He therefore let you be afflicted with hunger, and then fed you with manna, a food unknown to you and your fathers, in order to show you that not by bread alone does one live, but by every word that comes forth from the mouth of the LORD.

Yesterday we celebrated two significant solemnities – one that defines the Church and one that defines the Country.  Yesterday, in the Church, we celebrated Corpus Christi Sunday – the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ; our Country also celebrated Flag Day.

On June 14, 1777, the Second Continental Congress took a break from writing the Articles of Confederation and passed a resolution stating that “the flag of the United States be 13 stripes, alternate red and white,” and that “the union be 13 stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.”

So, we have the age old question – is it right to combine the “Church and the State”.  Let me post for you an excerpt from an article that my wife sent me from a website that is put together by William J. Federer.  Take a minute to read and reflect on the message being given to us in this article.

That for the sins of a people God may suffer the best government to be corrupted, or entirely dissolved …
Nothing but a general reformation can give ground to hope that the public happiness will be restored.”
“The kingdom of Israel was brought to destruction, because its iniquities were full … because there remained no hope of reformation …
Their government degenerated in proportion as their vices increased, till few faithful men were left in any public offices …
… At length, when they were delivered up for seventy years into the hands of the king of Babylon, scarcely any remains of their original excellent civil polity appeared among them …”
“When a government is in its prime … virtue prevails — every thing is managed with justice, prudence, and frugality …
But vice will increase with the riches and glory of an empire;
and this gradually tends to corrupt the constitution, and in time bring on its dissolution …
… This may be considered not only as the natural effect of vice, but a righteous judgment of heaven,
especially upon a nation which has been favored with the blessing of religion and liberty, and is guilty of undervaluing them;
and eagerly going into the gratification of every lust …”
“They were a sinful nation … who had forsaken the Lord; and provoked the Holy One of Israel to anger …
Their princes were rebellious against God … seizing the property of the subjects … and robbing the public treasury.
Every one loved gifts … they were influenced in every thing by bribery … they even justified and encouraged the murder of innocent persons to support their lawless power …
… And God, in righteous judgment, left them to run into all this excess of vice to their own destruction, because they had forsaken Him …
The public greatly suffered, and the people groaned, and wished for better rulers and better management.
… But in vain they hoped for a change …
when the spirit of religion was gone, and the infection of vice was become universal …
The whole body being so corrupted, there could be no rational prospect of any great reformation in the state, but rather of its ruin …”
“We must keep our eyes fixed on the supreme government of the ETERNAL KING, as directing all events …
… Yet if a general reformation of religion and morals had taken place, and they had turned to God from all their sins —
if they had again recovered the true spirit of their religion, God, by the gracious interpositions of His providence, would soon have found out methods to restore the former virtue of the state, and again have given them men of wisdom and integrity …
… We have rebelled against God.
We have lost the true spirit of Christianity, though we retain the outward profession and form of it.
We have neglected … the glorious Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ and His holy commands and institutions …
Their hearts are far from Him.
By many, the Gospel is corrupted into a superficial system of moral philosophy, little better than ancient Platonism …”
“Let us repent and implore the divine mercy. Let us amend our ways and our doings, reform everything that has been provoking the Most High and thus endeavor to obtain the gracious interpositions of Providence for our deliverance …
… May the Lord hear us in this day of trouble … ‘
We will rejoice in His salvation, and in the name of our God, we will set up our banners! …
Wherefore is all this evil upon us? Is it not because we have forsaken the Lord?
Can we say we are innocent of crimes against God?
No, surely it becomes us to humble ourselves under His mighty hand, that He may exalt us in due time …
… If God be for us, who can be against us?
The enemy has reproached us for calling on His name and professing our trust in Him.
They have made a mock of our solemn fasts and every appearance of serious Christianity in the land …
May our land be purged from all its sins!
Then the Lord will be our refuge and our strength, a very present help in trouble, and we will have no reason to be afraid, though thousands of enemies set themselves against us round about.”
What a beautiful homily I received yesterday on the occasion that Corpus Christi and Flag Day were honored on the same day.  Whoever penned that was truly moved by all the turmoil going on in America today.  Racism, rioting, a Country divided and a Country that gives every indication to be moving away from God and the true message of God, which is to love all of His creation.  Its seems at this point in our history, we don’t believe that all men are created equal or that we are all created His image and likeness.  If you would like to get a hold of this man who wrote this “homily”, it may take a little effort because he does not have an email address, a twitter account or even a snail mail address.  The man is no longer with us here on earth.  This homily was given to the Massachusetts Provincial Congress six weeks after the Battles of Lexington and Concord by Harvard President Samuel Langdon.  It brings to mind again the statement, those who fail to understand history are doomed to repeat it.
Do something great for our Lord today – pray that it doesn’t take another 40 years of wandering in our proverbial dessert to know that without God as our stronghold, we who are a stiff-necked nation will remain divided and will eventually fail – another lesson from history that we must understand.  Only in God will my soul be at rest; only in God will our Nation be at peace.
God’s will, not mine, be done.
Be not afraid; just have faith.
Jesus, I trust in You.
He must increase; I must decrease.
Lord, if You wish, You can make me clean.
But you man of God chose righteousness, devotion, faith, love, patience and gentleness.  Compete well for the faith.
Eternal God, in whom mercy is endless and the treasury of compassion – inexhaustible, look kindly upon us and increase Your mercy in us so that in difficult moments we may note despair nor become despondent but with great confidence, submit ourselves to Your holy will, which is Love and Mercy itself.
And one more prayer to join in unity with the Diocese of Allentown in an effort to end racism…
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One thought on “He therefore let you be afflicted with hunger, and then fed you with manna, a food unknown to you and your fathers, in order to show you that not by bread alone does one live, but by every word that comes forth from the mouth of the LORD.

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