George Washington's Sacred Fire
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George Washington's Sacred Fire

4.21 of 5 stars 4.21  ·  rating details  ·  335 ratings  ·  45 reviews
What sets "George Washington's Sacred Fire" apart from all previous works on this man for the ages, is the exhaustive fifteen years of Dr. Peter Lillback's research, revealing a unique icon driven by the highest of ideals. Only do George Washington's own writings, journals, letters, manuscripts, and those of his closest family and confidants reveal the truth of this awe-in...more
Paperback, 1208 pages
Published July 24th 2006 by Providence Forum Press (first published 2006)
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After reading this book you will never again be able to accept that George Washington was a deist.
Jul 01, 2010 Karen rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Karen by: a respected friend
I'm unsure how to review this book. While reading, Washington, the man became very personal to me. I now know why he is called "The Indispensable Man". This book made George Washington, alive to me. So, I say read this book. Introduce yourself to George Washington. Maybe he will speak to you too.

This is my favorite book on Washington because it made reading him easy. It is his words, given structure. The last 1/4 of the book is a glossary of his views on issues that effect us today. You want to...more
Deborah Sloan
George Washington's Sacred Fire
Every American needs to read George Washington's Sacred Fire by Peter A. Lillback for a valuable understanding on the beginnings of our nation and how truly a historic moment in time this was. Showing the "Providence of God" in the start up of this new country and the man who was chosen to lead us all.

Get in touch with the language of the day, the honor and principles expected and know how George Washington was absolutely the best possible choice of men ever to le...more
Neil McKinlay
The American people are experiencing a grass-roots level rediscovery of who they are as a nation. It turns out that the people have been discovering that the text books from which they were taught at school had been tampered with, to the point that relatively few of them now know very much that’s factual about the beliefs held by their founding fathers.

The good news is that there is now a hunger for truth sweeping America. Her people have a renewed interest in the beliefs of those who signed th...more
This 2006 release and national best seller from Peter Lillback and Jerry Newcombe was written for just one purpose: to answer the question, “was George Washington a Christian or not?” The authors remind us of that purpose in every chapter, if not every page. Enough already! We get it!

It took Lillback and Newcombe 725 pages to answer the question. That’s not counting the 458 pages of appendix, end notes and index. This is a monster book to read! Not only is its mere size intimidating to the casu...more
This was a great history of George Washington. It's too bad that its not in print anymore. I had to get an employee at Borders (when it was going out of business) to go in a back room and check their remaining stock for it. I got lucky!

Anyway, the book was very accurate and helped me to pass the Revolutionary War part of my APUSH class last year. I though it was very well-written. It takes a while to read simply because it is so long. Totally worth the time, though! :)
Christopher Smith
This is an important book, which shows that George Washington was not a Deist as some have claimed, but rather an orthodox Anglican with Latitudinarian tendencies.

One of the more persuasive arguments in the book, which the authors probably don't emphasize enough, is that Washington served as a godfather for some eight children and served as a very active lay-leader in his church, both of which required subscription to the Church of England's 39 Articles of Religion. Subscription was where unort...more
Jacob Aitken
Lillback rescues Washington from the charge of Deism, but not Masonry.

Thesis: George Washington was neither a Deist nor a modern Fundamentalist Evangelical. Rather, he was an orthodox Latitudinarian within the Anglican church. This means that while he did not have the outward, expressive, emotional zeal of 20th century counterparts, he did have a real faith in a Personal Triune God, and sucha faith did inform his public policies and inspire commitments.

Critics object that Washington never referr...more
A very comprehensive biography on Washington's Christianity. Quite extensive and thorough, this book should put to rest any false and ludicrous claims that Washington was a Deist. Quite the contrary. This book is well researched, extremely well documented, and very explicit on his love of and devotion to God. From quotes to experiences to personal accounts, there is ample proof that Washington prayed, attended religious meetings, was affiliated with a place of worship, and held deep convictions...more
Tweed Scott
Since the opening decade of the 20th century a concerted effort has been made by historians to distort and rewrite history to make a case that Geo. Washington was not a Christian. They consider him a Deist. This book goes to great length to show that he was raised Christian and relied on Christian teachings, values throughout his life. He required there be Chaplains present with his army throughout the Revolution. The concepts presented in this book are supported by The first presidents own word...more
Steve Curll
This is the most thoroughly researched book I have ever read. 1179 pages is a daunting task, indeed,, although the appendixes, footnotes and references take up 454 pages of small print. this book rewrites the recently rewritten history that has for many years claimed Washington was a Deist. The currently accepted research is looked at critically in great detail. All Deist arguments are refuted by Washington's own words. For a shortened but well researched version, read part I, about 63 pages,the...more
The important thing about this book is that it certainly clears the air for those who think they understand separation of church and state but don't. The opportunity for our nation's leaders to pray in public, go to church, or make references to the providence and God is a completely different thing from persecuting people because of what they believe. Washington regularly deferred to the providence of God. Leading his soldiers in prayer, both of hope and thanks. Whether or not Washington went t...more
Russ Bingaman
Over the years I have read many biographies of George Washington but I guess what sets this book apart from the others is the author’s research into George Washington’s religious views, personal history, and his personal writings. The author leaves no doubt that Washington was not only a god fearing Christian man but the only man worthy to lead a young nation out of the grips of the British Empire. It’s my opinion that this book should surely be a must read for anyone who wants to learn about on...more
Stan Crader
After reading Lillback's tome on Washington, my wife and I made arrangements to him come and speak to students at Southeast Missouri State University. That's how much I thought of the work. Lillback leaves no stone unturned in his research regarding Washington's faith. It's a thick book, nearly 300 pages are devoted to references. Lillback spent ten years researching an writing this book. I only gave it four stars because my rule is to never give a book of over 1000 pages five stars. I guess tha...more
Gary Wonning
Excellent book on the spiritual and religious beliefs of lour founding fathers.
Excellently presented, providing a thorough look into a man for the ages. Washington's personal correspondence to close family and friends unveil the true character of the American icon and remove all doubt and speculation of the magnitude of this man. Understanding the drive and diligence behind those who helped to create, shape, and form the foundation of our nation helps me to strive to continue to contribute to their dream and progress the ideals and principles they sought to instill in this...more
There's a fine balance between lots of detail and too much detail. This book crosses the line into too much detail. Lots of great information which really solidifies that Washington was not a deist, but the book goes into details about his life that are not necessary to make the case. The book could probably have been half as long while still making all of the essential points. Overall, however, if a person questions whether Washington was a Christian, this book gives a well-documented "yes."
Tim Chavel
This is an excellent book for those who want to know more about our first President's faith. It is very long but worth the read. The author does a great job siting first source documents. I am very happy to report that without a doubt President George Washington was a believer in our Lord Jesus Christ! The book has ten appendixes and the endnotes start on page 959 and go through 1155. The author, Peter A. Lillback, did much research for this fantastic book! I highly recommend it.
"Licentiousness is an abuse of liberty. It is a spirit of anything hoes. In contrast, Pres. George Washington believed in ordered liberty, liberty under God's law."
The authors did a great job of proving that Washington wasn't a Deist. They provide numerous textual support from Washington's own writing and from other documents of the time.

My only critique of the book is that it's long and becomes very repetitive after awhile. The book is great if you want to do some quick research, but it's not the best book for pleasure reading, in my mind. I had a hard time getting into it.
I love this book, but I read it in doses, a chapter a week. It is FULL of primary source-based facts. I was taught in high school that he was a deist. Wow, how "history teachers" like to twist the facts. I will not be so gullible in the future. I am half-way through. May take a couple of months to finish up, but I enjoy savoring this one.
As far as content I think this book had important information about George Washington and the Christian roots of the founding of America. The book was very long and quite redundant though which is why I didn't give it more stars. We had a fantastic book club discussion about this book though. It was a good read.
i never really doubted whether Washington was a Christian or a Deist. Lillaback definately has done his research and proves over and over that Washington was for sure a Christian. very well researched. deep and theological at points at times

not quite what i was suspecting and I am thankful to have completed it.
Chuck Springer
After reading just a couple of chapters, there was be NO DOUBT that George Washington was a Christian. The internal strength, integrity, honestly and fortitude of this great man is examined in tremendous detail. This book opened my eyes to how deeply devoted our first president was to his Deity.
Cristelle Beecroft
This was an amazing book. I've been on a history kick lately and have loved learning about some of our founding fathers. George Washington was truly a man of character and honor. I learned so much about him and his quiet, humble nature. This is a long book, but well worth the read.
This work is meticulously researched (400 pages of text notes alone!), but often reads more like a reference work than a spiritual biography--very repetitive: The book's 700 pages of text could have been cut to 400 without leaving out any of the author's points!
I am very anxious to read this book, especially since it was written by a hard-core evangelical who believes that Washington was a devout Christian in every sense of the word. I don't buy the argument, so this should be a fun book to dissect.
How can we understand our Present, if we don't know our Past? Mr. Lillback captured just that and more - he captured the essence of a great man during perilous times. We must continue to draw from this source of strength: Faith.
Sharon Eve Carson
As a high school history teacher, I considered this an excellent work. It brought the characters to life and I recommend it to anyone interested in the history of the U.S. and the personalities that gave birth to our country.
Pastor Don
If you want a great book to read and you love faith and history in whatever order, this is your book! Great facts backed up by over-extensive endnotes and apendixes. I'd read it again, and I don't do that often!
Christ's peace!
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BA, Cedarville College, 1974

ThM, Dallas Theological Seminary, 1978

PhD, Westminster Theological Seminary, 1985


Professor, Philadelphia Theological Seminary, 1995–1999

Professor of Historical Theology and Church History, Westminster, 1981, 1986–


President, The Providence Forum, 1999–

Pastoral ministry, Delaware and Pennsylvania, including Proclamation Presbyterian Church, 1982–20...more
More about Peter A. Lillback...
Wall of Misconception: Does the Separation of Church and State Mean the Seapration of God and Government? The Binding of God: Calvin's Role in the Development of Covenant Theology Business Ethics Today: Foundations American War for Independence George Washington & Israel

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