Today is a special day in history for all Americans. On this day, September 3, 1783, the Treaty of Paris was signed. It officially marked the end of The American Revolution.
Representatives of the United States, Great Britain, Spain and France met to sign this treaty which signified America’s status as a free nation. Britain agreed to formally recognize the independence of its 13 former American colonies. The boundaries of the new republic were agreed upon: Florida north to the Great Lakes and the Atlantic coast west to the Mississippi River.
Pilgrims had come to these shores seeking a new life and religious freedom. When King George III refused to grant the colonies political and economic reform he was answered with armed revolution when the first volleys were fired in 1775 in Lexington and Concord. More than a year later, on July 4, 1776, the Second Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence.
The 56 patriots who signed the Declaration were God-fearing men. Five times in this historic, founding document God is identified. He is called “nature’s God.” “Creator.” “Judge.” Human rights are identified as “God-given” rights. And it closes by them placing their trust in God “with the firm reliance of Divine Protection.”
They soon learned that freedom isn’t free.
Five years later 50,000 men had died or were wounded. The financial cost exceeded $400 million in wages for the troops, a considerable sum in those days. The fortunes of many of the Declaration’s singers were wiped out. 12 had their homes ransacked and burned. 5 were captured by the British and tortured as traitors. 2 lost their sons during the war and 2 had their sons captured. And 9 of the signers actually fought in the war and suffered its hardships.
Indeed, freedom isn’t free.
Sadly our leaders today have strayed from the principles that guided these early Patriots. But our concern is not so much political or economic, but ethical, moral and spiritual. Although our national motto and money says, “In God We Trust,” as a nation we have lost trust in Him, His Way, and His Word.”
“Here is my Creed, wrote Benjamin Franklin. “I believe in one God, the Creator of the Universe. That He governs it by His Providence. That He ought to be worshiped.”
Our second President, John Adams, and original signer of the Declaration affirmed this Truth, “Suppose a nation in some distant Region should take the Bible for their only law Book, and every member should regulate his conduct by the precepts there exhibited! Every member would be obliged in conscience, to temperance, frugality, and industry; to justice, kindness, and charity towards his fellow men; and to piety, love, and reverence toward Almighty God … What a Eutopia, what a Paradise would this region be.”
Unfortunately, modern-day “enlightenment,” skepticism, political correctness, humanism, nihilism and narcissism is moving us farther and farther away from that ideal. Greed, sloth, violence, abortion, and repudiation of God’s marriages laws are a daily, sobering reminder of this fact.
What we need is another revolution.
No, not an American Revolution fought with guns, weapons and war. But a spiritual revolution. One based on Biblical principles and precepts that call us back to the God who created us and gave the ultimate sacrifice to save us.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16-17)
Freedom isn’t free.
In a world of wickedness, we must be people of conviction and courage. We must put on the Christian armor (Eph 6:10-17), protected by the breastplate of righteousness, the helmet of salvation and wield the Sword of the Spirit, God’s Word, against immorality, ungodliness, indifference, irreligion and religious corruption.
We must stand up. Speak up. And live up to the standard we espouse.
We need another revolution.
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman