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On Affirming In God We Trust As Our National Motto

WHEREAS, “In God We Trust” is the official national motto of the United States, established by a law passed by the 84th Congress and signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower on July 30, 1956; and

WHEREAS, The biblical instruction to place trust in God (Psalm 4:5; 20:7; 22:4–5; 40:3; 91:2; Prov. 3:5–6) has been an integral part of American culture since our nation’s settling and founding; and

WHEREAS, The fourth verse of the national anthem of the United States, written by Francis Scott Key on September 14, 1814, says, “Praise the power that hath made and preserved us a nation . . . and this be our motto: In God is our trust”; and

WHEREAS, Salmon Chase, Secretary of the Treasury under President Abraham Lincoln, prompted by a minister’s plea, submitted a recommendation to Congress that we add “In God We Trust” to our coins, and Congress voted to approve his recommendation on April 22, 1864; and

WHEREAS, President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Thanksgiving Proclamation during the Great Depression declared: “[F]rom our earliest recorded history, Americans have thanked God for their blessings,” noting that Americans turn to God in times of trouble and happiness, and concluding, “In God We Trust”; and

WHEREAS, “In God We Trust” appears over the south entrance to the United States Senate chamber and above the Speaker’s rostrum in the chamber of the United States House of Representatives; and

WHEREAS, In 1954, Postmaster General Arthur E. Summerfield announced the first U.S. Postage Stamp to carry the inscription, “In God We Trust,” and a special Congressional Prayer room was added to the Capitol with a kneeling bench, an altar, an open Bible, an inspiring stained-glass window with George Washington kneeling in prayer, and the declaration of Psalm 16:1: “Preserve me, O God, for in Thee do I put my trust”; and 

WHEREAS, In 2006, the U.S. Senate reaffirmed “In God We Trust” as the official national motto of the United States of America for the fiftieth anniversary of its adoption and, in 2011, both houses of Congress reaffirmed “In God We Trust” and supported and encouraged the public display of the national motto in all public buildings, public schools, and other government institutions; and

WHEREAS, July 30, 2016, is the sixtieth anniversary of the adoption of “In God We Trust” as our official national motto; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in St. Louis, Missouri, June 14–15, 2016, affirm “In God We Trust” as the official national motto of the United States and support and encourage awareness of and the public display of the national motto.