Making America Good Again: The Source of Freedom and Goodness
The moral landscape that shaped America is deeply rooted in
Christianity. Interestingly enough, this
does not mean that to be a good person or enjoy the benefits of freedom you
must believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.I am a follower of the resurrected Jesus
Christ, but won't ever insist that you accept my beliefs.Jesus never forced anyone to believe in
Him.He invited people to follow
So whether you do – or don’t - believe God is the Creator
of all that is, including freedom and goodness, please accept this invitation
to read on.
Americans talk a lot about “rights" and
trusted that these rights came from our Creator - things like equality, life,
liberty, and being able to freely pursue your dreams. The Constitution's Bill
of Rights ensures that we are free to believe what we want, say what we please,
and use our time and money as we see fit.These ideals are yet to be fully realized for everyone, but we come
closer with each generation.
But what does it truly mean to be a person who is
free?It is more than not being a slave,
although that is a part of it. Human beings have free will.People are created to think and act as free agents, without any
Freedom works reasonably well if you live alone or with
people who think like you do, but that is not the real world.Why?Look at human nature.People are self-centered.We yearn to be free, but freedom is lost as
soon as one person or group hinders the freedom of another. The reality is, if
I fully exercise my freedom it will at some point hurt you, oppress you or
enslave you - and vice versa.
For all of us to be free, we must agree to place limits on
our freedom; “My freedom to swing my fist ends where your nose
This is where goodness comes in.
I like to think about it this way - if freedom is living
without restraint, then liberty is freedom infused with goodness.
America is the land of liberty.When we make good choices with our freedom,
we will live at peace with ourselves and with those around us.Not only that, we will need fewer laws and
In short, the only way to live free is to be good.
But what does it mean to be good?For most of American history people would
have thought the answer was obvious, but that is no longer the case.
Over the past 50 years or so, our concept of goodness has
been changed.Many have worked
diligently to remove America's Judeo-Christian foundation from our education
system, history and culture.Then
opinion-shapers moved us to accept the idea of moral relativity that assumes
each of us can determine what good, right and true for ourselves, but not
necessarily for anyone else.Now we are
awakening to a culture where opinion-shapers are defining morality for us with
only the faintest of nods, if any at all, to our Christian heritage.
Things are not working out so well, are they?
In these reflections, I will be challenging you to explore
what it means to be good, personally and in relationships within families,
communities and between nations. They are based upon the teachings of Jesus,
revealed in the Hebrew Scriptures and the New Testament, and confirmed by
observing human nature.I hope that you
will come to see God and goodness, faith and freedom in a whole new light.
And I also hope that together we can discover some common
ground to make America good in our generation and beyond.Our liberty depends on it.