On July 4th, we celebrate the 241st anniversary of the Declaration of Independence. And, with that great document, a new nation was launched upon the ebbing and flowing tides of world history. The roll call of great men and women who laid, with steely determination, the firm foundation upon which the United States of America would be built, reads like the A-list of the finest minds ever assembled for any purpose.
I’m sure that, as the days drug on leading up to the pronouncement, tensions were high, nerves were frayed and friendships were strained to the absolute limit. Working well into the wee hours of the
sultry Philadelphia nights, there were occasions when it was strongly suggested that they adjourn and return at a later date to continue the debate and conclude the arduous task. On more than one of these
pivotal junctures, the proceedings were halted and the name of God invocated in earnest prayer for divine guidance. Our founding fathers were more than 150 years removed from the humble beginnings of the Plymouth colony in 1620, yet the deep Christian faith and principles that guided the Pilgrims, beat strong and true in the hearts of many of their great-great grandsons the night the final document was agreed upon and signed by all in attendance.
As I pondered what to write for this month’s article, it occurred to me that, going back to the earliest civilizations, very few were the product of noble thoughts and pure intentions. Most nations were built on the premise that other nations were made up of inferior and thus, weaker individuals whose land possessions and labor were necessary for the betterment of the stronger nation. Looking at our world at this very moment, it is obvious that nothing has significantly changed, in that nations war against other nations and those who are stronger, conquer and enslave the weaker ones.
Am I about to start patting America on the back, because we have been a paragon of virtue among the nations of the world? I do believe that, in spite of the efforts some of our leaders, we have comported
ourselves reasonably well within the community of nations. However, with each passing year, we move farther and farther away from that early dependence upon biblical truths and Godly conduct that stood us
in such good stead over the formative years of our nationhood. So, you may ask, where are we now and where are we headed?
It is my firm belief that, when God is pushed out of the collective consciousness of any nation, the results are uniformly the same. The people of that nation start to look to the government to meet more and more of their perceived “needs” and, in the process, cede the vast majority of their freedoms to the government. As the lobster, in the parable, placed in a pot of cool water is blissfully unaware that the water is slowing being heated until it reaches the boiling point, so too, many in our country today are in a similar situation. Liberty and justice for all are the last five words of the Pledge of Allegiance, but how much of that liberty and justice is still available to us and who really cares one way or the other, anyway? The case could easily be made that, without an earnest and repentant return to our biblical roots, our country will not survive the continuous onslaught of the forces of evil encircling us today. We cannot assume that all will be well simply because we are loaded with good intentions and mean no one any harm. The world does not work that way!
God’s admonition to the people of Israel and, in essence, us—His church—is set forth in II Chronicles 7:14: “If my people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My
face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” I believe God is calling out people in one last, great gesture of grace and mercy. The signs of
the times are ever more clearly focused on the gathering storm clouds of war and destruction. I am well aware that it is not popular to constantly sound the alarm bells of “gloom and doom”. It is, also, equally as dangerous to live in perpetual ignorance about the clear and present danger now standing at your doorstep.
Jesus tells us, in Matthew 24:4, “…Take heed that no one deceives you.” There are people in this country today who are in the business of deceiving others into doing things without any regard for God or
the warnings about the “last days”. We, as Christians, must recognize the perilous times in which we live, seek out the lost souls among us and lead them to Jesus as soon as possible.
The only true liberty and justice for all is found in Jesus Himself! He said, “I am the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father, but through Me.” John 14:6. In the book of I Peter, chapter 2,
verses 9 and 10, it is written: “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who were once not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.” May we, His people, proclaim liberty and justice for all, through the precious blood of Jesus, shed for the sins of the entire world.