There are those who argue that this country was founded on secularism (i.e., Enlightenment theories). Thus, they claim, it was the expressed view of the Founding Fathers and Framers of the Constitution that God be factored out of the civil equation. But in light of the evidence, such a view is untenable. It was James Madison, the author of the First Amendment to the U. S. Constitution, who said:
It is the duty of every man to render to the Creator such homage and such only as he believes to be acceptable to him. This duty is precedent, both in order of time and in degree of obligation, to the claims of Civil Society…. And if a member of Civil Society, who enters into any subordinate Association, must always do it with a reservation of his duty to General Authority; much more must every man who becomes a member of any particular Civil Society, do it with a saving of his allegiance to the Universal Sovereign (James Madison et al., “Memorial and Remonstrance against Religious Assessments,” June 20, 1785).
In other words, prior to any citizen’s pledge of allegiance to the state lies his or her allegiance to God.