Monthly Archives: November 2011

America, Weighed in the Balances

America today finds itself in its most precarious circumstances since 1775, and our future is far less certain today than it was then. We have a socialist White House and a socialist Senate. Most of our Republican Representatives in the House are incompetent. Four of our Nine Supreme Court Justices are either progressives or socialists. Our economy is in shambles. Our defense policies are the most vulnerable in recent memory. Our culture is fragmented and corrupted. Our political parties’ lust for power has overcome their sense of patriotism to the Country. Our state governments are corrupt and self-serving. Our educational institutions have become little more than socialist indoctrination centers. Our national media has become the propaganda arm of the progressive Democratic Party.

We have forsaken our principles and rejected our founding documents. Worst of all we have also rejected the God of our Founders. Our pulpits are filled with false prophets and teachers, teaching the wisdom of men for the commandments of God. Our public policies foster iniquity and depravity.

We are told that America is not a Christian nation in spite of the fact that 84% of our citizens self-identify as Christian. However, there can be no question that historically America was established as a Christian nation. The first Charter (1606) for both the Jamestown and Plymouth colonies contained this phrase as to their purpose;

“We, greatly commending, and graciously accepting of, their Desires for the Furtherance of so noble a Work, which may, by the Providence of Almighty God, hereafter tend to the Glory of his Divine Majesty, in propagating of Christian Religion…”

It is interesting to note that the plans for a Plymouth colony were significantly altered twice by weather conditions (acts of God?). George Popham, one of the original holders of the 1606 Plymouth charter, established a colony in what is now Maine in 1607 at the same time the Jamestown Colony was being settled in Virginia. A severe winter caused Popham and all the settlers to return to England in the spring of 1608 abandoning the effort. The plans for a second attempt by the Pilgrims in 1620 was again changed by weather. Their original plans called for the establishment of a colony in what is now New York at the mouth of the Hudson River. However, a storm at sea drove them a hundred miles off course and they were forced by weather conditions and a shortage of supplies to establish their colony at Cape Cod in what is now Massachusetts.

One of the most well known of colonial documents is the Mayflower Compact of 1620. In it the Pilgrims reaffirm as their purpose in establishing a colony in America as,

“Having undertaken for the Glory of God, and Advancement of the Christian Faith, and the Honor of our King and Country, a Voyage to plant the first Colony in the northern Parts of Virginia;”

In 1629 King Charles, successor to James, issued a second charter to the Plymouth Company replacing the 1606 charter. This charter was issued to a group of Puritans led by John Endicott and was for a site at Massachusetts Bay some forty miles north of the Plymouth Colony settled by the Pilgrims. Again, the Charter for Massachusetts contained a reference to establishing the Christian faith as their main objective.

“…our said people, inhabitants there, may be so religiously, peaceably, and civilly governed, as their good life and orderly conversation, may win and incite the natives of country, to the knowledge and obedience of the only true God and Savior of mankind, and the Christian faith, which in our royal intention, and the adventurers free profession, is the principal end of this plantation.”  (Emphasis added)

The Christian Faith of these three colonies, Jamestown, Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay, provide the foundation on which the American culture was established and developed over the next three and a half centuries.  While the three colonies differed considerably as to the details of their faith, they were in agreement on the fundamental principles. The Jamestown Colony followed the teachings of the Church of England (Anglican) and their religious practices still closely resembled those of the Roman Catholic Church. The Puritans desired to reform the Church of England to bring it more in line with the teachings of the Bible. The Pilgrims believed the Church of England could no be reformed and therefore advocated a complete separation from it.

Among the principles they all agreed on were the authority of the Old and New Testament Scriptures, the Divinity of Jesus Christ and His atoning work, and the sovereignty of God in the affairs of man. Virtually all of the official documents during the colonial and revolutionary periods acknowledged the sovereignty of God as “God’s Providence” or “the Providence of God”. The Founding Fathers frequently expressed their faith in the Providence of God in their correspondence, the Declaration of Independence and in the Federalist Papers. George Washington, as Commander in Chief of the Revolutionary Army, endured more hardships during the struggle for Independence than any of the other Founders. His conclusion, as expressed in an August, 1788 letter to Thomas Nelson, one of his Generals, was,

“The Hand of Providence has been so conspicuous in all this, that he must be worse than an infidel that lacks faith, and more than wicked, that has not gratitude enough to acknowledge his obligations.”
~George Washington

These sentiments were also expressed by Jefferson, Madison, Hamilton and others in their writings. Many Christians and Christian Churches today avoid becoming too involved in the politics of the country, pointing to the fact that Jesus seemed to be a-political during his ministry and will frequently quote Jesus’ statement, “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” (Mark 12:17) Many who do actively participate in political matters hesitate to mention God’s plan because of the “politically correct” but historically incorrect application of the doctrine of “separation of church and state”.

We have 4,000 years of recorded history in the Old Testament Scriptures regarding God’s dealing with nations plus another 2,400 years of secular history. In Malachi 3:6 God reminds us, “I am the Lord, I Change not”. In Hebrews 13:8 Paul says “Jesus Christ [is] the same, yesterday, and today, and for ever.”  God does not change. Christians today should not believe that God will deal with America any differently than He dealt with Israel and other nations as recorded in the Old Testament.

In the fifth chapter of Daniel, Daniel tells the story of Belshazzar, King of the Chaldeans as he gave a great feast for a thousand of his lords. As they drank wine and praised the gods of gold, silver, brass, wood and stone a hand appeared and wrote on the wall of the palace, “MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN”.

“This is the interpretation of the thing:
MENE; God hath numbered thy kingdom, and finished it.
TEKEL; Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting.
PERES; Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.” (Daniel 5:26-28)

That same night, Belshazzar was killed and his Kingdom was taken over by Darius, King of the Medes. In considering the condition of America today the Christian can not help but consider that God may have weighed us in the balances and found us also wanting.

The Old Testament is a litany of God’s judgments against the rulers and the people of Israel, Judah, and the nations they dealt with. When they honored God and followed his commandments, God blessed them with peace and prosperity. When they turned to other gods and forsook His commandments he punished them with famine, pestilence and the sword, eventually destroying the nations of Israel and Judah, scattering the remnant of their people over the face of the earth.

With the possible exception of Israel under King Solomon, (970-930 B.C) no nation in history has enjoyed the blessings of God more than America. For some two hundred years America was the wealthiest, freest, and mightiest nation on earth. The dream of the poor and oppressed the world over was to someday migrate to America and become an “American”. Everywhere, “American exceptionalnism” was recognized as being due to the special blessings of God. All that began to change during the past two or three generations.

Prior to the mid-twentieth century the official policy of the American government was to acknowledge the sovereignty and providence of God in our national affairs and to seek His blessings through public prayers. Christianity was encouraged in our schools, and other public institutions. However, as early as 1890, at the beginning of the progressive era, a Wisconsin court ruled against using the King James Version of the Bible in public schools. Opposition to the idea of America as a “Christian Nation” continued to grow, slowly at first, until finally it reached the Supreme Court. A number of court ruling during the 1960s led to the eventual removal of all official recognition of God or Christianity from our public institutions. George Washington could not be elected to public office in twenty-first century America. Any public official delivering a speech with the Christian overtones of Washington’s Farewell Address of 1796 or his Thanksgiving Proclamation of 1789 would immediately be subject to condemnation by the modern American society and calls would be made for his or her resignation.

Along with our official rejection of God’s presence in our public affairs came the inevitable decline of morality in the American culture. Covetousness, jealousy, greed, sodomy, abortion, and various forms of idolatry are not only condoned, but encouraged by public policy. Washington D.C. has become the temple of our new god, the U.S. government. The worship of government, the environment and individual needs have replaced the worship of the Creator God of our forefathers. Virtually all of God’s commandments have been made disreputable by our official public policies and “politically correct” laws.

The Founders firmly believed that our success in gaining our independence from England and establishing our form of government was due to the providence of God. Years of studying history and the Bible has brought me to the same conclusion. Apart from that, history also shows that a society cannot long exist without an objective and enduring standard of behavior and order. For America, that standard is found in our four founding documents, the Bible, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. The further we move away from that standard the more our problems multiply. With these thoughts in mind, it is easy to relate our current problems to the sentiment expressed by Thomas Jefferson in 1785.

“Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are of the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with his wrath? Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just: that his justice cannot sleep forever..;” ~Thomas Jefferson

Nothing would go further in preserving our republic and reestablishing our lost liberty than another “great awakening” similar to the one from 1720 to 1770 that provided the moral fortitude for our establishment as an independent nation and constitutional republic. Just as Thomas Jefferson credited the state legislatures with saving the Constitution and the Republic during the administration of John Adams, Christians and Christian Churches have the opportunity today of helping to save our nation from the Judgment of God. We can no longer afford to sit on the sidelines and watch our nation slip into godless socialism.

“…If the watchman see the sword come , and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned ; if the sword come , and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman’s hand.”
Ezekiel 33:6