Americans are not always good at remembering.
We forget the sacrifices made for us so we can enjoy freedom today. We forget the blood, sweat, and tears of those who have given their all that we might have liberty.
Israel was not always good at remembering either.
They soon forgat his works; they waited not for his counsel: But lusted exceedingly in the wilderness, and tempted God in the desert.—Psalm 106:13–14
Forgetting is a serious offense for a nation, and it brought Israel down a vicious spiral of idolatry and desolation.
Judges 8:33 records of the nation of Israel after Gideon’s death, “And the children of Israel remembered not the LORD their God, who had delivered them out of the hands of all their enemies on every side.”
During this unstable time in Israel’s history, the nation persisted in spiritually fickle ways. They would turn from God to idols and then back to God. Each time they turned to heathen gods, the Lord would allow a nation to afflict them and bring them to repentance. Then He would raise up a leader who would deliver them from their bondage, and they would follow the Lord…until that judge died. Then it was back to idols. Over and over they repeated the downward circling cycles.
I’m concerned that America is also growing in idolatry. The gods of pluralism and sensualism are being worshipped by an ever-growing number of people. Our nation has long stood for liberty and for respecting the beliefs and practices of all faiths, but when the government seeks to shed Christianity and elevate godlessness, we diminish the faith of our founding fathers and grieve the God of our fathers.
Psalm 33:12 reminds us, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD: and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance.”
It grieves me to see our nation turn from this God and publically and forcefully declare that we don’t want Him involved in our land.
As Israel forgot God, she forgot as well that God is the one who delivered her from her enemies. God had brought miraculous victory and secured her borders. Psalm 78:42 laments, “They remembered not his hand, nor the day when he delivered them from the enemy.”
How foolish we are as a nation to forget God!
Ronald Reagan said, “The image of George Washington kneeling in prayer in the snow is one of the most famous in American history. He personified a people who knew it was not enough to depend on their own courage and goodness; they must also seek help from God, their Father and Preserver.”
May we never forget those who died for our freedom, and may we never forget the God who has blessed us!
This article originally appeared on the Pastor’s Perspective.