America the Beautiful?


The rise of worldwide enmity towards the U.S. should cause followers of Christ to take notice — not of these other countries but of America itself. The mainstream media around the world (including in the U.S.) characterizes the United States as being too imperialistic, capitalistic, immoral, grasping, arrogant, or just simply out of touch with the rest of the world. These criticisms must be looked at seriously, but believers need to look beyond the pat sociopolitical reasons and recognize the spiritual forces at work.

2 Chronicles Chapter 20:

18 Jehoshaphat bowed with his face to the ground, and all the people of Judah and Jerusalem fell down in worship before the Lord.
22 As they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushes against the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir who were invading Judah, and they were defeated.
24 When the men of Judah came to the place that overlooks the desert and looked toward the vast army, they saw only dead bodies lying on the ground; no one had escaped.
In this Old Testament story, God delivered the people of Judah from their enemies because they abided in His will. But today's America has strayed so far from its Biblical foundations that it functions outside the will of God. America has engendered, and exposed itself to, malice from enemies and allies alike, primarily as a result of its increased rebellion against God and less so the current sociopolitical climate.

America continues to maintain its status as an influential and powerful nation, but it's a kingdom built on sand. Secularists believe they can move America in the direction of a "brave new world," to follow the path which Europe has already taken. The paradigm for America today is secular humanism, based on faith in the progress of man (or, the Neitschzean "superman"). The paradise of men by men is a foolhardy dream: mankind is ever more enslaved to sin when it believes it can will itself to perfection. Man's will is death; God's will is life.

For the United States, conforming to the humanist credo has meant the systematic shedding of its Christian roots. In order to buy into the concomitant concept of globalism, America relinquished true autonomy and the freedom to act unilaterally. It hasn't happened overnight. In the post-WWII globalist climate over the past 60 years, America has clearly strayed from its Judeo-Christian foundation: gross materialism, the sexual "revolution," and imperialistic wars are just a few signposts of that drift.

This is not to say the U.S. was ever perfect — far from it. As an example, the Civil War highlights one of America's darkest historical chapters and one of its greatest sins: slavery. Modern revisionism, however, has greatly reduced the extent to which morality, specifically Christianity, played a part in the execution of that war. It is historically accurate to say that Abraham Lincoln wished to prevent secession and preserve the integrity of the Union. But it is an incomplete picture.

What contemporary history books don't say is Lincoln understood the great price that had been paid, and would be paid, in the Biblical sense, for America's sin of slavery. In his second inaugural address from March 1865, Lincoln said this, "Yet, if God wills that [the war] continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said 'the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.'"

The secularists do not acknowledge that, ultimately, men are instruments of God's will. Indeed, the actions of a nation are inherently complex. Men and women in power may posit a reason for action that belies its real purpose. So it could be argued that Lincoln may have been saying what the people "wanted to hear" at that time. But it doesn't matter. God may use an individual for an entirely different purpose from what they have in mind. The point is, Lincoln understood that America would inevitably be held in judgment for its sins regardless of why the Civil War was being waged.

Psalms Chapter 33:
14 Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord...
The sins of the past have merely been replaced by new ones. The so-called "enlightened" progress of humanity does not exist. But there is one glaring difference between the America of 1865 and the America of 2004, and that is, sin is no longer regarded as sin. There is a fundamental lack of awareness of sin in contemporary society, and therefore no understanding of Divine Judgment. If there is any awareness, it is offset by another blinding element: apathy.

The mainstream media and the entertainment world argue that America's Christianity is what has alienated it from the rest of the world. But the America of today is fragmented. The U.S. exports its own decay (in the form of its popular culture) to other countries while still pretending to be a Christian nation, or at the very least, still pretending to possess some kind of moral authority. Yet the U.S. itself has no moral unity, much like in the antebellum period — except that the divisions today are along a thousand more fault lines.

If America is to win back the love of its friends and the respect of its enemies, it needs to return to its Christian roots. America has lost its way at the spiritual level, and truly there is where its wars must first be waged.

Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians Chapter 10:
3 For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.
4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.