Righteousness Exalts a Nation
Jul 12, 2010 by Bruce Demarest | 0 Comments
This Independence Day I curled up with an informative book, Faith and the Presidency, that explores in depth the faith commitment of a dozen of our nation’s presidents. I was impressed by the fact that not a few of our national leaders worshiped God, read the Bible, prayed and believed the Scripture that “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin condemns a people” (Prov. 14:34).
Washington, our first president, wrote that any nation that disregards “the eternal rules of order and right that Heaven itself ordained” could not expect God’s blessing. Lincoln asserted that the evil of slavery and the calamity of the civil war represent punishments inflicted “for our presumptuous sins.” Woodrow Wilson insisted that the nation would prosper only if the Bible’s “eternal principles of right and wrong, of justice and injustice and of civil and religious liberty” were embedded in the nation’s laws. Toward the end of his presidency Dwight Eisenhower warned that “a materialistic America—bereft of spiritual purpose—would be a rudderless ship of state” that ultimately would crash in “the fury of international storms and internal decay.” And Ronald Reagan cryptically asserted, “If we ever forget that we’re one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under.”
Today our nation—blessed by God more than any other nation in history—confronts many daunting challenges and a dangerous world. May we fervently pray, as several of our presidents did, that God mercifully will bring spiritual renewal, revival and reformation in our day (2 Chron. 7:14).