Pastor's Corner - July

LEST WE FORGET

Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?  The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying, let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.  He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh:  the Lord shall have them in derision.   Psalm 2:1-4


Be wise now therefore, O ye kings:  be instructed, ye judges of the earth.  Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling.  Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little.  Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.  Psalm 2:10-12

Our country just celebrated its’ 239th birthday.  During the American Revolution, the legal separation of the Thirteen Colonies from Great Britain occurred on July 2, 1776, when the Second Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution of Independence that had been proposed in June by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia.  After voting for independence, Congress turned its attention to the Declaration of Independence, a statement explaining this decision, which had been prepared by a Committee of Five, with Thomas Jefferson as its principal author.  Congress debated and revised the wording of the Declaration, finally approving it on July 4.  A day earlier, John Adams had written to his wife Abigail:

“The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America.  I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival.  It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.  It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with show, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward and forever more.”

 The tradition of patriotic celebration became even more widespread after the War of 1812, in which the United States again faced Great Britain.  In 1870, the U.S. Congress made July 4th a federal holiday;  in 1941, the provision was expanded to grant a paid holiday to all federal employees.  Over the years, the political importance of the holiday would decline, but Independence Day has remained an important national holiday and a symbol of patriotism.

 The tradition continues to this day, but it seems that we as a nation have FORGOTTEN SOME VERY IMPORTANT TRUTHS:

 THE REASONS

The founders of our nation wanted to break from the tyranny of Great Britain’s despotic monarchy, fully embodied in King George III.

 Generations have come and gone, yet now we have forgotten just how unique our hard won liberties really are.

Several years ago a substitute teacher wrote in the Washington Post about the depressing experience he had while teaching three advanced government classes in a suburban Virginia school.  He decided to poll his students on the basic question of whether the American system of government was morally superior to that of the Soviet Union.  Fifty one of the 53 high school seniors he asked – the brightest high school seniors in one of the best school systems in the country – saw no difference between the two.

These children could not morally distinguish between their own nation built on the basis of each individual having God-given rights, and another nation that has operated for over 90 years on the assumption that man is a mere creature of the state.  Not coincidentally, the two children who did comprehend a difference were Vietnamese boat children.  They had received a valuable education in reality when they experienced the collapse of their homeland into the darkness of communism.  Unfortunately, belief in American exceptionalism has fallen upon hard times.

THE ORIGINS

With our present day, multicultural, hyphenated – American, politically correct mentality, many have lost sight of our distinctively Christian origins.  Consider the following:

“It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians, not on religions, but on the gospel of Jesus Christ!”  Patrick Henry

“The highest glory of the American Revolution was this:  that it connected, in one indissoluble bond, the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity.”  John Quincy Adams

“Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers and it is the duty as well as the privilege and interest, of a Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers.”  John Jay, 1st Chief Justice of Supreme Court:  One of the three men most responsible for the Constitution

 It should be clear to any American with a working knowledge of history that the United States was, and is, a nation founded By Christians, Of Christians, and For Christians.

 THE PRICE

Fifty six men signed the Declaration of Independence.  Over half of them were Seminary graduates, ordained Christian ministers.  Their conviction resulted in untold sufferings for themselves and their families.  Of the 56 men, five were captured by the British and tortured before they died.  Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned.  Two lost their sons in the Revolutionary Army.  Another had two sons captured.  Nine of the fifty-six fought and died from wounds or hardships of the war.  Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships sunk by the British navy.  He sold his home and properties to pay his debts and died in poverty.

At the battle of Yorktown, the British General Cornwallis had taken over Thomas Nelson’s home for his headquarters.  Nelson quietly ordered General George Washington to open fire on the Nelson home.  The home was destroyed and Nelson died bankrupt.  John Hart was driven from his wife’s bedside as she was dying.  Their thirteen children fled for their lives.  His fields and mill were destroyed.  For over a year, he lived in forests and caves, returning home only to find his wife dead and his children vanished.  A few weeks later, he died from exhaustion. 

It is gut-wrenching to realize our nation is presently not being taken, but given away by an arrogant, soft, effeminate, and eager to please our enemies, generation of liberals.

THE COST

What is the cost of our national capitulation?  The following is a quote by the Father of our Country, George Washington:

“Reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of Christian principle.”

John Adams warned:

“We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion.  Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people… it is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

Government funded abortion on demand, legalized marijuana, and now America becomes the first civilization to redefine marriage thru a 5-4 Supreme Court decision.  Homosexuals have taken God’s symbol (the rainbow) from the last time He destroyed the earth and are waving it around the United States as a proud symbol of their sin.  Great idea – excuse me while I take shelter!

Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.  Psalm 2:3

The prophetic utterance of French writer and philosopher, Alexis de Tocqueville in 1831, foretold what is coming to pass before our eyes:

“I sought for the greatness of the United States in his commodious harbors, her ample rivers, her fertile fields, and boundless forests – and it was not there.  I sought for it in her rich mines, her vast world commerce, her public school system, and in her institutions of higher learning – and it was not there.  I looked for it in her democratic Congress and her matchless Constitution – and it was not there.  Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits aflame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power.  America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great!”

THE SOVEREIGN

He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh:  the Lord shall have them in derision.  Psalm 2:4

God will have the LAST WORD on the fate of our nation, even as we celebrate our 239th birthday.  Thomas Jefferson expressed it for every God-fearing believer when he said:

“Indeed, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that His justice cannot sleep forever.”

But, THERE IS HOPE

Be wise now therefore, O ye kings:  be instructed, ye judges of the earth.  Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling.  Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little.  Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.  Psalm 2:10-12

“Sir, my concern is not whether God is on our side.  My great concern is to be on God’s side.”   Abraham Lincoln

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.  II Chronicles 7:14

The Bible is replete with examples of God withholding His judgment in behalf of a praying remnant.

Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,  Ephesians 3:20

Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.  Jeremiah 33:3