Saturday, November 27, 2010
Though I had the blessing of being with many precious family members that are so dearly loved and enjoying the good fellowship and food, I was taken away for a small portion of this day to notice a few folk that would likely tell you this was not there happiest thanksgiving experience.
We like to tell everyone we know that we all have something for which we can be thankful, and indeed we do. Just to be able to live in this Nation alone, is something for which we could give thanks.
This day I couldn’t help but be called aside to a little more serious level of appreciation for His many blessings in my life. When we see someone in the grips of depression due to the blows of life circumstances, we have to let our “merry heart” behavior remember the need to shine forth in compassion for the hurting.
Some people sat home today and had a day just like any other, that being not so good. There were no special foods, no loving family support, no one to laugh and chat with, and too low in spirit to even care.
What am I trying to say? I wish I knew exactly. This is just an expression of my heart and the need that seems so prevalent to help the one that just can’t seem to help himself anymore.
Today I’m thankful for my freedom with my God and my Country. I’m grateful for a group of Pilgrims who would risk all to find a land of freedom and a place of worship to the Almighty God. May we never lose sight of the price of our blessings. They came with great costs. No, freedom wasn’t cheap.
My prayer is to see a Nation once again honor the Creator of the Universe with a humble heart and a grateful spirit for all that He has provided.
As we celebrate this wonderful season of the year, may we always remember those souls who are hurting this season. May we help them find their way back to their recognition of all that our God has provided.
Blessings to all, Happy Thanksgiving,
Philippians 4:6-7 “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
"General Principles" Part II
I am very please that I received several comments from my last post, though they were anonymous, I would like to address them one at a time. Each one takes issue with my last post concerning America being founded on the general principles of Christianity. My comments in full can be viewed by clicking on the “General Principles” tab under the recent post header at the top left of the page.
Or you can just follow this link:
Anonymous pointed out the following:
The Treaty of Tripoli receiving ratification unanimously from the U.S. Senate on June 7, 1797 and signed by Adams, taking effect as the law of the land on June 10, 1797.
Article 11 reads:
Art. 11. As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen,—and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.What Anonymous has posted is accurate and I commend (him/her) for posting the full context and not just stopping at the first phrase. I will assume by this, anonymous is seeking for truth where ever it may lie and not just waging an ideological war.
It seems we have a contradiction here with Mr. Adams. He did sign this treaty, but he also said, “We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. . . . Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” - - - - John Adams, The works of John Adams, Second President of the United States, Charles Frances Adams, editor (Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1854), Vol. IX, p.229, to the Officers of First Brigade of the Third Division of the Militia of Massachusetts of October 11, 1798.
I do not have the time here to list all similar such comments made by Mr. Adams. (If anyone would like a list please say so in the comment section and I’ll give you such a list.) But even in the over whelming volume of comments such as this, the fact remains Mr. Adams did sign this treaty. So where does the truth lie?
Lets explore our options, He said, “The general Principles, on which the Fathers Achieved Independence, were the only Principles in which that beautiful Assembly of young Gentlemen could Unite. . . . Now I will avow, that I then believed, and now believe, that those general Principles of Christianity, are as eternal and immutable, as the Existence and Attributes of God. . .” and “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other." Etc.
1. We must conclude that he said these things but he was a liar and believed none of them.
2. He believed these things but was a coward and could not stand on his principles when pressure was applied.
3. He did not believe what the volumes of his statements hold and the statements cannot be explained.
4. There is more to the Treaty of Tripoli than appears in this statement.
I suspect after reading this post you will find yourself with one of these conclusions. I purpose that if you are truly looking for the truth you will do your research and weigh the evidence against the wording of one Government treaty. I would suggest in your research that you put more emphasis on the actual writings and quotes from the Founders than you do on the commentaries.
Having said that lets look at some facts. This treaty was during a conflict known as the Barbary Powers. A conflict between what was perceived to be Christian nations and the Muslim nations. In 1801 Tripoli declared war on the United States. They were attacking our merchant ships, capturing and enslaving our seamen and other Christians. Muslims were demanding gifts and payments for their release and as protection against other attacks.
One view is they were doing this in retaliation for what had been done to them by the "Christians" of previous centuries. ( A subject I will address in a later post) One thing is most certain about the time, Muslim’s did view this war as a holy war between Christians and Muslims.
The treaty was established to try and relieve this tension between the two countries. Some research on General William Eaton and his comments during this time will also shed light on these issues.
In light of these circumstances I can now have a better understanding of the diplomacy and wording of the Treaty. For in reality, the Government of the United States was not “founded on the Christian religion” in the sense of previous centuries and from the prospective of which the Muslim world perceived religion.
The Government of the United States did not and does not impose a State religion, force it’s citizens to participate, support, or ascribe to that religion. So fighting against the Government of the United States based upon it’s religion would be a misconception, for it “the Government” has none. The purpose of Government is to protect the rights that are “endowed by their Creator” “to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among men” ( Declaration of Independence).
So the wording of the Treaty would be a factual statement, yet does not negate the fact that the people of the United States were predominantly Christian, that our Founders carried a deep personal Christian faith, and that the Governing principles that influenced our society which Mr. Adams spoke of were all rooted in the Judeo - Christian faith.
With this view one can reconcile the wording of this treaty and the volumes of religious statements of our Founding Fathers. I hope this helps you in your pursuit of truth. I would advise you not to take my words, nor the words of anonymous, but search the words of our Founders, find their religious statements, let them speak the truth of their hearts into yours. It is your duty to find the truth of what has been handed to you from those before us. Don’t let me or anyone else rob you of that inheritance.
May God bless,