Washington – We hear a lot of talk about the separation of church and state in America, so you might not realize there's a deep connection to the Christian faith engraved throughout our nation's capital.
In fact, America's capital is full of Christian heritage, especially if you know where to look.
And you need to look no further than the iconic Washington Monument to see the evidence, even if that evidence is more than 500 feet up in the air.
"On the east side facing the rising sun and the US Capitol they inscribed the words Laus deo, 'Praise be to God,' in all likelihood giving praise for the final completion of the memorial after 35 years of construction," said Mike Litterst of the National Park Service.
Before construction even began on the iconic Washington Monument, a Bible was placed in the cornerstone.
The National Park Service allowed CBN News inside for a rare sight which few people get to see.
"That's Noah's Ark. Correct, that's Noah's Ark and that's the dove of peace," said Litterst.
Nearly 200 memorial stones, some depicting scripture, line the dark stairway. The stones were gifts from individuals, cities, states and countries.
Decades after the completion of the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial took its place on the mall.
"We need to study this because it's a Christian document," said Dr. Catherine Millard the president and founder of Christian Heritage Tours.
That document is the inaugural address by the nation's 16th President.
"What Abraham Lincoln is saying in his second inaugural address is that it's more than brother against brother, family against family, North against South, God brought down the Civil War in order to eradicate slavery," Millard said.
In the address, Lincoln glorified God quoting scripture and mentioning prayer along with the Bible several times.
"Both the North and South read the same Bible and pray to the same God because North and South were Christian," Millard said.
Lincoln delivered the speech on March 4, 1865 just 41 days before his assassination — 152 years later his words are engraved in stone.
Also etched in stone along the Tidal Basin is God's message at the Thomas Jefferson Memorial.
Just offshore, the words "Almighty God hath created the mind free" are inscribed under the dome.
Along another panel is the text, "God who gave us life, gave us liberty."
The words were taken from a summary view of the rights of British America, highlighting how the founding fathers turned to their faith for strength in creating an independent nation under God.
It's just one more sign of the Lord's mark in Washington, D.C.