John Hagee - How Free Is Freedom?
Freedom isn't free. Fifty-six men gathered in the Pennsylvania state house to draw up "The declaration of independence". It was a fortunate hour in our nation's history, one of the those rare occasions when we had greatness to spare. These 56 men had something to lose. They gave birth to our freedom at great sacrifice. I say that because historical revisionists are now trying to paint these founding fathers as poor, hungry, wild-eyed rebels with nothing to lose. That is nothing but a lie. I want you to hear this, America. We are no longer teaching American history in our schools. A nation that forgets its history cannot know its future. We must bring back, to our public schools, an awareness of the truth of the God we serve, of the Bible we believe, and "The constitution of the United States".
Of our founding fathers, 24 were outstanding lawyers. Nine were wealthy. Twenty-three were all men of distinction, who had a great deal to lose. They pledged to each other, our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor. In the theatre of your mind, can you possibly imagine members of the U.S. Congress making their pledge to the American people? Thomas Jefferson finished a draft of "The declaration of independence" in 17 days. Congress adopted it on July 4, 1776. "The declaration of independence" said, we are free, king George, from taxation without representation. They had a Boston tea party, listen, because the tax on tea was raised three Pennies per bag. A three percent tax hike started the American revolution.
Politicians in Washington are talking about taxing you, the American people, 70 percent of what you make. We should stand up and resist that. The founding fathers' prospect if they won the war, there would be years of hardship in the struggling nation. If they lost the war, they would be hung. King George says he would hang every one of the founding fathers. They signed with ink and they paid with their blood. They fought, they bled, they gave their fortunes, and they died for our freedom. What happened to those 56 men? Those 56 men were men of distinction. Carter Braxton of Virginia was a wealthy plantation owner and trader. He saw his ships swept from the seven seas. To pay his debt, he lost his home, he lost all of his properties, and he died in rags. He pledged his life, his fortune and his sacred honor. He kept his honor. He lost his fortune, he lost his life for your freedom and for mine.
Thomas McKean of Delaware was so harassed by the British: he was forced to move his family five times in five months. He served congress without pay. Can you imagine that? His family lived in poverty and in hiding. British vandals looted all the properties of Ellery, Clymer, hall, Gwinnett, Walton, Heyward, Rutledge and Middleton. Thomas Nelson, Jr. of Virginia of whom Thomas Nelson publishing company is named presently in America, Thomas Nelson, Jr. raised two million dollars on his own signature (and two million dollars then was a fortune) to provision our fighting troops. After the war, he personally paid back all of the loans. It wiped out all of his estate. He was never reimbursed by our government.
In the final battle of Yorktown, Nelson urged George Washington to fire on his own home, because general Cornwallis, who was the head of the British army, was using his home for headquarters. And Nelson said, "Blow it up". And George Washington did. Nelson died bankrupt and was buried in an unmarked grave. Thomas Nelson, Jr. pledged his life, his fortune and his sacred honor for our freedom. John Hart was driven by the British from his wife's side while she was dying on her death bed. Their 13 children fled in all 13 directions for their lives. His fields and his gristmills were torn apart. For more than a year, he lived in the forest and in caves with his 13 children. He returned home after the war to find his wife dead, his children gone, his properties destroyed. He died a few weeks later with a broken heart. He pledged his life, his fortune and his sacred honor.
Point: these 56 men paid a price for liberty and freedom. They were not poor, hungry, wild-eyed pirates in desperation. They were men of means, who enjoyed luxury and the ease of their own personal lives. And they had much to lose, and they gave it up freely for our freedom. Freedom was born July 4, 1776, but it was paid for in the blood, sweat and tears of the founding fathers. Today, I hear an echo coming from valley forge. I see a patriot standing in the snow. His head is bandaged with a blood-soaked bandage. He says to our congregation and to America, "I stood in snow without shoes to give you the right to vote, and you stayed home on election day because the weather was bad. I left my family destitute so that you could have the freedom of speech. And you remain silent because you're afraid it might be bad for business. I orphaned my children to give you a government to serve you. And through your neglect, you have permitted that government to become the master of your children".
America was born in covenant with God. The Bible says, "If the foundations are destroyed, what can the righteous do"? Listen to this. Pericles, he built a civilization based on culture. It failed. Caesar built a civilization based on power. Rome collapsed. It failed. Hitler built a civilization based on racial purity. It failed: thank God. When our forefathers landed at Plymouth rock, they knelt on the shores and they thanked God for this land. They built the United States of America on the Bible at Plymouth rock. When the continental congress came to an impasse, Benjamin Franklin called upon the members of congress to fall on their knees and to ask for God's guidance. I wonder what would happen if our president was to walk into congress tomorrow morning and ask them to fall on their knees to seek God's guidance for America. I wonder.
Edward Gibbon wrote his masterpiece, "The decline and fall of the Roman Empire". Let's see if you see America in any of these. One, the rapid increase of divorce. We have that. Two, the belittling of the sanctity of the home, the father's abandonment of their children. In the Roman Empire, if a father had a daughter that he did not want, he would put the daughter on the porch and pimps would pick her up and raise her to become a prostitute. And while we turn our nose up at that, America right now has sex trafficking that is the embarrassment of the world. We are no better. Thirdly, higher and higher taxes with public money being wasted. Does that remind you of anything lately?
Four, a mad craze for pleasure, which became increasingly exciting and brutal. This was the Roman gladiators in the coliseum. America's gladiators is professional football. When these gladiators play at high noon, the first service is empty. The fifth thing, gigantic armaments for the war where the nation decayed internally. Six, decline of faith in God that became mere form, faith in God. How many politicians have you heard say, "I'm a person of faith"? That's the most meaningless statement on the planet. Faith in what? Faith in yourself? Faith in power? Faith in money? Faith in lust? What do you have faith in? When you have faith in Christ, now you have faith in the solid rock.
Here is God's plan to take America back, saint Paul's plan for those who trust in God. 1 Timothy 2 says, quote, "I exhort that first of all supplications, prayers and intercessions... Be made for all men: for kings", that, for us, would be presidents and congress, "Who are in authority". First of all, top priority is to pray. Why? Because those in authority pass laws that affect every area of your lives and the lives of your children. We pray for those who are in authority. They pass laws that either control or enhance your freedom: that either control your children and your future, or bless your future. Prayer is not an option. Prayer is a must for the survival of our nation. "When the wicked rule," the Bible said, "The people mourn. And when the righteous rule, people rejoice".
There's not much rejoicing in America right now. Our prayer is, God, remove the wicked from office. Expose the corrupt. Let the light of truth strip the rich and powerful naked before God and man. Hallelujah. Then after you pray, go vote and vote the Bible. Then America will become a different nation. Here's an exciting Bible fact. America's leaders are controlled by God. Are you shocked? The Bible says, "All power is from God". Romans 13:1, "There is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God". That means all politicians, judges, policemen, kings are servants of God. The question is: why doesn't God do a better job in who he picks?
Consider Daniel and Nebuchadnezzar. The point is that all power rests with God. Nebuchadnezzar had a dream and he forgot it. Prima facie evidence that when you go to work in government, the first thing to go is your mind. Nebuchadnezzar commanded that his witchcraft corps tell him the dream that he had and what did it mean. He threatened to kill everyone in his kingdom who were in the witchcraft business. And he threw that blanket over Daniel. Daniel said, give me and my prayer group time to pray about it, and the God whom we serve will give us the answer. They prayed and God revealed both the dream and the interpretation.
Think about that. Listen to Daniel's prayer of thanksgiving in Daniel 2:20, quote, "Blessed be the name of God forever...For he removes kings and he establishes kings". That is as true today as it was then. Who removes kings? God. Who establishes kings? God. Proverbs 21:1: the king's heart is like channels of water. He turns it wherever he wishes it to go. Psalm 75:6: for promotion comes not from the east, nor the west, nor from the south. But God is the judge: he puts one up, and he puts another down. Who promotes to the White House? God. America is not in the hands of politicians. These politicians are in the hands of a living God. And God is saying to the church, what is your pleasure? What is it you want to do? Make it known to me in prayer.
I challenge every Christian under the sound of my voice. From now until the next election, you pray that God gives us righteous leadership. Can we take America back? Yes, we can. One heart at a time, one home at a time, one church at a time, one state at a time, one prayer at a time, we can prevail! Why? Because Jesus said to his disciples, "I give you all authority". We have that authority. Luke 10: I give you the authority to tread on serpents. And some of those serpents are two-legged. Matthew 18: what you bind on earth, I will bind in heaven. But that verse makes "You" the source of action. Until you do something in prayer on the earth, God will do nothing in heaven. The initiative rests with us, not God.
What you do on the ground in prayer determines what God can do in the heavenlies. Ask, and then you shall receive. Seek, and then you will find. Authority is given to be used. And we, as the church, have it. We have the authority of his name. We have the power of his blood. We have the power of his word. Let's use it for the glory of God and the future of our church! God will hear the cry of his children. Why pray? Because God will hear the cry of his children. If that's not true, none of this is true. If our prayers do not move God, then rip every page out of your Bible. Jeremiah 33: call upon me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things that you know not. Great and mighty things your mind cannot wrap around. But I want you to pay the price in prayer.
James 4: you have not because you ask not. God is powerless to move until you pray about it. 2 Chronicles 7:14: "If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways", listen to that phrase, "And turn from their wicked ways", we're a long way from that, "Then will I hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin, and I will heal their land". America's future is not in the hands of the ungodly. It's in the hands of God's children. "If my people," that's you. That's those of you who are watching this telecast. "If my people" means people who are committed to Jesus Christ, the truth of the scripture, and a personal knowledge with Jesus Christ.
In the Bible, look at Nehemiah. One man prayed one prayer, and he changed the course of history. He's a cupbearer to king Xerxes. He hears about the destruction of Jerusalem. The gates are burned. The city is Ravished. What did he do? He didn't file for a government grant. He fell on his face before God. He wept before the only one who has all power in heaven and in earth, crying out to God for Jerusalem. This is one man praying, not the whole nation of Israel. The king asked Nehemiah, his cupbearer, came in, and he said, "Nehemiah, you look sick this morning".
Nehemiah told the king about his burden for Jerusalem. The king, who is a pagan, said, "I'll give you the money. I'll give you the timber. I'll give you the time. I'll give you the men to help you. Go to Jerusalem and rebuild the walls". One man with one prayer, and God moved the king's heart like water. One prayer reshaped world history. One prayer, one prayer. Consider the story of Hezekiah, who was attacked by the Syrian army led by Sennacherib. Here's the story. The massive armies of Assyrians, 185,000 strong, surrounded Jerusalem. Their brilliant flags of the Assyrian army rippled in the breeze around the holy city. The Assyrian army with the battering rams, the slings and the scaling ladders and the machinery of war have assembled against the gates.
The Jews looked over the walls and saw the fierce faces of the battled-hardened Assyrians, who were cold-blooded killers. They were sharpening their swords for the slaughter of the Jewish people tomorrow. Tomorrow, the battering rams would blast the gates down. The archers would blacken the sky with their arrows. They would rape the women. They would slaughter the men. They would toss the babies into the air and catch them on their swords. This is what history records. This is not my imagination. Then they would put the young Jews in chains and take them home as slaves. The Assyrian general Sennacherib mocked the God of Israel in a letter. He said, "Your God can't deliver you".
If I give you two thousand horses, can you put men on them so we can have some sport while we're killing you? That's in the Bible. Hezekiah spread the letter before God and said, look what this man is saying. God replied, "For I will defend this city". Then it happened. As the sun set and the campfire simmered in the darkness, the prayer power of one man exploded on the battlefield. It was an invasion from outer space. An angel of the Lord walked through the camp of those who mocked the God of Israel. He smote the generals in their tents. He smote the officers as they rehearsed their battle plans. He smote the rank and file as they slept in their tents.
Swiftly and suddenly, the angel of the Lord moved through the camp. The next morning when the sun came up, 185,000 dead Assyrians were laying on the ground. Why? Because one man prayed one prayer, and God destroyed the most powerful army of the face of the earth in one night. That's power. You have that kind of power. Use it! Does one prayer from one person make a difference? Absolutely.
This is a true story that came to me from Derek Prince, the believers in England just after World War II. Joseph Stalin said he was going to execute the Jews in Russia and murder them all. And he was a blood-thirsty man. Believers in England began to fast and pray for God to save the lives of the Jewish people. At the end of the 12th day, Joseph Stalin had a brain hemorrhage. Sixteen doctors worked on him and could not save him. Why? Because the prayer power of one person or a group of people has an awesome impact beyond what you can ask or imagine.
God is waiting for his church to answer this wake-up call, waiting for us to take a stand against evil with prayer and fasting. He has given to us the awesome opportunity to talk to him face to face. The veil has been ripped from top to bottom. We have power to take America back to greatness and to God. We have power to present to our children and to our grandchildren, one nation under God, with freedom and justice for all. Let's do it! Let's do it, in Jesus' name!
Can we stand? I'm going to have one prayer, the prayer for God Almighty to expose and crush the ungodly, corrupt and criminal leadership of America.
Our most gracious Heavenly Father, Creator of heaven and earth, the God who calls the stars by name and who holds the seven seas in the palms of his hand, we call on you today on behalf of the United States of America. The righteous foundations of America are under attack. Your word declares, "I have given you authority and the power to trample over all the power that the enemy possesses". The Word of God declares, "No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue that shall rise against you in judgment you shall show to be in the wrong". "For the weapons of our warfare are not physical, but they are all mighty before God to overthrow and destroy the strongholds of the ungodly". God is our refuge and strength, a very-present help in the time of trouble. The Lord is near to all of those who call upon him. But thanks be unto God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ over the enemies of God and America that seek to destroy us. Let God arise and let his enemies be scattered! In Jesus' name, we pray and ask this. Amen and amen and amen.