It is forecast to be “the biggest human gathering on U.S. soil” in history!

It is forecast to be “the biggest human gathering on U.S. soil” in history! And everybody and his brother is headed to the Inauguration (although in our case, my brother’s going and I’m not). Predictions are that between three and five million people will crowd into the heart of the nation’s capital to “watch” as Barak Obama is sworn in as the 44th president of the United States of America on Tuesday, at precisely one minute before noon. And when he is, he will place his right hand upon the gold-trimmed, velvet-bound, metal-rimmed Bible that belonged to what many consider to be America’s greatest president, Abraham Lincoln.

But actually there is no constitutional requirement that a Bible be used for the presidential oath of office. All the Constitution stipulates is that presidents-elect take the oath of office at noon on January 20, and that they repeat the 35-word oath. George Washington chose a Bible, added the words “so help me God,” and kissed the Bible at the end of his oath. Theodore Roosevelt was the only president sworn in without a Bible. And John F. Kennedy, the first Catholic president, was sworn in on a Catholic Douay Bible. (http://www.scrippsnews.com/node/39923)

Why the Bible? According to religion scholar Julie Ingersoll the use of the Bible is a “symbolic shout out to the role religion plays in the presidency and implies the actual source of a president’s power.” She observed, "It's establishing the notion that authority comes from God.” (http://www.jacksonville.com/lifestyles/values_and_religion/2009-01-13/story . . .) The Apostle Paul would not disagree. “Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God” (Romans 13:1 TNIV).

And so if ever the individual occupying the office of the presidential governing authority of this nation needed divine guidance and providential wisdom, it surely would be now. The governmental, economic and social challenges that face our incoming president are gigantic and daunting—both nationally and globally. And while Seventh-day Adventist Christians are unequivocal in their passionate defense of the separation of church and state, it is neither antithetical to that stance nor counterproductive to our traditional disengagement from political alliances for us to be at the forefront of our communities in praying and interceding before God on behalf of our president. “I urge, then, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness” (I Timothy 2:1, 2).

On behalf of President Obama and his wife Michelle and their two young daughters, Malia and Sasha, let us then join our hearts in prayer, seeking for all four of them the watchful protection of God, interceding for husband and father and president a special measure of divine wisdom for the journey now fraught with such grave consequences. And let us lift our voices to the Supreme Leader of all, that a “mighty door of opportunity” might yet be held open a little longer, so that the passionate and final appeal of God to this civilization might go forth unimpeded before the return of Christ our Lord. Amen.

Comments

SABBATH ~ 2-070-2009 Reading about what you had to say about Obama. I want to say that you have a very keen, & nice way of ministering to others, yet a good Christian sternness to your sermons, & plea's. I enjoy listening to you Pastor. This was the way my Dad was in his sermon's at church when I was a child, he died when I was 9, in 1945. I am now 72 years old. This is the first time I have been on your site. Reading the items here that you had to say about others is very nicely put. Keep up the good work. I agree that we should all pray for the Presidency, esp. for the Obama family, & Obama himself, esp. being that he is a new person in all this. I have a question or 2 to ask you. I am wondering if this may, even though it is a very hard time the President has on his plate, if this is that short time of peace that the Bible speaks about, just before Christ's coming, coming up with our new President? Even though I study a lot, I am not sure when that time of peace is or was supposed to come about. Could you please comment on this & the items below for me, hopefully by email? I am also wondering just how easy it is going to be for this man to hang on to good principles in his wants & needs to change things for the people, & this country, (not forgetting that in one of his speeches, & heard him say something about doing away with the American flag, have you heard anything about this also?) that satanism is so deeply imbedded in some, or most our past president's. I have been studying much about the NWO, & Bush, & all the satanistic organizations he & past president's have been in since 1935, which existed before even this country came on the scene, at least some of them. And how this all ties in with the Jesuits, & Illuminati's, & the Papacy, I do know that it all ties into the NWO etc.? (I'm sorry if I mispell) What are your thoughts on these subjects? I was born & raised SDA, backslid in early years, but came back into the truth in the late 80's, & early 90's. Was re-baptised, & study very deeply into the truth, & White's writings. I believe very deeply in this wonderful truth we are in, as well as the Spirit of Prophecy. And uphold them to others every chance I get, or run into. And am looking forward to being in Heaven with our Lord Jesus Christ. The Sabbath truth runs esp. on my Dad's side of the Morton family since the 15 & 1600's. They were in England, as I was told they worked in the Palace. Half of them were Sabbath keepers, which was my dads side of my ancestors, so to escape to have freedom of religion, they fled England in the time of the Puritans, to the USA, for that religious freedom. The Sabbath remained in our family down into our time. Dad was a wonderful SDA Christian, an Elder of our church, & a fine upstanding pillar to our Faith. He died when I was 9 yrs. old. But, a teacher friend of the family, made sure I knew what kind of a man he was. She tells me, & I remember bits of this for myslef, that he always had a handshake for one & all, a happy smile for all, was always ministering to others, young & old. My brother told me that when we had his funeral in Visalia, CA. that there were hundreds of people waiting in the streets for blocks to see him, & so a man who had an Electronics store down town came & set up loud speakers, & a mike in the funeral parlor so all could hear what was going on inside. He also said that it was in the news papers all over the San Jua Quin Valley, & there were hundreds of cars in the funeral procession. I didn't remember this part. I don't know if I'm right to feel this way, but, I am very proud of my ancestoral past, & my upbringing. And am happy that I was born into this Faith. Even though I do not believe in pride. When I backslid, I still never gave up going to church, even though I didn't go every Sabbath, or never gave up my beleif that the our Sabbath is the Biblical Sabbath, & have always stood by it to others. I always told people who tried to get me to keep Sunday, that when I decide to go back to the truth, it would be to my own SDA church, & keeping the true Bible Sabbath. I believe that aside from family praying for my return to this truth, that God knew me, & always has known my mind & heart and that He never gave up on me, because of past incidents that I know He was there with me & for me. I could go into some more about that, but, that really isn't why I am writing this email. So will quit with these last statements above. God Bless your work Pastor Nelson Very Sincerely, in Jesus Christ Mrs. Phyllis Moles rpmo2@mail.com

Dear Pastor Nelson, I always look forward to reading your BLOG but most of all, hearing your powerful and always Scripture filled sermons. As a longtime follower of Jesus, and desiring to live a life that He shines through, I have been quite perplexed at how this student of political history should react to a President that has so far shown all the signs of someone who, in my opinion, seems to be set on destroying our Nation. Yes, I agree that as Christians we are to pray for our leaders; but I am finding this difficult as I see our freedoms slipping away; especially our right of free speech. I take comfort in the fact that we know "the rest of the story" and what is to take place before the return of Jesus. As a lay pastor, however, I am troubled by the numbers of Christians (SDA included)who do not see "the handwriting on the wall" and have bought into the rhetoric that I believe will lead them into "the time of trouble such as the world has never seen", totally unprepared.

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