(July 4) The Best News on Independence Day

Psalm 102:12 "But You, O LORD, are enthroned forever; You are remembered throughout all generations."

Aren't you glad to know that the Lord not only reigns on His throne but even better, He will reign forever? Kingdoms rise and fall, but the throne of our God has no end. This is great news for all believers!

It is right and fitting for us as Americans to be grateful for the freedoms we enjoy. The joy and privilege of living in a nation where we are free to pursue our hopes and dreams, free to gather for worship, and free to live the life we choose is a gift that is worthy of our gratitude. On this day when we celebrate our nation's independence, it is good for us to give thanks to the Lord for His gifts and also for the countless men and women who have served to preserve and defend our freedom.

There is a danger, however. It is very possible to be supremely patriotic yet not be converted. It is easy in America to mistakenly assume that loving your country is the same as loving God. It can also be tempting to think that because you are an American, that means you are going to heaven. It is good to be patriotic, but it is folly to substitute that feeling for salvation.

The truth is that no government, no king or president, no nation will be the supreme world ruler. There is only one throne in heaven and it is currently and forever occupied by God Himself. As Christians, our citizenship is in heaven (Philippians 3:20) and our true home is in the "city which is yet to come" (Hebrews 13:14).

I encourage you on this Independence Day to pause and give thanks for our nation. Thank God for His gift of freedom. Give thanks to the Lord for each brave veteran that has defended our nation. The men and women who have served our country are truly deserving of our utmost respect and honor. But, as followers of Jesus, let's use our freedom as a means to an end. Use the freedom we enjoy as Americans to proclaim the gospel, to preach the Word, and to make Christ known around your neighborhood and among the nations.

Our God is enthroned forever and we are brothers and sisters with every believer around the world -- regardless of nationality. Enjoy your freedom and be grateful. But never forget that we are Christians above all else, we belong to God, and He is the One on the throne forever.

Today, I am immensely grateful to be an American. Even more, I am amazed that I am a member of a holy nation (1 Peter 2:9) and a child of God.


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