The recent publication of pop theologian Eric Metaxas's "If You Can Keep It" has brought out the axes from the usual anti-"Christian Nation"suspects, including psychology teacher Dr. Warren Throckmorton of Grove City College, co-author of a self-published e-book called Getting Jefferson Right, a highly effective takedown of amateur historian David Barton's inept Jefferson Lies, which tried to make TJ some sort of orthodox Christian.
As is the custom of many self-appointed watchdogs and guardians of the truth, although Throckmorton is correct that Metaxas may leave the impression that Ben Franklin's plea for prayer at the Constitutional Convention was adopted, he isn't happy to stop there. He wants the blood of his ideological enemy.
"Clearly, Metaxas wants us to believe that God was involved in the Constitution. If you believe in providence, you believe God is involved with every government (read Augustine). However, in his book, Metaxas flirts with the idea that America has a special relationship with God, in the sense of being a chosen people like Israel was chosen. From If You Can Keep It:
Why is it too much for us to suppose — as Franklin, Washington, Adams, and so many others did — that the finger of the Almighty might indeed have been involved?"
Why, Doctor Throckmorton? Because on the very next page, Metaxas quotes James Madison:
"The real wonder (of the success of the Constitutional Convention) is that so many difficulties should have been surmounted, and surmounted with a unanimity almost as unprecedented as it must have been unexpected. It is impossible for any man of candor to reflect on this circumstance without partaking of the astonishment. It is impossible for the man of pious reflection not to perceive in it a finger of that Almighty hand which has been so frequently and signally extended to our relief in the critical stages of the revolution." [Federalist 37]
In a breathtaking huff and puff of superciliousness, Throckmorton concludes, "May God help us not to create myths and instead tell the whole story,"
Indeed, sir, indeed. Unfortunately, when the axman seeks out only the weakest trees, he invariably misses the whole forest.