Yesterday, millions of individuals gathered with friends and family to celebrate the birth of America and the many freedoms we enjoy in this nation. We listened to patriotic music, waved flags, and watched fireworks in honor of our country.
As Christians, we can and should enjoy the celebration of America, while thanking God for allowing us to reside in a blessed nation. And we should reflect on the freedom we are guaranteed by God … and the freedoms we are not.
You see, God created freedom and made it part of His great plan for the world. Each of us is given the freedom to either accept God’s free gift of salvation or reject Him. We can choose to surrender ourselves and live according to His plan, or we can live selfishly, which leads to eternal destruction.
God longs to be in a relationship with us, like a parent longing for a wayward child. He could have taken away our free will and forced us into communion with Him, but that’s not what He did. He wants us to choose Him, so He gave us the ability to walk away from Him, though it grieves Him.
This is the freedom given to every human being on the planet. As Americans, we have enjoyed other freedoms, such as the freedom to worship openly and freely, the freedom to share our beliefs, and the freedom to reject evil.
This freedom is not guaranteed to us. In fact, most of the Christian world throughout history has experienced the complete opposite. They have worshipped in secret and at their own peril. They have been penalized and martyred for proselytizing. Rejecting an unchristian worldview has often meant certain death. Even today, 320 million Christians face “high levels of persecution and discrimination” due to their faith in Jesus Christ, according to Open Doors.
Christians in America have been blessed by these freedoms since the birth of our country 247 years ago. Quite honestly, in the past decades, we have squandered these freedoms completely. A Lifeway Research study showed that 70% of Christians have not shared their faith at all in the past six months. The biblical worldview has all but disappeared from our nation. In a society where we face almost no legal penalties for our faith, very few are exercising this freedom to save the lost.
The reality is that our freedoms in America are slipping away. While the storyline of Pastor Preston Curtis in my book “A Pastor’s Pit” is fictional, there is a very real possibility that sharing the truth of the Bible could be classified as hate speech in the near future. Our culture and governing bodies are increasingly caustic to a biblical worldview, and we may find ourselves shoulder-to-shoulder with our persecuted brothers and sisters in Christ before we know it.
So, celebrate America. Celebrate the freedoms you enjoy in this nation, but don’t take them for granted. Make the most of the freedom you have by telling someone today about Gospel. It will never be easier to win souls to Christ than it is right now, so let’s take advantage while we still have time!