Today’s society confronts us with many choices, often unpleasant. A lot of them relate to our country’s government. But because most social studies and history courses have been on the back burner for years, today’s adults are unaware of how our government works and ignore the vitally important issues of the day.
When I was a high school student, we were required to take history. I thought, “What does this have to do with my life now? I want to study something that will help me NOW!” But I did take those courses and later, in college, elected to take a Western American history minor.
Today, in many of our public schools and colleges, history has been minimized, revised, or rewritten to match the liberal and socialistic beliefs of radical leftists. CRT (Critical Race Theory) is taught in many states but outlawed in others. Some current histories portray our country’s founders as greedy racists and hypocrites. Few take the time to find out why our founding fathers made the decisions they did while they formed the freest and most democratic country in the world. America is so free and full of opportunity that people of all races, skin colors, cultures, and backgrounds have given up everything just to come to this country for centuries. And all of this was long before the current border crisis in America.
A Harvard professor, George Santayana, said, “Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it.” But someone else, perhaps a little wiser, made the statement history shows that both those who do not learn history and those who do know history are doomed to repeat it.
These somewhat contradictory statements illustrate that you can be an avid student of history and not learn from it – because you don’t heed the lessons and warnings of history.
This was demonstrated repeatedly in the book of Judges. After the death of Joshua, Judges 2:10 states. “There arose another generation after them, which knew not the Lord, nor yet the works which he had done for Israel.” In Judges 8:34, “And the children of Israel remembered not the LORD their God, who had delivered them out of the hands of all their enemies on every side:” Finally, the book of Judges is summarized in 21:25, “In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.”
These generations had failed to obey God by teaching and living the commands of God. Deuteronomy 6:4-6, 12: “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” “Then beware lest thou forget the LORD, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.”
This command is emphasized later in Psalm 78:4-8 “We will not hide them from their children, shewing to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done. For he established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers, that they should make them known to their children: That the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children: That they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments: And might not be as their fathers, a stubborn and rebellious generation; a generation that set not their heart aright, and whose spirit was not stedfast with God.”
Please note that these commands were not given to the church or public, private, or Christian schools but to the parents. Parents, you are the ones designated by God to teach the Word of God to your children and then live the life before them.
Several years ago, I read an article about how we have failed our youth. We’ve taught them all the latest praise songs, entertained them with famous singers, kept them busy with youth activities, taken them on trips, and fed them countless times. We’ve pampered them and given them what they want, but we have not taught them the truths of the Bible. And when they graduate from high school, most leave the church, with only a few returning years later. The article urged pastors and workers to make teaching the Word of God the most prominent feature of the local church. Accompanying the teaching should be the godly lives of the teachers.
In Bible times and through the succeeding generations since then, godly parents taught their children in the home without any of the aids and props we use today. And up until the time of the printing press, most did not have even a copy of the Bible. The adults listened, digested, and memorized as they learned from teachers. Then, they came home and taught their children.
This teaching included relating the amazing acts of deliverance, provision, and protection that God did for Israel. It contained the stories of the life of Jesus, His death, burial, and resurrection, and the marvelous story of the early church in the book of Acts and throughout the New Testament. All the Old and New Testament saints would tell their personal stories of how they came to know the Lord and what He had done for them. It is a living history continuing in the life of believers today as they teach their children.
Are you giving heed to your country’s history, Bible history, and your personal spiritual history?