Happy birthday to the United States of America!!!!!!! For two hundred thirty six years this country has striven to advance the cause of personal freedom. It hasn’t been easy and lets face it, things are NOT perfect, BUT it is the best game in town and we should be proud of what we have accomplished!!! When I think of birthdays, naturally, I think of Jesus and this passage from Luke says it all...
Luke, Chapter 2
1 Now it happened in those days, that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be enrolled. 2 This was the first enrollment made when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 All went to enroll themselves, everyone to his own city. 4 Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David; 5 to enroll himself with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him as wife, being pregnant.
6 It happened, while they were there, that the day had come that she should give birth. 7 She brought forth her firstborn son, and she wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a feeding trough, because there was no room for them in the inn. 8 There were shepherds in the same country staying in the field, and keeping watch by night over their flock. 9 Behold, an angel of the Lord stood by them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 The angel said to them, “Don’t be afraid, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be to all the people. 11 For there is born to you, this day, in the city of David, a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 This is the sign to you: you will find a baby wrapped in strips of cloth, lying in a feeding trough.” 13 Suddenly, there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly army praising God, and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest,
on earth peace, good will toward men.”
15 It happened, when the angels went away from them into the sky, that the shepherds said one to another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem, now, and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 They came with haste, and found both Mary and Joseph, and the baby was lying in the feeding trough. 17 When they saw it, they publicized widely the saying which was spoken to them about this child. 18 All who heard it wondered at the things which were spoken to them by the shepherds. 19 But Mary kept all these sayings, pondering them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, just as it was told them.
21 When eight days were fulfilled for the circumcision of the child, his name was called Jesus, which was given by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.
Our flag stands for those who desire freedom and the greatest freedom of all is the freedom Jesus made available for all who would attain to the obedience of faith (Romans 1:5; 14:23). If we celebrate our worldly freedom on this July 4th, why not remember a birthday that is the hallmark of spiritual freedom. Be happy today and thank God that we live in America and also that Jesus came into this world to save us all.