Him or Us; You Decide
Can a nation survive long after an extended time of peace and prosperity? Americans should be asking themselves that question. We have reached a crossroads in our fight for life as we have known it.
We have come to our peculiarized version of Babel. Genesis 11:1–9 reveals the pivotal point in the early record of national existence when there was unity: one people, one language, and divine awareness. Then everything changed.
It was simple, yet profound. Humanity pivoted away from Jehovah to “Us.” An ancient cadre of “progressives” decided on a new direction: “Let us make bricks….Let us build ourselves a city;…let us make a name for ourselves” (vv. 3–4).
“Us” became of prime importance, and God became a liability. In the end, going it alone brought disintegration, alienation, and turmoil. Babel became a succinct summary of the no-God philosophy of the insipid paganism that prevailed.
On the other hand, the pinnacle of national achievement is defined in Psalm 33:12: “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lᴏʀᴅ.”
There has been controversy over whether or not America is a Christian nation. U.S. President Barack Obama believes not. In 2009 he declared Americans “do not consider ourselves a Christian nation or a Jewish nation or a Muslim nation; we consider ourselves a nation of citizens who are bound by ideals and a set of values.” But what is the source of the “set of values” by which we are bound?
The unassailable fact of history is that, until Babelized, amoral, social, and political chaos invaded our culture, the values were Judeo-Christian. They came to the pagan West when the apostle Paul heard the historic Macedonian call to change direction and take the gospel toward Europe, rather than Asia. Paul’s message was the matrix out of which the essentials of faith, orderly government, compassionate society, and adherence to truth as the guiding factor were born.
And with all due respect, the common values built into America—the greatest nation the world has ever known––were not brought by Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, or atheists. They came through what the Founding Fathers established, citizens cherished, and thousands within the Greatest Generation fought and died to preserve.
Jesus Christ is not a name to be despised and banned. His is the name above every name. He is the fountainhead of all we have inherited as a people. He promises liberty, peace, and emancipation; and through the Bible and its message-bearers, those blessings were delivered to our shores.
Nor is secularist scorn for the Torah a step toward a better future. America’s legal codes were moored to the sacred dictates of the biblical Law and the prophets. “In God we trust” was not the stuff of demented fanatics. Nor were the Ten Commandments, replicas of which today are literally being smashed and trashed by hedonistic cynics.
American painter Norman Rockwell illustrated mid 20th-century American life with humor and insight. “Without thinking too much about it,” he wrote, “I was showing the America I knew and observed to others who might not have noticed.”
In 1943, moved by President Franklin Roosevelt’s famous Four Freedoms speech, Rockwell produced a series of illustrations depicting Freedom of Speech, Freedom to Worship, Freedom From Want, and Freedom From Fear. The nation was overwhelmed with inspiration when it saw what he had translated from words to canvas. The reason was simple. In a struggle for the life of the country at that time, people still believed. Patriotism was alive and well, and Rockwell had captured the soul of America.
Have you noticed that those freedoms are under attack? Will we let them be taken from us?