Christ, Creation and the Declaration of Independence
* We begin our countdown to July 4, 2026
* 2026 will be the semiquincentennial celebration
* 250 years since founding of United States
* Programs will explore Biblical side of Declaration of Independence
* Founders were not only Christians, but also Biblical Creationists
* Project Hashtag is #BibleAmerica250
By FRANK DEFREITAS for WONDERS OF THE BIBLE
PUBLISHED: May 28, 2020 | UPDATED: June 8, 2020
Christ, Creation and the Declaration of Independence
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Christ, Creation and the Declaration of Independence
NOTICE: I will be launching the first exhibition on Tuesday, November 3, 2020 (election night special), at the monthly meeting of the Institute for Scientific and Biblical Research, held at the Farm and Home Center, located at 1383 Acadia Road, Lancaster, PA 17601. This will include both a presentation and exhibit. Thank you and hope to see you there!
PODCAST: If Philadelphia is the birthplace of a nation, then the Declaration of Independence has to be its birth certificate.
Hello, my name is Frank DeFreitas, and I would like to welcome you to Wonders of the Bible.
All throughout this current time of uncertainty, many of our usual routines of daily living are being rearranged, postponed, and challenged. If the last few weeks have shown us anything at all, it is that our ability and freedom to meet as groups with other like-minded individuals is precious.
Due to the Coronavirus shut-down here in Eastern Pennsylvania, I have been making every attempt to put my time to positive use.
Because my region is so important to the history of the United States, rather than focus on the history of the Bible in America (as has been done countless times before by countless others), I have tried to focus on the history of the Bible in my own general area of the country: South Eastern Pennsylvania, along with our neighbors and friends in the great states of New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland.
With my Wonders of the Bible collection and exhibitions, I have acquired numerous items showing how the Word of God gets to us: beginning with cuneiform tablets, to ancient Hebrew scrolls, from handwritten manuscripts to the invention of the printing press. I have also added examples of the history of the printed Bible, from the Textus Receptus; to William Tyndale; and many of the famous Bibles.
My latest ongoing efforts of the collection is in documenting the Holy Bible in early colonial America.
When the world's smallest, microscopic Declaration of Independence was recently offered at auction from a dealer in London, England, I knew I had to do my very best to make sure it came to reside in the Wonders of the Bible collection.
Then, following closely after, were several other historical Declaration of Independence exhibit items, of which I will tell more about in this podcast and web page.
Now, in regard to the Declaration of Independence, I know that many people would say "why add something political to a Bible history exhibit"? And that is a fair question. My answer would have to be that the Bible -- and the history leading up to the founding, exploration and settling what would become the United States of America -- are intertwined. Just as with the threads woven throughout a tapestry.
My main interest is in the fact that the Declaration of Independence (along with the state charters of my focus areas of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland) presents quite a few words and phrases related to God in general, and our Christian heritage, in particular.
Therefore, I thought it would make sense to center any forthcoming presentation for the public around them. For the Declaration of Independence, they are as follows (noted in their order of appearance):
1. Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God
2. Created and Creator
3. The Supreme Judge of the World
4. Divine Providence
Keep in mind that 56 extraordinary men of our American birth endorsed and put their signatures -- for all time -- to this document.
And, since the Declaration of Independence is the document that is the foundation of all that is the United States of America, I felt that it just had to be on display along with the rest of the Wonders of the Bible collection.
My thesis with this new presentation and exhibit is that not only were the founders Christian, and not only did they build the foundation of the United States of America ON Christianity, they were also Creationists ... believing entirely on Biblical Creationism.
The presentation title will be: "2026: Christ, Creation, and the Declaration of Independence"
The goal of this project is to show how Jesus Christ was not only the historical foundation of the birth of the United States of America, but also the glue that held all of the pieces together.
In other words, there would have been no United States of America without the Declaration of Independence, and there would have been no Declaration of Independence without Jesus Christ, the Creator.
I have been building out the Wonders of the Bible collection with recent acquisitions that document our Christian Holy Bible during the time of America's move to independence.
I have added several famous Bible leaves from that era in America's history. These additions would eventually include a page from the Robert Aitken Bible, which was the first English Bible printed in America (by Robert Aitken) and also known as the Bible of the American Revolution. It is also the only Bible to ever have been endorsed by the U.S. Congress; then there is the Thompson Bible, translated from the Greek by Charles Thomson, Secretary of the Continental Congress. It should also be noted that this Bible was printed by Jane Aitken, the first woman to print a Bible in America; pages from all four of the Christopher Saur Bibles, including the "Gun Wad" edition of 1776; and also such notables as William Penn -- founder of the state of Pennsylvania -- and his classic "No Cross, No Crown".
Since I am located in the state of Pennsylvania, I've also made certain to obtain historic bible leaves from our nearest neighbors and friends in the states of New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland.
So, with this podcast, I would like to announce -- and show examples of -- five more recent acquisitions to round out this exhibit. If you're listening to this podcast through one of the online podcasting services, you'll need to go to wondersofthebible.org and click on the link that takes you to the podcast section of the web site. Then choose "2026: Christ, Creation, and the Declaration of Independence" link. This link will take you to see the photos, and explanations, of these items. If you click or tap on individual photos, you'll see them up-close in high-resolution.
In preparation for the 250th anniversary celebrations of the Declaration of Independence; and the founding of the United States of America, those additions are:
The World's Smallest Declaration of Independence
The world's smallest Declaration of Independence was created in the mid 1800's in England. It is the size of a small snowflake, and requires a laboratory microscope to view it. CLICK / TAP PHOTO TO ENLARGE.
1. The world's smallest, microscopic Declaration of Independence. I honestly do not believe that you will find anything like this anywhere in the United States today. Extremely rare. In all of my years collecting microscopic scripture and art, this was the first time I had ever noticed an offering of the Declaration of Independence. You'll have to view this through a powerful, laboratory microscope. It is the size of a single, small snowflake.
The Corn-Driscoll Dunlap Broadside Facsimile
This Dunlap Broadside facsimile is one of the most sought after printings of the Declaration of Independence. Rarely is a facsimile famous and sought after, but the Corn-Driscoll Dunlap Broadside facsimile is an exception to the rule. No expense was spared in its re-creation. The original was the first print run of the Declaration of Independence, printed on the night of July 4th 1776. CLICK / TAP PHOTO TO ENLARGE.
2. The world-famous, Corn-Driscoll facsimile of the Dunlap Broadside. This was printed from the original Declaration of Independence owned by Ira G. Corn, Jr., and Joseph P. Driscoll of Dallas, Texas. This was the very first Declaration, printed on the night of July 4th, 1776. This print run is the finest, and only facsimile ever made of any existing Dunlap broadside. This particular Declaration is sometimes referred to as the “Lost Copy” since it was re-discovered in 1968 during the closing of Leary’s Book Store in Philadelphia. It is believed to have been in storage there for more than 100 years.
It was purchased by Dallas businessmen Joseph Driscoll and Ira Corn for $404,000 (U.S.) when it went up for auction ($3,010,885 U.S. in 2020 dollars). In 1970 Driscoll and Corn contracted with R.R. Donnelley & Sons Lakeside Press in Chicago to recreate exact facsimile copies -- and no expense was spared. The entire production from the custom-made paper, the ink formulation, the typesetting, and letter-press printing, recreated the document exactly as it would have been printed on July 4th, 1776 … on both sides of the sheet! These facsimile copies are highly sought after collectibles in and of themselves, and I am very happy -- and blessed -- to have had the opportunity, and ability, to obtain one for my Wonders of the Bible collection -- and for you to view!
1867 Jefferson Draft Engraving by Alonzo Chappel
Thomas Jefferson wrote his drafts of the Declaration of Independence while living at the corner of 7th and Market Streets in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This engraving, created in 1867 by Alonzo Chappel, was done directly from Jefferson's original in the collection of the National Archives. CLICK / TAP PHOTO TO ENLARGE.
3. An 1867 Engraving by Alonzo Chappel, of Thomas Jefferson's handwritten draft of the Declaration of Independence, in the collection of the State Department in Washington D.C. (now known as the National Archives).
1840 Micro Engraving by Charles Toppan
Engraved by Charles Toppan in Philadelphia in 1840. This is the smallest known engraving in the world of the Declaration of Independence. It must be read with a powerful magnifying glass. CLICK / TAP PHOTO TO ENLARGE.
4. A July 4, 1840 microscopic engraving of the Declaration, showing the document and the seals of the original 13 colonies. Engraved by Charles Toppan in Philadelphia. This is the smallest known engraving in the world of the Declaration of Independence.
William Stone Facsimile from National Archives
A copy (fascimile) of the Declaration of Independence as engraved by William J. Stone in 1820 by request of John Quincy Adams. CLICK / TAP PHOTO TO ENLARGE.
5. A copy (fascimile) of the Declaration of Independence as engraved by William J. Stone in 1820 by request of John Quincy Adams. Acquired directly from the original held in the collection of the National Archives in Washington, D.C. This is the copy that most people are familiar with: the one that has all signatures.
And, I would like to add, that none of these exhibit items are anywhere near as important as the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Just as our founding fathers already knew, placing our hope and dreams in anything other than in God's Holy Word would amount to nothing more than an exercise in futility.
As a side note, did you know that the signed copy of the Declaration of Independence was not signed on July 4th, 1776? The copy that we know so well, the one that contains all of the signatures, wasn't signed until the 2nd day of August!
Also: Thomas Jefferson wrote his drafts of the Declaration of Independence while living at the corner of 7th and Market Streets in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. As a young student, I attended the Philadelphia School of Printing and Advertising at 9th and Market Streets. Other historical Bible-related sites that are in the immediate area include: Robert Aitken's print shop and book store at 22 Market Street; Benjamin Franklin's print shop and book store at 318 Market Street (Franklin was one of the most successful Bible merchants); The famous Liberty Bell is housed at 526 Market Street; with the world-famous Independence Hall right behind it at 520 Chestnut Street. And let's not forget other places close-by, such as Jane Aiken's print shop address, Christ Church, or the Betsy Ross House. That's a lot of history in just a few square city blocks. Who knows, maybe I could start a Bible-history walking tour!
In closing, and for now, I would like to say that I am fully aware that for every statement, or belief, expressed in the world today, there always seems to be an equal and opposite statement, or belief, to counter it.
If someone states that they believe that the United States was founded as a Christian nation, there are plenty of others with the opposing view that America was *not* founded as a Christian nation. Actually, come to think of it, there are many *Christians* that feel that the United States was not founded as a Christian nation, and one can included many clergy in that number, as well.
You can mix and match all of these viewpoints and opinions till the cows come home...
... but, if the founding fathers were Christian, were not Christian, or were from Mars, it really just proves how God can use *everyone* in His master plan.
When it comes right down to it, the Declaration of Independence is still the Declaration of Independence. It is still the birth certificate of the United States of America. And it still contains the phrases and words: such as Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God; Created and Creator; The Supreme Judge of the World; and Divine Providence.
I hope that you enjoy seeing the photos of many unique forms of the Declaration of Independence here on the web page. I also hope to see many of you in person at one of my presentations. Lord willing, I will try my very best to answer two questions: (1) How does the Declaration of Independence point to scripture?; and (2) How does scripture point to the Declaration of Independence?
Once again, my name is Frank DeFreitas, and may God Bless You Today and Every Day AND, REMEMBER, to always love others, just as Jesus Christ Loves YOU.
"Science is the study of the physical manifestations of God in action."
-- Frank DeFreitas (Click Here for BIO)