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How Smart Are We America?

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Published on: June 23, 2015

“A thorough knowledge of the Bible is worth more than a college education.” Theodore Roosevelt

Today, we are going to talk about how smart our Founding Fathers really were. We are going to compare ourselves to them today and ask ourselves the question, “How smart am I?” I think that you are going to be surprised!

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These were some of the hundreds of questions asked to elementary school kids during the foundations of our country:

  • How many degrees of longitude are there?
  • How many degrees wide are the temperate zones?
  • What is a watershed?
  • Name the principal animals in the frigid zones.
  • What is a monarchy?
  • What portion of people on the globe are pagans?

Here are some spelling words for elementary students:

  • How do you spell contumelious?
  • How do you spell ichthyology?
  • How do you spell bronchotomy?
  • How do you spell loquacious?
  • How do you spell mendacity?
  • How do you spell armigerous?
  • How do you spell acanthus?
  • How do you spell oleaginous?

Here are some History questions asked to elementary students:

  • What is a writ of habeas corpus?
  • What is a bill of attainder?
  • What is an ex-post-facto law?
  • What are bills of credit?

There are countless of other story problems, math problems, spelling questions, and reading skills questions that they did all in their head! For some of these questions, they were not even allowed to do work out the problem on paper.

Now let’s take the test. Did you know the answers to any of these questions? Did you know the answers?

Charles Carroll, signer of the Declaration, entered college at the age of 10.

Fisher Ames entered Harvard at age 12.

Benjamin Rush graduated Princeton at age 14.

John Trumbull, who read through the whole Bible at the age of four years old, beat a minister in a Greek contest at the age of six. He passed a college entrance exam at the age of seven and a half years old, his parents held him out of college until the age of 13.

You might be asking yourself, why were they so smart? Well, here is the answer (Acts 4:13).

They had lessons books as these:

  • Character of Jesus Christ
  • The golden rule
  • Extract from the sermon on the mount
  • Solomon’s wise choice
  • The goodness of God
  • Gospel invitation
  • Christian light and hope
  • Awake Zion
  • On prayer

The point of this article is to show you that we don’t know everything (1 Corinthians 8:2). Lots of people in public schools and universities think they know everything. Yet, that is not the case. When observing our founding forefathers, we can see that they were extremely smart! Even if you knew one of the answers to any of these questions, I would consider you smart.

We need to not just go as far as someone tells you to go (Matthew 5:1-23). We need to raise the bar and go farther than what we think we can go. We need to know the Bible. We need to know the Constitution.

Theodore Roosevelt said, “A thorough knowledge of the Bible is worth more than a college education.”

We, in America, think that we become a man at the age of 18-25 years old. They were men at a very young age. Let’s raise the bar and become very smart like our Founding Fathers were.

America’s Christian Heritage

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