THE JEFFERSON LIES: Exposing the Myths You’ve Always Believed About Thomas Jefferson. On the side of truth and the un-besmirching of Jefferson’s name, David Barton enters the fray of the present day “Culture Wars.” Barton lobs a series of bunker-busting truth bombs at seven different underground nests of lies. In my opinion it is “Mission Accomplished” for Barton. Medals to follow!
In case you have just arrived from Mars, Thomas Jefferson lived from 1743 to (July 4) 1836. He became the third president in 1801 and remained such until 1809. He was the main author of the Declaration of Independence.
The seven refutations are as follows:
Lie # 1 Thomas Jefferson Fathered Sally Hemings’ Children
Lie # 2 Thomas Jefferson Founded a Secular University
Lie # 3 Thomas Jefferson Wrote His Own Bible and Edited Out the Things He Didn’t Agree With
Lie # 4 Thomas Jefferson Was a Racist Who Opposed Equality for Black Americans
Lie # 5 Thomas Jefferson Advocated a Secular Public Square through the Separation of Church and State
Lie # 6 Thomas Jefferson Detested the Clergy
Lie # 7 Thomas Jefferson Was an Atheist and Not a Christian
These seven rebuttals are sandwiched between an Introduction: Rediscovering Thomas Jefferson and a Conclusion: Thomas Jefferson: An American Hero.
Through many quotes from those who knew him and from Jefferson himself Barton does a fine job of letting the reader see for him/herself this great man’s character. He is an American hero!
Personally I was mainly interested in finding out if it really was true that Thomas Jefferson was a Deist or perhaps an Atheist as he is portrayed by some on the opposite side of Western Civilization’s “Culture Wars.” I must admit that I was surprised to find from his own pen that Jefferson claimed to be a Christian.
Barton gets to the heart of the matter for me when he starts addressing the following:
According to Barton, Thomas Jefferson in his latter years came under the influence of Barton Stone and Alexander Campbell who were leaders of a Movement. Says Barton, “The Restorationist and Christian Primitivist Movement came to be the dominant religious force in Charlottesville, and Jefferson openly embraced and promoted it. Not surprisingly, then, Jefferson’s writings during his latter years reflect all the major tenets of Christian Primitivism and Restorationism, using almost the exact tenor and words as the Restoration ministers surrounding him.”
So, there you have it. During his last years on earth Thomas Jefferson the Christian became blown off course by the strong winds of one of those Movements of Confusion that from time to time sweep across the face of the calm waters of Christianity.
In the following Barton sums up what I was looking for in reading this book: “The condition of Jefferson’s private personal theology and Christian faith in his last years might be questioned, but what cannot be questioned is the fact that throughout his life, Jefferson was pro-Christian and pro-Jesus in his beliefs, demeanor, and public endeavors.”
Yes, I heartily recommend this book!