(Red-letter portions of the New Testament)

Matthew 11:23-24, "And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted to the heavens? No, you will go down to Hades. For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day. But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.”

Jesus gave a warning to the cities of Chorazin, Bethsaida, and Capernaum where God had done great miracles, because the people in those cities still did not repent and follow God. Capernaum was a fishing and agricultural town on the Sea of Galilee with an established commercial interest. Jesus' Galilean ministry was centered in Capernaum. And yet, Jesus also saw a resistance to repentance and following God.

We celebrate the freedoms and the success in America on Independence Day. Truly we have been blessed by God. He is spoken of in our founding documents and by the founders of our nation as the superintending hand in our success.

We have seen God work in our nation to establish us with His principles and then to correct us when we didn't follow them. He made us a beacon light of freedom to the rest of the world.

But now, our own people are challenging those founding documents and their acknowledgment of God. Our culture is turning away from God and is on a path of everyone doing what is right in their own eyes, instead of what is right in the eyes of God.

Rather than turning to God in repentance and gratitude for his blessings, we are serving the created things instead of the creator. Instead of celebrating our dependence on God and his providential hand, we celebrate our independence from him like the prodigal son.

Jesus said that even Sodom, a town destroyed by God for its wickedness, would have repented if they had seen what we have seen and been blessed like we have been blessed. Even though wicked Sodom would have repented, the question is will we?

For those whom God has done great things, Jesus says their judgment will be even more severe than Sodom's, if they don't repent. There is no excuse. We know better.

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