It remains true, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people” (Proverbs 14:34). It is suggested by many that Thomas Jefferson would feel right at home in today’s secular America. Yet it was Jefferson who asked, “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 a gift from God? That they are not to be violated but by His wrath? Indeed, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; and that His justice cannot sleep forever.”
Thankfully, it is also still true that when believing people meet God’s prescribed conditions – when we humble ourselves, seek His face, pray, and turn from our sins – then He goes to work and lavishes mercy on their nation. Listen to God’s iron-clad promise of hope and restoration when His people meet the conditions: “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” (2 Chronicles 7:14). The responsibility for national renewal does not lie with the government, and certainly not with the courts. It lies with God’s people.
For the believer who holds to the faith of our fathers there is a sure hope for a better future. We can marinate the difficulties and disappointments of the present in the warm juices of biblical hope. The Bible confidently promises a coming day when “they shall beat their swords into plowshares . . . Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore” (Isaiah 2:4). Let’s not forget that when we sing Handel’s great Hallelujah Chorus, we are not just belting out magnificent music, we are pronouncing a magnificent promise from Revelation 11:15, “The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever.”
Let’s get it straight. The founders of the United States made sure there would be no human monarchy. Congress is not king, the president is not king, the courts are not king. Even though we enjoy great liberties, the people are not king. In the founding of this nation there was to be only one King –
“Our fathers’ God, to Thee, Author of Liberty,
To Thee we sing.
Long may our land be bright
With freedom’s holy light,
Protect us by Thy might,
Great God, our King”
– Samuel F. Smith
On this Independence Day weekend, David encourages you to join him in earnest prayer for America. David blogs Monday through Thursday. He invites you to join him Friday through Sunday in enjoying an extended Internet-free weekend.