The Impeachment of a Nation
While the House of Representatives has labored to bring Articles of Impeachment against Donald Trump, Heaven has been holding its own impeachment inquiry against a nation that has broken covenant with Him.
“America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.” This oft-quoted proverb is usually attributed to Abraham Lincoln. While it makes for interesting conversation and scintillating debate, Lincoln did not make this statement. However, he DID say something which expressed a similar sentiment. And, I think Lincoln’s words are far more eloquent and deeply more disturbing. I sat watching the news for some time today, growing more and more melancholy as I did when this supposed Lincoln quote kept crawling around in my mind. Since so many proverbs are attributed to individuals without anyone thinking to check on their authenticity, I decided to do a little research which revealed what Lincoln actually said:
“If destruction is our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time or die by suicide.”
This year my wife and I marked the 50th anniversary of our wedding. We have been blessed with five remarkable children and to date, 14 grandchildren. Our youngest, Wilhelmina Alexandra Haskell was born to our youngest daughter just 8 weeks ago. I have grave concerns about the world that little baby and her cousins will grow up in. This is a generation in which Americans are wholly engaged in what we suppose to be the “battle for the soul of America;” a great contest between conservatism and socialism, striving between right and left, the struggle a progressive new generation and the old guard.
In this, we are wholly deceived. What we are actually witnessing is a once-great nation as it commits national suicide – the very thing Lincoln warned would happen.
All over my town and as I travel throughout the country I see signs declaring, “Hate has no home here!” Nothing could be further from the truth. Hate has received a warm welcome in America and has set up its tent in every corner of our nation. And, it is growing in intensity every day. The hate that is consuming our nation is not consigned to one side or political party. It is living and growing in every corner of the land, billowing up in every party, playing all sides against the middle––growing inside the soul of our nation like cancer, eating away at every organ as it devours the life within us until we are found dead.
Every group and every party claims moral superiority, but when we examine ourselves carefully we discover that there is little high ground to be found. Our President leads the way, firing volley after volley of Twitter missiles meant to mock and humiliate his opponents while a bevy of spiritual advisors stand by and cheer him on rather than pleading with him that there might be a better, more honorable way. Of course, each volley from the Oval Office is met with a blitzkrieg of return fire from every direction in this unending war of personal assassination and public humiliation. In the meantime, every claim to greatness as a nation we might have ever owned is being reduced to rubble and waste. Those spiritual leaders who surround the President to pray for him, to counsel him should be pleading at every turn for him strive toward the upward calling of God, to walk in the way of Christ and commit his enemies to the hand of God. I pray every day that God will grant me the grace to not return evil with evil, but that I might respond to evil with grace and mercy toward the vilest of my enemies. I pray this same prayer for President Trump. God’s way is the only path to restoration and healing within our nation. If our leaders cannot find this way the rot that consumes us will only grow.
There is a war being waged in America today, but it is a war which no one can win, except the Spirit of Hate that drives it. We are engaged in this cannibalistic frenzy because America as a nation has forgotten God. We have turned our backs on Him as we shake our fists in His face. We have abandoned the moral principles in which this nation was rooted and God has given us up to a reprobate mind. We no longer call upon Him for help and wisdom. We proudly strut around in our own separate little worlds arrogantly claiming greatness and exceptionalism, only to discover that we have become common and petty, filled with bickering and wallowing in the foolishness of human wisdom, completely oblivious to the peril we have placed ourselves in.
As America has been held spell-bound while the House of Representatives seeks to level articles of impeachment against Donald Trump, Heaven is holding its own impeachment inquiry upon a nation guilty of far greater offenses than quid pro quo. The Scriptures are clear about the fate of any nation that “forgets” His grace and benevolence. That nation will surely perish from the earth.
“I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers—and it was not there. . . . . in her fertile fields and boundless forests—and it was not there. . . . .in her rich mines and her vast world commerce—and it was not there. . . . in her democratic Congress and her matchless Constitution—and it was not there. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because she is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, she will cease to be great.”
-Alexis de Tocqueville-
Clamor all you wish about the greatness of America, but you are clamoring about a day that has passed. A nation that murders more than a half-million of its most innocent citizens each year, a nation that celebrates the most perverse sexual immorality, a nation that calls that which is evil good and rails against that which is good is not a good nation. When the church in large measure lacks the courage to stand up and sound the warning of sure judgment certain doom lies ahead. We have become a people drowning in a sea of our own putrid vitriol, shouting blame at each other when in truth––we are all to blame. We have become the author and finisher of our own destruction.
There is a single hope that America might be rescued from its imminent demise, and I cry out for it every day. That hope is that the Holy Spirit of God might break through our national arrogance and break our hearts. I pray that the whole of us may come to understand that we have broken covenant with the God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob. I pray that we might lay down the weapons of self-destruction, and on bended knee confess our sins to God and repent of them. Instead of preaching conservative (or liberal) politics the church must return to the preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ, calling all men to repentance from their sins, for the Gospel is the only defense against the wrath of God. The apostle Paul gives us a stone-cold warning in the Book of Galatians:
“But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another.” (Galatians 5:15)