The annual commemoration of Independence Day on July 4 serves to remind U.S. citizens of our founding principles and a promise of great destiny. This nation was birthed on a network of freedoms that many other nations do not experience:
- Freedom to worship
- Freedom to own land
- Freedom of religion
- Freedom of expression and speech
- Freedom to elect representatives
Like a magnet this nation draws seekers and refugees longing for a citizenship of freedom.
From its humble beginnings as a band of 13 colonies, this nation has grown, flourished, and prospered. The branches of our historic freedoms reach deep into the timeless core—the True Vine—of our Creator God. And our blessings have been a direct result of God’s truth serving as the basis of our laws. (Consider the practice of each President placing his hand on a Bible when taking his oath to uphold the U.S. Constitution.)
As always, we face two choices—as individuals and as a nation: seeking independence from God or living in dependence upon God. We can live and act in ways that say we decide what is best, lobbying and legislating our way into license, all in the name of freedom. Or we can live our lives depending on God, relying every day on His leadership, recognizing and receiving His good gifts, and resting in His perfect Fatherhood. This choice—independence from God vs. dependence on Him—is (paradoxically) one of the freedoms God gave to us!
The U.S. Supreme Court’s most recent decision to enshrine same-sex marriage into law clearly displayed the desire of many to be independent from God, to disconnect our laws from His truth. This independence from God has also been made evident in our elected leaders and in laws that elevate progressive thought above God’s timeless truths. But as we continue to assert our independence from God, we risk losing His blessings. Man’s ways will lead only to self-destruction because God will give us over to the sins we refuse to abandon (Romans 1:24-28).
On the other hand, when we declare our dependence on God, we are free to live in the historic freedoms He has given us, and we remain free to receive His future blessings. Our faith and trust in Jesus Christ have provided us with a future filled with freedoms: freedom from lies, self-destruction, shame, sin, and—ultimately—death. Through Jesus the power of sin in our lives is broken, and we are freed to be all that God has designed and planned for us to be!
“As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord” (Joshua 24:15b).