Today's review copy: Washington's God: Religion, liberty, and the father of our country by Michael Novak and Jana Novak.
If my Conduct throughout the War has merited the confidence of my fellow Citizens, and has been instrumental in obtaining for my Country the blessings of Peace and Freedom, I owe it to the Supreme being who guides the hearts of all…
In his favorite blue coat, white waistcoat, and buff trousers, the tall horseman among them, or the suave, usually silent, mild conversationalist, George Washington knew he was a man to be reckoned with.
That hand became almost physically visible in his life when, at the age of twenty-two, he escaped from a very hot battle near what is today Pittsburgh, with four bullet holes in his coat, two horses shot out from under him, and men falling to his right and his left; yet he emerged intact, without a scratch.
Abigail, much to her own surprise, was blown away.
He was again roundly praised by his fellow men and the legislature; his reputation, both nationally and internationally, certainly well known.
How he dreaded that.
The location he chose not only ended up being in the exact spot where the French eventually located their fort, but also where Pittsburgh stands today.
He was, officially now, a rebel and a traitor to his king.
These will make you a greater and happier people than you are.
The whole experience was intended to be highly personal.
In this way, the Second Great Awakening directly affected Washington's later religious reputation, by imposing on an earlier generation a new generation's standards for defining a Christian.
But to imagine that God has a will independent of laws that reason has uncovered would seem to a deist more like superstition than like religion, and quite unworthy of a fully reasonable human being.
The Virgin Mary was hung just inside the front door, almost the very first object on which an incoming visitor's eyes would fall, and St. John hangs in a balancing position further along the same wall.
As it was for Hamilton's journey of faith, it is quite normal for Christians to undergo a journey or arduous voyage or time of trial as they grow in faith.
It is worth pointing out that Washington differed from Jefferson in turning toward the Hebrew idea of God, instead of the eighteenth-century idea of the watchmaker.
For even if fate were from the stars, the Maker of the stars could not be subject to their destiny.