Summary: A message describing how we can be a good Christian and a good citizen.
God and Country
June 30, 2002
Let me guess: I’m not the only one here who heard about the Federal Circuit in California declaring the Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional because of the phrase, “one nation under God.”
Let me also guess that I’m not the only one, who hearing that, thought, “These judges aren’t exactly the sharpest tools in the shed,” you know what I mean?
Independence Day gives us the perfect opportunity to look at just how this nation depends on and recognizes not just a god, but the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob – the God of the Bible.
And in getting us to start making the connections between God and country, I would like us to stand and recite the Pledge of Allegiance, and then the Apostles’ Creed. This can be found in the back of the hymnals, number 513.
Pledge of Allegiance
Where do God and country meet? How can we be good patriots and yet good Christians? Can we be both, or do we have to be one or the other? Do we have to sacrifice love of God for love of country?
Well, I think we can be both a good patriot and a good Christian, and I want to show you how that can happen.
I’m convinced that it’s not only possible, but that Christians have a holy obligation to be the best citizens we can possibly be.
Let’s take a look at just how we can be people whose love for God helps us be people who love their country.
To be the best possible Christian citizen we need to first of all…
I. Seek God’s continued grace on us as a nation.
Do you understand that if it weren’t for God’s grace and mercy we wouldn’t be the greatest country in the world?
Maybe I’m biased, but that’s what I think. Nothing against other countries in particular, but I think that if you were to put our country next to any others, especially in terms of freedom and opportunity in just about any area of life, no other comes close, amen?
We are the only real superpower left, since the Soviet Union crumbled, and we are the ones the world looks to when they are in trouble.
But we are only in that position because of God’s grace.
And I think that grace was given to us during the formation of our country, as men sought the face of God in forming a republic that afforded people these freedoms and opportunities.
Even some of our founding fathers, while not Bible-believing Christians, looked to the God of the Bible for divine guidance and providence.
This is similar to the nation of Israel, particularly, when the temple was being dedicated. Solomon declared publicly Israel’s need for God to not just watch, but to act on behalf of Israel. That’s what we need to do.
Let me read Isaiah 40:15 for you real quickly here:
Surely the nations are like a drop in a bucket; they are regarded as dust on the scales; he weighs the islands as though they were fine dust.
Why do I read that? Simply to remind us that if God chose to, He could blow us away like dust if He were so inclined.
We are familiar with 2 Chronicles 7:14, but I want to read it again, because I want to use it to show us just how it relates to being a good citizen.
if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
I want to point out something I’ve pointed out before, but it bears repeating: this verse is pointed not at the unbelievers, but to the believers.
We are the ones who need to repent and turn our faces to God for healing.
When we see court rulings like the one regarding the Pledge of Allegiance, we can blame the liberals, we can blame the atheists, but let me say that at the root of it is the church failing to fall on its face before God on a regular basis, pleading for His Spirit to fall on us so we could impact our society with the gospel of Christ.
So, let it begin here, okay? Let this become a church that prays for each other. Let us become a church that prays for the lost. But let us also become a church that prays for the continual filling of the Holy Spirit on His church in America.
And may God be pleased to move His church, and heal our land.
To be the best possible Christian citizen, we need to recognize and seek God’s continued grace on our nation.