Posted: Wednesday, July 4, 2018. 9:14 pm CST.
By Pastor Jim Duncan:
Evan X Hyde
3304 Partridge Street
Belize City, Belize
Dear Mr. Hyde,
I have enjoyed reading your newspaper and editorials for many many years, and have responded a few times before. This time I am writing in response to your editorial in the June 29 Amandala, titled “Belize or Israel: country or God?” I respectfully submit to you that for Belizeans to choose between our country and God would not only be foolhardy, but actually an impossibility. I will explain.
I certainly will never be as knowledgable about the history of Belize as you are, as I’ve only lived here for 20 years, but I do know that our Belizean constitution affirms in its preamble that “the Nation of Belize shall be founded upon principles which acknowledge the supremacy of God, faith in human rights and fundamental freedoms, the position of the family in a society of free men and free institutions, the dignity of the human person and the equal and inalienable rights with which all members of the human family are endowed by their Creator.”
Our National Prayer, penned by our beloved Right Honorable George Price, begins “Almighty and Eternal God, who through Jesus Christ has revealed Your Glory to all nations, please protect and preserve Belize, our beloved country. God of might, wisdom and justice, please assist our Belizean government and people with your Holy Spirit of counsel and fortitude.”
With that spiritual heritage as the foundation and fabric of our country, how could we possibly choose between God and country? We must do both – love and honor our Supreme Creator, and love and honor His creation, our beautiful Jewel.
And, what about Israel? Well, what does God say in His Word? Genesis !2 tells us that God called Abram from his home country to “a land that I will show you,” and He did say that “I will bless those who bless you, and will curse those who curse you.” Then, God passed that blessing down to Abraham’s son, Isaac, and then to Isaac’s son, Jacob, who God renamed Israel. Israel’s sons and their descendants became the great nation of Israel that God promised.
But, does that mean that, in order to be blessed, that we must support everything that Israel does as a nation? Well, did God Himself support everything that the nation of Israel did? Far from it. In Deuteronomy 28 He made it very clear; “All these blessings shall overtake you, because you OBEY the Lord your God.” In the same chapter He says, “If you do not obey the voice of the Lord your God …. all these curses shall come upon you and overtake you.”
Israel has had both blessings and curses ever since – based on God’s promises, and their obedience to God’s commands. Belize can do the same. We can bless Israel, and receive God’s blessings, and, at the same time, we can still speak against issues that violate God’s commands.
And, what about Jerusalem? Does Israel have the right to name it’s own capital? Well, what about Belize? Did we have the right to move our capital from St George’s Caye to Belize City, and then to Belmopan?
What does the Almighty, who we honor, say about it? He has a lot to say about Jerusalem. How about this one – in I Kings 11:36; “ And to his son I will give one tribe, that my servant David may always have a lamp before me in Jerusalem, the city that I have chosen for Myself, to put my name there.”
Wait a minute. You mean, God chose Jerusalem for Himself? That’s what our Almighty Creator says – for Himself – and so that His servant David would “always have a lamp before him in Jerusalem.” What does that mean? How could He do that?
Luke 1:31-33 records that the angel Gabriel came to the Virgin Mary and said, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And, behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David, and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”
When the Trump Administration made the decision to support Israel’s choice of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel by moving the US Embassy there, most of the world’s nations objected big time, including Belize. That was a mistake. I call upon our national leaders to reverse that decision. The Almighty God chose Jerusalem for Himself and His Son, Jesus Christ – forever!! We can bless Israel, and be blessed by supporting what God Himself established thousands of years ago.
But there’s more to that ancient blessing – that is promised to each of us personally. God also said to Abram (in Gen. 12:3) “In you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” Dis da fu all a we. That Blessing comes through our Lord Jesus. That’s a personal blessing – eternal salvation offered to all those who repent of their sins and receive His free gift. (Romans 6:23.)
We are so blessed in Belize to have a Christian heritage. Christian leaders must be involved in national affairs. It is our privilege and responsibility. We can serve our God, serve our country, and receive God’s blessings. “Land of the free, by the Carib Sea.”
Sincerely in Christ,
Pastor Jim Duncan
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