WHO DO YOU TRUST?
Although at different points in our history the phrase had been incorporated into hymns and patriotic songs, “In God We Trust” was voted into law as the official motto of the United States in 1956 because of the ominous threat of atheistic Communism during the Cold War at mid-20th century. It was a unanimous Joint Resolution of the 84th Congress, signed by President Dwight Eisenhower. It declared that as our national motto, the words must appear on all American currency, both paper and coin. Shortly after, these words were placed above the dais in the House chamber (between the clock and flag).
What would move a nation with such bold authority as to inscribe on its currency, “In God We Trust”? No mystery—this was the working power of God inspiring a nation that God is the sole source of their revenue. You can’t find a dollar without finding God. This currency penetrates the nation where the Bible is avoided or even refused, with resounding testimony of a whole nation: “In God We Trust”! All we have belongs to God. How humbling a way for a nation to honor its Creator.
All of that is well and good—and positive. On this 4th of July, we need to come to grips with how pervasive in our land is the concept of a national civil religion.
If America is to thrive, it will be by divine grace and reclamation of all of us to the profound, pervasive, Spirit-driven joy and goodness for the redeeming reign of God’s sovereignty that goes beyond boundaries and boisterous rhetoric.
Blessed and happy Fourth of July,