The Revolutionary War raged nearly a year before independence was declared. 10 of 13 colonies did not favor independence. On May 17th, a Day of Prayer was called and in all 13 colonies. People bowed before God to seek His guidance.
Congress convened on July 1, 1776, still undecided about independence. Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence and presented it to the representatives. During the debate, Rev. John Witherspoon, a minister. President of Princeton and Representative from New Jersey spoke and said, “There is a tide in the affairs of men. We perceive it now before us. To hesitate is to consent to slavery. That noble instrument (The Declaration) should be subscribed to this very morning. Though these gray hairs must soon descend to the grave, I would infinitely rather that they descend thither by the hand of the executioner than desert at this crisis, the sacred cause of my country and my God.”
So on July 4th, 1776, the continental congress introduced to the world the Declaration of Independence, one of the most important documents in our history.
Independence Day is our country’s most important holiday. This weekend as we celebrate this holiday (one that has a rich spiritual heritage) 50 of the 55 men who signed the Declaration of Independence were Christians. I want us to see a spiritual parallel to what Jesus did to purchase our freedom from the penalty of sin.
1. They were under bondage from a ruler who wanted to oppress them.
· We were in bondage and under “the prince and power of the air” – Satan.
2. They wanted to be free.
· Jesus said the truth will set you free.
· Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth and the life…”
3. They were willing to separate themselves from that which was comfortable for a higher purpose.
· Matthew 27:46 says, “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”
4. The writers of the Declaration of Independence literally gave their lives.
o 5 were captured by the British and tortured until they died.
o 12 had their homes burned to the ground.
o 2 lost their sons in the war.
· Jesus gave His life!
5. Their sacrifice provides us with freedom today!
· Jesus’ sacrifice provides us with freedom. We are set free from the penalty of sin.
Romans 6:18 says, “And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.”
We come together to acknowledge and celebrate Independence Day as a nation on July 4th.
Do you have a spiritual independence day that you can acknowledge and celebrate?