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Organizer of the American Revolution
(1722 - 1803)

(Excerpted from the book, Great American Statesmen and Heroes
copyright 1994 by Catherine Millard.

An inscription on the famed Adams statue in Boston, reads as follows:

Samuel Adams, 1722 - 1803, A Patriot
He organized the Revolution and
signed the Declaration of Independence
Governor, A true Leader of the People
A statesman, Incorruptible and Fearless
Erected A.D. 1880
bequeathed to the City of Boston
by Jonathan Phillips

Further to this impressive memorial, we glean the following accomplishments by this son of the American Revolution:

1722          Born in Boston, September 16
1740          Graduated at Harvard College
1743          Takes his Master's Degree from Cambridge
l747-48      Organizes a Political club and Newspaper
1764          Drafts the Boston Instructions
                  Proposes a union of the Colonies in opposition to Parliament
l765-74      Member of the Legislature
l765           Writes the Massachusetts Resolves
l766           Conducts a Controversy with the Governor
1768          Declares for Independence
1769          Writes "An Appeal to the World"
1770          Demands the removal of the troops
1772          Author of "The rights of the Colonists"
1773          Calls for a Continental Congress
                  Opposes Landing of the Tea
1774-81     Member of the Continental Congress
1775           Member of the Provincial Congress
                   Secretary of State, Councillor
1776           Signs the Declaration of Independence
1777           Member of the Board of War
1779           Member of theState Constitutional Convention
1781-84     President of the Massachusetts Senate
1786           Senator
1787           President of the Senate, and Councillor
1788           Member of the Convention to adopt the Federal Constitution
1789-93     Lieutenant Governor
1793-97     Governor

     What made Samuel Adams great? The historic annals of his own church, the Old South Meeting House in Boston, tell us that he was "the visible product of the New England Church." Nothing else could have made him what he was. He was born and nurtured, trained and molded under its powerful and penetrating influence. Unquestionably, the biblical principles and republican government of these Christian churches, under life-changing ministries produced the sound, clear-thinking patriots whose wisdom laid the foundations of our freedoms. The doctrine of the dignity of man, made in God's image, and hence, the equality of human rights and liberties, as God's inalienable gift to man, found its source in the Sacred Scriptures.

     Hence it is that Samuel Adams gained the reputation of being: The father of the American Revolution; the American Cato; the Chief Incendiary; Tribune of the People; the Cromwell of New England and the Last of the Puritans. These titles all express the indelible stamp of a superior mind and extraordinary feats of wisdom and courage.

     And what were the notable character traits which produced a great patriot and leader, pointing the way out of tyranny and oppression by an alien power? Brave as Adams was in resisting oppression by force of arms, he shed equal valor in refusing all offers to give us his beliefs for either advancement in salary or position. "Incorruptible," is a name which Samuel Adams has left to our nation. It is engraved upon our early history.

     Let the men of America take note today - in order that our politicians may see it; that our statesmen may comprehend its significance; and that our youth may inscribe its meaning upon the tablets of their hearts - and thus understand and merit their freedoms, once again. 

     Thomas Jefferson said of Adams, "I always considered him, more than any other member, the fountain of our more important measures." Men followed him because they saw that he was fit to lead. As Christ tells us in His Word, the Gospel: "He who would be first among you must be the servant of all" (Luke 22:26). Men looked up to him because they knew that their interests were in the hands of one whose life was regulated by his duty to God and man.

     In order to fully grasp the biblical mindset and value-system of this great American patriot, I quote from his famed Oration given at the State House (Independence Hall) on August 1, 1776:

Countrymen, and Brethren,

     ...Our Fore-fathers threw off the yoke of popery in religion; for you is reserved the honor of levelling the popery of politics. They opened the Bible to all, and maintained the capacity of every man to judge for himself in religion. Are we sufficient for the comprehension of the sublimest spiritual Truths, and unequal to material and temporal ones? Heaven hath trusted us with the management of things for Eternity, and man denies us ability to judge of the present, or to know from our feelings and experience what will make us happy.

     ...The hand of Heaven appears to have led us on to be perhaps humble instruments, and means in the great providential dispensation which is completing. We have fled from the political Sodom; let us not look back lest we perish and become a monument of infamy and derision to the world...Our glorious Reformers, when they broke through the fetters of superstition, effected more than could be expected from an age so darkened: But they left much to be done by their posterity. They lopped off indeed some of the branches of popery, but they left the root and stock when they left us under the domination of human systems...and decisions, usurping the infallibility which can be attributed to Revelation alone. They dethroned one usurper only to raise up another. They refused allegiance to the pope, only to place the Civil Magistrate on the throne of Christ, vested with authority to enact laws, and inflict penalties in His Kingdom. And if we now cast our eyes over the nations of the earth we shall find, that instead of possessing the pure Religion of the Gospel, they may be divided either into infidels, who deny the Truth; or politicians, who make religion a stalking horse for their ambition; or professors who walk in the trammels of orthodoxy, and are more attentive to traditions and ordinances of men, than to oracles of Truth. The Civil Magistrate has everywhere contaminated   Religion, by making it an engine of Policy; and Freedom of thought and the right of public judgment, in matters of conscience, driven from every other corner of the earth, direct their course to this happy country as their last asylum...

The organizer of the American Revolution concludes his unforgettable Oration from Independence Hall with a rally to the cause of Independence:

...That these American states may never cease to be free and independent!

     I conclude this chapter on Samuel Adams with the clarion call of America's Revolution, given at the dedication of Samuel Adams' memorial in his church - the Old South Meeting House, Boston:

God give us men!
A time like this demands
Strong minds, great hearts,
true faith and ready hands;
Men whom the lust of office
does not kill;
Men whom the spoils of office cannot buy;
Men who possess opinions and a will;
Men who have honor -
Men who will not lie;
Tall men, sun-crowned,
Who live above the fog
In public duty and in private thinking.



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