Over the past several years, Americans have felt the effects of the economic storms that have swept our land. From the massive drop in the stock market to the loss of millions of jobs and foreclosure of millions of homes to the collapse of so many financial institutions, the economic storms have ravaged us all.
Now, there are numerous reports that the economy is rebounding. Various news agencies and articles are reporting increases in exports, manufacturing, retail sales, trucking, home sales and the stock market as signs of an economic recovery. They speak of a vigorous recovery and optimism on America’s future.
But as America rebuilds its damaged house, is it being built on solid rock or shifting sand? Have we checked the foundation before starting to rebuild?
Matthew 7:24-27 states:
Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.
If your house had been heavily damaged by a flood or strong winds, would you start to rebuild without first checking to see how much damage the foundation had and fixing that first? Of course not!
Yet that is exactly what is happening in America today. Our house has sustained severe damage and our government is trying to repair it with 2x4s, nails and paint, without even glancing at the foundation to see if it will support their program to rebuild the house.
So what is the right foundation or the “foundation on rock” that Matthew speaks to us about?
It is the same foundation that our Founding Fathers put in place before building a new nation upon it. They started with the Word of God. Upon the solid rock of Scripture, the Founding Fathers laid the firm foundations consisting of the Declaration of Independence. Next, they framed the nation’s house with the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights. All of which were based firmly on biblical principles of virtue, morality and a devotion to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
Founders such as John Adams in a letter to Thomas Jefferson dated June 28, 1813 wrote:
The general principles, on which the Fathers achieved independence, were the only Principles in which that beautiful Assembly of young Gentlemen could Unite….And what were these general Principles? I answer, the general Principles of Christianity, in which all these Sects were United: . . . Now I will avow, that I then believed, and now believe, that those general Principles of Christianity, are as eternal and immutable, as the Existence and Attributes of God; and that those Principles of Liberty, are as unalterable as human Nature and our terrestrial, mundane System.
And Charles Carroll, another Founding Father, stated:
…without morals a republic cannot subsist any length of time; they therefore who are decrying the Christian religion, whose morality is so sublime & pure, …are undermining the solid foundation of morals, the best security for the duration of free governments.
In a vast study of over 15,000 writings of the Founding Fathers, it was learned that they quoted directly from the Bible thirty-four percent of the time, four times more often than any other source.
However, over the past century, Presidents, Senators, Congressmen and Judges have been hammering away at the foundations of our house by redefining of our founding documents, and blasting away at the solid rock on which that foundation was built. In America today, the solid rock of Gods Word has been chipped, fractured, tunneled through and in many areas beneath the house, removed entirely and is being replaced with shifting sands.
No matter how much repair and rebuilding is done to our house, it will still collapse if the foundation and the rock upon which it rests has not been replaced and repaired. As Christians, we MUST pray for our nation and then stand up and be heard at the polls. Noah Webster exhorted young men accordingly when he wrote:
In selecting men for office, let principle be your guide. Regard not the particular sect [party] of the candidate—look to his character. . . .It is alleged by men of loose principles of defective views of the subject that religion and morality are not necessary or important qualifications for political stations. But the Scriptures teach a different doctrine. They direct that rulers should be men “who rule in the fear of God, able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness.
And the words of John Jay, the first Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court:
Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty, as well as the privilege and interest of our Christian nation, to select and prefer Christians for their rulers.
Even though elections may be year away, it is our obligation to learn who will be running for office and what they stand for and if they do not stand firmly on the Word of God, then do not vote for them. The only way to mend the foundation is to put enough Christians into office so that they can undo the anti-biblical policies that have caused the underlying damage.
In 1876, U.S. Representative James A. Garfield (later to become the 20th President of the U.S.), gave a centennial address to Congress in which he gave this charge and prophetic warning:
Now, more than ever before, the people are responsible for the character of their Congress. If that body be ignorant, reckless, and corrupt, it is because the people tolerate ignorance, recklessness, and corruption. If it be intelligent, brave, and pure, it is because the people demand these high qualities to represent them in the national legislature… If the next centennial does not find us a great nation…it will be because those who represent the enterprise, the culture, and the morality of the nation do not aid in controlling the political forces.
Garfield’s statements were very prophetic indeed as we see the results for failing to heed his warning. .
Adams, John, Letter to Thomas Jefferson, June 28, 1813. Lester J. Capon, ed., The Adams-Jefferson Letters, University of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill, NC, 1959, pp. 339-340.
Carroll, Charles, Letter to James McHenry, Nov. 4, 1800, Bernard C. Steiner, The Life and Correspondence of James McHenry, Burrows Brothers Co., Cleveland, 1907, p. 475.
Garfield, James A., A Century of Congress, Speech commemorating the centennial of Congress in 1876, later published in Atlantic, July 1877.
Johnston, Henry, Ed. The Correspondence and Public Papers of John Jay, G. P. Putnam’s Sons, New York, 1893, Vol. IV.
Webster, Noah, Letters to a young gentleman commencing his education: to which is subjoined A brief history of the United States, S. Converse Printing, New Haven, 1823, pp 18-19.
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