (Romans 13: 1-2)
As shocking as it may sound, the American colonists who revolted against England and its King were guilty of this. Revolution is disobedience; it is a serious sin against the Fourth Commandment (rebelling against those lawfully over us). Pope Leo XIII (1878-1903) recognized this fact when he stated: “Inciting to revolution is treason, not only against man, but against God.” God’s Word makes it clear that authority does NOT come from the people (i.e. not from below), but from God above. Therefore, to rebel against legitimate authority is to rebel against God. Remember, the colonists were not trying to free themselves from some foreign power; they were British subjects at that time and they rebelled against and fought their own government and King, whom they even recognized as their “rightful sovereign.”
The Catholic student of history needs also to recognize a proper distinction. In most cases we are to obey the government. There are exceptions, however. We are not to obey when a law is passed that is contrary to any of God’s laws. Pope Leo XIII made this truth clear in his Encyclical on Human Liberty: “Where a law is enacted contrary to reason, or to the Eternal Law, or to some ordinance of God, obedience [to the law] is unlawful, lest while obeying man we become disobedient to God.” Since we are forbidden to sin, then we are required to resist any law that would lead to sin. In that sense, we must resist those efforts by governments which seek to destroy God’s moral order and the rights of His One True Church. But resisting particular sinful laws does not mean that we are required to over-throw the entire government which passed those laws.
The “Declaration” continues and states that men “are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. –That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among men,…” The Catholic student of history must ask: What did they mean by “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness? Are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness actual rights that men have? Is it the purpose of governments to secure these things? Let us examine these concepts in light of the Catholic Faith. Remember, we must judge everything to see whether or not (or how much or how little ) it conforms to the will of God, to His laws, and the teaching of His Church. This is our guide line - “Thy will be done on earth AS it is in Heaven,” for “the Lord is our Lawgiver, the Lord is our King” (Isaias 33:22).“Life”
Remembering that the ideas of the “Declaration” are based upon the ideas of the false “Enlightenment” will help the student to answer these questions. By “life” is meant that men have a ‘right’ to live, and do so in the ways they want and please. They say man gets to choose how he may live his own life and make his own laws. But we know that this is not a right, for it is a false definition. Life is a gift from God, and we must live not how we please or want, but according to God’s law. So we ask this question: Is it God’s will, which is done in Heaven and supposed to be done on earth, that man make up his own laws and lives the life he wants to live according to his own will? No, of course not. The Christian attitude and approach is “not my will, but Thy will be done.”“Liberty”
By “liberty” is meant the freedom to be out from under the authority and influence of the Church and her laws in order to be self-governing, and thus not be under an authority from above. Thus, men should decide for themselves what is right and what is wrong, what is good and what is evil, not the Church, or even God. Why? Because authority resides in man, hence the false-"Enlightenment" idea of "sovereignty of the people." This liberty was also a rejection of monarchy, and is represented by Thomas Paine in his much-read word Common Sense, wherein he denounced monarchy as the “popery of government.” But we know these ideas are false because God has revealed that authority comes from above (from God) and is thus hierarchical in nature. Therefore the revolutionary belief of liberty contradicts what God has revealed. True liberty is not freedom from an authority above us, but the freedom to overcome one’s passions and sins, to be able to reject error and know the truth and do the will of God. As Christ the King Himself said: we can “know the truth and the truth shall make us free” (Gospel of St. John, 8:32). True liberty in the social/political realm is to be under those instituted by God. So we ask: Is it God’s will, which is done in Heaven and supposed to be done on earth, that man is NOT to be under an authority, but is to be ‘free’ to believe what he wants and to govern himself? No, man must not only be under God’s authority, but also under those whom God has chosen to govern.Pursuit of Happiness
By the “pursuit of happiness” is meant simply that it is a ‘right’ for men to seek happiness in this world by seeking and having what pleasures they want. Thus men have a ‘right’ to pursue such happiness here and now. But this is only a worldly and selfish pursuit. It has nothing to do with pursuing the will of God and seeking His Kingdom above all us. We were created to know God, to love Him, and to serve Him in this world, and then to be happy with Him forever in Heaven. Seeking happiness for its own sake here and now is not in accord with God’s plan and why we were made. It will lead to only conflict and frustration, as fallen men pursue their personal happiness others will eventually get in their way as these others pursue their own happiness. By its very nature the "persuit of happiness" is an exercise in selfishness. Is it God’s will that men have the selfish ‘right’ to pursue happiness for themselves down here on earth? No, as our Lord declared: “Not my will, but Thy will be done” (Luke 22:24).
Using God’s Truth to guide us in understanding the clause “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” as ideas of the false “Enlightenment” makes it clear that these are not unalienable rights. Our Lord Jesus Christ declared that we must seek first the Kingdom of God, and that all other things (which are good) will be added unto our lives (Gospel of St. Matthew, 6:33). Desiring and having ‘life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness’ for ourselves is not seeking first the Kingdom of God, nor is it trusting God that all other (good) things shall be added by God to our lives.
This also means that, according to God, governments are not instituted to secure men’s desire to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness (as meant by the revolutionaries). The real purpose of governments is to provide the common good of men during this earthly life. The common good on earth must be seen with respect as to why we were created in the first place (to know God, to love Him and to serve Him in this world and to be happy with God forever in Heaven). Therefore, to live in accord with God’s will, governments are instituted by God to secure the freedom to practice the one true religion, the Catholic Faith; to secure the freedom of those social conditions which will help (or at least allow) men practice the true Faith and hopefully attain their eternal salvation. Sadly, none of the framers of either the “Declaration” (or the Constitution), believed these truths.
Another one of the ideas of the false “Enlightenment” presumed in the “Declaration” is that authority and power come from below, from the people. The Declaration states: “…Governments are instituted among men, deriving [receiving] their just powers from the consent of the governed…” But as we have just seen, this is not true, and is contrary to Christian principle. Christ our Lord told Pilate: “Thou would have no power at all over me were it not given thee from above” (John 19:11). Thus, governing power/authority comes from God above, not from the people below who are governed. To think and believe that the governed delegate their supposed authority to their elected representatives is a deception of Satan.Equality
What about equality? This idea and belief is so ingrained in the consciousness of the post-enlightenment mind that most Christians think that it is a truth of God's revelation. But is this really so? Are all men really created equal as it is stated in the Declaration? This also is an idea that the enemies of Christ and his kingdom on earth use to deceive men. Are all men created equal in the way they meant it? Contrary to what Americans have been taught, the answer is no. Since the so-called “Enlightenment,” the definition of equality has changed. In reality, God has created all reality -and this includes mankind- with an order, a hierarchical order. This order includes the supernatural over the natural; grace over nature; faith over reason; the spiritual over the physical; the soul, with its will and intellect, over the body, with its desires and appetites; the Church over the state; the shepherd over the sheep; the governor over the governed.
Freemasons and all those who promote the ideas of the false “Enlightenment” have revolted against God’s order. They have inverted the social and political order as designed by God. In other words, they wanted (and still want) to turn God’s order upside-down. They want to make man supreme, instead of submitting to God and to the Kingship of Christ. They want to make (fallen) human reason supreme over God’s revealed truths and the Faith. So the idea of equality was introduced. When everyone is equal, then no one has to submit to any authority other than themselves. This is the essence of revolution; this is the essence of Satan’s rebellion against God; this is the essence of sin!
To say everyone is equal is to say that each man is his own lord. This is why they reject the authority of Christ’s Vicar on earth, the Pope of Rome. They declared all men are equal in position and authority. This is how they convinced the average American colonist to want to revolt against King George, by saying, “all men are equal, thus, just as we need no pope to tell what to believe, we need no king to rule over us. We will govern ourselves and make our own laws.” (If this sounds familiar, it is because we have heard it before: when we learned that Lucifer had declared "non servium!" -I will not serve!)
However, it is a fact of God’s creation that not all men are created equal as the revolutionaries declared. “With much knowledge the Lord hath divided them and diversified their ways” (Ecclus. 33:11). By God’s design we are each different and diversified in our roles and abilities. God has ordered it so that some men are meant for certain positions and duties over other men. In other words, we are all meant to have someone over us. God has told us “to be subject to rulers and authorities, and to be obedient ready to do every good work” (Titus 3:1). This could not be if we are all equal in position and authority.
Not only in our roles are we different, and therefore not equal, but in how God has made each one of us. “But all these gifts one and the same Spirit worketh, dividing to everyone according as He will” (1 Cor.12:11). Not all intellects are created equal. Some men have greater intellectual capability than others. Some have greater leadership qualities than others. Some men have other abilities greater than other men, and on it goes. We all have different talents, and each has those talents in differing amounts. God has given to each person in differing measures their personality traits and capabilities. “But as the Lord hath distributed to everyone, as He has called everyone, so let each walk” (1 Cor.7: 17). We must both accept how God has distributed different gifts among us and in differing amounts, and thus how we are different and not equal, and walk, that is, live according to God’s design.
This also means we must accept our state in life and the duties enjoined to it. But the very "Enlightenment" idea of equality encourages (or better, tempts) an individual to desire more than what his state in life posits. It beckons individuals to want more -because he thinks he has the "right" to have more, because he thinks he is equal to all others and thus is entitled to what those in more priviledged states of life have, and he thinks he is entitled to the same rights as those in higher states in life, and on, and on, and on. Thus, the entire idea of equality has in fact enslaved men to the constant desire for more because they think they have the "right" to more and more (since he thinks he is equal to everyone). As a result of this, the fundamental Christian duty of accepting one's state in life -and the duties it requires- is rejected. The deception of "the American dream" constantly beckons men because of the false "Enlightenment" idea of "equality." The idea of equality has enslaved "modern" man to the entrapment of thinking he deserves more.
It is a revealed truth that God does not even give grace out equally to each. “But to every one of us is given grace according to the measure Christ gives of it” (Eph.4:7). So even the very gift of grace which each one of us needs to be saved is not given equally (but God does give enough for each man that he might be saved). If all men were equal, then God would not have done these things or created reality in the order that He did. God would have apportioned everything to everyone in equal amounts. But He has not. And since God’s ways are all just, then to hold that all men are equal and deserve to receive what others have in the same amount is in fact to be unjust. It goes against God’s order and justice. Catholics must recognize this and not fall for the deception of the false "Enlightenment" idea of equality.
Hopefully you can see now that men are not equal in the way “equality” has been defined and understood since the false “Enlightenment.” However, it should also be made clear that not being equal does not mean one person is better in his very nature than someone else. All men are created with the very same nature, and thus, in this limited sense are we equal. But having the same nature does not mean we are equal. At the same time, it should be made clear that being different and unequal does not mean better or worse. Nor does it mean that God is not equally just to all men, for He is perfectly and equally just to all men without distinction. The proper understanding of the fact that we are all unequal is that we are each unique, and are placed here to perform different roles according to how God has made us.Authority Over Us
Understanding God’s order will help men and women (and children) to know their roles better and perform their duties properly. Wives must be subject to their husbands. Fathers are heads of the family and children must submit to their parents. Husbands must love their wives as Christ loved the Church, His bride (Eph.5:25). This means fathers must submit to the demands of sacrificing for their families. But, as we shall see, the revolutionary idea of ‘equality’ would weaken and ultimately ruin this hierarchical order. (This is why the family unit is nearly destroyed in modern western cultures.)
Men must not only be subject to God and His laws, but be subject to those whom God has appointed to be over the rest. It is by God’s design that men are meant to serve other men, and thus men are to rule other men. God declared through His first Vicar, Pope St. Peter:
Be subject to every human creature for God’s sake: whether it be to the king as supreme, or to governors as sent by him to punish the evil doers and to praise those who do good… Servants be subject to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle, but also to those who are unreasonable. (I Peter 2:13-14, 18)
It should be clear now that God has not created all men equal, but that He has placed some over others, has given out different gifts to different persons, and all with differing traits and abilities, and differing degrees of both. Those who promoted the rebellious ideas of the false “Enlightenment” have used the idea of equality to cause men to think that no one should rule over them (that they don't first delegate) and that therefore they could revolt against their king, and even reject monarchical forms of government altogether. But, as we have just read from the Apostle Peter, God has revealed that we are to be subject to those over us, even if they are unfair or unreasonable in their rule over us.
As already mentioned, does this mean we must obey our leaders when they command us to do something sinful? No, of course not. We are obligated to obey only those laws which do not conflict with God’s laws and the virtue of justice. However, to disobey a sinful law does not mean we are allowed to totally revolt against those whom God has placed in authority and replace them with our own authority. This would be against God’s order. This is the definition of revolution: revolting against an established authority (which comes from God above) and replacing it with one’s own authority. Again, God has revealed:
Let every person be subject to the higher authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist are instituted by God. Therefore, he who resists authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will receive condemnation. (Romans 13: 1-2)
Of course, the idea of equality rejects this because it posits that, since all men are equal, authority must come from men (and not down from God above through certain men over the rest) and thus no one can be over us in authority (at least civilly, politically, and religiously). Now, not all of King George III's decisions concerning the colonies were wise, this is true, but this does not mean that they were contrary to God’s law and thus commanded men to sin. Nothing he did was so bad that it gave men the right to take up arms against him – to revolt. In fact, no one would have dreamed of revolting except that the false “Enlightenment” idea that everybody has a ‘right’ to do so for almost any reason had replaced the Christian understanding that very little is more important in a community or society than keeping peace. (Evangelizing one’s neighbors in order for them to convert to save their souls is one of the few things more important than keeping the peace.) Thus, whether King George was bad or not did not really matter in the revolutionaries' eyes, for they believed in the idea of equality, and thus rejected the very idea of any and ALL hierarchical structures. Therefore, rebellion would have occurred one way or another. Hence the birth of liberal democracy and modern republics -all which reject the social Kingship of Christ and His rights over men and states.
Now, it should be recognized that, even if King George III was unreasonable in his rule over the colonies, nevertheless, according to God’s Word quoted above ("be subject to your rulers with all respect, not only to the good and gentle, but also to those who are unreasonable"), the colonists still had no right to revolt against the authority of George III, and thus cause the deaths of thousands of persons.
However, on July 4, 1776, the Delegates of the thirteen states signed the document and declared the thirteen states to be independent of England. Sadly, one of these delegates was a wealthy liberal Catholic involved with the Masons and who embraced the distorted "enlightenment" ideas of liberty and equality: Charles Carroll from Maryland. This event marked the "moment" when the ideas of the (false) "Enlightenment" began to have practical consequences in the political and social realm. The Declaration of Independence was thus a declaration of independence from God's designed order. Unfortunately, this fact is hardly recognized by authentic Christian Americans and many who wish to adhere to the traditional Christian social and moral Order. (This is so partly because they erroneously equate love of their native land as inseparable from the government; but more so because they have been imbibed with and soaked in the ideology of the false "Enlightenment," and thus interpret even the social teachings of the Church through its lenses and under its influential canopy.)
When seen in light of the war between the Kingdom of Christ on earth and the kingdom of Satan, it is clear that the Declaration and its war was not fought for the rights of Christ and His Kingdom. Rather, it contributed to the greater revolt against the social Kingship of Christ and His law, and thus its application in the social/political order. We can know this by asking a few simple and direct questions: Were the American colonists fighting for the rights of Christ the King and His Church? Were they at least fighting for a type of freedom that would allow the laws of the land to conform to the laws of God and honor the social Kingship of Christ? Were they fighting in order to establish a government that would enact laws based on these truths? -Or were they fighting for the false “Enlightenment” notions of freedom and authority, whereby men would make up their own laws, and rule and govern themselves rather than let a government which acknowledged the authority of God and His delegates to rule them? Sadly, it was the latter reasons.
This traditional Catholic understanding concerning equality and liberty can be found in a prayer from the Church's traditional liturgy:
"Thou alone, O Mary, can break the inextricable chains, in which the cunning prince of darkness entangles the dupes he has deceived by the high-sounding names of equality and liberty. Show thyself a Queen, by coming to the rescue."Yes, O Heavenly Queen and Mother, come to our rescue!
(Feast of Our Lady of Ransom, The Liturgical Year, Dom Prosper Gueranger, O.S.B.)
- Adam S. Miller
Go to Part II: U. S. Constitution and Government
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