I was talking to an old friend this past week and we quickly agreed that our small town America upbringing was not only typical for many but the source of our lives being what they are today and the product of the best of memories past. The values we were ingrained with, the wholesome and God fearing approach to daily life along with a biblical worldview that was lovingly instilled in us is something we both cherish and appreciate to this day. It came from our parents and our parents parents who learned it from theirs. It’s who we are; it’s who America is. An that’s amazing as I have traveled the world and understand that we, America are only a mere 4% of the worlds population and yet this nation has given more than any other nation to missions and disaster response, taken in more refugees, sent more of it’s young men and women to war defending the freedom of others, created more opportunities for freedom, and given the world more inventions, medical technology and medicines than all others nations in recorded history. I believe the reason is that God has been honored here more than anywhere else in history! Think of this… If a plane is leaving Uganda headed for Thailand and is shot down to whom would they look for help? There are somewhere in the neighborhood of 310,000 brave Americans who wear the uniform of the United States Air Force and they know that those men and women would do what they could to seek justice and do what is right! Japan imports 100% of its oil which has to be transported across the Pacific. Suppose a ship is being hijacked on the high seas. To whom would they turn? There are over 327,000 brave men and women who wear the uniform of the United States Navy! That’s why there is peace and stability in the world. The Bible says that to overthrow the city you must first bind the strong man. And for those who wish to bring chaos on this planet there is one nation they have to go through… us!
I was honored to be in Washington DC a few weeks back for the inauguration of our 45th President. I saw a host of supporters and I saw a number of protesters. I was also still in town when another protest began on the Saturday after the inauguration. Last week a large gathering of Americans stood for the Sanctity of Human Life stood and marched in our nations Capitol. This is America and I Thank God we can do this without fear of threat or reprisal! This is the beauty of America’s freedom and opportunity. A freedom I might add that in every corner of the world I have traveled is longed for and appreciated and yet often never experienced. For this to continue unpopular steps are required, it’s been that way from our beginning. If this Free land which has been a blessing to the world giving more, sending more and yes voluntarily bleeding more that any nation has in the past for the freedoms of others is to continue then it must stay free, and that freedom must be based on our nations Godly heritage and the documents we have lived under as a nation for the last 240 plus years… (More than any country in the history of the world I might add!)
Rabbi Daniel Lapin gives the illustration where he asks, “Imagine if you will that you are running for your life through the streets at night and you can hear the footsteps of soldiers behind you. You come to a row of houses and you know that in each of the first four houses their lives the following, an economics professor, a politician, a baker and a dedicated Sunday School Teacher. Which door would you knock on? Rabbi Lapin pauses and then says, you would knock on the door of the Sunday school teacher! Why? Because you know for sure that that person values life and the best chance you have of staying alive would be in the home of one who believes that live is sacred and comes from God. In the history of the world there has only been one country to which the world could run to for live because our founding documents clearly begin with the truths we call “self evident” “that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness” And as my good friend Bob McEwen likes to point out, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness are of little value of you are dead!” The point Rabbi Lapin makes is that if America’s freedom disappears there will be no where else to go! We will have differences about many things but through it all I pray we stand firm on God’s word and God’s promises so America may be as Lincoln said, “the last best hope of earth!”! This is still a great place to live!
Tim Throckmorton is the former Executive Pastor of the Plymouth Heights Church of the Nazarene in Franklin Furnace Ohio and the Portsmouth First Church of the Nazarene in Franklin Furnace, Ohio. He is currently the Senior Pastor at Crossroads Church in Circleville, Ohio.ReachReach