July 4th, 2021: 6th Sunday of Pentecost, Patriotic

Dear Lord, thank You for putting us into a country where our voices matter.  Thank You for giving us insight and wisdom into what makes our country blest by You.  Today inspire us to use our freedoms to enrich our land, our people, and our nation by standing up for the truth that sets us free.  Amen


Text: Proverbs 14: 34: “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.”

Dearly Beloved Fellow Americans:

          It’s obvious to me that we are in the end of the 4th turning.  I’ve mentioned before about the “turning” view of American history.  As a  nation we’ve gone through cycles of upheaval about every 70-80 years.  These “turnings” match up with the God-made cycle of the seasons—Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter. The Revolution beginning in 1776 was our Spring—new, fresh, and full of energy.  The Summer started before the Civil War, marked by cleaning up the various messes that had sprouted.  Fall was a time of booming plenty—WWI, the roaring 20’s after  our appearance on the world stage followed by the bust of the Great Depression and then a new rise to plenty right after WWII.  With the tumultuous 60’s followed by a new millennium we have now entered a winter phase of decline, infighting,  and a fracturing of the social contract between government, business, and “we the people.”

Just as winter is marked by introspection due to the weather, so the last 25 years have been marked by economic hardship amid plenty, technological achievements which have diminished a sense of individual freedoms, and also a sense of unease over the future.  When you’re at the top you just know the rest of the world wants to knock you off your perch!  Hence the unease over the “climate change”, and so-called progressive agenda.  Polls reflect this.  Americans approach the future with trepidation.  Long time social norms—family and community—are being discarded and attacked as outmoded in this “global economy.”  Increasingly, celebrating the genius and strength of the individual citizen is being overtaken by group think led by governmental and educational elites.  So, here we are in winter even though the calendar says: summer!


          Solomon, the wisest man to ever live (that’s what Almighty God said about him) wrote this little text from Proverbs.  He tried to govern Israel on its basic truth, but alas, after he died and his progeny ascended the throne they failed.  Such is the nature of sin which always focuses on amassing power and wealth without any moral fiber (think the 10 commandments) to give it backbone and staying power.  Listen to what Solomon says: “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.”

          Rightness with God is the most vital tenet of any nation.  Acknowledging God as our Creator Who has given human beings certain inalienable rights such as: “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” is spelled out in The Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights.  Those aren’t just pretty words, they are facts.  Likewise, those concepts take shape in laws protecting the individual from the masses, laws which are founded in the 10 commandments.   If a nation upholds right vs. wrong and equal justice under the law—after all God treats all people the same under His justice; well, adhering to God’s truths as found in the Bible exalts and lifts up a nation. 

          During the Spring and Summer and even into the Fall season of our nation, most citizens did what was just and right for the common good of all.  It wasn’t about: “What’s in it for me?”  It was about doing what was right and good and people knew what was right and good because they went to a Christian Church.  They acted in a way which would honor God, thus benefitting everyone.  They acted for the greater good—our greater God.


          “But sin is a disgrace to any people.”  I read this week about the tent cities in San Francisco.  Currently 262 people are housed in them (I saw pictures) at a yearly cost of: $60,000 per person—paid for by taxpayers.  It would actually be cheaper to put them up in apartments.   What a disgrace.   Entitlement programs account for more than ½ of all government spending.  What every happened to the nobility of having your own job and living within your means?  When helping the needy changes to helping the majority something is wrong. Folks we’re killing ourselves and destroying our nation through lethargy, indecision, and self-interest.  Winter is here.  And baby it’s cold outside….

          America needs a religious revival.  We need a great big dose of God Who “humbles the proud yet exalts the truly humble.”  It begins with recognizing the problem in our own lives and then seeking solutions based on personal responsibility.  In the church we call that repentance.  It continues with seeking God’s ultimate answer to human sinfulness which is recognizing His goodness and will.  He treats us all equally.  “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.”  But the real power to get America to change is: Jesus Christ.  He died for everyone.—Total equality there.  And His love, borne of forgiveness for our sins, gives us a new spirit of doing whatever is right, noble, just, true and praiseworthy  because it honors Him since He first honored us with a Savior. 

          History teaches us that after winter comes spring once more.  Since we live in New England, we also know that the last blizzards are usually the most intense.  We’re starting to endure them right now.  But Spring is about rebirth.  It always comes.  It  will for America, too.  The question is: will you be ready to re-plant that seed of the Gospel which God has  placed into your heart via faith?  Amen


Pastor Thomas H. Fox

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