America’s covenant has frayed — but we can make it whole again

News & Politics

The United States and the Jewish state of Israel might sit separately in different hemispheres, but they are ever connected through their foundational promises. Now as the souls of these two nations are challenged and must stare directly into the face of evil, they are bonded, distinguished from the rest of the world, as covenantal societies.

We are living through an obvious and disconcerting shift in Americans’ belief in their foundational ideas. But the rejection is deeper than culture; it is a complete abandonment of the Judeo-Christian values that have tied this country together from the beginning.

We have reached a point where people are so open-minded that their brains have fallen out.

The founding fathers envisioned religious freedom for all and understood that society could not survive without religion. Religious freedom meant freedom and religion.

American liberty is inextricably linked to religion and God. This is understood on a deep level in Judaism. The name in Hebrew assigned to the United States does not literally translate to “united states.” It is Artzot HaBrit, which means “The Lands of Covenant.”

So the United States joined the children of Israel as a society rooted in a covenant with God and with each other. Faith in the nation and in the success of both nations, hinges on faith in the covenant.

The understanding that faith and liberty go hand in hand is deeply rooted in the writings and speeches of America’s founders. In a letter to the Massachusetts Militia in October 1798, John Adams wrote: “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

John Locke, the English philosopher whose ideas heavily inspired the framers of the Constitution, argued in “A Letter Concerning Toleration”that atheists could not be trusted in a covenantal society: “Lastly, those are not at all to be tolerated who deny the being of a God. Promises, covenants, and oaths, which are the bonds of human society, can have no hold upon an atheist.”

Of course, belief can not and should never be forced on anyone. But the waning of religion certainly explains the current phenomenon of nationwide institutional and cultural collapse.

We are becoming a country of spiritually bankrupt cities and purposeless people.

The covenant challenges us every day to do better and to be better. The independence of our nations also brought obligations — responsibility is intrinsic to freedom. So it comes as no surprise that at a time when playing the victim yields faster results than honest, hard work, people abandon this social and religious contract.

When Americans turn their backs on this founding bond, society collapses. We have reached a point where people are so open-minded that their brains have fallen out. An excessively liberal mentality has dimmed our national spark.

When we try to accept everything, we become nothing.

We can look to our forefathers and founders to know what happens when we neglect each other and stray from the path. After all, as Ecclesiastes reminds us, “There is nothing new under the sun.” But we don’t have to feel completely lost. We are “the Lands of Covenant,” and we can find our way back.

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