Thomas Jefferson is quoted as saying “When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty.” This is quite a true statement. These men knew tyranny. They knew what it meant to have so say in the affairs of a government that levied taxes with no redeeming value to the people. They sought out liberty.
Through the years this nation has grown, overcome adversity, made needed and lasting changes. This nation is not perfect, but it’s by far the greatest upon the earth. Let us remember this fact, and dedicate our service to the cause of liberty! Men and women have gone throughout the world to carry the banner of liberty, have helped to seek out tyranny where ever it may be and looked to destroy it.
As we go through our ritual of watching fireworks, eating hotdogs, and enjoying our time off from work, let us take time to remember those men who, long ago, declared their freedom: our freedom. Let us remember those men and women who gave their lives for the ideal: the reality, of liberty. Yet even more than that, let us take time to remember the divine “author of Liberty”—The God of heaven.
I am not one who argues that this is a “Christian nation.” Yet the fact remains and cannot honestly be denied, that the framers of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of this great nation did trust in God, and looked heavily to biblical principal in creating the documents.
The concept of “liberty” is of divine origin. We read, and understand liberty in the scriptures. The Apostle Paul, inspired by the Holy Spirit, wrote a great deal about liberty in the book of Romans. We find that Children of God have “liberty” in Christ. We find that we escape the consequences of our sin and obtain freedom! God indeed is the truth author of liberty. Let us never forget this.
Luke records the words of the Apostle Paul as he addressed those on the Areopagus, in Athens. He said :
God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men's hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring (Acts 17:24-28).
We notice also, that it is by God’s divine will, and by His providence that the United States of America came into existence. God appointed it! We should bear in our thoughts the fact that we as a people are here because God, in his divine providence, appointed a time and space for the United States. We owe our freedom, our liberty to God.
We often sing a song “America” written by Samuel F. Smith. In the fourth verse Smith writes
Our fathers' God, to thee,
author of liberty, to thee we sing;
long may our land be bright
with freedom's holy light;
protect us by thy might, great God, our King.
Let us bring forth the praises of this great nation! Let us take pride in our country and all that she stands for. Let us support always the cause of liberty. Yet most importantly, let us never forget to bring honor to God, “author of liberty”!