The Strength of a Nation
Roan Mountain Tennessee
The Strength of a Nation is one of the reasons I feel God’s providence. My conviction is that God has blessed us with freedom and prosperity for a purpose. I share the conviction of Charles Haddon Spurgeon who said in 1884, “I assuredly believe that England has been raised up as a nation and brought to her present unique position that she may be a means of spreading the gospel throughout the nations of the earth.
Where then is our nation’s strength? First, the strength of the nation is in the home. The strength of a nation is found in the character of its people. But where is character shaped and formed? It is formed in the home! So, ultimately, the strength of the nation is in the home.
Second, the strength of the nation is found in the spirit of its people who are to love and serve and keep the land. Whatever makes a person a good Christian ought also to make him a good citizen. It should make him patriotic. The scriptures say, “Honor all men, love the brotherhood, fear God, and honor the king” (1 Pet. 2:17). As Christians, we are to indoctrinate in ourselves and our children a love for, and loyalty to all that is great and good in our country’s heritage, a profound admiration for its men of virtue, and a responsibility to see that the nation is kept strong and free. Our goal as Christian patriots is to work and pray that all persons may be governed by God and not ruled by tyrants.
Third, the strength of the nation is found in our faith. Ultimately, the strength of our nation is found in its biblical heritage. This is not to say that all our founding fathers were Christians, or that they always lived by the teachings of the Bible. But it is to say they believed in God and established our nation on principles that come from scripture.
Read the documents of our nation. Listen to our pledge of allegiance to the flag. Look at the inscriptions on our money and you will be reminded of our religious heritage. We often forget that, in declaring independence from an earthly power, our forefathers made a forthright declaration of dependence upon Almighty God. The closing words of this document solemnly declare: ‘With firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor. “In the summer of 1787 representatives met in Philadelphia to write the constitution of the United States.
After they had struggled for several weeks and had made little or no progress, eighty-one-year-old Benjamin Franklin rose and addressed the troubled and disagreeing convention, that was about to adjourn in confusion. He begins by saying “In the beginning of the contest with Britain, when we were sensible of danger, we had daily prayers in this room for Divine Protection. Our prayers, sir, were heard and they were graciously answered.” The very purpose of the Pilgrims coming to America in 1620 was to establish a government based on the Bible. The Mayflower Compact begins with the words, “In ye name of God, Amen.”
Our founding fathers labored under the conviction that they were beginning something new, something unique and that it was being done under the watchful eye of God. It is that faith that makes us strong and it is that faith that will keep us strong. The nation and people can survive if we Keep Praying for our families, our nation and a place to pray.
John McCoury is pastor of Evergreen church in Roan Mountain, Tennessee and the chaplain at Roan Highlands Nursing Center