Rays of Light and Glory
John Adams wrote to his wife Abigail of the day that birthed our nation:
[This day] ought to be commemorated, as the day of deliverance by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp, shews, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations, from one end of the continent to the other, from this time forward forever.
You will think me transported with enthusiasm; but I am not. I am well aware of the toil, and blood, and treasure, that it will cost us to maintain this declaration, and support and defend these states. Yet, through all the gloom, I can see the rays of light and glory; I can see that the end is more than worth all the means, and that posterity will triumph, although you and I may rue, which I hope we shall not.
We are that posterity, the future of which Adams spoke. We are the inheritors of the toil, blood, and treasure that generations of Americans have sown into this land at home and abroad.
Land of Covenants
The United States is translated into Hebrew as, “Land of Covenants.” The model covenant is the original one created by God for the human race: marriage. “And a man shall cleave unto his wife” (Gen. 2:14 KJV). Marriage is a binding agreement covenant made between man, woman, and God. It was designed as a permanent, fruitful relationship based on love and self-giving not need and demand. It was founded on honor and trust, not deceit and faithlessness. The price of this covenant is laying one’s life down for the other, as exemplified in Christ (see Eph. 5). The greatest demonstration of this covenant bond took place when Christ laid down His life for His bride at Calvary.
In the Bible God speaks of a nation as a woman, and His commitment to her as a marriage. Her leaders, as representatives of God, are her husband, her people her assets. It’s a bond demonstrated in love, honor, faith, hard work, and expectation of fruitfulness and good posterity. Thomas Fuller (1608-1661), English churchman, poet, and historian, wrote, “I am confident that America…is now grown marriageable, and daily hopes to get Christ to her husband, by the preaching of the gospel.” There are four basic things a wife needs in her marriage: security, affection, open communication, and leadership. In short, she must be highly valued for who she is. America in God’s eyes is still very young, and we should be careful to think of her in the same way.
Lives, Fortunes, Sacred Honor
The signers of the Declaration of Independence said, “We, therefore, the Representatives of the United States of America…appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world…for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.
In the days following that declaration the signers did lose wives, children, and lands – but one thing remained. They did not lose their sacred honor. What they fought and died for was the reality indelibly etched in our history, America is a land in covenant with God Almighty.
America is not just one nation among many; an accidental convergence of the political change and colonial expansion; or a grand experiment that went right. The Spirit of Liberty stirred hearts and filled ship’s sails that carried Pilgrims and Puritans to our shore. Revival fire forged our disparate colonies into one nation. And the Holy Spirit inspired our fathers to design a Constitution for America to shine among nations as a City on a Hill whose builder and architect is God. It is a reflection of our covenant with Him, “The Lord is our Judge, the Lord is our Lawgiver, the Lord is our King.” This is our national treasure defended, passed down and stewarded for us by those who have gone before us.
In the film, Saving Private Ryan, the captain charged with securing Ryan’s safe return from the front, looks at the young man and says, “Earn this.” His brothers had all died in the Normandy invasion. Six men had since laid their lives down in order to ensure the posterity of the Ryan household would continue to a next generation. This scene encapsulates the story of America that we celebrate every Fourth of July.
The promise of America is like no other nations. Like the master in the parable of the talents Jesus told, God has invested Himself in our nation in covenant. How are we investing this great treasure He has given us?
If it is buried, let us go today. There’s a shovel-ready job. Dig up the promise, opportunity, and destiny God has given you to steward as a citizen of America. We who know Christ are blessed above all people. When the Master returns it is possible His question will not just be what you have done with your prayer life, your finances, or how you have raised your children. The God who holds destiny of nations in His hand may ask, “What did you do with the National Heritage that I gave you?”
America has been given in citizenship in this land the greatest gift. Will we give a return on His investment?
Let us refocus our hearts and our eyes and devote ourselves as John Adams wrote on the eve of war: “Through all the gloom, I can see the rays of light and glory; I can see that the end is more than worth all the means, and that posterity will triumph”
Let us see the light and the glory and fully lay hold of the talent that has been given each of us who call America home.
SO WE BLESS AMERICA TODAY WITH A DECLARATION FROM AMOS 9:11-15:
Lord raise up he tabernacle, which has fallen down,
And repair its damages;
Raise up her ruins,rebuild her as in the days of old;
That we may possess the remnant OF OUR INHERITANCE
And THE NATIONS who are called by YOUR name,”
MAY THESE BE THOSE DAYS
“When the plowman shall overtake the reaper,
And the treader of grapes him who sows seed;
The mountains shall drip with sweet wine,
And all the hills shall flow with it.
Bring back OUR CAPTIVE AND SET US FREE IN THE LIBERTY ONLY YOU CAN GIVE;
MAY WE build the waste cities and inhabit them;
MAY WE plant vineyards and drink wine from them;
LET US make gardens and eat fruit from them.
AS YOU HAVE planted US IN OUR land,
THAT WE AND OUR CHILDREN SHALL NOT BE UPROOTED FROM OUR HERITAGE OR FROM THE LAND YOU HAVE GIVEN US!
God Bless America!
Join us as we continue to invest in our nation in prayer. Consider starting a Watch of the Lord. Sign up to cover a day during our Let God Arise Prayer Rally. Take part in our Forty Day Corporate fast for America this September. Let God Arise!