Straightforward Magazine

America the Beautiful, the Hated, the Isolated

A superpower in decline
Charles E. Bryce

The United States of America is renowned around the world for its beauty, freedom and the opportunity for people from all walks of life who are determined, focussed and willing to put in a hard day’s work. From sea to shimmering sea and from border to border, the endless flow of goods and services fuels a dynamic economy that produces staggering wealth for the American population. From the grandeur of its mountain ranges to the sweeping expanse of its plains, to the hustle and bustle of its metropolitan cities, this country occupies a place in history that is unique.

Beside the golden door

Millions are attracted to the shores of the U.S. every year to experience for themselves the “Promised Land” known as America. The military might of the U.S. has grown to such heights that it is now the only super power in the world, unchallenged and able to extend its political, economic and military reach to any part of the globe and on relatively short notice. Perhaps the grandest thing of all about this beauty, wealth and power is the generosity and benevolence of Americans. Wherever disaster strikes in the world, historically, America is one of the first nations on the scene to lend a helping hand. Food, clothing, medicine and know–how are dispatched quickly to friend and foe alike.

When intractable international conflicts defy solution, the U.S. is usually the first one called upon to intervene diplomatically, and if necessary militarily, to settle the matter. This action comes at great cost to the American taxpayer and even more importantly, it often means shedding the blood of U.S. soldiers in the heat of battle. But Americans will be there and do that time and time again. No other country throughout history has been more gracious and willing to help. The U.S. has even rebuilt whole nations who were our bitter enemies in protracted warfare. The Marshall Plan, developed by U.S. Secretary of State George C. Marshall, and designed to revitalize Europe after World War II, is just one example of American charity and good will. The Statue of Liberty has a famous inscription on it that reads, “ Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore, send these, the homeless, tempest–tossed to me. I lift my lamp beside the golden door.” Multiple millions of immigrants have experienced that out–stretched hand over the years, and still do to this day.

A sinful nation

Yet, in spite of billions of dollars of aid in the form of humanitarian relief and military intervention generously sent to rescue and set free people and nations, anti–Americanism is on the rise. This is clearly a case of biting the hand that feeds you. Strong negative feelings ranging from suspicion and dislike all the way to the most intense hatred, are emerging and being directed toward this country. Why is this happening? Some say it is because of the corruption, out of control immorality and repugnant sleaze found at all levels of American life. And America the beautiful certainly does have a disgustingly ugly side. The current condition of American society is aptly described in Isa. 1:3–6 which says, “The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master's crib: but Israel [the U.S.] doth not know, my people doth not consider. Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the Lord, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone away backward. Why should ye be stricken any more? Ye will revolt more and more: the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint. From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in it; but wounds, and bruises, and putrifying sores: they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither mollified with ointment.”

America is accused of exporting this rot to other countries, causing them to resent and reject us. Critics say we are imperialistic and greedy, loudly proclaiming that we are trying to colonize the world economically. Others claim that we are out to promote dependence on the U.S., thereby eventually gaining permanent world domination and control.

But are such charges factual, logical and reasonable? Every country exports or has corruption and degradation to one degree or another. Many nations forge political, economic and military alliances and treaties yet do not incur the resentment and abhorrence poured out on America for doing the same. Why? Why the groundswell of street demonstrations against the U.S. where burning the American flag, pummeling effigies of our leaders, and screaming death wishes and destruction on the United States are commonplace?

Prophesied, but why?

Thousands of years ago this passionate hatred was prophesied to happen to the descendants of Jacob, most notably, America and Britain. God’s inspired Word, the Holy Bible says, “And I will set my face against you, and ye shall be slain before your enemies: they that hate you shall reign over you; and ye shall flee when none pursueth you” (Lev. 26:17). Jeremiah wrote of a time when Jacob’s descendants woud be the butt of jokes. “All that pass by clap their hands at thee; they hiss and wag their head at the daughter of Jerusalem, saying, Is this the city that men call The perfection of beauty, The joy of the whole earth?” (Lam. 2:15).

This ill will, distrust and vilification of America, bubbling up in so many places, is generating a growing isolation of this country from the community of nations. We are now being snubbed and abandoned by a number of our allies and so–called friends. New confederations and agreements are being formed, leaving America out in the cold. The “new normal” is for our political leaders to be challenged, rebuffed and lectured at various summit meetings and gatherings of our allies—something unheard of a few short years ago. Why? This too was prophesied in God’s Word by Jeremiah, who said “thy lovers [allies] will despise thee, they will seek thy life” (Jer. 4:30). And in Jer. 30:14: “All thy lovers have forgotten thee; they seek thee not; for I have wounded thee with the wound of an enemy, with the chastisement of a cruel one, for the multitude of thine iniquity; because thy sins were increased.” All of these events will culminate with a time called “Jacob’s trouble” (Jer. 30:7). This is a prophecy for America and Britain.

But what is the root cause of this trouble? Why the violent abhorrence and isolation of America in spite of her long legacy of generosity, charity and sacrifice so freely given to so many people and nations around the globe? The answer is found in Hosea 4:6–7: “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children. As they were increased, so they sinned against me: therefore will I change their glory into shame.”

Because of our disobedience and defiance toward our Creator, we have lost contact and favor with Him. The blessings He has showered down upon us over the years are now coming to an abrupt halt, and He is no longer granting us special favor with other nations. We are adrift and alone in a world that is leaving us behind.

God’s way of life no longer drives the American way of life. His name and His commandments are being stricken from our institutions of higher learning and our hallowed halls of justice. God gave this warning of what would happen if His commandments were not respected and obeyed: “But if ye will not hearken unto me, and will not do all these commandments; and if ye shall despise my statutes, or if your soul abhor my judgments, so that ye will not do all my commandments, but that ye break my covenant: I also will do this unto you; I will even appoint over you terror…” (Lev. 26:14–16).

Public prayer and open discussions about Jesus Christ and His Word are coming under more and more heat and outright prohibition. Many churches are moving away from literal teachings of the Bible and toward diluted, twisted application of scripture. The popular line, embraced by millions of churchgoers, is that Christianity isn’t so much about actual obedience to God, but whether or not you love Him in your heart. They forget what Jesus Christ Himself said in Luke 6:46, “And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?”

America’s plunge into unbridled immorality, corruption and rejection of godly values is not going unnoticed by the Almighty Creator. Unless there is national repentance and a wholesale turning back to God and His laws, the U.S. will be hated more and more, become isolated completely and finally destroyed. We need to wake up individually and nationally or prepare for the worst, described in Amos 4:11–12: “I have overthrown some of you, as God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah, and ye were as a firebrand plucked out of the burning: yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the Lord. Therefore thus will I do unto thee, O Israel: and because I will do this unto thee, prepare to meet thy God, O Israel.”

You cannot afford to wait and hope for this whole nation to return to God. Each of us individually must return to God in order to be spared from the terrifying devastation that is surely coming. Time is of the essence because sadly, it is coming sooner rather than later on our beloved America the Beautiful.