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Unity

Our country is clamoring for unity. But what unifying factors should structure our nation? Unity requires agreement on a set of principles the citizens of our nation will unite behind. The answer to this question will literally determine the fate of our Republic.

Past generations defined several unifying factors in our Pledge of Allegiance and coin inscriptions.

The pledge begins, “I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the REPUBLIC for which it stands…” PRINCIPLE ONE is that we are a REPUBLIC, not a democracy. Beware the leadership or ideas of anyone who claims we are a democracy, for such people are either ignorant or willfully seeking to subvert our government. The names of the political parties reveal their adherents’ ideology. Enough said.

The pledge continues, “…one nation UNDER GOD…” PRINCIPLE TWO is that our nation was founded through Almighty God’s grace and providence and under His authority. Our nation is privileged to be one of only two theocracies in world history. The first was Israel, who rejected God’s leadership when they begged for a king during the time of the prophet Samuel. In His gracious mercy, God worked out His will through the lineage of King David by sending the world His Son Jesus to be the atoning sacrifice for mankind. “Under God” means our nation was founded to be self-governing by a virtuous people who are informed of the attributes of virtue through God’s written Word, the Bible. Will the citizens of the United States yield to the authority of God as defined in His Word or continue to go their own way in a downward spiral of chaos, corruption and immorality?

“…indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” PRINCIPLES THREE AND FOUR are Liberty and Justice. God provided for every person to know the liberty that comes through faith in Christ and His forgiveness of sin. “If the Son sets you free, you shall be free indeed” (John 8:36). Our country enshrines that liberty through the religious freedom guaranteed in the First Amendment to our Constitution. God’s Word places considerable emphasis on justice, such as Micah 6:8: “He has shown you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”

Principles of national unity are also inscribed on every coin: Liberty. E pluribus unum (out of many, one). In God we trust. Most certainly the principle E pluribus unum is only possible because of the additional principles of liberty and trust in God. God created every person uniquely in His image (the “many”), yet He wants us all to be one in Him through faith in Christ. Jesus prayed to His Father for His disciples, “I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me” (John 17:22-23). God’s instructions to the New Testament church advise us how to live in liberty together through the power of His Holy Spirit. One guideline for liberty many of us can already quote: “Mind your own business” (1 Thessalonians 4:11). Other scriptures counsel kindness, compassion, and forgiveness (Ephesians 4:32); respect and honor (1 Peter 2:17); humility (Philippians 2:3); and of course justice and mercy (Micah 6:8).

In sum, these are the attributes of our country that can lead to unity: Republican (representative) government by the consent and participation of a virtuous (as defined by God), self-governing people under the authority of Almighty God, conducting its affairs in a manner that yields liberty and justice for all.

Many in America want to continue to live according to these principles that have united our country for almost 250 years. We say no thanks to the brand of unity advocated by those who would “fundamentally transform” our nation into a godless, perverse, coercive, corrupt society. Don’t expect us to embrace your principles of unity.

Christ’s disciples are instructed to live sanctified and holy lives so we can “shine like stars in the universe as [we] hold out the word of life” (Philippians 2:15-16). Believers, let us pray that our unsaved countrymen will also turn to Jesus as their Lord and Savior and thereby be transformed in heart and mind to be conformed to the image of Christ (Romans 12:2). Christ through “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness” (2 Peter 1:3). Why would we expect God to bless our nation if we abandon the principles of being “one nation under God” and “in God we trust”? These principles must remain the cornerstone of any call for “unity.”

God will not share His Sovereign Glory with anyone. God Himself declares “…the glory of the LORD fills the whole earth…” (Numbers 14:21). It is a privilege to be part of a nation founded to be “under God,” the Maker of heaven and earth. Please do not reject that blessing.

2 replies on “Unity”

One nation under god was added afterward.
I am not indivisible.

Pledge of Allegiance
Why is it, then, that so many American schoolchildren are required to swear allegiance to the flag and the Republic “for which it stands” rather than the Constitution? Millions of children start each school day with the Pledge of Allegiance: “I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic, for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” Wouldn’t we be much safer as a Republic if the children learned to respect the Constitution? If we were to place the flag in the hierarchy above, it would follow the Republic. The flag is a symbol of the Republic. It seems odd to pledge allegiance to the flag and to the Republic while ignoring both the Declaration and the Constitution.

To understand why this reversal took place we need to look at the history of the Pledge of Allegiance itself. Most of us grew up with the Pledge, and we probably assumed that it was always part of the American culture. But that is not true. Even the current version is relatively new. The phrase “under God” was not in the original version; it was added only in 1954. The Pledge itself doesn’t go back farther than the 1890s. It’s a child of the socialist Progressive movement.

It was during the late 1800s that, for the first time, widespread advocacy of socialism and statism became popular in the United States. Numerous authors wrote novels promoting these doctrines. Among those novels were Ignatius Donnelly’s Caesar’s Column and Edward Bellamy’s Looking Backward. Bellamy wrote of a futuristic America where socialism reigned. In its first year of publication, 1888, the book sold 100,000 copies and eventually topped a million in print; it was translated into 20 languages. As a work of American fiction it was surpassed in the nineteenth century only by Uncle Tom’s Cabin and Ben Hur.

John Dewey, the great advocate of government schooling and a socialist, called Bellamy his “Great American Prophet” and said: “What Uncle Tom’s Cabin was to the anti-slavery movement Bellamy’s book may well be to the shaping of popular opinion for a new social order.” In fact Dewey took many of his socialist ideas for education and indoctrination from Bellamy. Historian John Baer said that Dewey “was ready to advocate Edward Bellamy’s type of education and to reform American society through ‘progressive education.’” Dewey was keenly interested in the Soviet Union and wrote articles praising the educational system imposed by the communists. (The material from Baer comes from his book The Pledge of Allegiance: A Centennial History, 1892-1992. See www.vineyard.net/vineyard/history/pdgech0.htm.)

In Looking Backward the main character, Julian West, falls asleep in 1887 only to awaken in the year 2000. He finds an America where the means of production are owned by the state and everyone earns equal income. Jobs are assigned by the government to citizen-conscripts, who must work for the state from the age of 21 until retirement at 45.

Edward Bellamy, along with his cousin Francis Bellamy, were the two major spokesmen for what they called “Nationalism,” by which they meant the nationalization of all industry under state control. Across America some 167 Nationalist Clubs were formed. In 1889 one of the Boston Nationalist Clubs formed an auxiliary called the Society for Christian Socialists. According to Baer, “The principles [of the Society] stated that economic rights and powers were gifts of God, not for the receiver’s use only, but for the benefit of all. All social, political and industrial relations should be based on the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man, in the spirit of the teachings of Jesus Christ. Capitalism was not based on Christian love but on selfish individualism.”

Francis Bellamy became the vice president in charge of education for the Society. Other prominent members included Francis Willard, the leader of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union, and W.D.P. Bliss, a well-known minister.

The Bellamy cousins came from a long line of Baptist clergymen. Their grandfather had been a top aide to “The Great Awakening” evangelist Jonathan Edwards. Francis Bellamy was a seminary graduate and an ordained Baptist minister who openly preached socialism from the pulpit. But this led to conflicts with his congregation. One member, however, was enthusiastic about Bellamy’s socialist principles: Daniel Ford, editor of the religious publication The Youth’s Companion. Ford also was founder of Boston’s famed Ford Hall Forum.

Loyalty to the State
After Bellamy was relieved of his ministry, Ford offered him a position with his magazine. Together they continued to work with various advocates of socialism and decided that a program was needed to teach American youth loyalty to the state. They realized that the individualist tradition in America did not lend itself easily to the “patriotism” needed for the socialist state of Looking Backward.

Ford and Bellamy contacted the National Education Association (NEA), which was then headed by William Torrey Harris. Harris, according to Baer, “believed in a state controlled public education system. As the leading Hegelian philosopher in the United States he believed that the State had a central role in society. He believed youth should be trained in loyalty to the State and the public school was the institution to plant fervent loyalty and patriotism. Like many other American educators of his time, he admired and copied the Prussian educational system.”

A staunch opponent of private education, Harris wanted public education centralized in every way possible and used his influence to work toward that goal. He was unhappy that local education made it difficult to exploit the schools to indoctrinate children into accepting their proper role in society. His goal was shared by the Nationalist Clubs. The Lynn, Massachusetts, club persuaded the state legislature to require attendance at school until 15 years of age and to increase the school year from 20 to 35 weeks. John Taylor Gatto, an outspoken critic of government education, notes that Harris was one of the main proponents of using government schooling to indoctrinate and not educate. Gatto, in a speech on education, “Confederacy of Dunces: The Tyranny of Compulsory Education,” quotes Harris: “Ninety-nine [students] out of a hundred are automata, careful to walk in prescribed paths, careful to follow the prescribed custom.” Gatto continues: “This is not an accident, Harris explains, but the ‘result of substantial education, which, scientifically defined, is the subsumption of the individual.’”

It is obvious why Harris was happy to join Bellamy’s crusade. In 1892 Harris got the NEA to support a National Public School Celebration, which would promote loyalty to both the state and its schools. It was decided that they would promote an agenda written by The Youth’s Companion. The NEA asked Bellamy to be the chairman of the celebration. At the main event he gave a speech that showed the importance of public education in the task of political indoctrination. He told the audience, “the training of citizens in the common knowledge and the common duties of citizenship belongs irrevocably to the State.” Bellamy, like his cousin, wanted to use government schools to help promote a socialist agenda. He felt that one way of encouraging this agenda would be the teaching of state loyalty. To this end he wrote a pledge, which students across the country were asked to take. With a few minor changes this pledge is what is now called the Pledge of Allegiance. (According to Black’s Law Dictionary, “allegiance” is an “Obligation of fidelity and obedience to government in consideration for protection that government gives.”)

Bellamy attempted to accomplish several goals with his Pledge of Allegiance. He saw it as a means of inculcating support for a centralized national government over the federalist system of the Founding Fathers. He was particularly troubled by the idea that the individual states formed the federal government, fearing that secession from the union might be seen as legitimate after all. He kept in mind the “Oath of Allegiance,” which was forced on the South after the Civil War. Baer quotes Bellamy as saying: “The true reason for allegiance to the Flag is the ‘republic for which it stands.’ . . . And what does that vast thing, the Republic, mean? It is the concise political word for the Nation—the One Nation which the Civil War was fought to prove. To make that One Nation idea clear, we must specify that it is indivisible, as Webster and Lincoln used to repeat in their great speeches.”

Ford’s Youth’s Companion first published Bellamy’s Pledge on September 8, 1892, in its original format: “I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” Bellamy’s widow said he lamented that he couldn’t use the motto of the French Revolution, “liberty, fraternity, and equality,” instead. He was tempted to use the phrase, but thought that it was “too fanciful” and that its use was “thousands of years off in realization.”

The Youth’s Companion actively promoted the Pledge and loyalty to the government. At the time it was uncommon for a school to fly a flag outside its premises; that practice was almost exclusively associated with military bases. But during its campaign The Youth’s Companion sold thousands of flags for use at public schools.

Baer says Francis Bellamy acknowledged that his Pledge put forth the ideas of cousin Edward. Francis originally toyed with the idea of making the Pledge more openly socialistic, but decided that if he did so it would never be accepted.

The reason that elected officials swear an oath to the Constitution is clear. And the reason that Francis Bellamy wrote his pledge is also clear. Bellamy’s goal was not to inculcate the values of Jefferson and Adams. Instead, his desire was to promote the socialist utopianism of his cousin Edward.

The U.S. Constitution is anathema to socialists of all types. It is a roadblock to be circumvented. That Edward Bellamy understood this can be seen in his comparison of the written U.S. Constitution and the unwritten English one: “England’s Constitution readily admits of constant though gradual modification. Our American Constitution does not readily admit of such change. England can thus move into Socialism almost imperceptibly. Our Constitution being largely individualistic must be changed to admit of Socialism, and each change necessitates a political crisis” (quoted in Rose L. Martin, Fabian Freeway, p. 136).

The British Fabian socialist Ramsay MacDonald came to the same conclusion after a visit to the United States. In a speech printed in the February 1898 Fabian News he said: “The great bar to progress [in the United States] is the written constitutions, Federal and State.”

When an oath for schoolchildren was being contemplated the socialists knew exactly what they were doing.

Anyone who believes that we can have unity with the left is neither a conservative nor a Christian.
The left wants your guns, but they can have armed guards
The left wants to kill your babies at all cost
The left wants to cram homosexuality down your throat
The left can’t figure out who a boy or a girl is
The left wants your submission
The left wants to shut you up
The left wants to keep you muzzled
The left wants to make you godless
The left wants to take all of your property
And on and on it goes…………
How can light have fellowship with darkness? These are the enemies of God.

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