This is the time of the year that churches gear up for their biggest spectacles. Church-goers dress up in their finest apparel, and an egg-laying rabbit appears everywhere. Unfortunately, not many have a grasp of the facts, and most don’t want to know. And, tragically, not knowing, and the destruction and slavery which result from ignorance, is part of that Easter Parade.
On the 10th of Nisan, A.D.32, Jesus orchestrated the fulfillment of a prophecy by Zachariah. He entered Jerusalem riding on a colt of an ass. The date of that fulfillment had been prophesied by Daniel nearly 500 years earlier. Jerusalem should have known that their Messiah had come to redeem them. They didn’t know. Jesus wept. He looked into their ignorance-clouded future and predicted the destruction of Jerusalem along with the death and slavery which would result. 38 years later, his words became facts on the ground.
Fast forward…upon having decided to leave public service, George Washington, rightly called the father of our country, wrote a letter to the people of the United States. Among other warnings and injunctions which a father might pass along to grown children, General Washington said,
” In contemplating the causes which may disturb our Union, it occurs as matter of serious concern that any ground should have been furnished for characterizing parties by geographical discriminations, Northern and Southern, Atlantic and Western; whence designing men may endeavor to excite a belief that there is a real difference of local interests and views. … You cannot shield yourselves too much against the jealousies and heartburnings which spring from these misrepresentations; they tend to render alien to each other those who ought to be bound together by fraternal affection. ”
Was Father Washington right? Did the divisions along geographic lines cause a fraternal struggle between the Star and Stripes and the Stars and Bars which nearly extinguished the lamp of liberty?
Perhaps, then, we should listen when father Washington writes,
“Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. … And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle. ”
Is this now a nation built on morality? Has not immorality, instead, become the touchstone of equality and freedom? Have the Stars and Stripes been supplanted by a rainbow flag? Will that tendency, now, extinguish the light of liberty. Will the nation built by a free people finally slide into despotism and tyranny after willing embracing the chains of immorality?
Abraham Lincoln once wondered aloud if that nation, “could long endure”.
I wonder that myself, when ignorance is so often on Easter Parade.