This transcript was taken from a Stand in the Gap Today program originally aired on June 30, 2021. To listen to the program, please click HERE.
Sam Rohrer: Hello, and welcome to Stand in the Gap Today. And a first, actually, a first of a 10-part special series that we’re entitling 10 Principles to National Renewal. And with that, I welcome you again. I’m Sam Rohrer, and am going to be joined in just a moment by two fellow Stand in the Gap Today team members, Dr. Gary Dull and Dr. Keith Wiebe. Now we’re choosing to kick off this series, as we approach our national birthday to be celebrated this coming weekend. And then we’re going to continue this every Monday, beginning July 12th, and build out the respective principles once embraced by our founders, reflected in our Declaration and coded within our judicial system. And once preached faithfully from our pulpits, but sadly, today, rather ignored, rewritten and even trampled. And if there was ever a time for a reset of our thinking in our nation, a time for a refocusing of the pulpits, a time for a re-acquaintance with truth, history and fundamentally re-embracing of a biblical worldview, it is today.
And as we witness the hastening devolution and dismantling of our historical past, the undermining of our institutions of a just government, with the substitution of the God of heaven with the God of government, the substitution of truth with intentional lies and deception, our nation sits confused as to what to do. But are we without a direction? Are we without a roadmap for renewal? The answer is, definitely no. There is hope, and there is a way, but not without God’s help and following His plan. Now, the series of programs we’re going to begin, is intended to provide God’s plan for blessing, and the foundational principles identified in scripture. These principles are non-negotiable. They cannot be improved upon. They’re necessary for freedom and God’s blessing on our nation or any nation. They’re the same principles identified by our founders and preached by our founding pastors from the pulpits of America. And throughout the series, our own Stand in the Gap team members, myself, will lead and give comment, augmented at times perhaps with special guests.
But I trust that you’ll be blessed by this emphasis. Take good notes and then share with others who fear God, love our nation and desire God’s blessings.
Now the first principle we want to start with the day is that of integrity. The word’s used 16 times in the old Testament. It’s a necessary character trait of the person who fears God and desires God’s blessing. One verse that came to my attention as I looked at it, is King David in Psalm 25. He spoke words that should be our attitude now, in these increasingly perilous days.
He said in Psalms 21:1-5, “Unto thee, oh Lord, do I lift up my soul. Oh my God, I trust in thee. Let me not be ashamed. Let not mine enemies’ triumph over me. Indeed, none who wait for you shall ever be put to shame. They shall be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.” Then he says “Make me to know your ways, oh Lord, teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation. For you I wait all the day long.” And then at verse 21, he says this, “May integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for you.”
May integrity preserve me. That’s our first principle necessary for national renewal.
And with that, I want to walk in right now, Gary. And I want to go to you, Keith, here first. One thing to set this up further. In the days of ancient Greece, known for the philosophers then searching out some new truth, there was an odd duck, a Greek cynic named Diogenes, who became known for walking the marketplace of Athens in broad daylight, carrying a lantern saying, “I search for an honest man.” Well, his point was he couldn’t find any then. And honest men, I think, then, we’re about as short in supply as they are today. So Keith, you’ve been in ministry for 40-plus years, pulpit ministry and other involvement. Can you define just briefly for me, integrity, as you would define it? And to what degree have you seen the prevalence of integrity in our culture change, and maybe perhaps noticeably, where have you seen that?
Keith Wiebe: Well, I don’t think there’s any doubt, Sam, that the prevalence of integrity in our culture has changed dramatically. There is an increasing disconnect between what people say they are, and what they really are. Diogenes hit it pretty squarely on the head. The word integrity comes from a Latin root that means whole, complete, intact. One verse that I think defines it so well, is in Psalm 101 verse two, where the Psalmist, again, this is David talking, you quoted him a moment ago, where the Psalmist in Psalm 101 verse two said, “I will walk with integrity of heart within my house.” Integrity is going to describe someone who is the same in private as he is in public, whose word is dependable. It’s going to be somebody whose lifestyle and that what he says and what he believes is predictable, because it’s based on principles, specifically God’s principles.
Sam Rohrer: And Gary, I’d like you to take what Keith has laid out as a definition there, and then that verse that he cited. Add to it if you want to in any way, but then give just a short, apologetic, has to be short because we don’t have that much time, on the aspect of biblical integrity and how it relates to God. And how it should relate to our life and living, and yes, in application to from the pulpit. Tie those together.
Gary Dull: Well, I appreciate what Keith said in giving that definition, as it comes from the Latin word. The person who is a person of integrity is one who will be living rightly. He will not be divided. He will not be a different person, in different circumstances. He will be the same in every situation, no matter where he is, no matter what he does, no matter what he says, no matter where he goes. When I think of integrity from the biblical perspective, I think of the words of David, back in Psalm 51 and verse six, where he says that God desires truth in the inward part. And the fact of the matter is, biblical integrity is built upon the truth of the word of God. Jesus further elaborates on that in Matthew chapter five and verse eight, when he calls for the fact that a blessed person is one who is pure in heart.
And I’ve often thought that one of the passages of Scripture that really lays the foundation for building a life of integrity, is found in Philippians chapter four and verse eight, where it says,” Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of good report. If there be any virtue, if there be any praise, think on these things.” And I’ve often said, Sam, that if we want to live a life of integrity, it starts in the mind, that is in agreement with the Word of God, that is governed by these principles that are mentioned in Philippians chapter four and verse eight.
Sam Rohrer: Mm.
Gary Dull: That will equal integrity in the life of the believer.
Sam Rohrer: Thank you, Gary. And thank you, Keith. As we get into this theme, ladies and gentlemen, starting a first of a series, 10 Principles that Lead to National Renewal. Today, the focus is on integrity. And we’re going to begin laying out now three foundations of integrity. We’ve defined it, now we’re going to take and build it out.
Sam Rohrer: Well, welcome back to Stand in the Gap Today. And we are in the beginning of a new series that we’re entitling, 10 Principles that Lead to National Renewal. And boy, do we need direction in these days in our country, don’t we? And there’s precious little of it coming forward, but it is there. And we have to go to God’s word for it. We don’t have to, we want to go there, because that’s where good things begin. Now, most American citizens today have no idea of how our counterparts in the days of the American Revolution, for instance, what they believed or thought, or what caused them to act the way they did? In the early 18th century, most citizens understood the nature of God, and honored his expectations for nations, and they embraced them, well, fully. Many of them did. And it’s beyond question that Americans in the 21st century, now us, those who are listening, us now, we still enjoy many of the fruits and the rewards of our predecessors’ faithfulness and diligence and hard work and fervent prayers.
But these benefits are quickly slipping, are they not? In part, it’s because those who are alive today, don’t understand how those blessings and what we have, how they came about? From where they came? Or most importantly, know or fear the One from whom they came, that’s God himself. For generations, we in America have ignored God’s principles. We’ve not taught them to our children. In fact, we’ve allowed government itself to assume the role of God. The failure’s made worse because of our population’s gross ignorance of God’s plan, and too much the pulpit’s refusal to teach all that God’s word says.
But if, like Gideon and his army of 300 a long time ago, that group, a dedicated core of spiritual warriors then, they still exist today. If they, today, from community to community, from pulpit to the pulpit, and from position of elected office to another position of elected office, if we all did the work of identifying, understanding, embracing, and obediently building integrity back into the pillars of society, we can begin to grow once again. And what a magnificent change would occur in our nation, if it were dominated by individuals and institutions of integrity. Which we know, if the nation has none, that nation can’t survive, but with it, can thrive. Since a government of integrity literally means, as Keith defined on the other side, a government that is whole, or morally complete, based on God’s definition of morality, marked by honesty, justice, uprightness, and transactional dealings with each other.
And I think three foundational areas, we’re going to touch on them now and go into it. Gary, I want to go to you first here, because there’s a foundational principle, essential for laying the basis for a government of integrity. And I’m going to put down individuals and institutions of authority, at the home and so forth. It’s broader than just civil government. But that concept starts with the idea that nothing of enduring significance in the affairs of men can be achieved without God’s direct aid and blessing. Now, if someone’s listening they say, that sounds a little bit like something I’ve heard somewhere else. But can you build this out a little bit more, that idea that there is no blessing, you can’t even get off the ground without God’s direct aid and blessing?
Gary Dull: Well, that’s absolutely true. And whether we are talking about government or the individual life or the local church or the family, or whatever it is, it’s very important that we realize that we need God. I think when we are talking about integrity, we must recognize that even integrity itself cannot be rightfully established or even kept without God and His guidance, because integrity is based upon truth, and God is truth. But the important thing is, Sam, is that it’s very significant that we recognize God’s place in building anything. I’m reminded of Psalm 127:1 where it says, “Except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it. Except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain.” And one of the things that concerns me today is, whether we are talking about the home and the family or the church or the government or whatever it is, we’ve gotten to the place today where even as Christians, we will say, well, I can do it myself.
Well, we can’t do anything ourselves. It is God who has made us, and by the very fact that He has made us, we have the need to depend upon Him in all that we do. We need to be like Joshua back in the old Testament, where he said there in Joshua 24 and verse 14, “Choose you this day whom ye will serve.” And then he says, “but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
What was he talking about? He was talking about putting God number one in his life, recognizing that God himself was the source of strength. And then keeping God as that source of strength to govern him, as he went throughout his particular life. Without God, nothing can be done, but with God, all things are possible. We need God’s direction and blessing.
Sam Rohrer: And Gary, you highlighted that aspect that the knowledge of this is one thing, but the choice to choose it, is something entirely different. Keith, I want to go to you right now, because one of the things our founders did so well was that they studied the Bible, and history. And it started right from the very first ones who’d landed, for instance here, the Pilgrims and the Puritans who came. Their knowledge of God was amazing. I mean, I think even about some of the things they put down in the Mayflower Compact, but can you demonstrate just a little bit about some of that more, we would say, looking now, not that many people understand it, but it was something, a common knowledge of God and doing, exactly what Gary said, knowing that God raises up and God puts down. It’s the Lord that builds the house and we have to choose Him. Give us an example or two.
Keith Wiebe: Well, they did have that example for us, Sam. And they demonstrated that. The Mayflower Compact, in a sense, was the first constitution of our country. It was actually signed in November of 1620, before they ever got off the Mayflower. And the language of that is incredible. I actually looked at some references to the Mayflower Compact, and most of them leave out altogether the references to God. But when they wrote the Mayfair Compact, they start off by calling themselves the loyal subject of King James, by the grace of God. And then they go on in the body of it, and they say “having undertaken for the glory of God and advancement of the Christian faith …”
Sam Rohrer: And I think we lost Keith at that point. But the founders, Gary, as Keith was saying, the Pilgrims actually laid out, it said, for the advancement of the Christian faith, which is an incredible thing. Because most people don’t know, they came, not just to hopefully, maybe, start a new country. They came so that they could teach their children in the ways of God, because they were losing their kids there in Holland. And they also came as missionaries to this new continent, which is exactly what they said. Those are the things, as Keith was saying, most places you pull up the Mayflower Compact, they will take out those references to God. They’ve already tried to rewrite our history.
But Gary, you and I live here in Pennsylvania. Right down in Philadelphia, not far from me, was the first place, the gathering of the Congress, right after the War for Independence. But they were bickering and fighting with each other. They couldn’t come to an agreement, until a fellow, Benjamin Franklin stood to his feet. Do you have there what he said, which indicated that these guys really understood, that they had to understand that it was God who raised up a nation?
Gary Dull: You know, people say that Benjamin Franklin was a deist and didn’t have much of a relationship with God. But Sam, I think that if he was a deist, he spoke more truth than many evangelicals fundamental Christians do today. It’s interesting. But what he said in that situation is this, and I quote. He said, “We shall be divided by our little partial local interests. Our projects will be confounded and we ourselves shall become a reproach and a byword down the future ages. I therefore beg leave to move that henceforth, prayers employing the assistance of heaven and its blessings on our deliberations be held in this assembly every morning before we proceed the business. And that one or more of the clergy of this city be requested to officiate in that service.”
You see, Benjamin Franklin knew that without God, our labor was in vain. And he knew that this nation needed to have God’s help to build it. He also said at one point, the ‘longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth, that God governs in the affairs of man. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his hand? Benjamin Franklin knew that they needed the strength of God to build this nation.
Sam Rohrer: Mm. He really did, Gary. And as you cited there, that example there happened in Philadelphia, only about an hour from where I’m sitting, after they couldn’t come to an agreement, he called their attention back. And in addition to what he said, he reminded them, that he said, gentlemen, we stood in this location. And we prayed every day during the war, after the Declaration of Independence, because the task that we were undertaking was so much bigger than any of us could undertake. We needed God’s help. We stood here and we prayed every day. And he said, now, after God’s given us a victory on this side, we haven’t even prayed. Ladies and gentlemen, think about that. And when they prayed and they reassembled themself, and sought the God of heaven, who was the one who raised it up, and they knew it, within the space of a few days, they came together in unity and agreement. And they consolidated and they put together that constitution, which has been the bedrock of our law since then.
But it only stemmed from their commitment to integrity, and God himself who raises up and puts down, and their commitment to doing what he says. Well, we live here as the result of what they did. We’ll be right back.
Sam Rohrer: Every person and nation must first embrace integrity and truth if success and blessing can occur. We shared, just briefly, at the first part of the program, that our 10 principles that we’re going to be going through over the next weeks, we’ll be doing it on Mondays. So the next one will be starting on July the 12th, and then every Monday thereafter. And we’re going to be dealing with 10 Principles that Lead to National Renewal. You know, you and I, we all understand, this nation’s under attack. Everybody’s looking for strong leadership. The problem of it is this kind of strength of leadership we’re seeing, unfortunately looks more like tyranny, than it does godly leadership.
Our founders encountered the same kind of challenges back when this nation was begun. And back when the Declaration of Independence was signed. And so there’s nothing new under the sun, but we, unfortunately, it seems that people are not wanting to go back and find out and go to where the truth is. And it starts with integrity, and then it moves into other things which we will be identifying. So I want you to take note of these things. And note that you’ll be able to go and search for, and hopefully we’ll then have, by the time we’re done, 10 distinctly separate focuses by our team. Today, it’s Gary and Keith. Sometimes it’ll be Dave and Keith. Sometimes there’ll be Dave and Gary and myself, but we will be working through this. So you’re going to have something, I think, of great value when we are done.
But back to this part of it. Every person and nation must start with integrity. We have to tell ourselves truth, we have to be people of truth. And that first foundational structure there, is looking to God and his plan for the nations, understanding that it is God who raises up. And except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it. It all starts with our worldview. And if it doesn’t start with God, it’ll never get off the ground. You’ll end up in bondage.
But the second foundational structure, after we recognize that God is the one who lifts up and we’ve got to start with Him, it’s the principle of identifying and embracing a common vision. You have to be unified in something, where you’re going. William Penn here in Pennsylvania, identified this common vision and laid it down in his foundations for government, Frame of Government he called it, of 1621, is when he wrote it. But it really became the foundation for all of our founders, and really out of it came the concepts and principles that found its way into the Declaration, and beyond.
Penn phrased his vision this way, and that vision, which I’m going to read to you in just a moment, wraps around the rotunda in the Pennsylvania State Capitol to this very day. And I looked at it so many times when I was there. But it says this, “That there may be room there for such a holy experiment, for the nations want a precedent. And my God will make it,” Pennsylvania, he was talking about, “the seed of a nation, for the purpose that an example may be set up to the nations that we may do that thing which is truly wise and just.” That was the vision.
Keith, let me go to you first here right now. Let’s talk just a little bit more about what was meant, the keywords, and actually Penn had a number of keywords there. But his goal, which he made very clear, was self-government under God. And then he used the word, and I’d like you to build upon it a little bit, the essence of this. Self-government and the biblical basis for it. Build it out a little bit. What is self-government? Why does it stand in such contrast to what they were trying to get away from, and what we see happening and actually coming our way now, here?
Keith Wiebe: Well, a life that’s under self-government, Sam, speaks of a life that is under control. It’s a life that is principled. It’s a life, as we’ve been speaking of, it’s a life of integrity. But it’s not every man being a law to himself. That was in the book of Judges. It is rather a life that is under the self-government that comes from God. John 8:32, Jesus said, “You shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.” Now, when he talked about knowing the truth, he wasn’t just talking about an academic head knowledge of truth. It’s a Greek word for truth, for a note in there that is, that talks about experiential knowledge. This is truth that is understood in mind as coming from God, and then is exercised and acted upon in life. That is self-government. Government that is predictable.
Sam Rohrer: Mm.
Keith Wiebe: Government that is principle based. Government that, literally from God himself.
Sam Rohrer: Mm. And Keith, I’m going to add to that, because you could preach an entire sermon on this, and I know you have. But our early founders, including Penn, and others, said that an essential element for the enacting of self-government or the continuance of self-government, and this was it. They said it was conditional upon individuals, citizens, and those who would get into office as leadership, as making themselves, voluntarily committing themselves, they actually said the word subjecting themselves. Submitting themselves to the principles of, and the commands of, the 10 commandments of God.
Now think about that, ladies and gentlemen. Self-government is not you making up your own rules, doing whatever you want. It is voluntarily submitting to the God of heaven and His moral laws and His standards for society. Now, Gary, let me go in, because you’ll tie it together as we go into this. Because a part of the vision statement that Penn said, he referred to it as this holy experiment. And the fact that the world was wanting, the world was anxious, was hungry, thirsty, for a nation, to demonstrate, he said a holy experiment. You’ve probably preached a sermon on this or included into it. Expand upon what you think, or what Penn actually meant by a holy experiment.
Gary Dull: Well, one of the things to keep in mind is when Penn was living, people were coming to the New World, as it were, simply because of the oppression that they were facing in their native countries. And one particular point, Sam, is interesting that Penn said, “you are not at the mercy of a governor that comes to make his fortune great. You will be governed by the laws of your own making and live as a free, and, if you will, serious and industrious people. He went on to say that, I will not take any rights away, or oppress his person. And what William Penn was talking about, the fact, was a government that was set up and established through the guidelines that God gives in his word. And of course, God has set us up, basically, as it were, as a people who were to be governed by the word of God, not by the heavy hand of some kind of a dictator.
And it was William Penn who was trying to build a colony based upon freedom and independence. And he just basically wanted people to follow biblical truth. And of course that holy experiment was started back there. And they might say that the whole experiment continues to be lived out here in the United States of America. He wanted what took place there in Pennsylvania, to be the example of what would happen all across the nation. To a great degree, we’ve seen that happen. Unfortunately in recent days, Sam, we find that we’ve taken God and we’ve taken His word, out of our governance, our personal governments, our governance, our church governance, our national governments, and consequently, that brings all sorts of oppression. I wish we could get back to what William Penn had in mind, because the holy experiment is that which comes from God. And that which comes from God, is going to bring freedom. And that’s what William Penn had in mind.
Sam Rohrer: And Gary, I’m just thinking, as you’re talking about that, because I know when I used to be in the Pennsylvania House, I took people on tours of the Capitol, and I always wanted to point out that vision statement. And as I looked down on that beautiful building and then considered all that we have here in this country, the fact that, as you said, the holy part of it was that it was built on God’s idea and God’s plan and God’s design of mankind and human government, which we’ll be getting more into the principles later in these other programs. But it was an experiment, as you say, Gary, an experiment means something that has not yet been tried, but it was kind of interesting. He knew, Penn knew, and those who came around, and as preached from the pulpits, they knew that it was not just an experiment.
They knew the principles that God says, if you do this and this and this and this, then I will bless you in certain ways. But it was an experiment, because no other people really in the world had ever believed God sufficiently, to trust Him. That doing what he said actually would result in the blessings that they all wanted and the freedom. And so, ladies and gentlemen, as Gary has just referenced, things have changed, have they not? If you think of those things we’re just talking about here, the holy experiment. And did God answer that? It was a vision statement but it was also a prayer that Penn prayed. And the world did want an example of a holy experiment that came into being, and demonstrated that you didn’t have to have a tyrant rule you. But people actually conducting themselves according to the 10 commandments, actually could function. And God heard it. He heard that.
And Pennsylvania became that seed of a nation, that he only envisioned at that time. It became the United States of America, that beacon of hope for the world. But it was only a beacon of hope because the founders, and there were sufficient people then who believed what God said, and were willing to do it. Does that not sound like what we need today, in America? And these are some of the principles that in fact can lead to national renewal, if we embrace them and do them. We’ll be back in just a [inaudible 00:29:29]
Sam Rohrer: Now, we’re talking about three foundational principles that are a part of integrity, which is a part of what leads to national renewal. Alright, now did you get all that? If you were listening to the program, we’ve talked about one. We’ve mentioned one at the beginning. One of those foundational structural principles is that the fact that it is God who raises up, except the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain that build it. Number two, there has to be a national unifying vision. And that national unifying vision builds out of the concept of who God is. And the concept that if we’re going to be free and have self-government, as Penn called it, a holy experiment, it was going to be, in fact, linked directly to the voluntary submission of individuals and those who would become leaders in office, voluntarily submitting themselves to God’s moral law, the 10 commandments.
And actually it happened, right? Because that’s why it was in our schools. It used to be. That’s why it hung behind our judges’ court benches. It still does in many places, but I don’t think they know what it is. But it’s still there, as a reminder. But the last one is this, is submitting to God’s authority. Not just every once in a while, but continually. This principle is this, enduring success cannot be achieved under God’s blessing, unless we are consistently submitted to God’s authority. And that was part of the link into the 10 commandments. Most of God’s promises in the old Testament are national in scope. A lot of people don’t realize that, but they really are. For instance, Deuteronomy 6:3, it says, “Hear therefore O Israel. Observe to do what I’ve commanded you, that it may be well with you, that you may increase mightily as the Lord God of your fathers has promised you.”
Then in Deuteronomy 7:12-14 12, in part it says, “wherefore it shall come to pass, if you hearken to my commands and keep and do them, that I will love you and bless you and multiply you. I will bless the fruit of thy womb, the fruit of thy land, thy corn, and your wine and your oil, the increase of your cattle, the flocks and your sheep. And you shall be blessed above all people. And there shall not be male or female barren among you or your flocks.”
At Deuteronomy 28 it says this. God says, “and all these blessings shall come on you and overtake you.” They’ll be so abundant, you won’t be able to handle them. “If you harken to my voice and I, the Lord, God will set you high above all nations of the earth. And I will make you the head and not the tail.” Now, ladies and gentlemen, isn’t that exactly what God did for this nation? Because those who went before us, believed these things.
Now, Gary, in the next program that we’ll do on July 12th, part two of the series, we’re going to build out the human structure of authority. We’ll explain that more later in greater detail. But in simple terms right now, can you lay out the principles of the concept, I’m going to put here, of authority, as it relates to God and His word? And why submitting to God’s authority can’t just be every once in a while, but it’s got to be continual?
Gary Dull: Well, it has to be continual if we want to obey the Lord and if we want his blessing. You quoted from Deuteronomy 28, one of the things that always impresses me every time I read that verse, is that word overtake. Where it says, “and all these blessings shall come on you and overtake you if you hearken unto my voice.” One of the things that I think many of our founders realized, one of the things that we’ve gotten away from today, even in the church of Jesus Christ and in the Christian home and family, is the fact that God and His word is our only authority. And everything that we do, whether it’s in government, or our personal life, or the church, or in education, we need to go back to a phrase I’ve been using for many, many years. And that’s WDTBS. What Does The Bible Say?
Because you see, Sam, God’s authority starts with God’s word, which is truth, and it must be applied to every last element of our lives. And it must be applied consistently. The moment we say, well, I know this is what the Bible says, but I’m going to do it this way, this time, and then we begin to practice that. The moment we begin that, we are getting away from the truth and the blessing of Almighty God. I think of Psalm 33 and verse 12 says, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.” He is the Lord. He is the governor. He is God. And if we want a nation that’s blessed or a person that’s blessed, we must always submit to the lordship of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Sam Rohrer: Keith, we have George Barna on this program regularly. He does a lot of research. One of the things we’ve stated that he stated, which is astounding, which goes right to the heart of this point here, is that only 30% of the pulpits of America, 30% of the pulpits of America actually believe in the authority of scripture. You could cite many things, but just give a couple of practical implications of what happens when the pulpits don’t believe that God’s word is authoritative? Or those in office don’t believe that God’s word is authoritative? Or that individual citizens don’t believe that God’s word is really all authoritative?
Keith Wiebe: Well, the implications of that, Sam, are really very, very simple. We either accept the authority of scripture, or every person has to be their own authority. We have the tragic example that in the book of Judges. There was no king in Israel. That was more a personal statement than a political statement. And then it said twice in that book, every man did what was right in his own eyes. And we actually today have people who stand in pulpits, and they declare that we don’t need to follow the Bible. They establish themselves as their own authority. Now that’s authority that is inconsistent, that’s authority that is selfish, that’s authority, most important of all, that can never get the blessings of God. Either on ourselves, on our families or on our nation. So it’s either God’s authority as He gives it to us in scripture, or it’s every person doing what is right in their own eyes.
Sam Rohrer: And Keith, you’ve made that clear. And ladies and gentlemen, I would encourage you to go to the book of Deuteronomy. It’s a great book. It lays out national blessings. It also lays out national cursing. Read chapter 28 of Deuteronomy. Because what I cited earlier were the blessings of God, those blessings that would overtake. And God then lays out in that chapter, He gets about 10 verses where He spells out more in detail, the blessings that would overtake the nation whose God was the Lord. And who obeyed what he said. But then he says, but if you don’t do what I say, wow, then there’re 52 verses there in chapter 28 that spell out all of the judgments and the cursings that God said. If you walk away from me, there is a consequence to your choice. You remember, Gary started the program, talking about Joshua. As for me and my house, we’ll serve the Lord, right?
There is a blessing to choosing God. But there’s a consequence. Just saying, I can choose what I want to do, which 70%, by their poll, of the pulpits of America have said, I will choose what I’m going to preach about God’s word. And the people, all of us are listening, say, well, I guess we can too. And we’re going to do what we want. Read chapter 28 of Deuteronomy. It sounds just like we are here today. Our founders understood it. They lay down the principles. We walk away, to our harm. But we can renew this nation, by once again reclaiming those principles.
Thank you for being with us today. And again, join us tomorrow here on this program and in the future. And as we say, stand in the gap for truth, where are you are.