The 4th of July
The 4th of July
by Keith Bellamy
If I went around our community and asked about the 4th of July I wonder what kind of response I would get. And if I asked the average junior high or high school student what the 4th of July was about, I wonder if I would get the right answer.
“During the American Revolution, the legal separation of the Thirteen Colonies from Great Britain occurred on July 2, 1776, when the Second Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution of independence that had been proposed in June by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia declaring the United States independent from Great Britain. After voting for independence, Congress turned its attention to the Declaration of Independence, a statement explaining this decision, which had been prepared by a Committee of Five, with Thomas Jefferson as its principal author. Congress debated and revised the wording of the Declaration, finally approving it on July 4th.” (Wikipedia)
A day earlier, John Adams had written to his wife Abigail: “The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.” (Wikipedi
The declaration was signed on July 2nd; final approval was on July 4th.
Now what does any of this have to do with a religious column? A lot!
Human beings forget. So, if we forget what the 4th of July is about, what will happen to our history--let alone our country?
A number of years ago I completed a series on Sunday evenings on Church History. The purpose of the series was not to condemn but to inform. And if the History of the church is forgotten what does that say about its adherents?
I am thinking of Hosea 4:6. “My people are being destroyed because they don’t know me. Since you priests refuse to know me, I refuse to recognize you as my priests. Since you have forgotten the laws of your God, I will forget to bless your children” (NLT).