“Illegal Fireworks” on Independence Day

No fireworks on Independence Day, said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. To hell with that, said the people.” – Bruce Haring, “Los Angeles County Residents Ignore “No Fireworks” Order, Celebrate With Massive Display,” Deadline, July 5, 2020.

Yesterday was Independence Day. Independence Day marks the glorious moment that our forefathers declared their total Independence from British tyranny and embarked on the experiment of republican self-rule. It was the formal beginning of the Liberty movement that had been sweeping through the colonies and which today is gaining renewed strength among American patriots. It was, in short, the authoritative expression of our People’s desire to be free.

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When the Sons of Liberty finally secured their Freedom and established the United States of America, Independence Day was celebrated from one end of the Republic to the other. As the Union expanded, so, too, did the celebrations. And why should they not have? Independence Day was not only the most significant day in U.S. history, but one of the most defining moments in world history.

John Adams fondly envisioned a day when every American could commemorate their Independence:

The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.

You will think me transported with Enthusiasm but I am not. – I am well aware of the Toil and Blood and Treasure, that it will cost Us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. – Yet through all the Gloom I can see the Rays of ravishing Light and Glory. I can see that the End is more than worth all the Means. And that Posterity will tryumph in that Days Transaction, even altho We should rue it, which I trust in God We shall not” (John Adams to Abigail Adams, July 3, 1776).

By and large, Americans have faithfully fulfilled Mr. Adams’ hopes. Though the custom has fallen to the wayside, our People traditionally gave rousing sermons and speeches praising God for delivering us from tyranny and thanking Him for setting us up as a free People. To this day, we host large and colorful parades, brilliant firework shows, and community barbecues. You can still find historical reenactments and readings of the Declaration in locations. Bells are sometimes still sounded from church towers. Patriotic music blares over the airwaves. And in rural areas, we still shoot off guns on this special day.

However, a group of anti-American traitors has wormed their way into positions of power in our federal government and in our states. They control governorships, city councils, seats in Congress, judgeships, and so forth. This is particularly true in states like California, Oregon, Washington, New York, and Illinois where hardcore socialists now rule. This cabal of traitors has used their influence to gradually extinguish the American spirit, stifle our patriotism, and transform our country into a soulless Marxian state.

The hyped Coronavirus “pandemic” has provided the whole nation with proof of how eager this group of gangsters is to throw out the Constitution, restrict our rights, and dominate our lives. They’ve banned church services, arrested mothers playing with their children in public park, dumped tons of sand in skate parks to prevent kids from enjoying the outdoors, mandated the public wear masks that even the communist-controlled World Health Organization (WHO) admits do not work to stop viruses, forced us to stand six-feet-apart from one another like prison inmates, closed down our businesses, arrested people for trying to make a living, freed violent criminals from prisons to allegedly protect them (what about protecting us from them?), restricted travel, closed down schools, prevented people from attending doctors because they were trying to make room for “Coronavirus” patients who never arrived, and so on and so forth.

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So blatant have been the attacks on our Freedom – in particular our Freedom of religious expression – that a prominent religious leader, Elder David A. Bednar, said in frustration:

We cannot deny, and we should not forget, the speed and intensity with which government power was used to shut down fundamental aspects of religious exercise. These decisions and regulations were unprecedented. For nearly two months, Americans, and many others throughout the free world, learned firsthand what it means for government to directly prohibit the free exercise of religion. . . .

. . . Government power can never be unlimited. In our political system, the government “derives its just powers from the consent of the governed,” to quote the Declaration of Independence. But the just powers of government cannot be unlimited because they exist most fundamentally to secure the God-given rights of life and liberty so that each of us can exercise our moral agency, the ability to act for ourselves and not to be acted upon, and to be accountable before God for our choices and actions. Constitutions, representative government, checks and balances, and the rule of law help constrain the tendency of government to exercise unlimited power. . . .

. . . despite the obvious need for a proper response to COVID-19, we must not become accustomed to sweeping assertions of governmental power. Invoking emergency powers, government executives summarily impose numerous orders and directives that in many ways are analogous to martial law. These executive orders are unlike laws enacted through the ordinary give and take of the democratic process. No doubt an emergency on the scale of COVID-19 justifies strong measures to protect the public, but we cannot lose sight of the fact that many of these measures are extraordinary assertions of governmental power that can dramatically constrain our basic freedoms. The power of government must have limits. . . .

. . . we can no more disregard the valid claims of religious freedom in a time of crisis than we can disregard the valid claims of freedom of speech, freedom of the press, or freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures. Nor should we prioritize secular interests above religious ones. A health crisis should not become an excuse for a religious freedom crisis.”

Despite common sense of this sort, many states have used the “crisis” as a pretext for ushering in blatant tyranny that strangles our Liberty and extinguishes a multitude of our most precious rights. The abuses have been “sweeping.” They have been unapologetic. And they have been deliberate. Not only have they taken aim at everyday rights like the right to peaceably assemble, but they have been brought to bear on our most sacred national holiday – Independence Day.

If the concocted Coronavirus charade hasn’t been enough to convince you that those in positions of public trust don’t give a tinker’s dam about your Liberty, their blatant display of contempt for Independence Day should have done the trick. California is a case in point. The Democratic mayor of Los Angeles, Eric Garcetti, outright banned fireworks. The L.A. Department of Public Health published a news release ordering beaches closed from the 3rd through the 6th, “prohibiting fireworks displays,” banning “large crowds and gatherings,” and going so far as to tell people they could not spend time with anyone except those they lived with – as if they had such authority!

To quote these mini-tyrants in Los Angeles: “Physical distancing isn’t optional, wearing a face covering isn’t optional, spending time only with those you live with isn’t optional – these are requirements.” Los Angeles has essentially become a dictatorship with the Democratic Party calling the shots – your Liberty be damned.

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Despotic California Governor Gavin Newsom came out and supported the de facto canceling of Independence Day and declared similar measures across the whole state. Newsom threatened to cut off funds to local governments who did not go along with the plot to cancel Independence Day in California. He bullied local governments in these words:

A local government that refuses to abide by, ensure compliance with, or take enforcement action against noncompliance with these statewide public health directives, or that takes action that is otherwise incongruent with these directives, could jeopardize their eligibility for state funding.”

California has been enacting Marxist measures for a lot of years, but now, using the 99.8% survivable Coronavirus as an excuse, they have gone full-blown Bolshevik. Various state agencies have created ominously-named “strike teams” to go after those violating “public safety” measures (i.e. exercising their God-given, constitutionally-protected Liberty). Office of Emergency Services spokesman Brian Ferguson warned how the strike teams would be used this Independence Day weekend:

We will be going directly to those who thumb their nose at public health and safety. State government will be out in force this weekend to make sure all California businesses and service providers are doing their part to slow the spread of COVID-19.”

In other words, the Almighty Californian State will use its police power to force compliance with Liberty-violating measures allegedly enacted to “keep you safe.” What makes this all the more insulting is the fact that this comes on Independence Day – a time for the explicit celebration of Freedom from tyrannical government! Surely no right thinking individual can miss the irony of prohibiting Americans from celebrating Freedom on their cherished Independence Day!

In spite of government threats and bullying, thousands of people in Los Angeles disobeyed the mayor’s and governor’s dictates yesterday. A broadcast on KCAL 9 aired helicopter footage of the city. In every direction, fireworks illuminated the night sky. Red, white, yellow – the dazzling colors exploded in nearly every neighborhood. One Californian commenter on Facebook said that the city felt like “Baghdad.” On the same thread, another person replied: “It’s friggin Iraq in the city!! I’ve never heard it like this!”

An involuntary smile crossed my face as I watched Americans doing what Americans do best – defy tyrants and exercise their rights. I watched multiple clips of the fireworks in L.A. Everywhere you looked you could see phenomenal pyrotechnics, reminding me of the “rocket’s red glare” in Francis Scott Key’s immortal anthem.

The same KCAL 9 newscast mentioned earlier noted that police had received over a thousand complaints from people snitching on their neighbors for launching “illegal fireworks” (i.e. any fireworks). The LAPD finally asked people to stop calling 911 about fireworks. Apparently, a lot of people get offended by Independence Day and Freedom in Los Angeles. However, a larger number apparently still retain some sense of love for their country.

Though these same people were the ones who elected those public servants who are now trying to dominate and tyrannize them, this very public display of defiance demonstrates that many are fed up with the oppression and want their Freedom back. At the very least, they don’t want to be treated like children who can’t take care of themselves without a government commissar hovering over them. To be sure, some of the revelers just wanted to party. Who can blame them? But I believe many were using the Independence Day season as a chance to show their disapproval of the government’s heavy hand in their lives.

One article explained that Californians have been defying their government’s fireworks bans for weeks:

[E]xplosions and roman candles have been going off for weeks, culminating in a massive display on Saturday night.

Police claimed more than 1,000 fireworks complaints came in to various branches, and they tried to respond. But the task was akin to shoveling the ocean with a spoon . . . the city was ablaze with lights and sounds for many hours on Saturday night.”

I repeat: The fact that governments tried to prohibit us celebrating and exercising our Freedom on Independence Day shows that they hold our rights in utter contempt and seek, regardless of their alleged concern about “public safety,” to control our lives.

All would-be-dictators who seek to dominate the United States need to know that we won’t tolerate it. When our back is pushed up against the wall, we won’t surrender – we’ll fight. Freemen don’t live on their knees. We don’t kneel before thrones. We don’t bow to emperors. We don’t kiss the rings of kings. And we certainly don’t kow-tow to our elected representatives.

American citizens are the masters of their government, not the other way around. We are not governed “masses” or servile subjects. We are American freemen! The blood of patriots runs in our veins. Our ancestors called themselves Sons of Liberty, defied tyrants, and forged their Freedom from the chains created to enslave them.

America has suffered many dark days because we’ve been too kind and forgiving. We’ve tolerated abuses that our forefathers never would have tolerated. We’ve permitted those very things that the Declaration of Independence denounces in plain language, such as allowing government bureaucrats to make us “dependent on [their] Will alone,” establishing “Arbitrary government,” creating “a multitude of New Offices” which send their “swarms of Officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance,” and “destroy[ing] the lives of our people.”

Yes, we have been far too lenient! We’ve given our public servants the benefit of the doubt that they just want to help us. It should be painfully obvious now to everyone that our representatives look down on us, view us as children to be micromanaged, and spit upon our rights. Their oaths to the Constitution mean nothing to them; they certainly don’t follow them. They’re in it for power, wealth, and fame regardless of how much We the People suffer or how many rights we lose.

I applaud Los Angeles’ defiant fireworks display. It was a very visible symbol of resistance to tyrannical government overreach and a sign that there are few a still embers of Freedom burning in California. However, this defiance must translate into daily acts of resistance or it ultimately means very little. To shoot off fireworks on Independence Day in defiance of government mandates, but to turn around and wear silly masks or comply with “social distancing” dictates, is inconsistent with logic. It also shows that people did not truly comprehend the special meaning of the event they were celebrating.

Independence Day should have been a time for us as a People to regroup, recommit ourselves to the cause of Liberty, and humble ourselves before our Creator. This day, the Lord’s Day, we have the opportunity to again bow ourselves before God, thank Him for His blessings upon our favored land, and petition Him for deliverance from the shackles that our “representatives” are attempting to place on our wrists.

To a great extend, we’ve already fallen from grace and lost must of our Freedom. But the sacred fire of Liberty is not out yet. Millions of Americans honor our forefathers, love our unique American institutions, and will not go down without a fight. Even in California, of all places, thousands are willing to risk police visits and fines by shooting off fireworks to celebrate our nation’s Independence. This should give us hope that though the struggle will be fierce, we can succeed and win back our rights. If we go forward in the power of Jesus Christ, we can restore our Republic.

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I express my unshakable belief that Americans will restore their Republic eventually. Our flag will wave proudly on the flag pole. Independence Day will be celebrated precisely as John Adams envisioned – with devotions to God and shows and parades and guns and bells from one end of this blessed continent to the other. However, it will likely require the “Toil and Blood and Treasure” that John Adams said was required to win our Independence in the first place.

God bless this nation! God bless the good-hearted people who inhabit America by the tens of millions! And God help us maintain our Constitution and the precious rights it safeguards, even if it means defying tyrants to do it!

Zack Strong,

July 5, 2020

The Ongoing American Revolution

The American Revolution was not an event that began and ended at two fixed points in time. We mark the beginning of the War for Independence on July 4, 1776, and traditionally say the Revolution ended in 1783 with the Treaty of Paris, but the reality is that Independence Day merely marked a boiling point in a sweeping Liberty movement that began much earlier and which has not yet reached its culmination. The American Revolution is ongoing! The War for Independence is being waged today as fiercely as when our patriot forefathers squared off against the British invaders.

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In 1787, Dr. Benjamin Rush made an illuminating remark. He said:

There is nothing more common, than to confound the terms of American Revolution with those of the late American war. The American war is over: but this is far from being the case with the American revolution. On the contrary, nothing but the first act of the great drama is closed. It remains yet to establish and perfect our new forms of government; and to prepare the principles, morals, and manners of our citizens, for these forms of government, after they are established and brought to perfection”(Benjamin Rush, Address to the People of the United States, 1787, in Hezekiah Niles, ed., Principles and Acts of the Revolution, 234).

According to Dr. Rush, the genuine American Revolution consisted of the transformation and improvement of the “principles, morals, and manners” of the American People. What’s more, he saw this as a gradual process that, years after the War for Independence ended, had not yet finished. It was one thing to create a new nation with a novel system of government, but quite another thing to create a citizenry prepared for life under that government. Molding such a people – one worthy of republican institutions of self-government – was the true revolutionary task.

Another Founding Father, John Adams, concurred that the real American Revolution was not the short War for Independence, but a vastly more significant undertaking. He observed:

But what do We mean by the American Revolution? Do We mean the American War? The Revolution was effected before the War commenced. The Revolution was in the Minds and Hearts of the People. A Change in their Religious Sentiments of their Duties and Obligations. . . .

This radical Change in the Principles, Opinions Sentiments and Affection of the People, was the real American Revolution” (John Adams to Hezekiah Niles, February 13, 1818).

Both Dr. Rush and Mr. Adams agreed that the betterment of American principles and morals – both religious and political – was the real American Revolution. This Revolution happened in the hearts and minds of our countrymen long before the shot heard ‘round the world and continued long after the cannon ceased firing. One could look back to the Reformation or Renaissance to find the origin of the Liberty movement that eventually found its true expression in America. But for our purposes, we can trace the origin of the flame of Freedom to the First Great Awakening that took place roughly between the 1730s and 1760s.

It was during the First Great Awakening, when Americans turned their hearts back to the great God of the universe, that the revolution of principles spoken of by John Adams occurred. Church pulpits were ablaze with fiery sermons on Freedom. Preachers led the way in social reform and prepared Americans to defend their rights and stand like real men against despots. Schools were no less valuable. Teachers instructed children not only in constitutional principles and the science of good government, but in the “perfect law of liberty” given by Jesus Christ (James 1:25). In short, American Christians kneeled before the Lord in genuine humility, and then rose with staunch determination to follow Him and safeguard their God-given rights.

It was a band of Christian militiamen, inspired by their Reverend Jonas Clark, who defiantly stood with Captain John Parker on Lexington green in 1775 as an army of 700 Redcoats came to confiscate their firearms. It was a band of 56 patriots who signed and published the Declaration of Independence, announcing their determination to be free and their proclaiming their firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence.” And it was the Christian Father of our Country, George Washington, who told the nation during his First Inaugural Address:

No People can be bound to acknowledge and adore the invisible hand, which conducts the Affairs of men more than the People of the United States. Every step, by which they have advanced to the character of an independent nation, seems to have been distinguished by some token of providential agency.”

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It was this acknowledgment of God and His laws, including the “perfect law of liberty” noted earlier, that gave our forefathers the strength and tenacity to stand against monarchical tyranny. They were an educated and bright People. They understood self-government and cherished their Freedom to worship their God according to the dictates of their conscience, their Freedom to speak, their Freedom to assemble, their Freedom to bear and use arms to protect themselves and their rights, and so forth. In short, it was their mental and spiritual devotion to their Faith, Families, and Freedom, and their fidelity to these loyalties, that called down Heaven’s blessings on their behalf.

Our noble forefathers did not stop progressing when they went back to the business of daily life after the Revolution. Rather, they went on to produce the inspired Constitution and Bill of Rights, expand the borders of the Republic, and, thus, the borders of Liberty, alter their local laws and customs, prepare to end the vice of slavery, and generally became an industrious, enlightened, and patriotic People.

According to one contemporary figure of significant renown, American greatness reached its zenith during the Age of Jackson. He observed:

In continuation of such noble sentiments, Gen. [Andrew] Jackson, upon his ascension to the great chair of the chief magistracy: said, “As long as our government is administered for the good of the people, and is regulated by their will; as long as it secures to us the rights of person and property, liberty of conscience, and of the press, it will be worth defending; and so long as it is worth defending, a patriotic militia will cover it with an impenetrable aegis.”

General Jackson’s administration may be denominated the acme of American glory, liberty and prosperity, for the national debt, which in 1815, on account of the late war, was $125,000,000, and lessened gradually, was paid up in his golden day; and preparations were made to distribute the surplus revenue among the several states: and that august patriot, to use his own words in his farewell address, retired leaving “a great people prosperous and happy, in the full enjoyment of liberty and peace, honored and respected by every nation of the world”” (Joseph Smith, General Smith’s Views of the Powers and Policy of Government of the United States, February, 1844).

Andrew Jackson was one of the greatest American heroes. Today, he is hated and castigated by an ignorant generation that has lost touch with America’s original values and has been deceived by culture-destroying Marxists. But the truth is that General Jackson put America first, fought for his country his whole life as a soldier and statesman, fastidiously upheld the Constitution as president, waged veritable war against the conspiratorial banking cartel that wanted to enslave the Union, and was an honorable man of his word.

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Additionally, President Jackson was the only president to ever pay off the national debt in full. The American People prospered under his hand and it was during his administration that Alexis de Tocqueville visited the United States and remarked:

The progress of society in America is precipitate, and almost revolutionary. . . .

. . . The Americans of the United States must inevitably become one of the greatest nations in the world; their offset will cover almost the whole of North America; the continent which they inhabit is their dominion, and it cannot escape them . . . Riches, power, and renown, cannot fail to be theirs at some future time” (Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, Vol. 1, 434-435).

The American People did not stop their rapid progress and march toward destiny after the War for Independence. That was but a prelude to greater things. For them, as for Benjamin Rush, the American Revolution was ongoing; a process, not an event.

However, after the Age of Jackson, the Republic began to decline in important ways. Over time, we became so prosperous, powerful, and prominent in the world that we began to shed our humility, forget our past, and neglect our participation in self-government. We became reluctant to enforce the ideals of the Declaration of Independence and apply the Constitution as broadly as it was intended to be applied. The Civil War later rocked the nation, caused deep wounds, and resulted in a massively enlarged government that began intruding into our lives as never before.

In spite of the trials of the Nineteenth Century, on the whole, our People put their trust in God and looked to the Constitution and the men who made it for guidance. As the decades slipped by, the pull of prosperity and allure of modern conveniences took us away from the pursuit of Liberty and thrust us into the pursuit of materialism. We stopped studying the art of law. We ignored our governmental duties, allowing an organized group of traitors to come to power over us. We lived our lives in relative peace and disinterest as they hijacked our economy through the Federal Reserve. They put their men – FDR, Wilson, Carter, Bush, Obama, and others – into the presidency. They changed our laws and amended the Constitution in frightful ways. They thrust a dagger in Lady Liberty’s back and began twisting it menacingly.

Closer to home, the agents of cultural Marxism went to work to warp our view of marriage and families. They promoted hedonism and placed sex on a pedestal. They pushed filth and degeneracy, greed and selfishness, perversion and humanism. We began to lose our faith in the Creator – the source from whence our forefathers said came our unalienable rights of life, Liberty, and property. And so it has gone for over a century until now we see the fruit of the gruesome harvest – chaos, rioting, violence, hatred, division, unchecked governmental power, neglect of the Constitution, scientific and medical tyranny, anti-Christian bullying, high-tech censorship, societal distrust, and rampant unbelief in God.

Despite this growing darkness, many of the good people of this nation are waking up. It is in darkness, after all, that the light shines brightest. People from coast to coast have realized that the conspiracy – call it the “swamp,” “deep state,” the “Establishment,” or whatever name you will – is very real and threatens to overturn our Faith, Families, and Freedom. The American giant is beginning to stir and push back against the bands that traitors have tied around her. Lady Liberty is waking up from her deep sleep.

A general feeling is beginning to filter out and permeate the nation wherever good people still reside. It’s palpable and vibrant. The feeling is that revolution is upon us – the time for cleansing and refreshing is nearly here. Perhaps unconsciously, millions of Americans feel what Thomas Jefferson felt and articulated. He said:

[W]hat country can preserve it’s liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is it’s natural manure” (Thomas Jefferson to William Stephens Smith, November 13, 1787).

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But how will we rally ourselves and refresh the tree of Liberty? Everywhere I go, on every social media page I visit, in church congregations, and in private conversations, I see people asking roughly the same questions: “Where is the next George Washington? Where is our generation’s Thomas Jefferson? When will the next Boston Tea Party happen? When will someone step forward to lead another revolution to reclaim our Freedom?”

As these questions demonstrate, the sincere desire for change – for a return to our roots – is there. It may be in its infancy, but it is growing and rapidly gaining strength. It needs focus, however. It needs leaders. It needs experienced patriots to form us into a fighting force for Freedom.

In an attributed letter of Samuel Adams to James Warren on October 24, 1780, we find these relevant words: “If ever the Time should come, when vain & aspiring Men shall possess the highest Seats in Government, our Country will stand in Need of its experienced Patriots to prevent its Ruin.”

Where are we to find such men and women? Where are the John Adamses and George Washingtons? Where are the Sons of Liberty and militiamen of Concord Bridge? Who will step forward to lead the next chapter in the ongoing American Revolution?

The answer is two-fold. First, though you and I may not be the next George Washington, we may be like those men who marched in his army, crossed the frigid Delaware with him on Christmas morning, and together endured winter in Valley Forge. We may not command the patriot force, but we may be part of it. It may be our eternal honor to march alongside other patriots, either figuratively or literally, to victories as glorious as Yorktown.

No, we may never wear the general’s cap, but we can wear the revolutionary uniform. What good is even the greatest general without his fighting men? What good are fighting men without virtuous women supporting them? And in the war of ideas and principles, women – as mothers and as homemakers – have an absolutely essential role to play. We cannot effect a new revolution without their selfless service in the home, for as goes the home goes the nation.

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To elaborate, I ask, what good is a Declaration of Independence without men to win, and then maintain, Independence? There could have been no Age of Jackson with its prosperity and expansion without those willing to establish and sustain the great institutions of our Republic. Thankfully, earlier patriots have already established beautiful constitutional institutions for us. We don’t need to think outside the box – we need to merely dust out the box of the filth that has cluttered it. And we can kick-start the process by educating ourselves in correct principles.

To repeat, this war is primarily waged on the battlefields of the mind and heart. It is waged on Facebook and Twitter, in public school classrooms and around the dinner table, in private conversations with friends and worship services with your neighbors. It is waged on election day as well as every other day. Our just and holy cause is furthered by acts of service in our communities, by giving proper instruction to our children, by coherent and sincere social media posts, by participation in peaceful assemblies, and by a million other little acts, words, and moments that come in daily life.

Together, these seemingly small deeds constitute a revolution in principles, morals, and manners. Do not think you need George Washington to ride before you in order to participate in the ongoing American Revolution. It is your distinct privilege to fight these battles every day in your home, at church, at work, online, and in the most basic interactions with your countrymen. There will be no great political revolution until we first reform our minds and hearts as our ancestors did prior to challenging the British at Lexington and Concord.

Second, though we all must be engaged in the daily acts of revolution just described, there must be individuals who step forward to rally, unify, and lead those who love Liberty. These figures must have dignity and credibility. They must be men of honor, goodness, virtue, truth, and stability. They must be men of high ideals and lofty standards. They must be noble in heart, valiant in spirit, but humble enough to kneel before their God and petition His blessings upon our cause.

Patriot leaders must be found and thrust to the forefront. As it often goes, the most qualified for leadership are those who want nothing more than to live in peace. They don’t seek the limelight, but merely to do their part, quietly, to support their Faith, Family, and Freedom.

It is instructive to know that George Washington did not want to lead the Continental Army. Yet, he threw himself into the task when the People’s representatives called on him to do so. After the War for Independence, he retired to the peace and quite of his farm. Yet, when his countrymen selected him to be the first president, he came out of retirement and fulfilled that duty honorably. The same is true of Thomas Jefferson, who retired to Monticello before being drafted by his country to serve in the government. And that is the key word – serve. We don’t need self-important politicians, but public servants who labor on our behalf to secure for us the blessings of Liberty.

Today, we must find those people in our communities who are prepared for a call to service. They may not want to serve, they may not want to hold a position of public trust, they may not want to wade into the treacherous swamp of modern politics, but they will respond to the call the serve because their hearts burn with the fire of Freedom. It is our duty as citizens to find the next Thomas Jefferson and draft him into leadership. It is our duty as freemen to find the next George Washington and urge him to lead us against against the traitors who have entrenched themselves in our nation. In short, we may say that the next George Washington will not appear unless We the People call him into service.

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Dear reader, America is the greatest nation on earth, bar none. There has never been a greater Republic. There has never been a People who did more good for the cause of Freedom than the People of the United States. Our country is sick with an alien virus – the Red Plague of communism with its horrid atheism, immorality, and totalitarianism. We must recognize that this plague is hostile to everything our People stands for and that it will result in our demise as a free nation if we do not recognize it, quarantine it, and exterminate it.

Let’s first extinguish the virus in our hearts and minds by turning back to the God who granted us life and Liberty, to the Constitution which holds our Union together, and to the Founding Fathers who marked the path to Freedom for all peoples in all generations. Let’s rekindle the unique American spirit. On the eve of battle in 1776, George Washington encouraged his men to “remember . . . that you are Freemen, fighting for the blessings of liberty” (George Washington General Orders, August 23, 1776). Let’s do our part to remind ourselves, and teach our precious children, that we are freemen fighting for our Faith, Families, and Freedom!

Speaking at Mount Rushmore on July 3, 2020, President Donald Trump made the following pledge which we can all claim as our own. It can be our starting place as revolutionary Americans. It can be our promise to ourselves and our children:

[L]et us go forward united in our purpose and re-dedicated in our resolve. We will raise the next generation of American patriots. We will write the next thrilling chapter of the American adventure. And we will teach our children to know that they live in a land of legends, that nothing can stop them, and that no one can hold them down. They will know that in America, you can do anything, you can be anything, and together, we can achieve anything.

Uplifted by the titans of Mount Rushmore, we will find unity that no one expected; we will make strides that no one thought possible. This country will be everything that our citizens have hoped for, for so many years, and that our enemies fear — because we will never forget that American freedom exists for American greatness. And that’s what we have: American greatness.

Centuries from now, our legacy will be the cities we built, the champions we forged, the good we did, and the monuments we created to inspire us all.

My fellow citizens: America’s destiny is in our sights. America’s heroes are embedded in our hearts. America’s future is in our hands. And ladies and gentlemen: the best is yet to come.”

Yes, the best is still to come! We will yet see dark days. They will inevitably grow darker than they are now. But even as our enemies make their final, vain attempt to subjugate our nation, our People will awaken, arise, and rally behind the inspired standard of Liberty. We will recapture the Faith of our forefathers, fortify our Families, and reclaim our Freedom. Victory will be ours!

My soul gushes with thanksgiving to my God for the blessings He has rained down upon America! I love America! I love the Constitution and the honorable men who created it, which includes one of my own ancestors, Caleb Strong, to whom I pay tribute. I love the unrivaled heritage of Freedom we posses here in America. Let us never take it for granted. Let’s gather our children around us today, read to them the Declaration of Independence, and convey to them how much we love this land and the unparalleled rights we enjoy here.

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This Independence Day, be more than a spectator; participate in your Independence. I urge my fellow Americans to fall on their knees, cry to their Father in Heaven, petition the Lord for His strength, and then rise with renewed determination to be Sons of Liberty. We are American freemen. Liberty is our birthright and our destiny. May God help us become soldiers in this sacred struggle, to find and support our Washingtons and Jeffersons, and honorably play our part in this ongoing American Revolution!

Zack Strong,

July 4, 2020

Independence Day Reflections

As July Fourth fades into July fifth, and the rockets’ red glare ceases to illuminate the night sky, I sit on my bed pondering about this great land of America and the challenges we face. My heart is somber. I feel like I want a cosmic megaphone so I can shout to the whole world and warn them of the fate they are rushing towards – to alert them to the trap that has been laid for them by humanity’s enemies. As we wave our flags, sing patriotic songs, and boast of our Freedom, I fear that we lose sight of the seriousness of our present situation.

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It appears that we are fulfilling in every particular the old scriptural warnings against complacency, naïveté, and ignorance. In one place we are told: “Woe to them that are at ease in Zion” (Amos 6:1). And in another ancient holy book, we are similarly warned:

“And others will [Satan] pacify, and lull them away into carnal security, that they will say: All is well in Zion; yea, Zion prospereth, all is well—and thus the devil cheateth their souls, and leadeth them away carefully down to hell.

“And behold, others he flattereth away, and telleth them there is no hell; and he saith unto them: I am no devil, for there is none—and thus he whispereth in their ears, until he grasps them with his awful chains, from whence there is no deliverance” (2 Nephi 28:21).

I see so many conservatives applauding what they think are improving conditions under President Trump. The economy appears to be a booming. Unemployment numbers seem to be dropping. Some taxes have been cut. President Trump has slashed some of the myriad of bureaucratic regulations that entangle us. We are pumping and exporting more oil than ever before. We are extending the hand of diplomacy and friendship to belligerent nations like North Korea. We are making “deals” with everyone. And so forth. In all these things, conservatives believe they see the winds of change – a revolution in favor of sound government, national stability, and personal Freedom.

Yet, I must question whether any of these are indicators of true change and betterment. We have been so indoctrinated with Marxism that we see everything in terms of economics and materialism. If the economy appears stable, we think things are peachy. If unemployment drops, we think the government is doing wonderful. If a small tax cut puts a few extra dollars in our bank accounts, we assume everything is on track.

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But what of our spiritual health and cultural well-being? Is church attendance on the rise? Is faith in Jesus Christ increasing? Are we following the Ten Commandments as a People? Are our families stronger? Are more marriages weathering the storms of life and resisting the Siren song of easy and “no-fault” divorce? Have we done away with the barbaric practice of slaughtering our newborns? Are we having large families again like our forefathers? Are we less sex-obsessed than before? Are people obeying the Lord’s law of chastity and abstaining from sex before marriage and remaining faithful in marriage? Is entertainment abandoning the trend of throwing profanity and lewdness into everything?

And how are our social relations? Are we less divided than before? Do we agree and unite on more issues than before? Do we ignore superficial issues like race and gender, or are we obsessed with them? Do we heed the ludicrous demands of political correctness or ignore them? Do we go along with Marxist hate speech legislation or cherish free speech and expression? Are our public demonstrations peaceful or more violent and heated? Are mobs and mob mentality increasing or decreasing? Is our social media interaction friendlier than it was in the past or worse?

And legally speaking, are things on the upswing? Is the Constitution followed more often now or less? Is the First Amendment under attack or defended? Is the Second Amendment under assault or held inviolate? How are privacy rights doing – or is there such thing as privacy these days? Do we have more or fewer police swarming our streets? Are we emptying or filling our prisons?

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Folks, I could keep asking leading questions all day, but let me get to my point. Although the economy, on the surface, appears to be in a moment of upsurge (our $22 Trillion in debt, the existence of the parasitical Federal Reserve, and numerous other factors belie the claim of a booming economy), other indicators are blaring a “RED ALERT!” warning signal. The three great standards and institutions of any nation – Faith, Families, and Freedom – are all suffering massively. In fact, each is imploding before our eyes.

What good is a so-called “booming” economy when our Faith in the Savior gives way to pagan beliefs and reprobate behavior? How does a small tax cut assist us when our Families are decreasing in size, decreasing in effectiveness, and disintegrating altogether? What good is it to be a net exporter of oil when our Freedom is consumed by collectivist attitudes, Marxist-style Social Justice laws, and open calls for socialism by presidential candidates and the crowds who back them?

America is more divided than ever before. And the segment of the population who wants to drive the wedge even further and break us apart as a nation is succeeding largely because those of us who truly care and who ought to know better are ignoring the real problems. The honorable Ezra Taft Benson warned:

“If American freedom is lost, if America is destroyed, if our blood-bought freedom is surrendered, it will be because of Americans. What’s more, it will probably not be only the work of subversive and criminal Americans. The Benedict Arnolds will not be the only ones to forfeit our freedom. . . .

“If America is destroyed, it may be by Americans who salute the flag, sing the national anthem, march in patriotic parades, cheer Fourth of July speakers—normally good Americans, but Americans who fail to comprehend what is required to keep our country strong and free—Americans who have been lulled away into a false security” (President Ezra Taft Benson, “Americans Are Destroying America,” Conference Report, April, 1968).

Is this what is happening? Are good, seemingly patriotic Americans responsible for the cultural destruction we see around us because they have been apathetic, naïve, and ignorant? I submit that this is precisely the case. There will always be subversives who want to overthrow the established government and set up a self-serving system with themselves in charge. However, this criminal element can only succeed when the population as a whole turns a blind eye and allows them to. We have for generations been so obsessed with bread and circuses that we allowed the communist cancer to spread to every community in the Union. We’ve slept while Rome burned. We’ve sold our Liberty for a mess of pottage!

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Ezra Taft Benson delivered another powerful warning that should’ve been heeded decades ago:

“For a quarter of a century I have seen, at close range, the insidious forward march of creeping socialism and its ruthless companion godless communism. It is a shocking record of bluff, bluster, deception, intrigue, bondage, and mass murder. Never in recorded history has any movement spread itself so far and so fast as has socialistic-communism in the past few years. The facts are not pleasant to review. Communist leaders are jubilant with their success. They are driving freedom back on almost every front. . . .

“I say to you with all the fervor of my soul: We are sowing the seeds of our own destruction in America and much of the free world today. It is my sober warning to you today that if the trends of the past thirty years – and especially the past three years – continue, we will lose that which is as priceless as life itself – our freedom – our liberty – our right to act as free men. It can happen here. It is happening here.

“Our greatest need in America today is to be alerted and informed” (Ezra Taft Benson, “We Must Become Alerted and Informed,” speech, December 13, 1963).

The seeds of destruction that were sewn decades ago are being harvested now before our eyes. Our enemies are “jubilant with their success.” Our level of healthy religion and morality – the pillars of free society – is declining. Our families are falling apart. Freedom is being pushed back “on almost every front.” And what do we do in the face of this awful situation? We cheer and celebrate, wave our flags and shoot off our fireworks, and believe that President Trump will save us!

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Instead, we need to become “alerted and informed.” We need to comprehend that there exists an international Satanic cabal which seek to obliterate our Liberty and consolidate the United States into a Marxist world order. We need to understand that communism never died, the USSR faked its “collapse,” and the West lost the Cold War. We need to admit that we have not done enough for to save our Republic – that it is our fault for allowing this clique of gangsters to abuse us for all these many years. We need to wake up and heed the warnings of men who have been awake all this time and who have screamed themselves hoarse trying to alert and save their country.

After this Independence Day, will anything change? Are our hearts stirring with emotion for our lost Liberty? Are we pricked with the terrible realization that all is not well in Zion? Will we push forward with more vigor for the restoration of our land to its godly roots? Will we work harder to preserve and replenish our Faith, Families, and Freedom? Will anything change at all? Or is July Fourth it just another day? Was it just another holiday – an excuse to BBQ, take the day off, and blow off some fireworks? Only you can decide what this day meant for you and what you will do from here on out.

From where I sit, it is not “morning in America.” But there should be mourning in America. The blast of the fireworks last night should have reverberated in our souls. We should feel the urgency which our situation presents. We should feel stirred to action in defense of our smoldering homeland. We should feel a greater determination to push back the communists who have gained so much ground that they are openly parading with hammer and sickle flags, burning Old Glory in D.C., beating people to within an inch of their lives in violent public demonstration while the police do nothing, and relishing the notion that one of their chosen candidates will likely be the Democratic Party nominee for president in 2020.

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My fellow Americans, we are losing this war. We are losing. Donald Trump is president, yet we are losing. So-called conservatives have a majority on the Supreme Court, yet we are losing. Republicans control the Senate, yet we are losing. Our culture is sinking under the weight of hedonism and selfishness. Public schools are little more than communist indoctrination centers. Even public libraries, those places that gave me so many hours of joy as a child, are scenes of debauchery and indoctrination. Yes, Christian constitutionalists are being pushed back on almost every front.

If I sound overly pessimistic, it is because I am. We are losing the war and the casualties are mounting. I know we will win the war in the end, but at what cost? How much will we lose along the way? How many of our friends and family members will fall in this struggle? How many more good people will have their lives, careers, and reputations destroyed because of the cowardice of their neighbors to defend their rights against oppression? How many more children will be stolen from good homes because of the political or religious views of their parents? How much more lewdness and depravity must we be forced to witness? How much more suffering must we endure before we wake up and thrash the enemy who feeds off of our pain like the American Indian god Okee?

As wonderful and fun as it is to watch fireworks, have BBQs, wear patriotic apparel, and read The Declaration of Independence with my family, I can’t help but mourn for my country. America is on fire. And if my home is burning, will I remain silent? If my family is in danger, will I remain inactive? If I’m on the verge of losing everything I love, will I shout, “USA! USA! USA!” or say “All is well”? No! And if you are a patriot, you must not fall into this fatal trap of complacency and inattention!

Now is the time to wake up. Now is the time to become informed. Now is the time to study the Constitution as well as the tactics of the communist enemy. Now is the time to educate your family and neighbors. Now is the time to act in behalf of your country. Now is the time!

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I love America! America is the greatest nation on earth! We are the most blessed People in history. This is a special land – a Promised Land. It is a land reserved by God for humble, righteous People. It is the Lord’s base of operations in these last days. America must be defended!

I pledge my life to the restoration of the Republic, the defense of our God-inspired Constitution, and to the maintenance of the principles of Liberty and rule of law. I pledge myself to the defense of Faith, Family, and Freedom. Whatever little I have to offer, I offer to my nation, to my People, and to my God. God help America!

Zack Strong,

July 5, 2019

The Noble Free

The great patriotic hymn “My Country, ‘Tis of Thee” contains these memorable lines:

“My native country, thee, Land of the noble free, Thy name I love; I love thy rocks and rills, Thy woods and templed hills. My heart with rapture thrills Like that above.”

America, a precious land dotted from one coast to the other with the beauties, blessings, and bounties of God’s superintending love, is the greatest land on earth! It is a special land of promise – a land of special covenants and promises. It is a land sanctified with the blood of patriots and martyrs. It is a land saved and set apart by the Almighty to be inhabited by a God-fearing, righteous, honorable, industrious, worthy people.

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The American People, in the early days, was a society of such spiritual stature that they won this land for their inheritance and were blessed with political, religious, social, economic, military, and technological advancement unrivaled by any other nation at any time in history. No honest and objective observer can deny that the America is the greatest nation to have ever existed when measured by nearly any metric.

The very perceptive scholar and statesman J. Reuben Clark, Jr. noted that:

“[U]nder our form of government the people of the United States have made a progress never before made by any other people in the world in an equal time during the whole period of recorded history.

“. . . standards of life and of living of the entire American people are far beyond those enjoyed by any other people in any other part of the world, either now or at any other time, which is a living testimony and evidence of the kindly beneficence of our free institution. . . .

“. . . I believe that the destiny of America is to be the abiding place of liberty and free institutions, and that its own practice and enjoyment of these blessings shall be to the world a beacon light which shall radiate its influence by peaceful means to the uttermost parts of the world, to the uplifting of all humanity” (J. Reuben Clark, Jr., June 11, 1940, cited in Jerreld L. Newquist, ed., Prophets, Principles and National Survival, 129).

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America indeed has risen to greater heights than any other nation before her. Today, even in our degraded state brought on because of years of deliberate attack by our enemies, the United States is the most influential, powerful, prosperous, respected, and free nation in the world. Without one ounce of doubt, we possess the greatest potential of any people on the planet. The Lord has not only blessed this Promised Land with the riches of minerals and natural resources, but with the far richer blessing of an unequaled heritage of Freedom, rule of law, and Christian devotion.

Our ancestors were “the noble free.” They were true freemen. They were patriots. They were the Sons of Liberty and the daughters of the Revolution. Our forefathers were great. They were honorable. They were pious and faithful. They were fervent Christians and fierce patriots. They were not perfect, but they were sincere and grounded, honest and true.

Our forefathers forged a free, civilized, and prosperous nation out of a wild wilderness. They made the Gospel of Christ and the Ten Commandments the basis of our society. We were founded as a nation of laws, not a nation of tyrants. Rule of law prevailed – not the whim of the mindless majority. Of these early Americans, George Washington Adams recounted:

“Our forefathers were a patient and persevering people; their devotion was simple but earnest; their theories were circumscribed but conscientious; their morality was rigorous but practical. They were from necessity frugal; from their position circumspect; from their situation vigorous and hardy. Obliged alike to brave the savage and the European foe – acquainted equally with the implements of husbandry and with the weapons of war – they guarded the state till she had cleared the dangers of her infancy. Such was the early character of the people of New England. It shows a race of men fit to be free. History presents no parallel to such a people mid all her records . . . she shows no other state originating in devotion and in liberty of thought – no other nation whose foundation was the pure worship of the living God” (David Barton, ed., Celebrate Liberty: Famous Patriotic Speeches and Sermons, 47).

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As noted, the Gospel of Jesus Christ was the rock foundation of this American nation. With the love of the Lord came a love of the Liberty He bestowed upon mankind. Defending the Liberty “wherewith Christ hath made [them] free” (Galatians 5:1) became paramount for the colonists. Therefore, when British persecution became severe enough, our patriot forefathers burst the political bands that tethered them to enslaved Europe and created the first free nation in modern times, opening a new epoch in mankind’s history.

Our Founding Fathers published the Declaration of Independence, proclaiming that this nation acknowledged God as their Sovereign, that their rights came from Him, and that they would rely upon Him for protection. The Lord heard our People’s cries for deliverance and divine intervention was forthcoming. In his First Inaugural Address, President George Washington affirmed God’s intervention in our nation’s behalf during the War for Independence. He stated:

“[I]t would be peculiarly improper to omit in this first official act my fervent supplications to that Almighty Being who rules over the universe, who presides in the councils of nations, and whose providential aids can supply every human defect, that His benediction may consecrate to the liberties and happiness of the people of the United States a Government instituted by themselves for these essential purposes, and may enable every instrument employed in its administration to execute with success the functions allotted to his charge. In tendering this homage to the Great Author of every public and private good, I assure myself that it expresses your sentiments not less than my own, nor those of my fellow-citizens at large less than either. No people can be bound to acknowledge and adore the Invisible Hand which conducts the affairs of men more than those of the United States. Every step by which they have advanced to the character of an independent nation seems to have been distinguished by some token of providential agency.”

It was widely believed by those of our founding generation that America had been set up and protected by the hand of God for a special reason; that reason being the preservation of Liberty for mankind. For instance, in an Independence Day oration in 1826, George Bancroft stated:

“The dearest interests of mankind were entrusted to our country. It was for her to show that the aspirations of former ages were not visionary – that freedom is something more than a name – that the patriots and the States that have been martyrs in its defense were struggling in a sacred cause and fell in the pursuit of a real good. The great spirits of former times looked down from their celestial abodes to cheer and encourage her in the hour of danger. The nations of the earth turned towards her as to their last hope. And the country has not deceived them” (David Barton, ed., Celebrate Liberty: Famous Patriotic Speeches and Sermons, 98).

The American freemen cherished the thought that Heaven had appointed them to be the guardians of Freedom on the earth – that America was a shining city on a hill beckoning to the oppressed of mankind. They knew, from the generous intervention of Almighty God in their favor, that America was not just another nation; she was special. I also know that America is a blessed land, a favored land, a choice land, a Promised Land. There is nowhere on earth more favored and watched over than America. And no people has received as many blessings as the American People.

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We owe a massive debt of gratitude to our Creator and God for the privilege and blessing of living in this the greatest nation on earth. At this time of the year when we turn our minds back to our patriot forefathers who won for us our sacred Freedom, we should humble ourselves and recommit our lives to the service of God. John Adams famously said that our system of government is only sustainable by a “moral and religious people.” He was right. Our forefathers knew it and I know it. Either we will turn back to the Lord and cut out the cultural cancer consuming us, or we will collapse as a nation.

Another great American, Ezra Taft Benson, issued a warning in 1979. It is even more applicable in 2019:

“Never before has the land of Zion appeared so vulnerable to so powerful an enemy as the Americas do at present. And our vulnerability is directly attributable to our loss of active faith in the God of this land, who has decreed that we must worship Him or be swept off. Too many Americans have lost sight of the truth that God is our source of freedom—the Lawgiver—and that personal righteousness is the most important essential to preserving our freedom. So, I say with all the energy of my soul that unless we as citizens of this nation forsake our sins, political and otherwise, and return to the fundamental principles of Christianity and of constitutional government, we will lose our political liberties, our free institutions, and will stand in jeopardy before God.”

If we wish to be “the noble free” like our ancestors, we must cherish this land of Liberty enough to live as our forefathers lived and worship as they worshiped. Our devotion must be to law – rule of law and divine law. The Savior should be the center of our lives, the center of our families, the center of our communities, the center of our laws, and the reason we so fiercely contend for Liberty under our inspired Constitution. America, this citadel of Freedom we so love, is worth every effort to defend.

Truly, it is not enough to remember the sacrifices our forefathers made all those years ago. We must imitate them and step forward to defend our Republic in our own day. It is time to show whether you are a freeman or a slave, a patriot or a turncoat. Now is the time to honor your forefathers by making our America the bastion of Liberty – the shining city on a hill – they hoped to create. The power is in our hands. What will we do with it?

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Happy Independence Day. God bless you and yours. And God bless America.

Zack Strong,

July 1, 2019

Festival of Freedom

“My God! How little do my countrymen know what precious blessings they are in possession of, and which no other people on earth enjoy!” – Thomas Jefferson to James Monroe, June 17, 1785.

The United States of America is the greatest nation on earth! With all of our numerous flaws and serious disruptions and contentions, this Republic is still, without question, the best nation in the world and the last hope for mankind. No other country has as much raw potential as the United States. And certainly no other nation has as glorious a heritage of Freedom, rule of law, and godly society as does America. We are a blessed land with a special mission to fulfill.

In order to fulfill our singular mission, however, we must recognize and be grateful for our unsurpassed blessings, embrace our unique American heritage, revive the principles and ideals enshrined in our founding documents, and press forward in faith. We must defend our faith, families, and Freedom against all attacks – both from within and from without. We must imbibe the same spirit our forefathers possessed that caused them to risk life and limb to forge a free nation. Independence Day is the perfect time to do just that.

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During an Independence Day oration in 1826, George Bancroft referred to this exceptional holiday and stated:

“The festival which we keep is the festival of freedom itself – it belongs not to us only but to man. All the nations of the earth have an interest in it, and humanity proclaims it sacred!”

Independence Day is not just another day. It is a special day; a sacred day. It was the opening of a new epoch. This holy day marks the founding of the first free nation in modern times – a nation which grew from its humble beginnings to become the greatest nation in recorded history. America is not just another nation, and her birthday is not just another day.

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In 1796, a full generation before Bancroft delivered his oration, John Lathrop gave an Independence Day address wherein he affirmed:

“Liberty descended from Heaven on the 4th of July, 1776. . . .

“The first promulgation of the Gospel of Liberty was the declaration of American independence . . . the Americans were elected by God to redeem from bondage the miserable victims of arbitrary power.”

America was the vessel which the Lord designed to carry Liberty to a safe harbor. When fifty-six men signed their names to the Declaration of Independence in 1776 and proclaimed their reliance upon “the protection of Divine Providence,” Freedom began to burst forth. America is the modern birthplace of Liberty and has remained its sole incubator for 242 years. Truly, Independence Day is no ordinary day.

John Quincy Adams, in an Independence Day speech delivered in 1837, rhetorically asked:

“Why is it that next to the birthday of the Savior of the world, your most joyous and most venerated festival returns on this day?”

He went on to provide the answer:

“Is it not that in the chain of events, the birthday of the nation is indissolubly linked with the birthday of the Savior? – that it forms a leading event in the progress of the gospel dispensation? Is it not that the Declaration of Independence first organized the social compact on the foundation of the Redeemer’s mission upon earth? – that it laid the cornerstone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity and gave to the world the first irrevocable pledge of the fulfillment of the prophecies announced directly from Heaven at the birth of the Savior and predicted by the greatest of the Hebrew prophets six hundred years before?”

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To our forefathers, the birth of America was not a raucous “rebellion,” but a sacrosanct religious event. It was an act of Providence. It was a fulfillment of ancient Biblical prophecy. So many profound miracles poured forth from Heaven that General George Washington, in the heat of the conflict with tyrannical Britain, wrote to a fellow general that:

“The hand of Providence has been so conspicuous in all this, that he must be worse than an infidel that lacks faith, and more than wicked, that has not gratitude enough to acknowledge his obligations” (George Washington to Thomas Nelson, August 20, 1778).

Speaking in 1793, just a few years after Washington penned his letter, Elias Boudinot told an audience gathered for their Independence Day celebration the following:

“The late revolution . . . is big with events that are daily unfolding themselves and pressing in thick succession to the astonishment of a wondering world!

“It has been marked with the certain characteristic of a Divine overruling hand in that it was brought about and perfected against all human reasoning and apparently against all human hope – and that in the very moment of time when all Europe seemed ready to be plunged into commotion and distress.

“Divine Providence, throughout the government of this world, appears to have impressed many events with the undoubted evidence of His own almighty arm.”

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On April 30, 1789, newly elected President George Washington delivered his First Inaugural Address. In it, he stated:

“[I]t would be peculiarly improper to omit in this first official Act, my fervent supplications to that Almighty Being who rules over the Universe, who presides in the Councils of Nations, and whose providential aids can supply every human defect, that his benediction may consecrate to the liberties and happiness of the People of the United States, a Government instituted by themselves for these essential purposes: and may enable every instrument employed in its administration to execute with success, the functions allotted to his charge. In tendering this homage to the Great Author of every public and private good I assure myself that it expresses your sentiments not less than my own; nor those of my fellow-citizens at large, less than either. No People can be bound to acknowledge and adore the invisible hand, which conducts the Affairs of men more than the People of the United States. Every step, by which they have advanced to the character of an independent nation, seems to have been distinguished by some token of providential agency.”

Through the intervention of Almighty God, the American Republic came into being. Without His divine aid, our War for Independence would have floundered, our Founding Fathers would have been hanged as traitors, the U.S. Constitution would have never come into being, and America would have been once more subjected to European tyranny. Yet, God did intervene, America did win her bid for Independence, and the Founding Fathers went on to draft the U.S. Constitution under inspiration and set America on the path to unrivaled greatness.

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Today, how many of us stop to remember and express gratitude for the Lord’s hand in our nation’s birth and progress? How many of us truly comprehend how significant Independence Day was in the course of world history? How many of us understand the great mission America has been given – the mission of preaching the Gospel of Liberty to mankind? How few of us thank our God for His bountiful blessings upon this special land!

As Americans, we are unique. The eyes of the world are, and truly have been, upon us. No other People has a history and a heritage like we do. No other nation boasts such a large group of Founding Fathers so thoroughly brilliant, honorable, and wise. No other nation has founding documents as inspired as the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. No other country anywhere witnessed such conspicuous intervention by Deity in its founding. The American Republic is not just another nation, and her birthday is not just another day.

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Be proud to be an American. Be proud of your unmatched heritage of Freedom. Feel honored you were born here in the cradle of Liberty and that you have the privilege of participating in this ongoing struggle. Defend your faith, family, and Freedom against all attacks. Cherish the history of the American founding and the memory of the men who sacrificed so much for this Republic. And never take for granted this special day, this Independence Day, this festival of Freedom. Long Live Liberty!

Zack Strong

July 1, 2018.