Tuesday, July 04, 2006

What God has Done for America
Psalm 33:12

[Please note that the historical information is from secondary sources.]

A Brief history of Christianity in America:

***** Jamestown, Virginia’s first community building was a church.

***** Puritans first act at Plymouth Rock was to kneel, praise and dedicate the new colony. The purpose of their journey was religious freedom.

***** Roger Williams (Baptist minister) founded Rhode Island.

***** Lord Baltimore held church service in establishing Maryland.

***** William Penn founded Pennsylvania seeking a safe haven for Quakers.


Historical Perspective of Christianity in America:

***** Twelve of the original 13 colonies incorporated the entire Ten Commandments into their civil and criminal codes.

***** President John Adams stated, "The law given from Sinai was a civil and municipal code as well as a moral and religious code. These are laws essential to the existence of men in society and most of which have been enacted by every Nation which ever professed any code of laws. Vain indeed would be the search among the writings of secular history to find so broad, so complete and so solid a basis of morality as the Ten Commandments lay down."

***** The American Bible Society was started by an act of Congress. John Adams, our second president, served as its first leader.

***** Supreme Court building, built 1935, features a Moses and Ten Commandments.

***** In the House of Representatives, across from the speakers’ seat, is a sculpture of Moses.

***** William Penn, in writing government policies for Pennsylvania, made sure “all treasurers, judges, and all elected officials professed faith in Christ.”

***** President George Washington said, "It is impossible to govern the world without God and the Bible. Of all dispositions and habits that lead to political prosperity, our religion and morality are indispensable supporters."

***** 1/3 of George Washington’s inaugural address was dedicated to asking God for help.

***** Henry Laurens, fourth president of the Continental Congress, stated, "I had the honor of being one who framed the Constitution. In order effectually to accomplish these great constitutional ends, it is especially the duty of those who bear rule to promote and encourage respect for God and virtue."

***** Patrick Henry, first governor of Virginia and a member of the Continental Congress, stated, "It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religion, but on the Gospel of Jesus Christ."

***** French writer Alexis de Tocqueville, after visiting America in 1831, said, "I sought for the greatness of the United States in her commodious harbors, her ample rivers, her fertile fields, and boundless forests--and it was not there. I sought for it in her rich mines, her vast world commerce, her public school system, and in her institutions of higher learning--and it was not there. I looked for it in her democratic Congress and her matchless Constitution--and it was not there. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great!”

***** Our nation’s motto: “In God we trust”


Christianity in the courts:

***** In 1853 a group petitioned congress for the separation of Christian principles from government, a “separation of church and state.” For nearly one year the Senate and House Judiciary committees reviewed and studied the petition to see if it would be possible to separate Christian principles from our civil government. Both returned almost identical reports.

The House Judiciary Committee report on March 27, 1854, said, "Had the (founding fathers), during the revolution, a suspicion of any attempt to war against Christianity, that Revolution would have been strangled in its cradle.... At the time of the adoption of the constitution and its amendments, the universal sentiment was that Christianity should be encouraged, but not any one sect (denomination)."

It also said, "In this age, there is no substitute for Christianity... That was the religion of the founders of the republic and they expected it to remain the religion of their descendants."

Two months later, the Senate Judiciary Committee added this declaration, "The great vital and conservative element in our system is the belief of our people in the pure doctrine and the divine truths of the Gospel of Jesus Christ."

***** At one point the Supreme Court ruled that America was a Christian nation.

***** In 1878 in a case called Reynolds vs. the United States, a group tried to take Jefferson’s “separation of church and state” statement to prove a separation of Christianity and government. In it’s response, the court quoted a lengthy section of the Jefferson letter and used it as a basis to prove that it was permissible to retain Christian values, practices and principles as official policies of the government. Jefferson’s letter was used to prove the inclusion of Christian practice and religion in government. When these debates had been settled the letter went basically unused for the next 75 years until 1947.

***** In the case of Everson vs. the Board of Education the court, for the first time, did not sight Jefferson’s letter in its entirety but instead they selected eight words from the Jefferson letter, "a wall of separation between church and state" and then declared “that wall must kept high and impregnable,” and used it, for the first time, against Christianity.

This started a redefinition of what “church” meant. It became common to think that "separation of Church and State" applied to any religious activity. This definition is now assumed, without attempting to understand the shift in meaning. Dr. William James (father of modern psychology and father of modern education), echoing Carl Marx might explain it this way: "there is nothing so absurd but that if you repeat it often enough people will believe it"

***** It got so bad that in 1958 in a case called Baer vs. Kolmorgen a dissenting judge warned that continuing to talk about the "Separation of church and state" would make people think it was part of the constitution.

***** In June 25, 1962 the case, Engel vs. Vitale was based on the misrepresentation of that phrase, the Supreme Court for the first time separated Christian principles from education when it struck down a prayer in schools. [The prayer was: “Almighty God, we acknowledge our dependence upon Thee, and we beg Thy blessings upon us, our parents, our teachers, and our country.”]

The court went so far as to determine what percent of the population believed in God. The court itself reported that 97% of the nation believed in religion and in God. Only 3% did not, in effect they made the philosophy of the few the binding (and blinding) guide for the many.


A brief history of Christianity in Education:

***** The New England Primer was the first textbook ever printed in America. It was introduced in Boston in 1690, and for the next 210 years it was THE textbook in our schools. If you went to school in America, you learned to read from the New England Primer.

It was a simple book that taught alphabet, and after the alphabet was learned it went back and attached sentences to those letters to be memorized. These are the phrases that were memorized in our schools for over 200 years.

A - A wise son maketh a glad father, but a foolish son is the heaviness of his mother.
B - Better is a little with the fear of the Lord than great treasure and trouble therewith
C - Come unto Christ all ye that labor and are heavy laden and He will give you rest.
D - Do not the abominable thing which I hate saith the Lord.
etc...

[Did you notice these are all from the bible?]

***** In 1782, the U.S. Congress voted in favor of a resolution recommending and approving the Bible for use in the schools.


A History lesson from Judah:

[32] The people of Israel and Judah have provoked me by all the evil they have done--they, their kings and officials, their priests and prophets, the men of Judah and the people of Jerusalem. [33] They turned their backs to me and not their faces; though I taught them again and again, they would not listen or respond to discipline. [34] They set up their abominable idols in the house that bears my Name and defiled it. [35] They built high places for Baal in the Valley of Ben Hinnom to sacrifice their sons and daughters to Molech, though I never commanded, nor did it enter my mind, that they should do such a detestable thing and so make Judah sin. [Jeremiah 32:32 – 35]

What was the worship of Baal:

Baal is geographically identified with Palestine. He is the local god. Archaeological evidence puts Baal worship predating Abraham. Literary evidence both in the Bible and in outside sources indicate that Baal worship has been around “indefinitely.” The modern word Belezebub, a synonym for Satan or the Devil, is actually a form of Baal-zebub.

It was believed that Baal died every winter and then was born every spring. With his birth comes the spring harvest and blossoms. Then he thrives through summer and ages in fall only to die in winter. It was believed that public and perverted sex would bring his rebirth every spring. Baal worship included female and male prostitutes along with homosexual acts.

Baal worship also emphasized the environment. Many tenants of modern environmentalism trace back to the worship of Baal.

Baal was tangible. One could taste the crops yielded. People could feel the pleasure of sex. It felt like the right thing to do.

What was the worship of Molech:

He is probably Phoenicians. You’ll remember the Phoenicians from your world history because of their two famous wars. The Trojan wars with Greece and three wars with Rome. The great military strategists Hannibal was from Phoenicia. Their great city was named Carthage.

The Romans hated the worship of Molech. Most of our information about Molech comes from them. The name of Molech appears early in the Bible. He is in the book of Leviticus as worship to him is strictly forbidden. This means that he was in Canaan before the Exodus. Molech was a fire god who demanded human sacrifice. Moloch had a human shape with a bull’s head. His arms were outstretched and a fire was built within the idol to a great heat. Then the parents would come with their baby and place the baby on the outstretched arms of Moloch and watch: they had to watch without emotion or tear to convince this angry demon god that sacrificing their baby was voluntary.

The worship of Molech, in the valley of Hinnom included priest that tossed infants back and forth across fires until the children roasted to death. It was the same valley Jesus referred to as a picture of hell. It is suspected that these two false gods were once considered the same god.

The real problem was that they were worshiped along-side of the one true God. In other words, the same people that indulged in sexual orgies and sacrificed their children in fires would also observe in Passover.


Conclusion:

Ask yourself, could this be happening today? We would like to think not... Why do 1/3 of all children in America die in abortion chambers? Is that not a sacrifice for our own benefit? Why is suicide and homicide leading causes of death among America’s children?

Can we not find, even in a small town like ours awful sexual perversions? If you don’t believe me walk down Ashmun street toward Portage avenue. Do you know were our city has set up a real idol? I’ll give you a hint, it’s beside the locks.

What about our church? Do we have idols such as control and gossip? Do we try to hold on to the things of God and the things of this world.

There is a scene in the film “Master and Commander” where the captain proposes a toast. He holds his glass in the air and says with all appropriate seriousness, “To our wives and our sweethearts.” All the men at the table, the officers say dutifully, “here, here.” Then Crowe says, “may they never meet!” Possibly we also have divided our love between the world and the Lord. Possibly we hope that one will not interfere with the other.

Today we have a choice. On one side is the blessing of Almighty God, while on the other side judgement. It pains us to see our country sliding into moral chaos and into a religious free fall. Some say we do not need a Savior but God hears the cries of need every day. Will we begin to see our lives and our world through our proclaimed Heavenly Father’s eyes? All that needed to happen for Judah to slide down it’s path was for true believers to be silent, to NOT bear witness, to NOT be involved. Each day, by its own behavior, our country forges it’s chains of tyranny and slavery to sin.

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