- Religion and Philosophy
Shining city on a hill
Fruit of the Spirit
I think we sometimes forget (conveniently), that we are ALL sinners, always have been, and always will be.
It is a fact, that man is indeed sinful and has committed atrocities since the beginning of time. And YES, many of which was done, “in the name of God”, who has declared themselves as Christians. But, I say that these atrocities were not perpetrated by God, but by evil human beings. Jesus himself said that "many" people who think they are His followers will be rejected by Him when they attempt to claim that they are His disciples. Not all who claim the name of Jesus are actually His disciples.
I also firmly believe that it was Christians,(followers of Christ) and Godly men and women, that built this Country into a Great Nation formed over 230 years ago. They were the ones who practiced the fruit of the Spirits; that being love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control, knowing that against such things there is no law. I would even argue that it has been the atheists that have committed far more atrocities than all Christian groups combined.
Joseph Stalin lead over 60 million people to their deaths. Karl Marx, Benito Mussolini, Mao Tse-Tung, all, right up there with him.....all were atheist. Even though some people say that Hitler was a Christian, I'm am quite certain, he was not practicing the “fruits of the spirit” when he murdered hundreds of thousand people.
It really seems to me, that many in this country have forgotten all the great things this nation has done, with “God” as our foundation. Starting with the hundreds of thousands of men and women, who died during WWI & WWII, to assure our freedoms and to stop such dictators who had a much different approach to “nation building”. Not to mention all of the benevolent giving to the “least of these” by those who did so in the “name of God”, not just for the people in this country but all people over the world.
Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD
The Bible tells us, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, The people He has chosen as His own inheritance.” Psalm 33:12 and those words were taken to heart by many of our forefathers.
When James Madison said, "We have staked the whole future of American civilization, not upon the power of government, far from it. We have staked the future of all of our political institutions upon the capacity of mankind of self-government; upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to control ourselves, to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God." And when he went on to say…. "The future and success of America is not in this Constitution, but in the laws of God upon which this Constitution is founded.”
Daniel Webster also once stated that: "If we and our posterity...live always in the fear of God and shall respect His Commandments...we may have the highest hopes of the future fortunes of our country.... But if we...neglect religious instruction and authority; violate the rules of eternal justice, trifle with the injunctions of morality, and recklessly destroy the constitution which holds us together, no man can tell how sudden a catastrophe may overwhelm us and bury all our glory in profound obscurity."
Without God, there could be no American form of Government
On February 20, 1955, Eisenhower stated: "Without God, there could be no American form of Government, nor an American way of life. Recognition of the Supreme Being is the first - the most basic - expression of Americanism."
Even JFK believed our greatness was “in the name of God”. On his inaugural speech he said the following: "The rights of man come not from the generosity of the state but from the hand of God. The energy, the faith, the devotion which we bring to this endeavor will light our country and all who serve it—and the glow from that fire can truly light the world. And so, my fellow Americans—ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country...Let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God's work must truly be our own”
Even Albert Einstein, said that, "Being a lover of freedom, when the (Nazi) revolution came, I looked to the universities to defend it, knowing that they had always boasted of their devotion to the cause of truth; but no, the universities were immediately silenced. Then I looked to the great editors of the newspapers, whose flaming editorials in days gone by had proclaimed their love of freedom; but they, like the universities, were silenced in a few short weeks...Only the Church stood squarely across the path of Hitler's campaign for suppressing truth. I never had any special interest in the Church before, but now I feel a great affection and admiration for it because the Church alone has had the courage and persistence to stand for intellectual and moral freedom. I am forced to confess that what I once despised I now praise unreservedly.”
Sermon on the mount
What I would like to stress is, just how important it is, that the true Christians of this country, does not buckle during these trying times. That now! is the time for all of us, to put God first and foremost in everything we do. Ronald Reagan often reminded us of his vision of America as a "shining city upon a hill." He knew exactly that this referred to Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, where he tells us "You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven" (Matthew 5:14).
Those words hold true to this day. But it is up to each Christian to stay true to the teachings laid out to us by God himself. We have a responsibility as American citizens to strive do good works, while glorifying our heavenly Father. To not buckle under being politically correct or being tolerant of what we know is evil. Not to be complacent or lethargic with our daily walk, but be as our forefathers were, and merely do what we know is right.
This may seem corny, but it is indeed how I feel. I am the eternal optimist and fully believe that we can still be a blessed nation.