In 1973 President Ezra Taft Benson gave a message entitled, "This Nation Shall Endure." In his message, he said, “Our American republic will endure only as long as the ideas of the men who founded it continue dominant.”
He also said, "The freedom which we enjoy did not originate with the Founding Fathers... this great boon of freedom and respect for the dignity of man, came as a gift from the Creator. The Founding Fathers, it is true, with superb genius welded together the safeguards of these freedoms. It was necessary, however, for them to turn to the scriptures, to religion, in order to have their great experiment make sense to them. And so our freedom is God-given. It antedates the Founding Fathers."
He continued, "Let us... learn the meaning and importance of our God-ordained Constitution. Let us rededicate ourselves to the lofty principles and practices of those wise men whom God raised up to give us our priceless freedom. Our liberties, our salvation, our well-being as a church and as a nation depend upon it. This nation has a spiritual foundation—a prophetic history. Every true Latter-day Saint should love the United States of America—the most generous nation under heaven—the Lord’s base of operations in these last days. May we do all in our power to strengthen and safeguard this base and increase our freedom. This nation will, I feel sure, endure. It is God-ordained for a glorious purpose. We must never forget that the gospel message we bear to the world is to go forth to the world from this nation. And that gospel message can prosper only in an atmosphere of freedom. We must maintain and strengthen our freedom in this blessed land."
To read the rest of President Benson's address, click here.