Before the service started in church last week the music pastor played “Proud to be an American”. I thought it was strange because it was a country/western type song and I think it has been used in Chevy or Ford truck commercials. I figured that perhaps he was just warming up before the service or something but by the time the service started everyone had drifted into the sanctuary and when the number was finished they all clapped enthusiastically. The congregation’s response seemed way out-of-place to me. What nonsense is this that we would give accolades to a song about America when we don’t seem to do anything of the sort for God when we sing a hymn? I was really astonished that the next song was “God Bless America”. Since when, I wondered, did being proud of being an American and our country take precedence over loving God? I finally figured out that we were doing these songs because independence day weekend was coming up.
That understanding helped put things in perspective but the question of priorities continues to trouble me. There are times when Christians seem to place America and the Constitution above the Bible. There is a new study Bible out called the Patriot’s Bible. That combination can only have a corrupting influence on interpretation/application and makes me uneasy. When Jesus walked among men during His earthly ministry I don’t think He would have been quick to endorse the Zealot’s Torah.