Our 21st Century American society places a high value on tolerance and rejects the idea of universal right and wrong. Our legislative system is having a harder time defining the laws, and our court systems are having an even harder time interpreting them because they choose not to use the principles the laws are founded on, which are Biblical truth and Christian values. Any objective study of the history of America will reveal that “Christianity” has been our established religion in almost every sense of the word and certainly is reflected in our Constitution and laws. The establishment of Protestant Christianity was not only reflected in law but shaped our culture as well. But the idea that Christianity played a dominant role in the earliest days of this country and in the formation of its laws is largely ignored by media, academia, and present-day politicians. The fact is America today is the most religiously diverse nation in the world, and the influence of Biblical Christianity in this country has been diminished. Millennials, who are members of the first generation who raised children in an America that was fundamentally non-Christian, have had to determine if American greatness is made better if it remains a Christian nation, or would it be greater if it went down the path of accepting all beliefs as true. As a result, today many Americans believe that the most important issue facing our country is how people of all faiths and beliefs can get along with one another in order to make a better America. The problem, according to God’s Word, accepting all religions as truth will lead a nation to its destruction. The concept of “allegiance” to the United States of America under God, as pledged every day in our school, is quickly becoming a victim of the movement which rejects the concept of absolute truth and a Creator God’s hand in the greatness of this country.
The crucial biblical concept of “the redemption of man” is based on the idea of allegiance. Throughout the Bible, God calls for people to surrender to Him and give their allegiance to God. In His foreknowledge He chooses people to become citizens of His Kingdom. The deal is sealed when by faith we promise our submission to God through faith in His Son Jesus Christ. In return, God promises “salvation” to His loyal subjects. Those who don’t pledge their allegiance cannot become citizens of His kingdom. Allegiance to the King is essential.
The Bible teaches that God “justifies” those who are “saved.” But “saved” from what? In a sense, becoming a naturalized American citizen means being “saved” from another government. In the oath to become a citizen every person renounces their allegiance to their former country. Ideally, a person who becomes an American citizen sees the desirability of the American system over his or her former country. Becoming a citizen in the Kingdom of heaven follows the same process. To be saved, and a citizen of heaven, we must know something about what we want to be saved from, (our sin) as well as something about what God promises to provide for us (eternal life). We must renounce our former allegiances (sin, self) and embrace God’s promise of eternal life through His Son Jesus. The Bible says this happens when a person sees the disadvantages of an old way of life, renounces that old way of life and declares his allegiance to a new way of life. Salvation means moving from a kingdom of darkness to the Kingdom of Light. The point is that you can be a citizen of the Kingdom of God and simultaneously a citizen of the United States. Not to understand this would to be guilty of misusing the word “citizenship.” In heaven or in the Kingdom of God citizenship is a theological concept. To be a citizen of the United States is a political concept. It is a legal condition with no theological significance. Being a citizen of the United States does not make a person a Christian. One has nothing to do with the other.
Is it conceivable that in America a Christian might have to make a decision between his allegiance to God and his allegiance to his country? The wind of change is blowing all around us. The answer to the question is that right now we don’t have to make that choice. We have freedom to share our faith, to choose to go to the church of our choice, and the right to attend a Christian school. What will the legacy of your generation be? Will it be known as the generation of believers who caved into political correctness? Or are you going to carry on the tradition of true believers who pledged their allegiance to God even if it meant loss of their liberty and their rights, even in some cases their life.
Jesus Christ deserves our allegiance. Who have you given your allegiance to? I believe as American citizens we should give our political allegiance to this nation that was founded on the truths of God’s Word. I love this country and I hope you are proud to be a part of a nation which was literally founded to advance the Christian faith. But history tells us that nations fail and their governments change. But the most important allegiance you will ever have to choose is not about being an American. It is your decision to give your allegiance to the Creator of the universe and place your faith in His Son Jesus Christ who loves you and paid the price on the cross for your citizenship in heaven. If you have never made the decision to trust in Him for your eternal citizenship, why not today?
Robert Andrews, Ph.D.