OUR FOREFATHERS’ COVENANTS
February 14, 2020
Last week's sharing spent a bit more time than planned on William Penn. Meant to hold down the length a little more, but I really wanted to finish up in one day with William Penn and his establishing of the Pennsylvania Colony. Still, the history and details of Penn's faith, and the lengths to which he went to incorporate a firm understanding of God's governance in our society are nothing less than amazing!
By now, I'm sure you are beginning to get the picture. America's foundations are completely unlike any and every other nation in the world. No other nation on the face of this planet was specifically constituted for the spread of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. No other nation on earth saw its founders come together in covenant to ensure that people would have the guaranteed right to worship the Lord, to speak out publicly on spiritual issues; and no other nation EVER incorporated into its constitution the right of individuals in government to honor the Lord Jesus Christ freely and without fear of sanction.
By the same token, no other nation has ever seen the Gospel of Jesus Christ so incorporated into its founding documents. It makes America unique in the world. It also makes us as a nation the target of every individual who hates God, who hates the name of Jesus Christ, and who hates the power, the authority and the dominion that Christians have in a spiritual realm. It is why liberals and socialists have sought to tear away the spiritual fabric of our nation.
One cannot be a socialist and be a Christian in the true sense of the word. Jesus Christ was anything but a socialist. By the same token, everything that epitomizes and characterizes liberals today is the polar opposite of all that characterizes Jesus Christ and all that He stood for. One cannot be a liberal and know the heart of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Liberals and socialists want this nation to become a pure Democracy, NOT a Republic. Pure democracy always ultimately results in anarchy. Because, as we have watched with the liberal, God-hating mainstream media, the will and mindset of a people can be turned and twisted with lies, half-truths, manipulations of facts and the deliberate creation of false impressions. The true will of the people gets contravened by distorting the truth and causing people to believe a lie.
It was Hitler's Minister of Propaganda, Josef Goebbels, who said (and I'm paraphrasing him), "Tell people a lie often enough and they will believe it to be the truth."
In a pure democracy where people vote according to that which they believe, once you've convinced them that a lie is actually the truth, you've succeeded in altering the course of human events and manipulating voter outcomes to suit a wicked agenda. (Witness the liberal mantra of the past few years, "Trump colluded with the Russians." Or how about this one? “Trump bribed Ukranian president.”
Despite the fact that all of the evidence conclusively proves the fact that President Trump did not commit acts of treason, bribery, extortion (or other acts worthy of impeachment), polls taken today show national confusion of the President's handling of the foreign diplomacy. Public opinion has been deliberately altered by the continual hammering and yammering of those who hate everything he stands for.)
In an article titled, The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America, Charlotte Iserbyt notes that,
"These college-level school books, as well as the Salina, Kansas 1898 eighth grade final exam (on the Internet) which the average Harvard graduate could not pass, supported conclusions I had reached over a period of thirty years as a researcher, school board member, co-founder, with Bettina Dobbs, of Guardians of Education for Maine (1980-1998), and Sr. Policy Advisor in the U.S. Department of Education 1980-1982. Those conclusions were that the creation of moral chaos and the "dumbing down" of America have been deliberate in order to move our nation towards the totalitarian, socialist World Government called for by Lenin and Stalin.
Citizens who know nothing of their country's history, its free economic and political systems, or of those alien systems such as democracy, fascism, socialism, and communism, who cannot read well, write or calculate, will accept whatever the highly paid "change agents" feed them in regard to "the need for change." Example: citizens' acceptance of free trade (NAFTA and GATT) which sounds so nice but is really socialistic international "redistribution of wealth." If a citizen doesn't know what he has, how can he know or care when that thing is taken from him?
The danger in not teaching our children American history and their rights under the Constitution and Bill of Rights was underscored by a recent survey commissioned by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) and conducted at 339 U.S. colleges and universities which found that more than 2/3 of students and administrators were unable to remember that freedom of religion and the press are guaranteed by the Bill of Rights. When asked what essential rights are protected by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, over 1/4 failed to mention freedom of speech and over 3/4 did not name freedom of assembly or the right to petition the government for redress of grievances. Only 21% mentioned freedom of religion, and less than 30% mentioned freedom of the press."
(More of the article is available at: http://www.deliberatedumbingdown.com/)
Under the form of government established by our founding fathers, America was created as a "nation under God," recognizing that He was the ultimate authority and that all good government derives from Him. Republican government is representative of the people, and yet controls and moderates democracy in such a way as to stave off anarchy.
I'm a bit ahead of myself with this discussion, but as we continue this narrative -- most likely next week -- to get into the discussions between our founding fathers, you will easily see that there was a serious effort to prevent pure democracy as the Constitution of the United States was created and this nation was formed.
We've been talking about William Penn during the past couple of weeks, and the charters and constitution he both requested and had prepared for the Pennsylvania Colony. What may be lesser known is the fact that William Penn also established the Charter of Delaware in 1701.
The area we now know as the state of Delaware was formerly an apportionment of the lands and territories granted to Penn by Charles II under the denomination, Pennsylvania and Territories. With the 1701 Charter of Liberties for Pennsylvania and Territories, William Penn separated out a portion of that territory, designating it as the Delaware Colony. In the same way that he relinquished his charter to the colonists and settlers of the Pennsylvania Colony, he also relinquished that portion of his charter to those colonists and settlers in the Delaware Colony.
The preamble to the charter reads much like the preface to the Charter of Liberties for Pennsylvania, namely,
"BECAUSE no People can be truly happy, though under the greatest Enjoyment of Civil Liberties, if abridged of the Freedom of their Consciences, as to their Religious Profession and Worship: And Almighty God being the only Lord of Conscience, Father of Lights and Spirits; and the Author as well as Object of all divine Knowledge, Faith and Worship, who only doth enlighten the Minds, and persuade and convince the Understandings of People, I do hereby grant and declare, That no Person or Persons, inhabiting In this Province or Territories, who shall confess and acknowledge One almighty God, the Creator, Upholder and Ruler of the World; and professes him or themselves obliged to live quietly under the Civil Government, shall be in any Case molested or prejudiced, in his or their Person or Estate, because of his or their conscientious Persuasion or Practice, nor be compelled to frequent or maintain any religious Worship, Place or Ministry, contrary to his or their Mind, or to do or suffer any other Act or Thing, contrary to their religious Persuasion.
AND that all Persons who also profess to believe in Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the World, shall be capable (notwithstanding their other Persuasions and Practices in Point of Conscience and Religion) to serve this Government in any Capacity, both legislatively and executively, he or they solemnly promising, when lawfully required, Allegiance to the King as Sovereign, and Fidelity to the Proprietary and Governor, and taking the Attests as now established by the Law made at Newcastle, in the Year One Thousand and Seven Hundred, entitled, An Act directing the Attests of several Officers and Ministers, as now amended and confirmed this present Assembly."
Just as John Winthrop did double duty with Massachusetts and Connecticut (through his son, John Winthrop II), William Penn utilized his powers and authority to ensure that both Pennsylvania and Delaware were both established and founded upon faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Backing up once again in the 17th Century to the early years of Charles II, we find another English Knight in search of a charter and grant of lands in America. This gentleman's name was Sir Fernando Georges Knight, and the land he sought after was the province of Maine. Once again, we find the establishing of the Gospel, and the building of churches at the heart of his charter.
Charles II's grant to Sir Fernando Georges Knight reads in part:
"CHARLES by the grace of God King of England Scotland France and Ireland Defender of the Faith, &c
To all to whom these Presents shall come Greeting Whereas Sir Ferdinando Georges Knight hath been an humble suitor unto us to grant and confirm unto him and his heirs a part and portion of the Country of America now commonly called or known by the name of New England in America in these Presents hereafter described by the meets and bounds thereof with divers and sundry privileges and jurisdictions for the welfare and good of the state of those Colonies that shall be drawn thither and for the better government of the people...Do give grant and confirm unto the said Sir Ferdinando Georges his heirs and assignee All that Part Purported and Portion of the Mayne Lande of New England aforesaid beginning at the entrance of Piscataway Harbor and soe to pass up the same into the River of Newichewanocke.....
.........and also All Patronages and Advisers Free Dispositions and Donations of all and every such Churches and Chapels as shall be made and erected within the said Province and Premises or any, of them with full power license and authority to build and erect or cause to be built and erected so many Churches and Chapels there as to the said Sir Ferdinando Georges his heirs and assignees shall seem meet and convenient and to dedicate and consecrate the same or cause the same to be dedicated and consecrated according to the Ecclesiastical Laws of this our Realm of England...." (spelling corrected for modern English)
For the past two weeks, we've been mostly looking at the charters and grants given by English kings to the settlers, explorers and colonists. The English, however, were not alone in their objectives. As we have noted already, there were people from many nations who were fleeing religious persecution, risking their lives and all they had in order to make their way to America in order to have a place where religious persecution would be banned, where the Gospel of Jesus Christ could have free course, and where folks of varying doctrinal persuasions could worship the Lord freely without the imposition of government-enforced doctrines or restrictions.
Next Sunday, we'll take a look at some of the charters and grants from the Dutch, the French and the Swedish kings. You will quickly see that in all these charters and grants, the spread of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and freedom to worship was at the core of all their purposes.
We have a profound heritage, folks! It's time for America to wake up to that fact! It's time for believers to become spiritually militant and begin to retake this land from those enemies of the Gospel who would rub out all mention of the Lord Jesus Christ. It's time for Christians to become active in the political processes like they have never before done. It is time for God's people to exercise the authority granted them by the Lord.
Daniel prophesied this day. "But the saints of the most High shall take the kingdom, and possess the kingdom for ever, even for ever and ever.........And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time. But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end. And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him." (Daniel 7:18, 25-27)
We'll talk more about this prophetic word in the weeks to come.
I've been saying this throughout this series, and I've said it often throughout the past years, but we have a spiritual heritage behind the formation and founding of this nation the likes of which no other nation on earth has. America must wake up to that fact! It's time for believers to assert their authority in Christ and begin to exercise their responsibilities before God to retake this land from those enemies of the Gospel who would rub out all mention of the Lord Jesus Christ. It's time for Christians to become active in the political processes like they have never before done. It is time for God's people to exercise the authority granted them by the Lord as a direct result of the covenant He has made with us.
The election of 2020 offers Christians across America the opportunity once again to raise up the righteous in authority, and to continue the “swamp cleaning” we’ve seen in the past three years under President Trump. I know that there are many issues facing this nation over which people express deep concern. It is extremely important that we realize we are in the midst of a battle royal -- a spiritual battle.
Because the mainstream liberal media so highly accentuates and distorts the facts surrounding virtually every issue facing the nation, people who get their news and information from the media, and then form their opinions and make decisions on the basis of what they hear in the media almost always get led astray. There ARE major issues facing us in 2020.
No issue like the issue of illegal aliens so touches sensitive nerves among Americans. The fact that our borders are so porous reflects a lax attitude on the part of Americans for generations. This isn't a recent issue. It's just that the 9-11 attack brought it into glaring view. It isn't the Bush administration's fault, although the media would love for you to believe that. It is the fault of the Obama administration, the Bush administration, the Clinton administration, the previous Bush administration, the Reagan administration, the Carter administration, the Ford administration, etc., etc., ad nauseam; and yet one cannot place the blame at their doors, either. When you have people who ignore an ongoing problem for generations, and voters who refuse to show up and vote during both primaries and general elections, one cannot place blame anywhere but on the people as a whole.
We've become so desensitized to Truth by the distortions and manipulations of the media and liberal politicians with an agenda that it has become all too easy to join the "blame game." It's Obama's fault. No, it's the fault of Bush. Well, it's really the fault of the Democrats. No it isn't, the blame lies at the door of Republicans.
See what I mean? Americans are afraid to take responsibility for their own lack of involvement. They stay home during the primaries, or play the kind of games folks played when I was running for the U.S. House. During the 2003-2004 campaign, I can't tell you how many folks told me that they were going to switch sides during the primary in order to vote for a Democratic candidate they believed I could beat in the general election. They expressed confidence that I was going to win the primary easily, so instead of casting their vote for me, they voted on the Democratic ticket in order to shift the election (they hoped) away from Lloyd Doggett who, though not an incumbent in that Congressional District because of the redistricting that had taken place, was exceptionally well-heeled because of having a well-oiled support machine by virtue of many years in office.
I don’t have the time or space to get into that discussion today, but it was a learning experience for me — and one that I’ve never forgotten. Maybe I’ll get to share some of it next week. See you then.
In case you are missing out on real fellowship in an environment of Ekklesia, our Sunday worship gatherings are available by conference call – usually at about 10:30AM Pacific. That conference number is (712) 770-4160, and the access code is 308640#. We are now making these gatherings available on video using ZOOM. If you wish to participate by video on ZOOM, our login ID is 835-926-513. If you miss the live voice-only call, you can dial (712) 770-4169, enter the same access code and listen in later. The video call, of course, is not recorded – not yet, anyway.
Blessings on you!
Regner A. Capener
RIVER WORSHIP CENTER
Temple, Texas 76502
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