Today will be the final installment in this series. I pray it has been a help and blessed you in some manner. As always comments and suggestions are welcome.
The Ten Commandments or the Law of God Series
Godliness makes a nation great, but sin is a disgrace to any people. (NLT)
I have repeatedly stated on the site, that we are not a Christian Nation (Theocracy). This is an indisputable fact or at least should be. Likewise the fact that we were founded upon Judeo-Christian principles (the moral law of the Ten Commandments primary amongst these) should be equally indisputable.
There are consequences for abandoning those principles.
FRC’s The Ten Commandments; Foundation for American Society, notes the following:
For a majority of Americans, the Ten Commandments are not set in stone. According to a USA Today
poll, “Sixty percent of Americans cannot name five of the Ten Commandments.”1 In fact, it is amazing
what Americans do know by comparison:
74% of Americans can name all three Stooges – Moe, Larry, and Curley.2
35% of Americans can recall all six kids from the Brady Bunch.3
25% of Americans can name all seven ingredients of McDonald’s Big Mac®.4
Here is the sad news: Only 14% can accurately name all Ten Commandments.5 Yet 78% of Americans
are in favor of public displays of the Commandments.6 How ironic. Americans affirm the Ten
Commandments, but cannot name them. Consequently, the greatest tragedy is not that the Ten
Commandments are vanishing from public schools, courtrooms, and government buildings, but that they
are disappearing from the minds, hearts, and lives of most Americans. Yet the Ten Commandments and
biblical morality were taken more seriously during the settlement and founding of America.
The Founding Fathers went out of their way to acknowledge God no less than four times in the Declaration:
• “[T]he Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God…”
• “[A]ll Men are created equal. They are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights…”
• “[A]ppealing to the Supreme Judge of the World for the Rectitude of our Intentions… • “[W]ith a firm Reliance on the Protection of divine Providence…”
Back in 2012 when we were still publishing our quarterly The Apologist, we ran our annual American Heritage Edition, here is an excerpt from that publication:
God asks, America, why has thou forsaken me? Recent events, political and judicial decisions in America have left little doubt that this once God fearing nation; has turned its back on the God of the universe. For much of our history we depended upon the providence of God to protect us from enemies foreign and domestic. Now we have no excuse, no reasonable expectation except that God in His divine providence and wrath will cause us, The United States of America, to remember what we have forsaken. Our founding fathers, despite what is preached, published and taught today, understood this as evident by most all of the documents, laws and quotes of the time.
The following quotes are just a few of the thousands of examples of how these men considered the God of the Bible sovereign in all things.
Samuel Adams, Father of the American Revolution, Signer of the Declaration of Independence, I . . . recommend my Soul to that Almighty Being who gave it, and my body I commit to the dust, relying upon the merits of Jesus Christ for a pardon of all my sins.
John Dickinson, Signer of the Constitution, Rendering thanks to my Creator for my existence and station among His works, for my birth in a country enlightened by the Gospel and enjoying freedom, and for all His other kindnesses, to Him I resign myself, humbly confiding in His goodness and in His mercy through Jesus Christ for the events of eternity.
—Will of John Dickinson
Henry Knox, Revolutionary War General, Secretary of War, First, I think it proper to express my unshaken opinion of the immortality of my soul or mind; and to dedicate and devote the same to the supreme head of the Universe – to that great and tremendous Jehovah, – Who created the universal frame of nature, worlds, and systems in number infinite . . . To this awfully sublime Being do I resign my spirit with unlimited confidence of His mercy and protection . . .
John Langdon, Signer of the Constitution, In the name of God, Amen. I, John Langdon, . . . considering the uncertainty of life and that it is appointed unto all men once to die [Hebrews 9:27], do make, ordain and publish this my last will and testament in manner following, that is to say-First: I commend my soul to the infinite mercies of God in Christ Jesus, the beloved Son of the Father, who died and rose again that He might be the Lord of the dead and of the living . . . professing to believe and hope in the joyful Scripture doctrine of a resurrection to eternal life . . .
Richard Stockton, Signer of the Declaration of Independence, I think it proper here not only to subscribe to the entire belief of the great and leading doctrines of the Christian religion, such as the Being of God, the universal defection and depravity of human nature, the divinity of the person and the completeness of the redemption purchased by the blessed Savior, the necessity of the operations of the Divine Spirit, of Divine Faith, accompanied with an habitual virtuous life, and the universality of the divine Providence, but also . . . that the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom; that the way of life held up in the Christian system is calculated for the most complete happiness that can be enjoyed in this mortal state; that all occasions of vice and immorality is injurious either immediately or consequentially, even in this life; that as Almighty God hath not been pleased in the Holy Scriptures to prescribe any precise mode in which He is to be publicly worshiped, all contention about it generally arises from want of knowledge or want of virtue.
Further proclamations have happened throughout the History of our Nation:
(George Washington) General Orders, Head Quarters, Cambridge, Feby 26th 1776, Parole New-York.Countersign Lee.
The Commanding Officers of Regiments are immediately to order all the Axes—Pick-axes—Spades—Shovels, and other intrenching Tools, now in their possession, to be forthwith sent to the Qr Master General’s Store in Cambridge.
All Officers, non-commissioned Officers and Soldiers are positively forbid playing at Cards, and other Games of Chance; At this time of public distress, men may find enough to do in the service of their God, and their Country, without abandoning themselves to vice and immorality.1
The President, Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy, desires and enjoins the orderly observance of the Sabbath by the officers and men in the military and naval service. The importance for man and beast of the prescribed weekly rest, the sacred rights of Christian soldiers and sailors, a becoming deference to the best sentiment of a Christian people. and a due regard for the divine will demand that Sunday labor in the Army and Navy be reduced to the measure of strict necessity.
The discipline and character of the national forces should not suffer nor the cause they defend be imperiled by the profanation of the day or name of the Most High. “At this time of public distress,” adopting the words of Washington in 1776, “men may find enough to do in the service of God and their country without abandoning themselves to vice and immorality.” The first general order issued by the Father of his Country after the Declaration of Independence indicates the spirit in which our institutions were rounded and should ever be defended:
The General hopes and trusts that every officer and man will endeavor to live and act as becomes a Christian soldier defending the dearest rights and liberties of his country. – ABRAHAM LINCOLN.
SCOTUS decision Church of the Holy Trinity v. United States (1892)
In his Holy Trinity opinion, Justice Brewer wrote that “beyond all these matters no purpose of action against religion can be imputed to any legislation, state or national, because this is a religious people.”He then gave a summary of America’s religious history and concluded that “this is a Christian nation”.
Lest anyone thinks that all is lost (although it may seem so in today’s worldly affairs; it was less that 20 years ago when these two documents were produced:
Congressional Report: TO REAFFIRM THE REFERENCE TO ONE NATION UNDER GOD IN THE PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Kentucky State Legislature Joint resolution on the Ten Commandment’s
In Psalm 33:12, we find that God blesses nation(s) that honor Him. In context, this is speaking of Israel alone here for it is the only nation chosen by God. However I do not think it a stretch to say that any nation that claims Judeo-Christian law/morals/principles call it what you may, as their foundation and then abandoned those same foundations will get the same outcome or worse than Israel.
Many nations of the ancient (and 18th-19th centuries) world no longer exist. Some had rulers that reported to honor God, moany decried the God of the Bible, all have a similar fate death. Their sinfulness has caused them to become a no more than a footnote in history.
Can America be far off from that same fate?
“Has God Abandoned Us?” (Speaks about individuals in a national setting)
Exodus 20, Deuteronomy 5, The Ten Commandments
Keach’s Baptist Catechism of 1677 – Modern #44-92
Thomas Watson’s classic The Ten Commandments
Systematic Theology, Charles Hodge, Chapter XIX, The Law
The Ten Commandments, by A. W. Pink
The Doctrine of Law and the Grace Unfolded – John Bunyan
A Treatise on the Law and the Gospel by John Colquhoun, D.D