Summary: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Dream was a gift from God to save his people from despair and provide hope to a whole nation divided by racism.
Giving all praises and glory to God, our Father, honor to the honorable Mayor of Rowlett Dr. John Harper and other members of city council, peace to my brethren of the ecclesiastical authority of Rowlett and members of the “Pray” Rowlett Pastor’s Fellowship, love, peace, and grace be unto you the citizens of this growing city.
Tomorrow our nation will give notice and recognition to one of the greatest Americans to have ever lived, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and to his ongoing legacy called the Dream. I have been privileged to speak a word in memory and honor of this Champion of Freedom and ethnic equality and of his speech, “I Have a Dream,” past, present, and future. This prolific preacher, civil rights leader, and drum major for justice and peace has inspired Americans of many generations.
Nearly 50 years ago, 47 to be exact, America was given a gift by God to save our democracy. He sent it in the form of a dream. It is not unusual for God to work through dreams to save his people from devastation. He sent a dream to Pharaoh interpreted by an Israelite named Joseph who was sold into slavery by his brothers and saved Egypt and his family from famine. He sent another dream to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon about the coming of an everlasting Kingdom. Unable to understand the dream, he issued a death decree to all of the wise men in his kingdom which included Daniel and his three friends, Meshach, Shadrach, and A-b-e-d-n-e-g-r-o, I mean, Abednego. And Inspiration states Daniel tells King Nebuchadnezzar:
The secret which the king hath demanded cannot the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, the soothsayers, shew unto the king; But there is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets, and maketh known to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days. Thy dream, and the visions of thy head upon thy bed, are these; Daniel 2:27, 28
The Dream Maker’s gift to America came in the form of a dream delivered to a Dreamer who called himself a Drum Major for Justice, Drum Major for Peace to save his people from social injustices, poverty, and ethnic discrimination. And I can tell you that in preparation for this occasion; I encountered some sorrow of heart as I listened to his speeches. All of the men that God has ever given the responsibility of being a visionary for His people have suffered. And listening to His homily called “A Knock at Midnight” he tells of the many, many phone calls that he received threatening his life and the life of his family. But what strengthened him, what gave him the moral fortitude to continue, by his own testimony, was that He had to get to know the one his father told him about and that is the Dream Maker, Jesus Christ.
The Dream of the Past was birth in the midst of treachery and violence posed on the Negro and other minorities in America. It inspired hope to a people sunken with despair in the face of social, economical, and mental cruelty. The Dream was the spark the catalyst of a new America by calling into action old American values and principles. By this is what I believe Dr. King meant when he said “We have come to our nation’s capital to cash a check…But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. And so, we’ve come to cash this check, a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice.” And those who championed the cause of freedom in our country who endured the bombings, long nights in small cells, the bullets of fire hosing, the bites of ferocious dogs and even after his assassination believed in the Dream. They silenced the Dreamer but could not stifle the Dream because the Dream Maker gave it to us through him. The Dream did not die in the past, went away until someone else carried the “torch,” it forced America to take a deep, deep look within herself and make some notable changes which brings us to the “Dream of the Present.”
Make no mistake about it, Dr. King’s Dream wasn’t political; I reiterate that it was very spiritual. Neither the movement for which he fought was political it was theological. You see politics is the way of the majority in any government while theology attempts to help us to see things and live our lives on a spiritual plateau. But I say to you that the Dream of the Present has been counterfeited. One particular cause you know has been getting a lot of press here lately. When it started they said that “It was the new Black.” I have to be careful here because we have to keep things in perspective. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was not a politician he was a preacher and I must quantify that by saying a Gospel preacher.