Sunday, February 13, 2022

Repairing Foundations

By Ron Bartanen


     When a nation that once honored God decides it no longer needs God nor His laws, what is the Christian to do? The question, as found in the Psalms. is, “If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?” Psa. 11:3. “By “foundations,” reference is obviously made to the principles that undergird society.  In the context of this verse is pictured a situation where wickedness and violence prevailed in the abandonment of the laws and principles set forth in God’s Law for Israel.  The question seems to be that of the Psalmist David’s advisors who advise him to “Flee as a bird to your mountain” (v. 1).   While they would advise him to go fearfully into hiding, David’s decision instead is to put his trust in God: “In the LORD put I my trust….  The Lord is in His holy temple, the LORD’s throne is in heaven…” (vs. 1a, 4a).  It is He who will judge the unrighteous (v. 6).

     Are we viewing the crumbling of the foundations of our nation? Any who are at all acquainted with our nation’s early history must admit that the founders envisioned a government where Christian principles prevailed.  While not all professed to be Christians, there was a profound respect for the Bible and the principles derived from the Bible.  The liberty they envisioned was regarded as being dependent upon respect for Scripture.  John Adams on June 21, 1776 wrote, “Statesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for liberty, but it is Religion and Morality alone which can establish the principles upon which Freedom can securely stand.  The only foundation of a free Constitution is free Virtue, and if this cannot be inspired to our people in a greater Measure than they have it now, they may change their Rulers and the forms of Government, but they will not obtain a lasting liberty.”  This same sentiment had been expressed by Samuel Adams in 1772 when he wrote, “The rights to freedom being the gift of the Almighty…the rights of the colonists as Christians…may be best understood by reading and carefully studying the institution of the Great Law Giver and Head of the Christian Church, which are to be found clearly written and promulgated in the New Testament.”  Sadly, it seems that every effort is being made by some to undermine these principles.  The secular world is regularly assaulting Christian values, opposing a foundation that would define morality.  Even the mention of God and the Bible is taboo in schools.  Most of the problems we face in our world are due to those who act contrary to these principles.  Homes are destroyed, marriage is being redefined, pornography and other sexual sins no longer have shock-value, and God and His word are being removed from public view under the erroneous excuse of “separation of church and state.”

     But, “What can the righteous do?” All too many would seemingly do nothing.  Many churches do not even regard the Bible as the inspired word of God, and see righteousness as something to be redefined by society.  But the righteous must, as David, trust God and His word to guide us.  May we never give up the stand for what is right and honorable in our lives and in our nation.  May we continue to hold to the standard of God’s word—to never surrender it, but ever defend it.  We must do all we can to repair the damage that has been done, and speak up where others remain silent, knowing that only “the foundation of God standeth sure” (2 Timothy 2:19). May we constantly sound the warning to all who will hear: “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God” (Psalms 9:17).

- Ronald Bartanen is a retired minister who for many years served the Lord's church in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan and Tennessee. He may be contacted at:

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