David Barton has made a habit of making the most absurd and strained connections between Bible verses and the Constitution, but he’s not alone. In his Founder’s Bible, he includes an article by Paul Jehle, Executive Director of the Plymouth Rock Foundation, who says that the famous phrase “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” came from the Bible too. And you’re gonna love his argument:
When we look at the Declaration of Independence and the truths they held as self-evident – the list of inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness (which is another way the Founders spoke of the right to private property) – those ideas were not the invention of great minds of the Enlightenment; they originated with the source of light Himself, God. They were revealed truth our forefathers found in the pages of Scripture.
The charter that God made with Adam was threefold. First, “Be fruitful and multiply,” which is mankind’s basic right to life. Second, “fill or replenish, the earth.” The Hebrew word fill or replenish involved the scientific method, meaning to take something that we observe, then break it down to its essential ingredients and reform it into a different form. It is a concept that requires the right to liberty. When we have liberty, we can take natural resources and then refill the earth with the same natural resources in different forms through invention and technology. Third, “subdue the earth and rule, or have dominion, over it,” which is the right to own private property. Dominion of the earth simply means we have a parcel of land that is our exclusive possession that we steward before God.
You have to be seriously logic-impaired to buy such a claim. This is an argument you could accept only due to confirmation bias, not reason.
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