Can God Bless America?

Jeff "Miztah" Rogers By Jeff "Miztah" Rogers, 14th Feb 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Family>Religion

Is the United States or any other nation today in a covenant relationship with God? What is the standing of the U.S.A. as a nation before God?

Can God Bless America?

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land." 2 Chronicles 7:14

Today as we prepare to enter the next presidential cycle, many candidates are making themselves known to the people of our great country. We often hear in their speeches a continual call for God to bless America. They end every speech with "God bless you and God bless America". Is there anything wrong with this? I don't think so. I think the sentiments are good and fine and it is a way to direct the crowds' hearts and minds to something bigger than themselves. And it is an American tradition; just look how much flack B. Obama took for not regularly wearing an American flag lapel pin.

But is there a biblical basis for this call for divine blessing? Is there a basis for God to bless America today? I don't mean have we as a nation earned his blessings, clearly we have not. What I mean is from what justification are we expecting God to bless our nation. Some will cite the verse above; but is that a legitimate basis to expect God to bless the United States? Why would we have a claim to God's blessing based on this verse and not expect China or Russia or Iran or others to claim the same basis for the same blessing? But let's look at this verse and see if there is cause for us today to expect God's blessing based upon 1 Chronicles 7:14.

First notice that the verse is a conditional promise: "IF my people " do all of the things listed -- "THEN will I " provide the blessings that are listed. As a "Conditional Promise" we must recognize that this was given to a people who were in covenant relation to God. The nation of Israel was related to God through his covenant that he had given to the nation through Moses. So this verse was given to a nation that was in a covenant with Jehovah God. Is the United States as a nation in a covenant relationship with God? If we are, is it the old conditional covenant of the: "IF" -- "THEN"? Or is it the unconditional covenant of participating with Christ in his work on the cross in salvation? I think it is pretty obvious that is cannot be the second, or else all of our fellow countrymen and women would be saved, and clearly they are not. If it is the Old Covenant, then where are the animal sacrifices? Who are the priests? Should we revert back to the Levitical diet of clean and unclean? I would be hard pressed to say that our country is in relationship to God through that Old Covenant, nor do I think that we would want to be. So based on this, we cannot use this verse to claim blessing for our nation.

This verse is given in the context of the dedication ceremony where King Solomon was dedicating the temple that had just been built.

"Thus Solomon finished the house of the LORD, and the king's house: and all that came into Solomon's heart to make in the house of the LORD, and in his own house, he prosperously effected.And the LORD appeared to Solomon by night, and said unto him, I have heard thy prayer, and have chosen this place to myself for an house of sacrifice." 2 Chronicles 7:11-12

Here Solomon had finished the dedication of the temple and then God appears. He gives them the conditional "If '" Then" promise of verse 14 that we saw above. Then as God is speaking to Solomon he tells him.

"And as for thee, if thou wilt walk before me, as David thy father walked, and do according to all that I have commanded thee, and shalt observe my statues and my judgments;" 1 Chronicles 7:17

Here God uses the words "And as for thee" -- to directly address Solomon. He tells Solomon; "IF" you walk before me as David did, doing all the commandments, obeying all the statutes and judgments -- "THEN" --

"Then will I stablish the throne of thy kingdom, according as I have covenanted with David thy father, saying, there shall not fail thee a man to be ruler in Israel."

1 Chronicles 7:18

"THEN" God promises to establish the throne of his kingdom. And he promises that there will always be one of his lineage to sit on the throne. But again, this pertains to the King of that nation that was in covenant relation with God, Israel. Could this promise possibly be applied or claimed by any in the United States of America?

That was the positive declaration of God's promise. There is a negative side to this promise as we will see as we continue to read.

"But if ye turn away, and forsake my statutes and my commandments, which I have set before you, and shall go and serve other gods, and worship them;" 1 Chronicles 7:19

"Then will I pluck them up by the roots out of my land which I have given them; and this house, which I have sanctified for my name, will I cast out of my sight, and will make it to be a proverb and a byword among all nations." 1 Chronicles 7:20

God now uses the Holy comparative, "BUT" in contrast to the blessings you may have in obedience, here is the flip side of that. "IF ye turn away -- " forsake the statutes, commandments, etc. "THEN will I" Kick you out of the land; cast the temple from my sight, etc. Now historically did any of this happen? Did Solomon and the nation continue in obedience and earn all of these great blessings, or did they run off and worship and serve other gods? Of course we know the answer to that question. They failed miserably. So much so that God finished his admonishment with these prophetic words.

"And this house, which is high, shall be an astonishment to ever one that passeth by it; so that he shall say, Why hath the LORD done thus unto this land, and unto this house? And it shall be answered, Because they forsook the LORD God of their fathers, which brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, and laid hold on other gods, and worshipped them, and served them: therefore hath he brought all this evil upon them." 1 Chronicles 7:21-22

God did ultimately destroy the nation of Israel, it is what Jesus told the scribes and Pharisees in reminding them of the coming destruction of AD 70. This was the EXACT fulfillment of that second part of the curse in verse 20; "and this house, which I have sanctified for my name, will I cast out of my sight," Did God cast out this house, the temple that Solomon had just dedicated? He most certainly did. Even Jesus while in his earthly ministry continued this warning of the impending destruction of the temple.

"And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down." Matthew 24:1-2

"Behold, your house is left unto you desolate." Matthew 23:38

So Israel, the nation to whom this promise of blessing actually applied could not keep it in such a way as to earn those blessings, but they did ultimately earn the curses contained in this oft quoted promise. SO why in the ungodly nation of the United States do we think that we can earn those same blessings?

But let's look at the other constituent elements of the promise in 1 Chronicles 7:14

IF we:

---Humble ourselves

---Pray

---Seek God's face

---Turn from our wicked ways

THEN God will:

---Will hear from heaven

---Forgive sins

---Heal the land

So in the first place will it be necessary for 100% of the people to humble themselves, or is 70% okay? Who determines the grading system on this "if -- then" proposition? Is praying once a day good enough; once a week? This sounds like works to me. I am okay with all of these activities as a Christian and I pursue them regularly, but will my pursuit of them result in the blessings of the second part of the verse?

Based on my performance will God hear me? Or does he hear me because of the blood and merits of Christ? Is God waiting for me to meet the conditions of part one of the verse in order to forgive my sins? I sure hope not. What about the land? Is God going to heal my little plot of land that I live on here in Colorado? I have some spots in my lawn that I cannot seem to get grass to grow, and some flower bed with excessive weeds. And do not get me started on tomatoes: I just cannot get them to grow. Seriously, can I legitimately apply ANY PART of that land promise to myself?

The only land that God ever promised to anyone was the land promised to the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Did he promise land to George Washington, John Adams, and Thomas Jefferson? I am thinking he did not. So on what basis are we as a modern nation claiming this as a promise. Again, an honest look at this verse shows that we cannot claim the blessings of God based on this verse.

So then on what can we as a nation claim the blessings of God? I must be honest and blunt -- we can't claim God's blessings today as a nation. God is not in covenant relationship to any particular nation today as he was in Solomon's day to Israel.

But we as individuals can claim the blessings of God. You ask, how? The only way is through the merits, work and person of Jesus Christ.

"For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us." 2 Corinthians 1:20

The letter of 2 Corinthians was not written to a nation, it was written to a church. God works through individuals today in his church to do his work in the world. The United States is not God's covenant people, but those who are washed in the blood of Christ are. So insomuch as we individual believers in Jesus Christ are blessed by God, Those blessings have a tendency to pour out over onto our communities. So is it possible for God to bless the U.S.A.? Absolutely, but it will be dependent not on our obedience and our adherence to a list of "IF -- THEN" conditions -- no it will be dependent on individual believers actually believing God for the blessings that come ONLY from Jesus Christ and His perfect obedience.

You see today we individual believers are in covenant with God through Jesus Christ. Jesus was born under that old conditional covenant, and he perfectly obeyed and kept every commandment, statute, judgment and word of the Lord. He kept it so perfectly that God has highly exalted him. Jesus not only kept the old covenant perfectly, but he kept it on our behalf as well. He imputed (gave to us) his perfect obedience to us today as individual believers in such a way that when God sees us, he sees the perfection of his son Jesus Christ, and he is quick to bless us, NOT based on what we have done or how we have performed -- But based on how Christ has performed and all that he did.

So today we can rest in the blessings of God as believers, and hope for an overflow of those blessings from our lives onto our neighbors and fellow Americans -- .so I can say with great confidence (because of Jesus Christ), God Bless America!

Tags

Country, Covenant, Nation, Patriotism, Politics

Meet the author

author avatar Jeff "Miztah" Rogers
Lived in many places in the U.S.. Served in the Air Force for 21 years. retired from active duty in 2002. Traveled extensively, lived 8 years in Europe. I write about the bible, faith, and new ideas

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Comments

author avatar Jack Vorster
15th Feb 2012 (#)

The only reason America remains (relatively) intact is because of its Christian "content", that is, the presence of "Joseph in the house of Egypt". The truth is, America is busy breaking down its own house in line with God's universal laws.

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author avatar Ivyevelyn, R.S.A.
16th Feb 2012 (#)

Thank you, Zach and Jack.
I am reading the Universal Laws and I am not yet educated enough to comment.

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author avatar ittech
18th Feb 2012 (#)

interesting writing again . Thnx for sharing .

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author avatar Denise Larkin
4th Mar 2012 (#)

Great writing.

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author avatar Jack Wellman
11th Mar 2012 (#)

You bless me always Jeff. Knowing that you have proudly served this nation and lover her profoundly, your heart is truly invested in this article.

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author avatar Teila
6th Apr 2012 (#)

Powerful

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