Happy Birthday to us


By Timothy Johnson

Preacher’s Point

The 4th of July is upon us. My family celebrates four holidays every year: Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, and July 4th. Every year, everyone gathers at my oldest daughter’s house for our nation’s birthday. Food, fun, and fireworks are the events of the day. Each year, we have a corn hole tournament. I had won several years in a row, but my reign ended last year. I can’t prove it, but I wonder if I was sabotaged in our random draw for partners.

I love my country, and I am willing to give myself for her. Between my time in the US Army and my career in law enforcement for the US Department of Justice, I worked slightly less than thirty years in service to America. I am a proud flag-waving American.

Just like the racehorse Secretariat pulled away from the field, setting records as the fastest horse in history and winning the 1973 Belmont Stakes by nearly thirty lengths, America’s greatness pulled her far in front of all other nations.

I am not saying America is righteous or even right all the time. We have our sins.

Still, we were first in liberty. We are still where the ordinary person can move from rags to riches. I have a friend who had a job at a steel factory. On a Friday, the company told him and several others that layoffs were necessary. That night, he bought two dozen cases of different types of soft drinks. The following day, he parked on the street near the entrance of a fleamarket and started selling pop off the back of his pickup truck. Within a year, he owned a beverage store. In America, where there is a will, there is a way.

How did we become the land of liberty, the place of opportunity? How were we able to be the place people flock to for a better life? Our origins and the Bible provide the answers.

The first paragraph of the Declaration of Independence tells us that when a people dissolve the political bands that connect them to another, they must give reasons for the separation.

The second paragraph begins the list of the reasons the colonies were seperating themselves from the crown. The Founding Fathers immediately bring God into the argument. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

The Founders believed they were establishing a government based on Christianity.

“The Declaration of Independence laid the cornerstone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity.” – John Quincy Adams.

“The only means of establishing and perpetuating our republican forms of government is the universal education of our youth in the principles of Christianity by means of the Bible.” Benjamin Rush – First Chief Justice US Supreme Court.

Those are only two of the hundreds of examples in which our founders credited Christianity or the God of the Bible when speaking about the formation of our country.

We do not have a state religion, nor do Christians want one, because Jesus said, “Whosoever will may come.” Christianity is not Christianity if forced upon someone; it is a choice. God gives people the ability to choose, and since we receive our rights from God, our founders put in the Bill of Rights that the government will not establish a religion.

With the foundation laid of a government established on Christian principles, we now come to a promise from God. Psalm 33:12, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD…”

Less than a hundred years after the Declaration of Independence, America went through a blood bath because of the sin of slavery. Lincoln was correct in his second inaugural address when he said that the Civil War was a judgment from God. “Fondly do we hope—fervently do we pray—that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondman’s two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said, “The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.”

Between the end of the Civil War and the beginning of the twentieth century, the nation experienced a spiritual revival. America sent missionaries around the globe to preach the gospel of Christ, giving those who had never heard of Jesus the opportunity to believe or reject Him.

This period coincided with the move westward and the Industrial Revolution in the east. America becomes the bread basket of the world and the leader in production and wealth.

Our military might saved the world twice; once each in both world wars. God used the United States as a significant player in reestablishing the nation of Israel. In the 1950s, things were looking good. The average Joe could buy a home, and the nonwealthy started attending college. God was blessing the nation, but there were spiritual rumblings few people noticed.

There was respect for the Bible and religion in the first half of the twentieth century, even among non-religious people. By that, I mean that almost everyone accepted the Ten Commandments as a good moral code and agreed on right and wrong.

Newer English translations appeared around the beginning of the twentieth century. Despite being watered down from the King James Version, they were accepted by churches, ministers, and seminaries. False doctrine started creeping in; some even questioned Christ’s deity. The more Christians accept false teachings, the less influence the Holy Spirit has on society.

In the early 1960s, the influence of Scripture had waned so much that the Bible and prayer were removed from schools. By the end of the sixties, the sexual revolution was in full swing, and the morals taught by the Bible were quickly becoming a thing of the past. It only took a few decades for society’s view on sex outside of marriage to move from being called “Living in sin” to a relationship being in trouble if there hasn’t been sex by the third or fourth date.

Over the same period that sexual impurity had grown, mass shootings went from being nonexistent to massive headlines to “oh, another one?”

Things that God calls an abomination are now celebrated in American society.

America has always had her sins, but we have entirely taken God out of our thought process. Could you imagine the reaction if a politician did what Lincoln did by telling the people that the troubles we are going through are the judgment of God?

We have an election coming in November. It will not change anything. Regardless of which side wins, there will be policy changes. Some will make life easier, and some won’t work as well as planned, but neither party will turn the moral decay around.

Remember the verse quoted earlier: God will bless the nation whose God is the LORD. When churches are entertainment centers and the populous, as well as the politicians we elect, never have God as part of the decision-making process, how can we say He is our God?

The only thing keeping God’s hand of blessing on America is God’s promise in Genesis 12:3 – He will bless those that bless Israel and curse those that curse her. When the day comes that America turns her back on Israel, there is nothing left to keep God from turning His back on us. And with world events the way they are, that day may come sooner than many people think.

Preacher Johnson is the Pastor of Countryside Baptist Church in Parke County Indiana. Website: www.preachers-point.com; Email: [email protected]; Mail: 25 W 1200 N; Kingman IN 47952. Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Timothy-Preacher-Johnson-101171088326638. All Scripture KJV.

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