Thursday, January 24, 2008

John Quincy Adams - 3 Quotes on the Bible and Christianity

(Note: references added below on July 11, 2008)

"It is no slight testimonial, both to the merit and worth of Christianity, that in all ages since its promulgation the great mass of those who have risen to eminence by their profound wisdom and integrity have recognized and reverenced Jesus of Nazareth as the Son of the living God."
Statement, quoted from Stephen Abbott Northrop, D.D. A Cloud of Witnesses (Portland, Oregon: American Heritage Ministries, 1987) p. introduction

"In what light soever we regard the Bible, whether with reference to revelation, to history, or to morality, it is an invaluable and inexhaustible mine of knowledge and virtue."
From William J. Federer, America's God and Country (Saint Louis, Missouri: Amerisearch, Inc., 1999) p. 19

"The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were.... the general principles of Christianity."

Thomas Jefferson, The Writings of Thomas Jefferson (Washington D. C.: The Thomas Jefferson Memorial Association, 1904), Vol. XIII, p. 292-294. In a letter from John Adams to Thomas Jefferson on June 28, 1813


IntelligentDecline said...

Your first J.Q. Adams quote is extremely dubious, and was most likely a simple copy and paste on you part without any effort made to verify it. You think I am in error? I''ll cite a book published in 1850, available for viewing at Google Books which proves I am correct.

Letters of John Quincy Adams to his Son; Published by J.M. Alden, 1850; Preface, page 8
Google Books Link

If you'll carefully note, there is no attribution to John Quincy Adams for these words, and instead it is hyperbole written by someone else.

It is also of note that as early as 1860, this falsehood had been promulgated in a published book about J.Q. Adams:

Life and Public Services of John Quincy Adams, Sixth President of the United States; By William Henry Seward; Published by C.M. Saxton, Barker & Co, 1860
Page 100

It would seem that Alaska wasn't the only one of Seward's follies...

There are very sound reasons why one should always seek an original attribution for a quote before they lay their credibility on the line. Of course, one who posits a premise prior to collecting a body of real verifiable data, and then attempts to justify their assertions with after the fact substantiation, cannot be expected to return unbiased research.

History Matters said...

Thanks for your comments/correction. I usually do try to double-check all my quotes, but sometimes one slips through. I have collected many quotes, opinions, etc. in a database. Some I have already validated, some I have not yet; I found an inaccurate some a couple months ago and have been checking more carefully since then.

I DO stand by my premise for this blog's theme, summarized here:

Before I got too excited about this whole topic some years ago I did much independent research. So I guess you are correct that I am posting opinions/quotes that support what I am saying. I am trying to do so in an honest manner. Is that so different from most blogs? I am not presenting both sides of the argument, but I am trying to make sure that I support mine with good, clean facts. There are many, many blogs on the other side of the argument and they don't really present both sides either.

If you find any more errors please feel free to comment again. I'll either approve the comment or correct the error (or both).

History Matters said...

UPDATE: the quotes in this post appear to be correct. References are now added under each quote.