Act I. George Washington. Out of many, one With liberty and order for all Unum versus pluribus Act II. John Adams. A churchgoing animal Black cockades and tricolors "Order is heaven's first law" "The grand question Act III. Thomas Jefferson. The American dreamer For Jefferson and liberty Utopia meets reality Act IV. James Madison. Constructing freedom's altar Defending the empire of liberty Act V. James Monroe. All for one and one for all Considerations of humanity.
Today's dispute over the line between church and state (or the lack thereof) is neither the first nor the fiercest in our history. In this retelling of the birth of the American body politic, religious historian Forrest Church describes our first great culture war-a tumultuous yet nearly forgotten conflict that raged from George Washington's presidency to James Monroe's. On one side of the battle, the proponents of order--Federalists, Congregationalists, New Englanders--believed that the only legitimate ruler of men is God. On the other side, the defenders of liberty--republicans, Baptists, Virginians--cheered the Enlightenment and the French Revolution, and believed that only the separation of church and state would preserve man's freedom. Would we be a nation under God, or with liberty for all? In this vigorous history, Church offers a new vision of our earliest presidents' beliefs, reshaping assumptions about the debates that still reverberate across our land.--From publisher description.
Bibliography, etc. Note
Includes bibliographical references (pages -513) and index.