Exodus 5:1 “And afterward Moses and Aaron went in, and told Pharaoh, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness.”
Exodus 9:1 “Then the LORD said unto Moses, Go in unto Pharaoh, and tell him, Thus saith the LORD God of the Hebrews, Let my people go, that they may serve me.”
Exodus 13:21-22 “And the LORD went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night: He took not away the pillar of the cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people.”
As I close out this series on the spiritual basis of our Declaration of Independence, there is a closely-related historical element that is worth mentioning. On July 4th, 1776, in addition to unanimously adopting the Declaration, the Continental Congress formed a committee consisting of Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and John Adams to design the seal of our newly declared independent nation. Their designs were ultimately tabled, with a completely new design finally adopted in 1782.
Yet, their drafts are powerfully revealing as to the Biblically-minded thoughts that dominated the founder’s motivations and perspectives about independence.
Franklin’s draft displayed images of Moses and God’s people in safety on the far side of the Red Sea, with Pharaoh and his men being overwhelmed by the waters. A pillar of fire is central to this design, designating the source of power and strength for God’s people. His recommended motto: Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God.
Jefferson created a draft with a similar theme, displaying the children of Israel in the Wilderness. In his depiction, they were led by a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night.
Our founders saw their departure from British rule as an analogue to the Israelites flight from Egypt. Their deliverance and ultimate success would be guided by God’s direction, day and night. It was their ultimate source of wisdom and power.
Our ultimate success today depends upon the same!
PLEASE PRAY FOR AMERICAN CHRISTIANS TO FOLLOW GOD’S PILLARS OF GUIDANCE AT ALL TIMES. Our founders trusted the Lord’s leadership in the creation of our great nation. Their power in rebellion must be ours in every element of our public and private activity – obedience to God. It is the pillar of our success!