1.  George Washington  1789-1797 

2.  John Adams  1797-1801

3.  Thomas Jefferson  1801-1809

4.  James Madison 1809-1817

5.  James Monroe 1817-1825

6.  John Quincy Adams 1825-1829

7.  Andrew Jackson 1829-1837

16.  Abraham Lincoln 1861-1865

26.  Theodore Roosevelt 1901-1909

28.  Woodrow Wilson 1913-1921

31.  Herbert Hoover 1929-1933

33.  Harry Truman 1945-1953


George Washington,

"The Hand of providence has been so conspicuous in all this, that he must be worse than an infidel that lacks faith, and more than wicked, that has not gratitude enough to acknowledge his obligations." George Washington's letter of August 20, 1778 to Brig. General Thomas Nelson

"Almighty and eternal Lord God, the great Creator of heaven and earth, and the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ; look down from heaven in pity and compassion upon me Thy servant, who humbly prorate myself before Thee." George Washington's prayer at Valley Forge

"No people can be bound to acknowledge and adore the invisible hand which conducts the affairs of men more than the people of the United States. Every step by which they have advanced to the character of an independent nation seems to have been distinguished by some token of providential agency...We ought to be no less persuaded that the propitious smiles of heaven cannot be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right, which heaven itself has ordained." -- George Washington in his Inaugural Address, April 30, 1789

"Such being the impressions under which I have, in obedience to the public summons, repaired to the present station, it would be peculiarly improper to omit in this first official act, my fervent supplications to that Almighty Being, who rules over the universe, who presides in the council of nations, and whose providential aids can supply every human defect, that His benediction may consecrate to the liberties and happiness of the people of the United States.." "...Every step by which they have advanced to the character of an independent nation, seems to have been distinguished by some token of providential agency"  From President George Washington's Inaugural Address, April 30th, 1789, addressed to both Houses of Congress.

"Let us with caution indulge the supposition, that morality can be maintained without religion."--George Washington, ca. 1789,  Maxims of Washington, ed. John F. Schroeder (Mt. Vernon: Mt. Vernon Ladies Association, 1942), p. 106.

"The General hopes and trusts that every officer and man, will endeavor so to live, and act, as becomes a Christian Soldier defending the dearest Rights and Liberties of his country." General George Washington, July 9, 1776

"Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports . . . And let us indulge with caution the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion . . . Reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail to the exclusion of religious principle." From President George Washington's Farewell Address

Was George Washington a Christian? You will need to use your browser arrow to return to ESRI.


John Adams,

 "The highest glory of the American Revolution was this: 'It connected in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity."  President Adams, July 4, 1821

"The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were.... the general principles of Christianity." -- John Adams in letter to Thomas Jefferson, June 28, 1813

"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net.  Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people.  It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other." John Adams from his Oct. 13, 1789 address to the military.  

"Suppose a nation in some distant region should take the Bible for their only law book, and every member should regulate his conduct by the precepts there contained! Every member would be obliged in conscience to temperance, frugality and industry: to justice, kindness and charity towards his fellow men: and to piety, love and reverence toward Almighty God....What a Eutopia, what a Paradise would this region be." John Adams diary entry Feb. 22., 1756.

"The Christian religion is, above all the Religions that ever prevailed or existed in ancient or modern times, the religion of Wisdom, Virtue, Equity, and Humanity. Let the Blackguard Paine say what he will; it is Resignation to God, it is Goodness itself to man." John Adams retorting to Thomas Paine in his diary, July 26, 1796.

"A patriot without religion, in my estimation, is as great a paradox as an honest man without the fear of God. Is it possible that he whom no moral obligations bind, can have any real Good Will towards Men? Can he be a patriot who, by an openly vicious conduct, is undermining the very bonds of Society? ...The Scriptures tell us righteousness exalteth a Nation." Abigal Adams, wife of President John Adams in letter to husband John Adams 1776.

"...a true American Patriot must be a religious man...He who neglects his duty to his maker, may well be expected to be deficient and insincere in his duty towards the public." Abigal Adams, wife of President John Adams in letter to husband John Adams 1776.

"The race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong; but the God of Israel is He that giveth strength and power unto His people. Trust in Him at all times, ye people, pour out your hearts before Him; God is a refuge for us." Abigal Adams, wife of President John Adams in letter to husband John Adams 1776.

"Statesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for liberty, but it is religion and morality alone, which can establish the principles upon which freedom can securely stand. The only foundation of a free Constitution is pure virtue, and if this cannot be inspired into our People in a greater Measure than they have it now, they may change their rulers and the forms of government, but they will not obtain a lasting liberty." John Adams, The Works of John Adams, Second President of the United States, Charles Francis Adams, editor (Boston: Little, Brown, 1854), Vol. IX, p. 401, dated June 21, 1776.

"The general principles, on which the Fathers achieved independence, were . . . the general principles of Christianity." John Adams, in a letter to Thomas Jefferson, June 28, 1813, The Adams-Jefferson Letters,ed. Lester J. Cappon (Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 1959), vol 2, pp. 339-40.


Thomas Jefferson, 

"Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with His wrath? I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that His justice cannot sleep forever." President Thomas Jefferson

"The reason that Christianity is the best friend of Government is because Christianity is the only religion that changes the heart." President Thomas Jefferson

"Of all systems of morality, ancient of modern, which have come under my observation, none appear to be so pure as that of Jesus." Thomas Jefferson To William Canby, 1813

"I hold the precepts of Jesus as delivered by Himself, to be the most pure, benevolent and sublime which have ever been preached to man..." President Thomas Jefferson

“I have always said and always will say that the studious perusal of the Sacred Volume will make better citizens, better fathers, better husbands... the Bible makes the best people in the world." President Thomas Jefferson

"My views- - - are the result of a lifetime of inquiry and reflection, and very different from the anti-Christian imputed to me by those who know nothing of my opinions. To the corruptions of Christianity I am, indeed, opposed; but not to the genuine precepts of Jesus himself. I am a Christian in the only sense in which He wished anyone to be; sincerely attached to his doctrines in preference of all others—"   Thomas Jefferson to Dr. Benjamin Rush On April 21, 1803

"I am a real Christian, that is to say, a cisciple of the doctrines of Jesus. I have little doubt that our whole country will soon be rallied to the unity of our Creator." Thomas Jefferson wrote on the front of his Bible.


James Madison,

"Before any man can be considered as a member of civil society, he must be considered as a subject of the Governor of the Universe. And to the same Divine Author of every good and perfect gift [James 1:17] we are indebted for all those privileges and advantages, religious as well as civil, which are so richly enjoyed in this favored land." James Madison

"While we assert for ourselves a freedom to embrace, to profess, and to observe, the Religion which we believe to be of divine origin, we cannot deny an equal freedom to them whose minds have not yielded to the evidence which has convinced us." James Madison, A Memorial and Remonstrance (Massachusetts: Isaiah Thomas, 1786). This can be found in numerous documentary histories and other resources.
The religion of divine origin was obviously Christianity, of which Madison said he was convinced.

"Waiving the rights of conscience, not included in the surrender implied by the social state, & more or less invaded by all Religious establishments, the simple question to be decided, is whether a support of the best & purest religion, the Christian religion itself ought not, so far at least as pecuniary means are involved, to be provided for by the Government, rather than be left to the voluntary provisions of those who profess it." James Madison response to an essay/sermon by Reverend Jasper Adams. Religion and Politics in the Early Republic: Jasper Adams and the Church-State Debate, Daniel L. Dreisbach, ed. (Kentucky: University Press of Kentucky, 1996), p. 117.

"Religion, or the duty we owe to our Creator, and the manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force or violence; and, therefore, that all men should enjoy the fullest toleration in the exercise of religion according to the dictates of conscience, unpunished and unrestrained by the magistrate, unless under color of religion any man disturb the peace, the happiness, or safety of society, and that it is the mutual duty of all to practice Christian forbearance, love, and charity toward each other." James Madison, ca. 1789, cited in Gaillard Hunt, James Madison and Religious Liberty (Washington: American Historical Association, Government Printing Office, 1902), p. 166.


James Monroe,

"The liberty, prosperity, and the happiness of our country will always be the object of my most fervent prayers to the Supreme Author of All Good."  March 5, 1821 in his Second Inaugural Address


John Quincy Adams,

"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." President John Quincy Adams

"The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were.... the general principles of Christianity." President John Quincy Adams

"My custom is to read four or five chapters of the Bible every morning immediately after rising... It seems to me the most suitable manner of beginning the day... It is an invaluable and inexhaustible mine of knowledge and virtue." President John Quincy Adams


Andrew Jackson,

"The Bible is the Rock on which this Republic rests." President Andrew Jackson


Abraham Lincoln,

America’s sixteenth president, who died on a Good Friday, was a devoted Bible reader but never joined a church. In a youth of near poverty, the Bible was one of the few books Lincoln owned. When he became president, its words and phrases found their way into many of his speeches.

Earlier, a broken engagement had caused him much pain, and Lincoln declared that his Bible was "the best cure for the blues." Lincoln also said that "this Great Book is the best gill God has given to man." When his wife, Mary, urged harsh measures for the defeated Confederacy, Lincoln quoted Jesus’ words to her, "Judge not, lest ye be judged."

"I believe the Bible is the best gift God has ever given to man. All the good from the Savior (Jesus) of the world is communicated to us through this book. 

“I am profitably engaged in reading the Bible. Take all of this Book upon reason that you can, and the balance by faith, and you will live and die a better man." 

Lincoln’s famous words, speaking of the slavery issue in America, were, "A house divided against itself cannot stand." He was quoting from Luke 11:17, in which Jesus’ enemies claimed Jesus could cast out demons because He was in league with the devil himself Jesus replied, "Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and a house divided against a house falleth" (KJV)

President Lincoln, a devoted Bible reader, claimed the Bible moved him to issue his Emancipation Proclamation, freeing America’s slaves, in 1863. He noted especially the words of Exodus 6:5: "I [God] have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel, whom the Egyptians keep in bondage" (KJV).

Lincoln's 2nd Inaugural Address

"Fellow countrymen: At this second appearing to take the oath of the Presidential office, there is less occasion for an extended address than there was at the first...The progress of our arms, upon which all else chiefly depends, is as well known to the public as to myself; and it is, I trust, reasonably satisfactory and encouraging to all. With high hope for the future, no prediction in regard to it is ventured...

"Neither party expected for the war, the magnitude, or the duration, which it has already attained. Neither anticipated that the cause of the conflict might cease with, or even before, the conflict itself should cease. Each looked for an easier triumph, and as a result less fundamental and astounding. Both read the same Bible, and pray to the same God; and each invokes His aid against the other...The prayers of both could not be answered; that of neither has been answered fully...If we shall suppose that American Slavery is one of those offenses which, in the providence of God, must needs come, but which, having continued through His appointed time, He now wills to remove, and that He gives to both North and South, this terrible war, as the woe due to those by whom the offence came, shall we discern therein any departure from those divine attributes which the believers in a Living God always ascribe to Him?

Fondly do we hope - fervently do we pray - that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue, until all the wealth piled by the bond-man's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every every drop of blood drawn with the lash, shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said 'The judgements of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.'

"With malice toward none; charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow and his orphan - to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." Immediately afterwards, Lincoln kissed the Bible, bowed, and retired from the platform. Abraham Lincoln's 2nd inaugural address, March 4th, 1865.

"Intelligence, patriotism, Christianity, and a firm reliance, are still competent to adjust, in the best way, all our present difficulty". 

"The philosophy of the school room in one generation will be the philosophy of government in the next." 

"The only assurance of our nation's safety is to lay our foundation in morality and religion." 


Theodore Roosevelt,

 “To every man who faces life with real desire to do his part in everything, I appeal for a study of the Bible." President Theodore Roosevelt


Woodrow Wilson, 

 "America was born a Christian nation. America was born to exemplify that devotion to the elements of righteousness which are derived from the revelations of Holy Scriptures. Ladies and gentlemen, I have a very simple thing to ask of you. I as of every man and woman in this audience that from this night on they will realize that part of the destiny of America lies in their daily perusal of this great book of revelations. That if they would see America free and pure they will make their own spirits free and pure by this baptism of the Holy Scripture." Woodrow Wilson, 1911, pre-Presidential campaign speech.

“I have a very simple thing to ask of you. I ask every man and woman in this audience that from this day on they will realize that part of the destiny of America lies in their daily perusal of this great Book (the Bible)." President Woodrow Wilson


Herbert Hoover,

"The study of the Bible is a post-graduate course in the richest library of human experience." President Herbert Hoover


Harry Truman,

 "The fundamental basis of this nation's law was given to Moses on the Mount. The fundamental basis of our Bill of Rights comes from the teaching we get from Exodus and St. Matthew, from Isaiah and St. Paul. I don't think we emphasize that enough these days. If we don't have the proper fundamental moral background, we will finally end up with a totalitarian government which does not believe in the right for anybody except the state. President Harry S. Truman


Source:  http://www.errantskeptics.org/Quotes_by_Presidents.htm