Would We Know It If God Blessed America??

July 4, 2024

The Bible has often been described as the book that built America. As President Franklin D. Roosevelt affirmed, “We cannot read the history of our rise and development as a Nation without reckoning with the place the Bible has occupied in shaping the advances of the Republic.”

Significantly, it was many of America’s Founding Fathers who worked actively to spread the Bible and its influence across America. For example, in 1809 Benjamin Rush (a signer of the Declaration of Independence) helped establish the first Bible Society in America. By 1816, 121 more Bible societies had been started across the nation, many of them with the help of key Founding Fathers. The American Bible Society was the first national Bible society in America, and still is very active today.

In October 1863, during the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln said this about our dependence upon God and His word, “It is the duty of nations as well as of men to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God; to confess their sins and transgressions in humble sorrow, yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon; and to recognize the sublime truth, announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history, that those nations are blessed whose God is the Lord.

We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of heaven; we have been preserved these many years in peace and prosperity; we have grown in numbers, wealth and power as no other nation has ever grown.

But we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us, and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own. Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us.”

As we celebrate another Independence Day, many people think our country is going in the wrong direction. A 2024 NBC Poll found that 71% of the people think the country is on the wrong track. This is the first time this poll has found such sustained pessimism polling over 70% in eight of the last nine polls, dating back to Oct. 2021.

I think it is more than just a struggling economy. I think Americans need to look within their souls and ask who they worship and, are they living as if this is true. The God of the Bible seems to get little more than lip service when the gods of pleasure, power and possessions twinkle in our eyes. God is way down on the list for too many Christians.

I challenge believers to look at the way you live as a reflection of what you believe. As you do so, consider a few quotes from some of our founding fathers. John Quincy Adams said about the Bible, “The first and almost the only book deserving of universal attention is the Bible. I speak as a man of the world…and I say to you, ‘Search the Scriptures.’”

His father, John Adams said, “The Bible contains the most profound philosophy, the most perfect morality, and the most refined policy that ever was conceived upon earth.”

The importance of faith to Samuel Adams is clear in these words, “Let divines (ministers) and philosophers, statesmen and patriots, unite their endeavors to renovate the age by impressing the minds of men with the importance of educating their little boys and girls, of inculcating in the minds of youth the fear and love of the Deity and universal philanthropy, and, in subordination to these great principles, the love of their country.”

When the Constitutional Convention of 1787 was falling apart, and the United States was splintering into pieces, it was Ben Franklin who took the floor and quoted scripture in order to get the delegates back on track after turning to God in prayer. The scripture he quoted was Psalm 127:1, “Unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.” His speech reminded the delegates that God had protected them during the war, and they needed to turn to God to write their constitution. They prayed, they were guided by the hand of God, and they succeeded in writing the greatest document of self-governance ever written.

These men were ready to give their lives for God and Country, in that order. As you celebrate this Independence Day, I invite you to read the Declaration of Independence with those that are celebrating with you. It will add much to your festivities. To God be the Glory!