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Irreconcilable Differences

We are always challenged by political divisions. Not long ago, contending parties competed for influence from a foundation of common values and shared goals. Democrats favored centralized power and an activist government. Republicans favored states’ rights following the idea expressed by Thomas Jefferson: “That government is best which governs least.”

Not long ago the contending parties fought heartily for their respective platforms but they worshipped the same God, took the same oath, recited the same pledge, sang the same anthem, and generally agreed upon the nature of man, the ideal of self-government, the importance of individual freedom, the necessity of private property, and the vision of moral citizenship.

The American experiment in Liberty became a great adventure in freedom of thought, freedom of assembly, freedom of religion, freedom of movement, freedom of conscience, freedom to work and risk, freedom to speak, and freedom to take seriously the duty of citizenship.

This great experiment worked so long as the foundations held and the attitude of the majority was mutual respect and support fueled by a true sense of virtue and goodwill. These shared values and foundations made America great, prompting an apt declaration:

Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the greatness and genius of America. America is great because America is good. If America ever ceases to be good America will cease to be great.

Distilling further, this blessed nation was great when we freely obeyed the two great commandments found in Mark 12:30-31:

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.

We do not love God fervently. Instead, we insult Him with our blasphemes, our lusts, and our idols. We do not love our neighbor. Rather, we insult him, assault him and injure him.

Is it any wonder we suffer greatly?  Is it any wonder mere factions have become vicious combatants?

Every constructive belief and virtue and principle and civilized proceeding is trampled underfoot. Every vile and twisted and perverted thought and act is exalted and worshipped and forced upon the ignorant and defenseless.

It is a recipe for mayhem much like that seen in Genesis 6:5-6 describing the days of Noah:

The Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time. The Lord regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled.

Short of a great revival millions will be found outside the Ark, desperate for salvation, finding it too late. While there is time, be Reconciled to God and to Man through the Life, Death, and Resurrection of Christ. It may be too late for America, but in this life, it is never too late for you.

Allan Erickson

Allan Erickson---Christian, husband, father, journalist, businessman, screenwriter, and author of The Cross & the Constitution in the Age of Incoherence, Tate Publishing, 2012.