Eddie Hyatt, the author of this profoundly silly article in Charisma News that echoes most of David Barton’s more absurd claims, calls himself a historian. Like Barton, however, he has no credentials at all in the field (his degrees are in divinity, from Regent University, and “Pentecostal-Charismatic Studies” from Oral Roberts University). Let the ridiculous claims begin:
The Constitution’s Division of Powers Is Based on the Biblical Worldview of the Founders
America’s Founders divided the powers of government and provided various checks and balances because they held to a Biblical world-view, which recognizes that “man” in his present condition is flawed because of sin and cannot be trusted with “power.” They would agree with the adage of Sir John Dalberg-Acton who, after extensive studies of both secular and religious history, declared, “Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
This was the view of the early Puritans to whom the Founders were indebted for much of their thinking. Most of them would have agreed with William Bradford, five-time governor of Plymouth Colony, who spoke of “man’s fallen state” and declared that “all men have corruption in them.” In this fallen state human beings cannot be trusted with power; hence the division of powers and other checks and balances in our country’s founding documents.
I always laugh when people cite the Puritans and their alleged influence on the founding fathers. The colony they established was a rather brutal theocracy that imprisoned, exiled and sometimes put to death even their fellow Christians if they were the wrong brand. Funny how they trusted themselves with such power. It’s also laughable to suggest that one needs a Christian worldview to recognize that too much accumulation of power is a bad thing. You know how they learned that? From watching the behavior of Christian kings who ruled by alleged divine right.
Whereas modern liberalism claims that human nature is essentially good and that people only need a change of environment and circumstances to improve and perfect their behavior, the Founders held no such utopian view of the human condition. In fact, George Washington and Alexander Hamilton, both signers of the Constitution, pointed to Jeremiah 17:9 as an underlying principle for the separation of powers provided for in that document. This passage reads, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?”
Really? They did? Please cite them saying such a thing. There is no record of it.