A Philosophical Analysis of The Young Person’s Significance in the Battle for Liberty
I wish to share with you some reasons for why you are significant in the fight for liberty. Most people want to be useful. They want to do something to help others. And yet, when a perfect opportunity presents itself — such as the battle for liberty — they shy away in fear. If you feel like I’m describing you right now, don’t stop reading! Don’t worry! I’m actually describing the way I was not too long ago.
Before I divulge any of my thoughts on this subject, I must tell you something: this article is written for Christian young people. It is not applicable to anyone but a Christian. Now, please do not think that I just don’t like non-Christians. I have family and friends who I love who are not saved. You see, ultimately, liberty starts in the heart with salvation, when Christ comes and indwells a poor sinner — one such as myself — freeing them from all unrighteousness. Freedom from sin is the highest form of liberty, and insomuch as we deny this, our efforts in the fight for liberty will be futile. We cannot have secure liberty if our hearts are still enslaved to sin. The pride and greed that can give rise to tyranny will still exist. Therefore, in order to be able to really apply what I will share with you in this article, you must be a born-again believer in Jesus Christ. I hope to write to my non-believing friends soon.
I am very glad you have found this site, because I know that if you are browsing on it, you must be interested in the fight for liberty. Such is a good thing, for, while not every U.S. citizen is interested in the fight for liberty, everyone holds interest in liberty. What I mean is this: while not everyone has a desire to use their God-endowed talents to help preserve liberty, everyone benefits from the liberty that has been procured for them. In addition, everyone enjoys liberty. So, if everyone holds interest in liberty, and everyone enjoys the freedom liberty brings, then everyone should be concerned about preserving it. Think of it this way: if you had a home that was worth several million dollars, you would probably be very concerned about protecting it from robbery and vandalism. You would do all that was necessary to ensure that your home remained a safe, comfortable place to live. What about liberty? Is it not more important than a lavish existence? Why aren’t we taking great measures to ensure that our liberty is maintained?
Fallacies and Fears
I think the answer to this question is multifaceted, and lies in several wrong ideas which we have, oftentimes subconsciously, accepted. These wrong ideas can incite in a person a fear of engagement in the battle for liberty. Therefore, in order to explain how YOU are indispensable to the cause of liberty, I must first identify and refute a few of these commonly held fallacies. I will then explain why you must fight for liberty. It is crucial to the welfare of our nation that you heed the call of liberty and promptly expel any remaining untruth that may be hampering your effectiveness as a U.S. citizen.
So, here are four common fallacies that can cause us to be fearful:
Fallacy No. 1 — “I’m just another person. I’m average, I’m not talented, and other people can certainly do a much better job than I.”
Fallacy No. 2 — “I can’t really make a difference in the political sphere until I can vote.”
Fallacy No. 3 — “If I mention God, people will blow me off.”
Fallacy No. 4 — “If nobody knows about me, I won’t be able to make a difference. Fame and power are the indispensable tools in the fight for liberty.”
The fear that these fallacies cause us is real, but it is no excuse for inaction. Honestly, I have been a prisoner of this fear. I am deeply grateful to God for using Rick Boyer and his book Take Back the Land to eradicate the fear of insignificance from my mind. That book truly changed my mindset regarding activism, and helped shape many of my views on politics. Before reading it, I was enchanted with ideas of becoming an attorney, with the object of holding public office “someday.” Today, having read the book, I am convinced that I can make an enormous difference now, and so can you! I am now confident of my role in the fight for liberty as a young activist. We as young people possess tools and hold advantages that would be enormously powerful, if we would only use them. While the fear is real, we must take courage, and fulfill our duty to liberty with staunch determination and unshakeable faith in God, for Christ has “overcome the world” (John 16:33).
Now, the way to overcome these fears is to counter attack with the truth. Truth and falsehood are mutually exclusive; therefore, when you respond to your fears with truth, the lies will run for the shadows. Here are some truths to answer your fears:
Truth No. 1:
You are not “just another person”; you are made in the image of a big God who has a record of using the most unqualified people for the most Herculean tasks of their time (look up the stories of Moses and David, at least to get started). There is nothing that can resist the hand of God, and if God is working through you, the only thing left for His enemies to do when you enter the fight is to run. You must abandon every fear of insignificance; God will work through His children.
If you feel that you can’t make a difference in the fight for liberty because you have no special talent that qualifies you for service, you have missed the point. What makes a good soldier is his response to the call of duty, not his exceptional fighting abilities. You must enter the fight for liberty because it is your duty as a U.S. citizen and a child of God. Those who have achieved the most for God have not done so based on an unshakable confidence in their stellar abilities; they have simply placed their confidence in God’s power to work mightily through His children. It is love for God and your fellow man that should persuade you to fight to preserve this gift, not a feeling that you are distinctly suited to the fight.
Furthermore, this nation was built upon popular government — a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. The people are central to the success of our government. In other words, the strength of the American system lies in “average people” just like you. Therefore, while you may have never taken an oath of office, if you are a U.S. citizen, you are part of the government, and are responsible for seeing that liberty is maintained.
Moreover, for those of us who are children of the one true King, Jesus Christ, we have been set free from sin, and have entered into the freedom of Christ’s holiness (John 8:36, Galatians 5:1-26, Ephesians 1:4). God governs the world by giving us great liberty, but punishing wrongdoing. He gives us a will, but expects that we operate in accordance with His standards. If we are to honor God and be imitators of Christ in everything (1 Corinthians 10:31, Ephesians 5:1), then our earthly government should honor God by implementing His principles of government on earth. As the messengers of the Gospel, we must see to it that it does so.
Here is a story that may encourage you:
I’ve had the great privilege of meeting my state Representative, James Leewright. Rep. Leewright is a businessman who runs a highly successful restoration and construction company in Oklahoma. Just a few of his accomplishments include being named one of Oklahoma’s Top 40 under 40 professionals and Entrepreneur of the Year for Creek County, as well as serving as president of Sapulpa’s Chamber of Commerce. The kicker? Rep. Leewright was dyslexic. He is also an accomplished musician, playing all sorts of brass instruments, as well as bass guitar. If a guy who struggled with dyslexia in elementary and middle school can rise to become a solid voice for conservative principles in a state legislature, then we as “average people” can certainly make a difference!
This world needs a generation of young people who are committed to their Maker now more than ever. It doesn’t need stars, only soldiers; not talent, but commitment; not energy, but determination to impact this world for Chirst. YOU are a perfect candidate! As I mentioned earlier, the scope of your impact is as broad as Christ, working through you, will make it to be; and believe me, His scope is infinite!
I think you get the point — you don’t have to possess extraordinary talent or exceptional intelligence to do big things. You are not effective because of who you are; contrariwise, you are effective because of Who is in you. You MUST answer the call of duty and humbly accept your commission.
Truth No. 2:
In no way is your effectiveness in the fight for liberty curtailed by you being younger than eighteen. You don’t have to be “old enough”, because, if you really want to make a difference, there is no such thing as “old enough”. You still have a mouth for God to speak through, hands for Christ to work through, a heart for God to love through, feet for the Holy Spirit to lead through His word, ears for The Lord to speak to, and a mind to digest His words through. You must abandon every idea of uselessness, based on age, that might plague your mind.
It’s easy to feel that political effectiveness is limited by age, but, contrary to what pop culture states, you are a full-blown person. Pop culture would have us believe that we are “teenagers,” “boys,” or “girls,” something in between childhood and full adulthood. “They’re just kids”, they say. This is a view that might make us feel special, but it actually hinders our effectiveness. If you view yourself as something less than an adult, you will not feel prepared to enter the ring of political activism. I want you, here and now, to embrace a bigger outlook on life: you are an adult. Adults are perfectly capable of identifying and solving problems, and so are you. I’m not advocating some heightened self-esteem, but if you view yourself as an adult, instead of something less, then you will feel that you are a valid participant in the fight for liberty. I am also most certainly NOT saying that you are exact equals with your parents, or even your legislators. They have more wisdom gained by the experience of years. They are still the authority. One day, when you are a taxpayer, you will be one of your legislators’ employers, but until then, I want you to think of it this way: a private in the army does not have as many privileges as an officer, but he is no less a soldier. He still answers to superiors, but he is no less a soldier. One day he may advance to command the men he was once answerable to, but until then, he is a dutiful soldier. You are still accountable to your parents, and you are always obliged to respect your elders, but YOU ARE NO LESS A SOLDIER!!! You may one day advance to hold public office, but in the meantime, you must faithfully execute your duties AS A SOLDIER! You are still a citizen of the United States of America. Liberty belongs to you, and it is, therefore, your responsibility to fight for it.
NOW is the “right time” for action. I have seen young people waste away their teenage years chasing teenage fun, teenage activities, teenage work, and teenage relationships. The result? Several years of wasted energy with no benefit to others, several years of meaningless stimulation with no benefit to the mind, several years spent fostering a poor work ethic with no training in long-term occupational or character requirements, and several years of wasted emotional relationships with a huge detriment to the young person’s future marriage. God wants you to enlist in His ranks NOW, not someday when you feel like it, or when you are “old enough.”
Here are a few stories for your consideration:
Once upon a time, there was a nation that was at war. (I know, that’s not a very romantic way to begin a story, since people are always at war.) This nation’s enemy had a champion who had never been defeated. Day after day, he would call out to them for a man to fight him, defying their God. This man was a giant — almost ten feet tall — and he was armed to the teeth with the finest, heaviest weaponry of his day. One day, a young man came to bring his older brothers, who were engaged in the standoff with the giant, some food from their father. When he heard the man’s open defiance of the living God, he was filled with righteous indignation, and he chided his brothers and their comrades for their lack of courage. But, he wasn’t all bark and no bite; the young man seemed determined to fight the giant. The king of the nation I’ve been telling you about sent for him, and tried to dissuade him from what seemed to be a rash act. The young man simply recounted his God’s faithfulness, and assured him that he would be victorious through that God. He refused to don the Kings armor, and instead gathered five smooth, round river stones and prepared his sling. He went out to meet the giant, who openly mocked him, and then gave quite a speech. He then took up his sling, and landed a stone in the forehead of the giant, chopping off his head to finish the brave deed. The giant: Goliath of Gath. The young man: David, future King of Israel.
Many years later, Israel was in a mess. It had a wicked, idolatrous king for it’s ruler, and it’s people and religious leaders had also become perverted. Finally, the king’s own servants had had enough of him, so they killed him. Naturally, his son advanced to the throne. In the course of his reign, the new king radically reformed the government by humbling himself before God and reinstating God’s law as the governing document of his kingdom. The land enjoyed peace and prosperity for the duration of his reign. This king also happened to be a mere eight years old when he took the throne! His name was Josiah, King of Israel (2 Kings 21).
My next story is also set in Israel, and the nation had again become very immoral. This time, however, the principle problem was not that the king had openly served a false god, but rather, that true religion had been twisted. The religious leaders had begun citing useless tradition and meaningless works as the means of salvation. One day, a young man of twelve years was in Jerusalem for a feast, and began conversing with some very knowledgeable men. Everyone marveled at his maturity and understanding. After all, this young man was only the son of a carpenter. He had no impressive education to boast of and no advanced religious training. This man was Jesus, the King of kings, sent by God, his Father and equal, to be the perfect ransom for sinners (Luke 2:40-51).
None of these men waited around for adulthood to come; rather, they went to it. The idea of describing an eight, twelve, or sixteen year old as a man might sound a bit outrageous, but truly, maturity is not proportional to age. Of course, we are not God. Will never be perfect, as Jesus was. However, he lives in us, and has sent the Holy Spirit to give us the words to speak. David did not possess unparalleled strength, and Josiah did not possess supernatural wisdom. They simply trusted God and obeyed His commands. Jesus was a humble servant, speaking only the words of His Heavenly Father. We can approach the leaders of our day with the same confidence in God’s power that these men had. Young people CAN do big things for God. Please forgive this extenuated explanation; I cannot overstate the viability of young activism.
I hope you can see from these examples that age is an obstacle which is easily circumvented. There is ample opportunity for you to make a difference outside of voting. And if you realize that there is something you can do, you are obliged to follow through and do it. As Dietrich Bonhoeffer said, “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”
Truth No. 3:
Morals without Christ will never help this country. If men’s hearts remain unchanged, no amount of legislation will improve the culture. To sweep Christ under the rug is to disregard the very author of liberty. You must refuse every temptation to privatize your faith; this world needs Christ infinitely more than it needs liberty. Turn a nation’s focus to Christ, and liberty will come.
There is no denying that discussions of God, who He is, what his requirements of man are, and how he deals with immorality have reached the pinnacle of controversy. In addition, with the advent of moral relativism, it is often very difficult to establish a general foundation for logical determination of moral right and wrong. These things have all contributed to a very convoluted intellectual situation, and thus, mentioning God’s name can be a frightening prospect.
With all these obstacles, it is imperative that we re-establish the basis for morality as found in Jesus Christ and fight for a return to biblical truth.
As Christians — followers of Jesus Christ — we must centralize God in everything we do. After all, “the chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy him forever” (The Shorter Catechism). How can we fully glorify Him if we relegate Him to the private sector, where He will be forgotten by a world that needs Him desperately. We must keep Christ as the central figure of all of our political efforts.
Consider for a moment the gift which we have been given through salvation: freedom from sin (Galatians 5:1). As I said earlier, this is the pinnacle of liberty. As Christians, we know that, were all earthly freedom to be taken from us, our souls would still be free. In addition, we believe that God is the basis of morality. And now, let me ask, “Can morality and justice really be expected from unsaved persons?” Indeed, a non-Christian has, by definition, rejected God, Who is the Author of liberty, the supreme, righteous Judge of the world, and the basis of morality. In the end, injustice and oppression will arise from the selfish lusts of the flesh.
If we want liberty to endure, then we must labor to return Christ to the center of the culture, as He was in the days of the founding fathers and framers of the Constitution. Without Him, our culture will be one of selfishness and pride; with Him, men will recognize the rights endowed by God to their fellow man.
Now, as far as others blowing you off is concerned, don’t worry about it. Speak the truth in love, and God will take care of the rest. It may be that God will use your words to prick their hearts and show them the truth. As the Benham brothers put it, “take care of God’s stuff, and he will handle yours.” Remember the words of General Robert E. Lee: “Duty is ours; the consequences are God’s.” Which would you rather do: let those you talk to know that God is the basis of your beliefs and point them to the Author of truth, or, for fear of confrontation, leave God out of the equation, thereby ensuring their ignorance of Him? I want you to think again in terms of a soldier: if you are fighting for a certain army in a certain war, would it be beneficial to your side to become a neutral party? Or should you, rather, fight boldly with your comrades?
I sense no ambiguity in the command, “speak the truth in love.” In every situation, and regardless of your audience, lovingly share truth with Christ as the focal point.
In addition to all these things, there is something else to consider. A common misconception that has circulated rather quickly states that the founding fathers were, largely, atheists, agnostics, and desists. This could not be further from the truth.
In order to effectively fight for a return to traditional American values and government, we need to understand what the founders really thought about religion and God’s relevance to government. Here are a few quotes from the founders:
Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.
— Benjamin Franklin
Our constitution was made for a moral people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.
— John Adams
The sum of all is, if we would most truly enjoy the gift of Heaven, let us become a virtuous people; then shall we both deserve and enjoy it. While, on the other hand, if we are universally vicious and debauched in our manners, though the face of our Constitution bear the face of the most exalted freedom, we shall be the most abject slaves.
— Samuel Adams
Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and cherish them… Let it simply be asked, where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of moral and religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instruments of investigation in the courts of justice?
— George Washington, Farewell Address
So, according to America’s greatest general, religion is an “indispensable support” of liberty. But just which religion is General Washington speaking of? Here, again, is Mr. Franklin, this time speaking before the delegates of the Constitutional Convention, to clarify what he and others meant by the word, “religion”:
“In this situation of this Assembly, groping, as it were, to find political truth, and scarcely able to distinguish it when presented to us, how has it happened, Sir, that we have not hitherto once thought of humbly applying to the Father of lights to illuminate our understandings? In the beginning of the conquest with Great Britain, when we were sensible of danger, we had daily prayer in this room for the divine protection. Our prayers, Sir, were graciously answered. All of us who engaged in the struggle must have observed frequent instances of a superintending providence in our favor. To that kind providence we owe this happy opportunity of consulting in peace on the means of establishing our future national felicity. And have we now forgotten that powerful friend? or do we imagine that we no longer need His assistance? I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth: that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the sacred writings, that, “except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it.” I firmly believe this; and I also believe that without His concurring aid, we shall succeed in this political building no better than the Builders of Babel: we shall be divided by our little partial local interests; our projects will become confounded, and we ourselves shall become a reproach and a byword down to future ages. And what is worse, mankind may hereafter from this unfortunate instance, despair of establishing Governments by Human wisdom and leave it to chance, war, and conquest.”
Mr. Franklin then moved that prayers be offered as the initiation of the proceedings of the convention every morning thereafter, and that a local pastor should “officiate in that service.”
This is truly remarkable. Here we have one of the greatest American statesmen and philosophers testifying to the faithfulness of God, and recommending that prayer be the first activity of each day of the Constitutional Convention. In our day, jaded and mislead politicians would not dare recommend such a thing at even a minor governmental proceeding, let alone one so decisive as the Constitutional Convention! I could give you many other quotes like the one above. How far we have come! But, my point is not to lament our moral decline, so I will digress.
What I want you to take away from these quotes is this: our Nation only became free and prosperous because of God’s favor on the early Americans, who both petitioned and honored Him for all their success. Throughout history, those who have honored God with their lives and governments have been endowed with God’s blessings. America is no exception to this rule.
It is unthinkable to assume that America, having sprung from such a fertile bed of Christianity, would be able to thrive without being continually watered by Christian principle. Insomuch as we attempt to remove God from the public arena for the sake of political expediency, we are despising our Nation’s beginnings and furthering the downfall of America. To eradicate God from the public arena is to sentence America to death. To subvert God beneath a guise of political correct rhetoric is to destroy the foundation upon which this great nation was built.
When seeking to bring about a return to the liberty that our forefathers procured for us, we must ask ourselves, “How did they obtain liberty? Who did they rely on to win their battles and give them wisdom — a man, or God?” We can see from the above quotes that God was their source of strength. He must be ours as well, if we hope to ever restore a sense of virtue and liberty in America. Please do not allow yourself to be persuaded into thinking that you will “get farther with people” by ignoring the Author of liberty.
Moreover, the problems that we face in America today are exclusively rooted in our forgetfulness of God. The gross sexual immorality and violence that has come to nearly define our culture reflects our willful ignorance of God’s laws concerning fornication and adultery. The excessive use of illicit drugs and alcohol is indicative of our greed and disregard for God’s laws concerning covetousness, as well as a reliance on the material for supposed joy and happiness. The profligate spending of the government for its own expansion is telling of our pride and desire for power. The open murder of children in the womb shows clearly our lack of love and compassion for our fellow human beings and disregard for God’s laws concerning murder. And the whole moral scene in America exposes our general denial of God and His authority.
At the end of the day, the battle for liberty is one of worldviews — biblical against anti biblical, Christocentric against anthropocentric, life against death. Jesus died on the cross to set us free (Galatians 5:1), and wants His creation to live a life marked by the love which He showed us, serving Him and loving our fellow man. Satan wants to enslave us to sin. In a perfect world, none of the problems now facing us would even exist due to our perfect love in Christ Jesus and dedication to His service.
Therefore, we must seek to solve every problem in America with a biblical solution. It is not enough to tout love, if we neglect to publicly recognize the Author of love. It is not enough to lobby for justice, if we ignore the perfect Judge of the world. We must unashamedly fight under the banner of the Author of liberty, and implore Him to grant our efforts His blessing. We must return God to the arena of public service.
Truth No. 4
The idea that your effect is directly proportional to your fame is more of Satan’s Bologna. This is the Devil trying to tell you, in yet another way, that you’re inadequate. Remember, Christ is not inadequate, and, if He is working through you, neither are you (1 John 4:4). You do not need fame or power to talk about these issues with your family and friends. Those who are closest to you will oftentimes be the most inclined to listen to your views, provided you present those views in a loving way. You also do not need to advance your name recognition in order to influence your legislators. Most legislators want to hear from their constituents more often than they do, regardless of those constituents’ respective social statuses. Fame has no hold on impact; your community is bursting with opportunities for influence. You must reject every inclination to advance your name before the fight for liberty; it will only delay your impact.
Remember the young men I mentioned earlier? None of them sought to become famous or powerful in order to build a platform for cultural impact. Each of them was simply concerned with doing the will of his Heavenly Father. They followed where He led, and obeyed His every command. Their lives should serve as the blueprint for our work. It must be, “Christ only, always, living in me.” His glory must be the object of our efforts.
Conclusion: The Hope and The Calling
I pray that you are encouraged by what you’ve read. I pray that you’ve realized that God wants to use YOU for His wonderful, life-giving purpose. I pray that you’ve realized that there is hope.
At the end of the day, all the fears we have discussed can be summarized in one phrase: fear of failure. Somehow, we seem to think that failure is ignoble, that it is indicative of weakness. This simply isn’t true. God has a purpose and a lesson for you even in failure, and He will use the failure to shape you into a better soldier. Remember, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Roman’s 8:31). “Greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world” (1 John 4:4). “With God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26). We will never fail if we are fighting in His strength. He is the hope.
But, God never gives us hope without giving us a calling. Consider the Great Commission, given in Matthew 28:18-20:
“And Jesus answered and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and earth. Go ye, therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe whatsoever things I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.”
The hope lies in this glorious fact: Christ holds infinite power, and has chosen to be with us “to the end of the world.” This is exciting! But, now look at the calling: “go ye, therefore, and teach all nations.” God wants us to DO something with our hope. He wants us to share it with others.
You may be thinking, “Yeah, but this sounds more like evangelism, not politics.” Remember, “religion and morality are indispensable supports” of “political prosperity.” As I said earlier, freedom from sin is the highest form of liberty. Without a changed heart as the foundation for liberty, our efforts will be in vain. This battle is a spiritual one.
In case you are still thinking, “okay, I realize I can do something, I just really don’t see why I must,” it is crucial that you view the current cultural struggle in terms of a battle, with Jesus Christ as our Commander, and God the Father as our King. You are a soldier for Christ in this battle. If a soldier can save his injured comrade, but chooses not to do so, we would call him a coward, and history would record his heinous deed with the utmost derision. If there was anything he could do to save his comrade, he would be duty bound to carry it out. In the same way, the fact that we can do something is the reason why we must. If we do nothing, history will record us as cowards, traitors, and weaklings.
So, it’s time to get off the bench and into the game. It’s time to get on fire for God and His purposes. It’s time to get passionate about impacting our culture for Christ. It’s time to “teach all nations.” It’s time to take off the gloves. Its time to go to war with the Father of lies. It’s time to dispel the lies, and FIGHT FOR LIBERTY!