By Ramon Arias
Before the American Revolution the Colonies and Europe were experiencing a great spiritual movement from 1730 to 1770. In America the preaching of George Whitfield, Jonathan Edwards, and Gilbert Tennent were shaking the conscience of the inhabitants to the degree that in 1739 Benjamin Franklin wrote in his autobiography when he had told his friend, George Whitfield, of the effects of preaching:
“It was wonderful to see the change soon made in the manners of our inhabitants. From being thoughtless or indifferent about religion, it seemed as if all the world were growing religious, so that one could not walk through the town in an evening without hearing Psalms sung in different families of every street.”
The Pulpits of the Colonies
The pulpits of the colonies transmitted to their parishioners’ passionate messages promoting the independence of America from Great Britain. These messages taught Christian the responsibility of fighting for liberty and justice. In May 17, 1976, the Continental Congress declared a National Day of Fasting, Humiliation and Prayer at the University of Princeton. Reverend John Witherspoon delivered a sermon entitled «The Dominion of Providence over the Passions Men,» in which he stated:
“While we give praise to God, the Supreme Disposer of all events, for His interposition on our behalf, let us guard against the dangerous error of trusting in, or boasting of, an arm of flesh…
If your cause is just, if your principles are pure, and if your conduct is prudent you need not fear the multitude of opposing hosts.
What follows from this? That he is the best friend to American liberty, who is most sincere and active in promoting true and undefiled religion and who sets himself with the greatest firmness to bear down profanity and immorality of every kind.
Whoever is an avowed enemy of God, I scruple not to call him an enemy of his country.
It is in the man of piety and inward principle that we may expect to find the uncorrupted patriot, the useful citizen, and the invincible soldier. God grant that in America true religion and civil liberty may be inseparable and that the unjust attempts to destroy the one may in the issue tend to the support and establishment of both.”
The Churches of the Colonies and their Participation in Culture
While the Patriots of the Revolution listened to their pastors, their hearts and minds were moved to action, the English soldiers, and the Red Coats, nick named the pastors «The Black Regiment» because of the black robes they used for preaching. The English soldiers would soon cease to laugh and mock the «Black Regiment» as they saw the courageous example of the pastors leading in the fight for liberty. Of course this part of history of the Revolution is not being taught in public schools but our children are being taught about abortion, sex, and how to avoid pregnancy. And of course the universities are teaching Socialism, Marxism/Leninism, Cosmic Humanism – New Age and postmodernism all being nourished by the religious Theory of Evolution. Also, unfortunately and shamefully, the majority of Christians, including Christian leaders, are unaware of the part of history that tells of the «Black Regiment.» A great abyss divides the pulpits prior to the Revolution and the majority of the pulpits and Christian organizations of today, that abyss should cease to exist that we might redirect the culture of our nation back to godly principles.
To be continued…