To assess the success or failure of America or any nation, there must be a benchmark, or a standard against which to measure performance. Inasmuch as America is a Christian nation, that benchmark should be the Bible.
There will be those who argue that the Bible focused initially on the nation of Israel and then the ‘church’ and thereby limited it’s applicability to those specific segments of mankind.
However, that viewpoint is myopic. Even though the Bible, especially the Old Testament, is largely the history of Israel, the majority of that history was written before it occurred. The amazing prophetic accuracy of Israel’s pre-written history should authenticate the Bible for all segments of mankind throughout the world.
The 66 individual ‘books’ in the Bible were written over a period spanning 1500 years by an estimated 40 inspired writers. The Bible outlines the detailed process which instructs mankind how to regain the innocence lost in the Garden of Eden. And while God originally revealed His standard of righteousness and justice to national Israel, they in turn were delegated to be the living example for all nations.
“For you are a holy people to the LORD your God; the Lord your God has chosen you to be a people for Himself, a special treasure above all the peoples on the face of the earth…Therefore know that the LORD your God, His is God…and He repays those who hate Him to their face, to destroy them. He will not be slack with him who hates Him…Therefore you shall keep the commandment, the statutes, and the judgments which I command you today…” Deuteronomy 7:6-11
The nation of Israel was chosen to be ‘a special treasure above all the peoples on the face of the earth’. That truth prevails yet today and even though Israel has ‘forgotten’ their God, His unconditional covenant with Abraham through his descendents Isaac and Jacob will be fulfilled in His time and Israel will once again be the light of all nations. Notice further that God will deal justly with those who ‘hate’ Him.
“Now, O Israel, listen to the statutes and the judgments which I teach you to observe…Therefore be careful to observe them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples who will hear all these statutes, and say, ‘Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.’” Deuteronomy 4:1, 5-6
Then Moses stressed that the Israelites were not to alter the instructions.
“You shall not add to the word which I command you, nor take from it…” Deuteronomy 4:2
Even before Israel asked for a king to rule over them, God spoke through Moses and outlined specific instructions for their future king.
“Also it shall be, when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, that he shall write for himself a copy of this law in a book, from the one before the priests, the Levites and it shall be with him, and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the LORD his God and be careful to observe all the words of this law and these statutes, that his heart may not be lifted above his brethren, that he may not turn aside from the commandment…” Deuteronomy 17:16-20
Note that the king was to govern by the exact same law used by the priests and Levites. No provision is made for a separate standard of justice for their religion versus their ‘state’. Furthermore, the king was to study the law continuously so that he would know how to rule righteously and justly so as not to pervert the law. These were the same instructions given to the judges, priests, and all other officials.
“You shall appoint judges and officials in all your towns…You shall not pervert justice; you shall not show partiality, nor take a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and twists the words of the righteous.” Deuteronomy 16:18-19
Approximately seven centuries later the Prophet Isaiah reaffirmed the unending applicability of God’s laws and oracles.
“The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever.” Isaiah 40:8