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Sunday, November 19, 2006

Francis Frangipane on "The Two Wings"

You may balk at his finding the U. S. in Revelation 12 or his interpretation of the eagle prophesied there, but these are good thoughts in this season. Please be sure to pray for all our leaders, not just the ones you like!

As American elections close, many Christians have felt discouragement with the outcome. Yet, let me remind you that, even in what seems like loss, God continues to work all things for good. Yes, we've been praying for our nation, desiring to see the country return to a moral, God-fearing culture. Yet, I hope we all know that the kingdom of God is not limited to a political party!

What encourages me is that among those Democrats who won Republican seats, most were either moderate or very conservative in their moral outlook; they were not liberals. In other words, the Democratic party, which for years seemed to resist any advance toward traditional moral values, picked conservative Democrats to run against Republican conservatives. Indeed, in a number of contests, pro-life Democrats ran against pro-life Republicans.

I personally interpret this as a good sign. The reality is, both political parties realize America has a strong percentage of God-fearing people whose views and convictions cannot be ignored. Today, both parties recognize the increasing influence people of faith have to determine our nation's future.

America in the Bible

"The two wings of the great eagle were given to the woman, so that she could fly into the wilderness to her place, where she was nourished for a time and times and half a time, from the presence of the serpent" (Revelation 12:14).

For many years this verse has served to help define my vision for America. I wouldn't call my view an unbendable doctrine, but more a faith-text: a revelatory adaptation that adds to my already God-inspired motive to pray for the USA.

In the above text, two symbols need explaining: The woman and the eagle. Who is the woman? According to verse 17, she "and her children" hold "the testimony of Jesus." Thus, her confession of Jesus reveals that the woman is a symbol of the church. But what does the eagle represent? It is quite possible that this text points to the eternal destiny of God for the USA, whose national symbol is, in fact, the "great eagle."

Consider also that at the core of America's self-identity is its role as a place of refuge for persecuted peoples. We have not always lived up to our standards here in the States, but our ideal remains true. In many ways, America was actually founded by people fleeing persecution. Thus, it is not unreasonable that America will again offer protection to persecuted Christians and peoples in the last hours of this age.

Would such action be inconsistent with the historic vision of America? Not in the least. Consider the Stature of Liberty and its famous poem, The New Collossus, written by Emma Lazarus (a Jewish American poet/author).

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "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-tost to me
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

The Statue of Liberty, here called the "Mother of Exiles," welcomed the world's persecuted. This is not a political issue, but something deeply embedded into the DNA of the American psyche. John says "the two wings of the great eagle" were given to the woman: the right wing (Republicans) and the left wing (Democrats).

Thus, I welcome the increase of godly leaders into the left wing of the great eagle. May the Spirit of God increasingly be represented in every level of government! I am also thankful that thirty Jewish politicians were elected (an all-time high).

Yes, some things might have gone better in certain elections and trends, but we must never doubt God's plan nor His ability to work all things for good. Let us keep the vision of a holy nation, cleansed by the blood of the Lamb. Let us believe our nation can be made pure by the fires of revival, fanned by the presence of a holy God.

Regardless of which side of the political divide you fall, let us pray that both wings of the great eagle shall be lifted to the service of God.


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