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The 4th of July, 2023

Updated: Jun 21, 2023

The 247th birthday of the United States of America is fast approaching, so let us eagerly rejoice in the freedom and liberty that we still enjoy in our country today.

Historically, the Declaration of Independence was signed in what today is Independence Hall in Philadelphia on July 4th,1776, and it declared our independent national sovereignty, our separation from Great Britain. This Declaration came about, in part, due to the strong Christian faith of our ancestors that in the end proved greatly instrumental in molding colonial people's mindsets and in paving the way for our eventually hard-fought-for and won freedom (at the conclusion of the American Revolutionary War in 1783), a freedom that we, our families, friends, and fellow Americans continue to reap the blessings of today.

Now, faith in God Almighty was not absent from the political formation of the United States. In fact, John Adams, a Congregationalist, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, and the 2nd President of the U.S., is famous for having said, "Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."

The link that follows leads to a very brief article (about a 3-minute read) highlighting the impact of religion in Colonial America, an article in which the writer states, "In the eyes of many interpreters, the First Great Awakening planted the seeds of a more individualistic and egalitarian style of religion that would blossom into the [American] revolutionary spirit" [emphasis added].

And certainly God, too, values freedom, for the Holy-Spirit-inspired Apostle Paul writes in the Epistle to the Galatians, "For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery" (Galatians 5:1).

But freedom is never free; it cost Jesus Christ His life to pay the penalty of our sin on the Cross, so that we might be forgiven and freed from the consequences of our sin if we repent and have faith in His finished work on the Cross and His Resurrection, and remaining free politically requires constant vigilance. When Benjamin Franklin exited the State House (Independence Hall today) in Philadelphia on September 17, 1787, after the newly formed Congress voted to adopt the U.S. Constitution, a reporter of the day asked him what kind of government the Congress had voted for, to which Dr. Franklin responded, "A republic--if you can keep it!"--and keep it we must.

On this 4th of July, why not focus on celebrating our political freedom and, more importantly, the freedom faith in Jesus Christ provides. And let us be truly thankful for our not perfect, but still quite free United States of America!


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