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America and Christianity: Part 3 

Christianity’s part in the founding and revival of America 

Psalm 16.1–9 

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • April 14, In the year of our Lord Christ, 2019 


  1. Giving Time for Prayer

    “In New York’s Manhattan in 1857 thousands attended noon meetings, reported newspaper editor Horace Greeley. In Portland, Oregon, a half century later, department stores closed for prayer.”

    – J. Edwin Orr, The Rebirth of America, p. 63
    1. In the middle of the 19th century in Manhattan 
      1. a man advertised that he was going to have a prayer meeting 
      2. once a week. 
        1. Six people out of 1 million showed up. 
        2. The next week, 14 were present. 
        3. The following week, 23 were there. 
          1. They started meeting daily. 
          2. It filled a Dutch Reformed Church and a Methodist Church. 
            1. It was reported that soon every public building 
            2. in downtown New York was being used.

              “Famed newspaper editor Horace Greeley sent a reporter with horse and buggy riding around the prayer meetings to see how many men were praying. In one hour, he could only get to 12 meetings, but he counted 6,100 men.”

              – Orr, Ibid.
    2. In 1905: 
      1. 25% of Yale students were enrolled in prayer meetings and Bible study. 
      2. Preachers in Atlantic City claimed 
        1. that of the 50,000 people in that city, 
        2. only 50 could be counted 
          1. who did not attend a church worship service. 
      3. In Portland, Oregon there were 240 department stores. 
        1. They all closed from 11 to 2 for prayer. 
        2. They all signed an agreement 
          1. to be closed for that time 
          2. so that they would not cheat and stay open. 
      4. The Denver Post of January 20, 1905:

        “Entire city pauses for prayer even at the high tide of business.

        “Remarkable outburst of gospel sentiment…noonday meetings draw congregations unprecedented in numbers.

        For two hours at midday all Denver was held in a spell…The marts of trade were deserted between noon and two o’clock this afternoon, and all worldly affairs were forgotten, and the entire city was given over to meditation of higher things. The Spirit of the Almighty pervaded every nook. Going to and coming from the great meetings, the thousands of men and women radiated this Spirit which filled them, and the clear Colorado sunshine was made brighter by the reflected glow of the light of God shining from happy faces. Seldom has such a remarkable sight been witnessed—an entire great city, in the middle of a busy weekday, bowing before the throne of heaven and asking and receiving the blessing of the King of the Universe.”
  2. Symbols of America’s Faith
    1. Senator Robert Byrd on June 25, 1962 said,

      “In no other place in the United States are there so many, and such varied official evidences of deep and abiding faith in God on the part of Governments as there are in Washington.”
      1. This was part of a speech that he delivered two days 
        1. after one of the most disastrous Supreme Court decisions in history,
        2. that prayer in school is unconstitutional. 
      2. He concluded,

        “Inasmuch as our greatest leaders have shown no doubt about God’s proper place in the American birthright, can we, in our day, dare do less?”
    2. The Capitol
      1. The House and the Senate begin every session with prayer. 
        1. There are chaplains for both houses. 
        2. There is a prayer and meditation room for Congress only. 
          1. Psalm 16.1 is on a stained glass window in it, 
          2. showing George Washington kneeling in prayer.

            1 Preserve me, O God, for in You I put my trust.

            – Psa 16.1
      2. The Rotunda has a picture of the Speedwell, a sister ship of the Mayflower.
        1. The chaplain of the Speedwell has an open Bible on his lap, and 
        2. the words, “the New Testament according to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ,” are visible. 
        3. The sail on the ship says: “In God We Trust, God With Us.” 
      3. The next time there is a presidential speech in the House of Representatives and 
        1. the camera gives a rare view of the entire wall behind 
          1. the President, Vice President and Speaker of the House, 
          2. try not to look at the balcony above, but 
        2. look at the space above the three and 
          1. below the balcony, and 
          2. you will see, “In God We Trust.” 
      4. I have read that the president of the Senate, who is the Vice President
        1. has opposite him in the room where the Senate meets, 
        2. the same words. 
    3. The Supreme Court. 
      1. The Ten Commandments are above the head of the Chief Justice. 
      2. Moses is included in a sculpture. 
      3. The crier closes each session of The Supreme Court with,
        1. “God save the United States and the Honorable Court.” 
    4. The Washington Monument.
      1. At the top are the words “Praise be to God.” 
      2. Lining the walls of the steps are: 
        1. “Search the Scriptures” 
          1. from John 5.39 
        2. “Holiness to the Lord” 
          1. found in several places of the Old Testament, 
          2. starting with Exodus 28.36. 
        3. “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.” 
          1. from Proverbs 22.6. 
    5. The Library of Congress.
      1. There are many Scripture quotations in this building. 
      2. Micah 6.8 from the Old King James Version is one,

        8 He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

        – Mic 6.8, Old KJV
      3. Psalm 19.1 is in the lawmaker’s library,

        1 The heavens declare the glory of God;
        And the firmament sheweth his handywork.

        – Psa 19.1, Old KJV
      4. John 1.5 is also found at the Library of Congress, 
        1. which is the largest library in the world.

          5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

          – John 1.5, Old KJV
    6. Lincoln Memorial.
      1. Quotes of Lincoln are found, including 
        1. the Gettysburg Address

          “…That this Nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”
        2. His Second Inaugural Address is on the walls with allusions to 
          1. God, 
          2. the Bible, 
          3. providence, 
          4. the Almighty 
          5. and divine attributes. 
        3. Lincoln quotes, and this is included in the Memorial, Matthew 18.7,
          7 “Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!”

          – Matthew 18.7 Old KJV
          1. The last part of the second to last paragraph of his address, and 
            1. again this is inscribed on the walls of the Memorial,

              “…as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said, that the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether,”
            2. which is a quotation of Psalm 19.9b. 
    7. Jefferson Memorial.
      1. At his memorial are his words,

        “God who gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are the gift of God? Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that his justice cannot sleep forever.”
  3. America Rejects God in Dealing with the Issues of Life
    1. In Ezekiel 16 God explains to Jerusalem how He adorned the city. 
      1. What she did was to trust in that beauty 
        1. rather than in the One who gave it. 
        2. Verses 13–15 expresses the thoughts of God. 
      2. This could just as easily be said to or about America.

        13 “Thus you were adorned with gold and silver, and your clothing was of fine linen, silk, and embroidered cloth. You ate pastry of fine flour, honey, and oil. You were exceedingly beautiful, and succeeded to royalty. 14 Your fame went out among the nations because of your beauty, for it was perfect through My splendor which I had bestowed on you,” says the Lord GOD. 15 “But you trusted in your own beauty, played the harlot because of your fame, and poured out your harlotry on everyone passing by who would have it.”

        – Ezekiel 16.13–15
    2. Hosea 2 is a similar commentary. 
      1. Do not let these things be said about you 
      2. that they may not be said about the nation.

        8 For she did not know
        That I gave her grain, new wine, and oil,
        And multiplied her silver and gold—
        Which they prepared for Baal.

        – Hosea 2.8
    3. Most acknowledge that God has blessed America. 
      1. Why has He? 
        1. We have acknowledged Him. 
        2. We have blessed the rest of the world. 
      2. However, all the blessings can be taken away by 
        1. Failing to remember Him; 
        2. Celebrating ourselves; 
        3. Glorifying man; 
        4. Becoming materialistic. 
    4. America is becoming accustomed to the dark. 
      1. Even as a man’s eyes become accustomed to the dark and 
      2. he can start to see things, 
      3. so this happens in the spirit also. 
    5. The closing verse of the Book of Judges 
      1. has been permeating the American people for a long time.

        25 In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.

        – Judges 21.25
    6. What this also leads to is changing God’s ways. 
      1. Isaiah 5 is a good example.

        20 Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;
        Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness;
        Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
        21 Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes,
        And prudent in their own sight!

        – Isaiah 5.20–21
        1. Now we have alcoholism instead of drunkenness. 
        2. Gay lifestyle instead of sodomy. 
        3. Pornography is called freedom of speech. 
        4. Adultery is a love affair. 
        5. Most wrongful behavior is classified as a disease. 
      2. The renaming of these sins does not call forth the biblical remedy. 
        1. Thus, they are either accepted 
        2. or “treated.” 
      3. Not surprisingly crime spirals out of control. 
        1. God says there are biblical solutions, but 
        2. we have sought other solutions 
        3. and they do not work. 
    7. Deuteronomy 6 gave a warning to Israel 
      1. that any nation must hear.

        10 “So it shall be, when the LORD your God brings you into the land of which He swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give you large and beautiful cities which you did not build, 11 houses full of all good things, which you did not fill, hewn-out wells which you did not dig, vineyards and olive trees which you did not plant—when you have eaten and are full— 12 then be-ware, lest you forget the LORD who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.”

        – Deuteronomy 6.10–12

        17 “then you say in your heart, ‘My power and the might of my hand have gained me this wealth.’”

        – Deuteronomy 8.17
      2. Has this happened with many Americans? 
  4. There are myths that can destroy America
    1. Myth: We cannot lose our religious freedom. 
    2. Myth: Evolution is scientific fact. 
    3. Myth: It is possible to have morality without religion.

      “We have not yet seen the full result of humanism in the United States, because we are still coasting on the values derived from our rich Judeo-Christian heritage. But what of the generations to follow? As that heritage fades, everyone will be permitted to do whatever seems right in his own eyes in a world of twisted values, where morality is ridiculed and evil becomes a virtue.”

      – Edwin Lutzer
    4. Myth: If it is legal it is moral. 
    5. Myth: Morality cannot be legislated. 
    6. Myth: There are no differences between women and men. 
    7. Myth: A fetus is not human. 
    8. Myth: Pornography is freedom of speech. 
    9. Myth: The church should refrain from being public. 
  5. What America Needs
    1. First Chronicles 12 describes the kind of men America needs today.

      32 …of the sons of Issachar who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do, their chiefs were two hundred; and all their brethren were at their command.”

      – 1 Chr. 12.32
    2. Please pray for America 
      1. that she would listen to God’s word and 
      2. that she returns to her roots in God’s word.