The Presidents Code – The Ronald Reagan Presidency

The Presidents Code – The Ronald Reagan Presidency

President Ronald Reagan 1/20/1981-1/20/1989
President Ronald Reagan 1/20/1981-1/20/1989

Ronald Reagan’s name meaning is speaking of King David, the one who was given the shield of salvation in order to defeat the Canaanite nations. The one to whom was promised an heir, who would be the Savior of the world.

 

Ronald is the Scottish form of ‘Ragnvaldr’ which is an Old Norse name composed of the words ‘regin’ which means advice and counsel and ‘valdr’ which means ruler. This points to David who, as did Reagan, reigned by delegation (2 Samuel 8:15-18; 20:23-26).

 

Wilson is from an English surname meaning ‘son of William.’  William is from the Germanic name ‘Willahelm,’ which consists of the words ‘wil’ which means will or desire and ‘helm’ meaning helmet or protection.’ This name points to the helmet of salvation who is Messiah (1 Thessalonians 5:8; Genesis 48:16; 49:18; Ephesians 5:23; Colossians 1:18), this shield of salvation which was given to David.

 

2 Samuel 22:36 Thou hast also given me the shield of thy salvation: and thy gentleness hath made me great.

 

Reagan comes from an Irish surname ‘Ó Ríagáin’ which means a descendant of ‘Riagan.’  Riagan is  derived from the word ‘ríodhgach’ which means the ‘kings heir.’ This of course is pointing to King David and the most important part of his life, the promise of an heir who would be Messiah (Psalm 72:1-17; 45:1-17; Jeremiah 23:5-6; 33:15; Isaiah 9:7; 11:1-5; 40:10-11; Zechariah 9:9; Daniel 9:24; Luke 1:32; Acts 2:30; Hebrews 1:8-9).

 

Ronald Reagan’s Presidency is a picture of King David, in particular the days of David as the conquering King of the Promised land. Reagan is credited with bringing about the end of the Cold War which pictured the wars between Israel and the Canaanite nations which were finally subdued during David’s days (2 Samuel 7:1). Reagan’s Presidency also pictures the transition from David to Solomon as the King of Israel as George H.W. Bush was elected to succeed Reagan as President, due in large part to Reagan’s popularity. Many of the Cold War victories were completed during Bush’s presidency, just as the Kingdom of Israel fully realized the fruit of David’s labors during the reign of Solomon.

Reagan revolution

Reagan’s Presidency became known as the Reagan Revolution, a time in which America regained a sense of Patriotism and more importantly rededicated itself to the principles upon which the Founders established this nation. The foundational principle established by the Founders was the belief in freedom which comes from God and the setting up of a government which is based upon God’s gift to mankind of self-government. It was a time in which America, through the words of Ronald Reagan, openly declared that this nation is of God and our duty is to serve and praise Him. After David was given victory over the Canaanite nations, he spoke in similar terms.

 

Psalm 18:1 To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David, the servant of the LORD, who spake unto the LORD the words of this song in the day that the LORD delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul: And he said, I will love thee, O LORD, my strength.

Psalm 18:49 Therefore will I give thanks unto thee, O LORD, among the heathen, and sing praises unto thy name.

reagan dutch

Ronald Reagan was called Dutch as a child because he was said to look like a ‘fat little Dutchman’ and had a ‘Dutchboy’ haircut. This name links Reagan to David as the name ‘Dutch’ means ‘belonging to the people.’ This was the declaration of Israel in regards to David.

 

2 Samuel 5:1 Then came all the tribes of Israel to David unto Hebron, and spake, saying, Behold, we are thy bone and thy flesh.

 

Reagan grew up during the Depression and lived the life of a ‘gypsy.’ This too corresponds with David who proclaimed he was a stranger and pilgrim during his days on earth (Psalm 119:19, 54).

 

Psalm 39:12 Hear my prayer, O LORD, and give ear unto my cry; hold not thy peace at my tears: for I am a stranger with thee, and a sojourner, as all my fathers were.

 

1 Chronicles 29:15 For we are strangers before thee, and sojourners, as were all our fathers: our days on the earth are as a shadow, and there is none abiding.

These days as a ‘pilgrim’ must have affected Ronald Reagan greatly as his belief system reflected these days of learning self-reliance and an understanding of freedom.

reagan farewell

The past few days when I’ve been at that window upstairs, I’ve thought a bit of the ‘shining city upon a hill.’ The phrase comes from John Winthrop, who wrote it to describe the America he imagined. What he imagined was important because he was an early Pilgrim, an early freedom man. He journeyed here on what today we’d call a little wooden boat; and like the other Pilgrims, he was looking for a home that would be free.” {Farewell Address to the Nation 1/11/1989}

 

At every crucial turning point in our history Americans have faced and overcome great odds, strengthened by spiritual faith. The Plymouth settlers triumphed over hunger, disease, and a cruel Northern wilderness because, in the words of William Bradford, ‘They knew they were Pilgrims, so they committed themselves to the will of God and resolved to proceed.’ George Washington knelt in prayer at Valley Forge and in the darkest days of our struggle for independence said that ‘the fate of unborn millions will now depend, under God, on the courage and conduct of this army.’ Thomas Jefferson, perhaps the wisest of our founding fathers, had no doubt about the source from which our cause was derived. ‘The God who gave us life,’ he declared,’ gave us liberty.’ And nearly a century later, in the midst of a tragic and at times seemingly hopeless Civil War, Abraham Lincoln vowed that ‘this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom.’” {Radio Address to the Nation 9/18/1982}

reagan lifeguard

Ronald Reagan’s first job was as a lifeguard where he saved 77 lives. This connects to David’s days as a shepherd watching over the flock. The Hebrew word for ‘savior’ literally portrays a shepherd who rescues the life of a member of his flock. These days as a lifeguard displayed Reagan’s inward desire to be a hero which was further demonstrated in his career as an actor where he almost always played the role of the hero. So too, David rose to fame amongst Israel as the hero who defeated Goliath and led the armies of Israel.

The 1976 election saw Reagan rise to national fame and was a picture of David slaying Goliath.  This parable will be discussed in more detail in the article on Gerald Ford’s Presidency.

reagan kings row

Interestingly, it was Reagan’s role as a double amputee in the movie ‘Kings Row’ which made him a star. Although the movie is not about a king, the name of the movie is an interesting word play which the Lord used to bring the reader’s mind to the picture of which Reagan’s life is displaying in regards to David, the King. It was during Reagan’s days as an actor that he began his ‘crusade’ against Communism. In the code, Communism and the Cold War is a picture of the wars between Israel and Canaan. This corresponds to David who rose to fame by slaying Goliath and continued to battle the Canaanite nations the rest of his days (1 Samuel 16:18; 1 Chronicles 28:3).

reagan 1980

In 1980 Reagan soundly defeated Jimmy Carter to become President but inherited the weak economy that Carter likewise inherited. Reagan was not able to overcome these economic woes until the last year of his first term, 1983. So too, David had to deal with a famine of three years due to the sins of Saul (2 Samuel 21:1). Reagan believed that the weak economy was caused by the laws passed during the Lyndon Johnson administration which caused government to get too big. This belief brought about Reaganomics which was based upon the concept of lowering the size of government, reducing taxes and putting the economy more into the hands of the free market.

reaganomics

Although Reaganomics did not pull America immediately out of the Recession, the economy did recover by the end of Reagan’s first term and helped him get re-elected in one of the biggest landslides in American history. Reagan’s campaign spoke of the recovery as ‘morning again in America’ referring to a Psalm written by David at the dedication of his house.

 

Psalm 30:5 For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.

President Reagan at an Oct. 22, 1987 news conference shortly after the Black Monday
President Reagan at an Oct. 22, 1987 news conference shortly after the Black Monday

For the rest of Reagan’s Presidency the economy was strong except for one exception, the Stock Market crash of 1987 which became known as ‘Black Monday.’ This links to the plague which occurred during David’s days which was caused by his numbering of the people (2 Samuel 24; 1 Chronicles 21).

 

Economists predicted that the crash would lead to a period of time like unto the Great Depression of the 1930s. In the code, the Depression pointed back to the plagues of Egypt. David repented to the Lord of his sin and the plague was stayed (2 Samuel 24:15-17). He asked that God not destroy the entire nation, as had been seen in the days of Pharaoh, but that the punishment would fall upon his house. Interestingly, this was seen in the George Bush Presidency as the economic problems he faced and which led to his defeat by Bill Clinton, were due in large part to the policies of the Reagan administration.

reagan assassination

During his first term as President, on March 30th, 1981, John Hinckley made an assassination attempt upon Ronald Reagan. This corresponds to the time when Ishbibenob thought he had killed David. Afterwards, Israel requested that David no longer go into battle with them lest the ‘light of Israel’ be quenched (2 Samuel 21:16-17). So too, after the assassination attempt, Reagan was less involved in the details of what went on in the White House and delegated authority to his staff. This links to David as well who also delegated authority in order to better lead the nation (2 Samuel 8:15-18; 20:23-26). It is interesting to note that Ishbibenob’s attempt on David’s life occurred at the time period of the famine during David’s days which corresponds with the economic problems which Reagan experienced in his first term.

 

Ronald Reagan believed that God had spared his life so that he might go on to fulfill a greater purpose.

 

“God knew I needed a nudge. God wanted that assassination attempt to happen. He gave me a wake-up call. Everything I do from now on, I owe to God.”

 

So too, David was drawn closer to God and sought to serve Him after his life was spared from the assassination attempts of Saul (Psalm 57:1, 7-9; 18:1-2, 48-49). Reagan’s desire to live out the rest of his days in service to the Lord further connects to David in which he speaks of serving God in old age (Psalm 71:1-23). At his farewell address, Reagan further established these thoughts.

 

“Finally, there is a great tradition of warnings in Presidential farewells, and I’ve got one that’s been on my mind for some time. But oddly enough it starts with one of the things I’m proudest of in the past 8 years: the resurgence of national pride that I called the new patriotism. This national feeling is good, but it won’t count for much, and it won’t last unless it’s grounded in thoughtfulness and knowledge.

 

An informed patriotism is what we want. And are we doing a good enough job teaching our children what America is and what she represents in the long history of the world? Those of us who are over 35 or so years of age grew up in a different America. We were taught, very directly, what it means to be an American. And we absorbed, almost in the air, a love of country and an appreciation of its institutions.

 

We’ve got to do a better job of getting across that America is freedom-freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of enterprise. And freedom is special and rare. It’s fragile; it needs protection.

 

If we forget what we did, we won’t know who we are. I’m warning of an eradication of the American memory that could result, ultimately, in an erosion of the American spirit.”

reagan hospital

After being shot, Reagan’s health steadily declined for the rest of his days. In 1985 he had surgery for colon cancer which corresponds with David’s ‘loathsome disease’ mentioned in Psalm 38:7 and 41:8. In the same year he underwent multiple operations to remove skin cancer and in 1987 he had further surgery because of skin cancer and yet another surgery due to an enlarged prostate. However, despite the belief of many that he would die in office, Reagan’s life was preserved.

 

Psalm 41:3 The LORD will strengthen him upon the bed of languishing: thou wilt make all his bed in his sickness.

reagan bible

As Jimmy Carter before him, Reagan displayed the character of a man ‘after the heart of God’ like unto King David (1 Samuel 13:14; Acts 13:22), a man who ruled in the fear of God (2 Samuel 23:3).

 

Ronald Reagan’s faith in the Word of God was displayed throughout his Presidency. He spoke openly of his belief. Reagan attributed the Bible as the foundational doctrine upon which the United States was founded.

 

Of the many influences that have shaped the United States into a distinctive nation and people, none may be said to be more fundamental and enduring than the Bible.”

 

“Deep religious beliefs stemming from the Old and New Testaments of the Bible inspired many of the early settlers of our country, providing them with the strength, character, convictions, and faith necessary to withstand great hardship and danger in this new and rugged land. These shared beliefs helped forge a sense of common purpose among the widely dispersed colonies — a sense of community which laid the foundation for the spirit of nationhood that was to develop in later decades.”

 

“The Bible and its teachings helped form the basis for the Founding Fathers’ abiding belief in the inalienable rights of the individual, rights which they found implicit in the Bible’s teachings of the inherent worth and dignity of each individual. This same sense of man patterned the convictions of those who framed the English system of law inherited by our own Nation, as well as the ideals set forth in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.”

year bible

Reagan’s faith influenced the country to the extent that 1983 was proclaimed as year of the Bible.

 

“Now, Therefore, be it Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the President is authorized and requested to designate 1983 as a national ‘Year of the Bible’ in recognition of both the formative influence the Bible has been for our Nation, and our national need to study and apply the teachings of the Holy Scriptures.”

 

Of the many influences that have shaped the United States of America into a distinctive Nation and people, none may be said to be more fundamental and enduring than the Bible.

 

Deep religious beliefs stemming from the Old and New Testaments of the Bible inspired many of the early settlers of our country, providing them with the strength, character, convictions, and faith necessary to withstand great hardship and danger in this new and rugged land. These shared beliefs helped forge a sense of common purpose among the widely dispersed colonies — a sense of community which laid the foundation for the spirit of nationhood that was to develop in later decades.

 

The Bible and its teachings helped form the basis for the Founding Fathers’ abiding belief in the inalienable rights of the individual, rights which they found implicit in the Bible’s teachings of the inherent worth and dignity of each individual. This same sense of man patterned the convictions of those who framed the English system of law inherited by our own Nation, as well as the ideals set forth in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.

 

For centuries the Bible’s emphasis on compassion and love for our neighbor has inspired institutional and governmental expressions of benevolent outreach such as private charity, the establishment of schools and hospitals, and the abolition of slavery.

 

Many of our greatest national leaders — among them Presidents Washington, Jackson, Lincoln, and Wilson — have recognized the influence of the Bible on our country’s development. The plainspoken Andrew Jackson referred to the Bible as no less than “the rock on which our Republic rests.” Today our beloved America and, indeed, the world, is facing a decade of enormous challenge. As a people we may well be tested as we have seldom, if ever, been tested before. We will need resources of spirit even more than resources of technology, education, and armaments. There could be no more fitting moment than now to reflect with gratitude, humility, and urgency upon the wisdom revealed to us in the writing that Abraham Lincoln called “the best gift God has ever given to man . . . But for it we could not know right from wrong.”

 

The Congress of the United States, in recognition of the unique contribution of the Bible in shaping the history and character of this Nation, and so many of its citizens, has by Senate Joint Resolution 165 authorized and requested the President to designate the year 1983 as the “Year of the Bible.”

 

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, in recognition of the contributions and influence of the Bible on our Republic and our people, do hereby proclaim 1983 the Year of the Bible in the United States. I encourage all citizens, each in his or her own way, to reexamine and rediscover its priceless and timeless message.” {Proclamation 5018 — Year of the Bible, 1983}

 

In PUBLIC LAW 97-280 the 97th Congress set into law the year 1983 as the Year of the Bible and proclaimed the Bible as the rock upon which this Republic rests.

 

Whereas the Bible, the Word of God, has made a unique contribution in shaping the United States as a distinctive and blessed nation and people;

 

Whereas deeply held religious convictions springing from the Holy Scriptures led to the early settlement of our Nation;

 

Whereas Biblical teachings inspired concepts of civil government that are contained in our Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States;

 

Whereas many of our great national leaders-among them Presidents Washington, Jackson, Lincoln, and Wilson-paid tribute to the surpassing influence of the Bible in our country’s development, as in the words of President Jackson that the Bible is “the rock on which our Republic rests”;

 

Whereas the history of our Nation clearly illustrates the value of voluntarily applying the teachings of the Scriptures in the lives of individuals, families, and societies;

 

Whereas this Nation now faces great challenges that will test this Nation as it has never been tested before; and

 

Whereas that renewing our knowledge of and faith in God through Holy Scripture can strengthen us as a nation and a people: Now, therefore, be it resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the President is authorized and requested to designate 1983 as a national “Year of the Bible” in recognition of both the formative influence the Bible has been for our Nation, and our national need to study and apply the teachings of the Holy Scriptures.”

 

This declaration of 1983 as the Year of the Bible also points to David, who loved the Word of God as can be seen in Psalm 119.

 

Psalm 119:97 MEM. O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.

Psalm 119:48 My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have loved; and I will meditate in thy statutes.

Psalm 119:113 SAMECH. I hate vain thoughts: but thy law do I love.

Psalm 119:127 Therefore I love thy commandments above gold; yea, above fine gold.

reagan 1983 religious broadcaster

In an address at the Annual Convention of the National Religious Broadcasters in 1983, Reagan further displayed his love and reverence for the Word of God.

 

When Americans reach out for values of faith, family, and caring for the needy, they’re saying, ‘We want the word of God. We want to face the future with the Bible.’

 

Facing the future with the Bible — that’s a perfect theme for your convention. You might be happy to hear that I have some “good news” of my own. Thursday morning, at the National Prayer Breakfast, I will sign a proclamation making 1983 the Year of the Bible.

 

We’re blessed to have its words of strength, comfort, and truth. I’m accused of being simplistic at times with some of the problems that confront us. But I’ve often wondered: Within the covers of that single Book are all the answers to all the problems that face us today, if we’d only look there. “The grass withereth, the flower fadeth, but the word of our God shall stand forever.” I hope Americans will read and study the Bible in 1983. It’s my firm belief that the enduring values, as I say, presented in its pages have a great meaning for each of us and for our nation. The Bible can touch our hearts, order our minds, refresh our souls.

 

Now, I realize it’s fashionable in some circles to believe that no one in government should order or encourage others to read the Bible. Encourage — I shouldn’t have said order. We’re told that will violate the constitutional separation of church and state established by the Founding Fathers in the first amendment.

 

Well, it might interest those critics to know that none other than the Father of our Country, George Washington, kissed the Bible at his inauguration. And he also said words to the effect that there could be no real morality in a society without religion.

 

John Adams called it ‘the best book in the world.’ And Ben Franklin said, ‘. . . the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth, that God governs in the affairs of men . . . without His concurring aid, we shall succeed in this political building no better than the builders of Babel; we shall be divided by our little, partial, local interests, our projects will be confounded, and we ourselves shall become a reproach, a bye-word down to future ages.”

 

So, when I hear the first amendment used as a reason to keep the traditional moral values away from policy making, I’m shocked. The first amendment was not written to protect people and their laws from religious values; it was written to protect those values from government tyranny.

 

I’ve always believed that this blessed land was set apart in a special way, that some divine plan placed this great continent here between the two oceans to be found by people from every corner of the Earth — people who had a special love for freedom and the courage to uproot themselves, leave their homeland and friends to come to a strange land. And, when coming here, they created something new in all the history of mankind — a country where man is not beholden to government, government is beholden to man. “

 

Continuing in his address, Reagan spoke of legislation by government being much more successful when it is based upon the Word of God.

 

“I read in the Washington Post about a young woman named Victoria. She’s with child, and she said, “In this society we save whales, we save timber wolves and bald eagles and Coke bottles. Yet everyone wanted me to throw away my baby.” Well, Victoria’s story has a happy ending. Her baby will be born.

 

Victoria has received assistance from a Christian couple, and from Sav-A-Life, a new Dallas group run by Jim McKee, a concerned citizen who thinks it’s important to provide constructive alternatives to abortion. There’s hope for America. She remains powerful and a powerful force for good, and it’s thanks to the conviction and commitment of people like those who are helping Victoria. They’re living the meaning of the two great commandments: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might” and “thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.”

 

Each year, government bureaucracies spend bills [billions] for problems related to drugs and alcoholism and disease. Has anyone stopped to consider that we might come closer to balancing the budget if all of us simply tried to live up to the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule?”

 

Reagan then spoke of the religious broadcasts in America affecting the peoples of the Soviet Union in a positive manner towards the Gospel. This is the purpose of America, to be a free nation in which the Gospel can be propagated without persecution. As a matter of fact, according to historian Richard Frothingham, the Declaration of Independence was written for this very reason.

 

The measure [the Declaration of Independence] was urged as necessary to insure permanency to the civil and religious institutions of the colonies, as essential to their material prosperity, in order to secure fair scope for the industrial energies of the land, as vital to the expansion of American ideas over the continent, and to the creation of an opening for the spread of the Gospel, as the only escape from tyranny, and the only guaranty of that government which is ‘an ordinance of Heaven to restrain the usurpation of wicked men, to secure to all the enjoyment of their natural rights, and to promote the highest political interests and happiness of society.’ It was urged that independence ‘was the path of empire, glory, liberty, and peace,’ and that labor in such a cause was labor on the side of Providence.” {Rise of the Republic – Richard Frothingham}

 

Continuing with Reagan’s speech:

“Now, these broadcasts are not popular with governments of totalitarian powers. But make no mistake, we have a duty to broadcast. Aleksandr Herzen, the Russian writer, warned, ‘To shrink from saying a word in defense of the oppressed is as bad as any crime.’ Well, I pledge to you that America will stand up, speak out, and defend the values we share. To those who would crush religious freedom, our message is plain: You may jail your believers. You may close their churches, confiscate their Bibles, and harass their rabbis and priests, but you will never destroy the love of God and freedom that burns in their hearts. They will triumph over you.

 

Malcolm Muggeridge, the brilliant English commentator, has written, ‘The most important happening in the world today is the resurgence of Christianity in the Soviet Union, demonstrating that the whole effort sustained over 60 years to brainwash the Russian people into accepting materialism has been a fiasco.’

 

Think of it: the most awesome military machine in history, but it is no match for that one, single man, hero, strong yet tender, Prince of Peace. His name alone, Jesus, can lift our hearts, soothe our sorrows, heal our wounds, and drive away our fears. He gave us love and forgiveness. He taught us truth and left us hope. In the Book of John is the promise that we all go by — tells us that ‘For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.’

 

With His message and with your conviction and commitment, we can still move mountains. We can work to reach our dreams and to make America a shining city on a hill. Before I say goodby, I wanted to leave with you these words from an old Netherlands folk song, because they made me think of our meeting here today:

 

We gather together to ask the Lord’s blessing.

 

We all do extol Thee, Thou leader triumphant

 

And pray that Thou still our Defender wilt be.

 

Let Thy congregation escape tribulation.

 

Thy name be ever praised! O Lord, make us free!

 

To which I would only add a line from another song: America, America, God shed His grace on thee. {At the Annual Convention of the National Religious Broadcasters 1/31/1983}

 

Reagan understood the concept of the Declaration of Independence being associated with the Gospel.

 

It’s not good enough to have equal access to our law; we must also have equal access to the higher law – the law of God. George Washington warned that morality could not prevail in exclusion of religious principles. And Jefferson asked, ‘Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure, when we’ve removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of people that these liberties are the gifts of God?’ We must preserve the noble promise of the American dream for every man, woman, and child in this land. And make no mistake, we can preserve it, and we will. That promise was not created by America. It was given to America as a gift from a loving God – a gift proudly recognized by the language of liberty in the world’s greatest charters of freedom: our Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.” {At the Annual Meeting of the American Bar Association 8/1/1983}

reagan revolution 2

Ronald’s Reagan’s time as President and the change in which was seen in the political atmosphere of America was known as the ‘Reagan Revolution.’ The Reagan Revolution came forth from Ronald Reagan’s Libertarian message that changed the ideology of the Republican party. Reagan preached a message of returning to the days of the Founders, a message of limited government, freedom, love of God and neighbor. These were the principles upon which this nation was founded, and the same principles which the Founders declared must be adhered to if the system of government they gave to their children would endure.

 

Ronald Reagan ran on the principle of smaller, more constitutionally based government.

 

“Ours was the first revolution in the history of mankind that truly reversed the course of government, and with three little words: ‘We the People.’ ‘We the People’ tell the government what to do; it doesn’t tell us. ‘We the People’ are the driver; the government is the car. And we decide where it should go, and by what route, and how fast. Almost all the world’s constitutions are documents in which governments tell the people what their privileges are. Our Constitution is a document in which ‘We the People’ tell the government what it is allowed to do. ‘We the People’ are free. This belief has been the underlying basis for everything I’ve tried to do these past 8 years.” {Farewell Address 1/11/1989}

reagan government quote

The above words are summed up in Reagan’s famous quote:

“Government is not a solution to our problem, government is the problem.”

 

As with the Founders, Reagan did not believe that government was to be the ‘god’ of the people. A free people should govern themselves based upon their understanding of how to walk in the will of the Creator.

 

Reagan’s desire to return America to self-government points to the reign of David who recognized the Lord as the King of Israel (Psalm 47:2; 22:27-28; 95:3-11). It was Reagan’s Presidency that restored America’s faith in the office of the Presidency after the people had lost faith during the days of Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon. This displays the lack of faith of the nation of Israel in requesting a king from Samuel. In doing this, Scripture says they rejected the Lord as King (1 Samuel 8:7). Saul’s wickedness then led the Lord to reject him. (1 Samuel 16:1). Following, Samuel anointed David as king (1 Samuel 16:13) who would lead the people back to God (2 Samuel 7:8; Psalm 78:70-72; 89:19-29; Acts 13:22-23). Here we see the progression of the Great Society model of government of Lyndon Johnson where government becomes a ‘nanny-state’ in which the people rely upon, to Ronald Reagan’s model of government where man is to take care of himself and rely upon God for provision.

Reagan sought to undue the ‘Great Society’ concept of which Lyndon Johnson had set up in the 1960’s. While the Great Society had admirable ideas of taking care of the poor and needy and equal rights, the legislation passed, was in many regards, contrary to the Constitution and made the government bigger than the Founders had envisioned. This corresponded to the time period of Israel in the wilderness who was to take over the Promised Land but was unsuccessful because they didn’t fully follow the law of God. The parallel between the Constitution and the law of the Lord is clear here. Reagan sought to restore government to its rightful position within the confines of the law, as David sought to restore the people of Israel to their rightful position of walking in the law of the Lord (1 Kings 2:3-4; 6:12; Psalm 132:12; 1 Chronicles 28:8; 22:12-13).

 

Reagan attributed his message of freedom to the law of God.

“Freedom prospers when religion is vibrant and the rule of law under God is acknowledged.”

reagan first inaugural

Ronald Reagan reminded the country that our government is a Republic which is a system ‘of the people and for the people.’ He spoke of this idea in his first Inaugural address to the nation.

 

Mr. President, I want our fellow citizens to know how much you did to carry on this tradition. By your gracious cooperation in the transition process, you have shown a watching world that we are a united people pledged to maintaining a political system which guarantees individual liberty to a greater degree than any other, and I thank you and your people for all your help in maintaining the continuity which is the bulwark of our Republic”

 

“In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem. Government is the problem.”

 

“From time to time, we have been tempted to believe that society has become too complex to be managed by self-rule, that government by an elite group is superior to government for, by, and of the people. But if no one among us is capable of governing himself, then who among us has the capacity to govern someone else? All of us together, in and out of government, must bear the burden. The solutions we seek must be equitable, with no one group singled out to pay a higher price.”

 

“We are a nation that has a government — not the other way around. And this makes us special among the nations of the Earth. Our Government has no power except that granted it by the people. It is time to check and reverse the growth of government which shows signs of having grown beyond the consent of the governed.”

 

“It is my intention to curb the size and influence of the Federal establishment and to demand recognition of the distinction between the powers granted to the Federal Government and those reserved to the States or to the people. All of us need to be reminded that the Federal Government did not create the States; the States created the Federal Government.”

 

In his second Inaugural address, Reagan reiterated these thoughts:

“Four years ago, I spoke to you of a new beginning and we have accomplished that. But in another sense, our new beginning is a continuation of that beginning created two centuries ago when, for the first time in history, government, the people said, was not our master, it is our servant; its only power that which we the people allow it to have.”

 

In his second Inaugural address, Reagan spoke of America being poised for greatness because he believed the American Revolution was being reborn. It was hoped that this would be a time when there would be no Democrat or Republican, only Americans as in the days of Washington. This links to the days of David when the two houses of Israel were joined together as one (2 Samuel 5:1-5; 8:15; 1 Chronicles 18:14; 1 Kings 2:11-12). This was the ‘golden years’ in Israel’s history when they realized the promise of God of ruling over the Promised land (Exodus 23:31; 2 Samuel 8:3-13; Psalm 2:8), a time of such greatness that it foreshadowed the Kingdom of Heaven (Amos 9:11; Acts 15:16).

 

“My fellow citizens, our Nation is poised for greatness. We must do what we know is right and do it with all our might. Let history say of us, ‘These were golden years — when the American Revolution was reborn, when freedom gained new life, when America reached for her best.'”

 

“Our two-party system has served us well over the years, but never better than in those times of great challenge when we came together not as Democrats or Republicans, but as Americans united in a common cause.”

 

“So we go forward today, a nation still mighty in its youth and powerful in its purpose. With our alliances strengthened, with our economy leading the world to a new age of economic expansion, we look forward to a world rich in possibilities. And all this because we have worked and acted together, not as members of political parties, but as Americans.”

 

In the conclusion of his second Inaugural address, Reagan likened the freedom upon which America was founded to a song. Again, a connection to the warrior-poet, David (1 Samuel 16:16, 23; 2 Samuel 23:1).

 

It is the American sound. It is hopeful, big-hearted, idealistic, daring, decent, and fair. That’s our heritage; that is our song. We sing it still. For all our problems, our differences, we are together as of old, as we raise our voices to the God who is the Author of this most tender music. And may He continue to hold us close as we fill the world with our sound — sound in unity, affection, and love — one people under God, dedicated to the dream of freedom that He has placed in the human heart, called upon now to pass that dream on to a waiting and hopeful world.”

 

The Reagan Revolution was in reality a desire to return to the days of the Founders. The days of the Founders were a picture of the beginning of Creation and the Paradisaical state which existed where man could walk with God. David was a type of Adam who walked in close relationship with God (1 Samuel 2:35; 1 Kings 3:14; 8:25; 9:4; 2 Chronicles 6:16; 7:17; Psalm 116:9), a foreshadowing of Messiah (Ezekiel 34:23-25; Isaiah 11:1; 55:3-4; Jeremiah 23:4-6; 30:9; Hosea 3:5; Revelation 22:16).

reagan prayer

Ronald Reagan was a man of prayer, just as David was (Psalm 5:2; 18:4; 42:4 55:16-17; 56:8; 62:8; 86:3; 102:1; 142:2; 2 Samuel 7:27).

 

“The other day in the East Room of the White House at a meeting there, someone asked me whether I was aware of all the people out there who were praying for the President. And I had to say, ‘Yes, I am. I’ve felt it. I believe in intercessionary prayer.’

 

I think I understand how Abraham Lincoln felt when he said, ‘I have been driven many times to my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go.’” {Address to the National Association of Evangelicals 3/8/1983}

 

Reagan desire to return America to the days of the Founders was grounded in prayer.

 

“Americans in every generation have turned to their Maker in prayer. In adoration and in thanksgiving, in contrition and in supplication, we have acknowledged both our dependence on Almighty God and the help He offers us as individuals and as a Nation. In every circumstance, whether peril or plenty, whether war or peace, whether gladness or mourning, we have searched for and sought God’s presence and His power, His blessings and His protection, His freedom and His peace, for ourselves, for our children, and for our beloved land.

 

That was surely so at the very beginning of our Nation, in the earliest days of our quest for independence and liberty. It could only be thus, for a people who recognized God as the Author of freedom; who cherished the ancient but ever new words of Leviticus, ‘Proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof” and who cast those words where they would ring out forever, on the Liberty Bell; who affirmed along with Thomas Jefferson that the God Who gave us life gave us liberty as well.

 

So did they believe, those who gathered in Carpenters’ Hall in Philadelphia in 1774, the members of the First Continental Congress. They had come together, in times that tried men’s souls, to deliberate in the united interests of America and for our ‘civil and religious liberties.’ John Adams later wrote his wife Abigail about what followed: ‘When Congress first met, Mr. Cushing made a motion that it should be opened with prayer.’ Some delegates opposed the motion, citing differences in belief among the members; but Sam Adams, that bold lover of liberty and our country, arose to utter words of healing and unity.

 

‘I can hear the prayer,’ he said, of anyone ‘of piety and virtue who is . . . a friend to his country.’ He went on to suggest that a clergyman of a persuasion other than his own open the First Continental Congress with prayer.

 

And so it happened. Because Sam Adams gave voice to all the goodness, the genius, and the generosity that make up the American spirit, the First Continental Congress made its first act a prayer — the beginning of a great tradition.

 

We have, then, a lesson from the Founders of our land, those giants of soul and intellect whose courageous pledge of life and fortune and sacred honor, and whose ‘firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence,’ have ever guided and inspired Americans and all who would fan freedom’s mighty flames and live in ‘freedom’s holy light.’ That lesson is clear — that in the winning of freedom and in the living of life, the first step is prayer.

 

Let us join together, Americans all, throughout our land. Let us join together, in factories and farms, in homes and offices, in places of governance and places of worship, and in outposts everywhere that service men and women defend us. Let us, young and old, join together, as did the First Continental Congress, in the first step — humble, heartfelt prayer. Let us do so for the love of God and His great goodness, in search of His guidance and the grace of repentance, in seeking His blessings, His peace, and the resting of His kind and holy hands on ourselves, our Nation, our friends in the defense of freedom, and all mankind, now and always.” {Proclamation 5767 — National Day of Prayer, 1988}

The history of the American Nation is one of conviction in the face of tyranny, courage in the midst of turmoil and faith despite the roils of doubt and defeatism. Throughout our 208 years of freedom, the people of the United States have drawn upon the lessons learned at the dawn of our liberty by acting ‘with a firm reliance on Divine Providence’ and expressing gratitude for the many blessings a loving God has showered upon us.

 

These lessons have not been learned and honored without difficulty. During the Revolutionary War, the Continental Congress proclaimed a National Day of Prayer each year for eight years, a practice that ended with the winning of the peace in 1783. Decades later, while the Civil War raged, this observance was renewed by Abraham Lincoln. Responding to a Senate Resolution requesting the President to designate and set apart a day for prayer and humiliation, Lincoln said that ‘intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us.’ He then called the Nation to prayer.

 

Our very existence as a free Nation, then, has provided potent witness to the efficacy of prayer. Grover Cleveland, in his First Inaugural Address, said, ‘Above all, I know that there is a Supreme Being who rules the affairs of men and whose goodness and mercy have always followed the American people, and I know He will not turn from us now if we humbly and reverently seek His powerful aid.’ Franklin D. Roosevelt, in his Fourth Inaugural Address, expressed the same thought, ‘The Almighty God has blessed our land in many ways . . . So we pray to Him now for the vision to see our way clearly — to see the way that leads to a better life for ourselves and for all our fellow men — to the achievement of His will, to peace on earth.’

 

Today our Nation is at peace and is enjoying prosperity, but our need for prayer is even greater. We can give thanks to God for the ever-increasing abundance He has bestowed on us, and we can remember all those in our society who are in need of help, whether it be material assistance in the form of charity or simply a friendly word of encouragement. We are all God’s handiwork, and it is appropriate for us as individuals and as a Nation to call to Him in prayer.” {Proclamation 5296 – National Day of Prayer, 1985}

 

Reagan spoke of the importance of prayer in the lives of a free people.

 

“My daily prayer is that God will help me to use this position so as to serve Him. Teddy Roosevelt once called the presidency a bully pulpit. I intend to use it to the best of my ability to serve the Lord.”

 

“Prayer has sustained our people in crisis, strengthened us in times of challenge, and guided us through our daily lives since the first settlers came to this continent. Our forbearers came not for gold, but mainly in search of God and the freedom to worship in their own way.”

 

“We’ve been a free people living under the law, with faith in our Maker and in our future. I’ve said before that the most sublime picture in American history is of George Washington on his knees in the snow at Valley Forge. That image personifies a people who know that it’s not enough to depend on our own courage and goodness; we must also seek help from God, our Father and Preserver.

 

Abraham Lincoln said once that he would be the most foolish man on this footstool we call Earth, if he thought for one minute he could fulfill the duties that faced him if he did not have the help of One who was wiser than all others.

 

The French philosopher Alexis de Tocqueville, visiting America a hundred and fifty years ago, marveled at Americans because they understood that a free people must also be a religious people. ‘Despotism,’ he wrote, ‘may be able to do without faith, but freedom cannot.’

 

Today, prayer is still a powerful force in America, and our faith in God is a mighty source of strength. Our Pledge of Allegiance states that we are ‘one nation under God,’ and our currency bears the motto, ‘In God We Trust.’

 

The morality and values such faith implies are deeply embedded in our national character. Our country embraces those principles by design, and we abandon them at our peril. Yet in recent years, well-meaning Americans in the name of freedom have taken freedom away. For the sake of religious tolerance, they’ve forbidden religious practice in our public classrooms. The law of this land has effectively removed prayer from our classrooms.

 

How can we hope to retain our freedom through the generations if we fail to teach our young that our liberty springs from an abiding faith in our Creator?

 

Thomas Jefferson once said, ‘Almighty God created the mind free.’ But current interpretation of our Constitution holds that the minds of our children cannot be free to pray to God in public schools. No one will ever convince me that a moment of voluntary prayer will harm a child or threaten a school or State. But I think it can strengthen our faith in a Creator who alone has the power to bless America.

 

One of my favorite passages in the Bible is the promise God gives us in second Chronicles: ‘If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.’

 

That promise is the hope of America and of all our people.” {Remarks at a White House Ceremony in Observance of National Day of Prayer, 5/6/1982}

 

In his first Inauguration speech, Reagan declared:

“I am told that tens of thousands of prayer meetings are being held on this day, and for that I am deeply grateful. We are a nation under God, and I believe God intended for us to be free. It would be fitting and good, I think, if on each Inauguration Day in future years it should be declared a day of prayer.”

reagan prayer schools

Prayer was an important part of the Reagan Revolution. He even purposed to get prayer in school protected by law.

 

“I know one thing I’m sure most of us agree on: God, source of all knowledge, should never have been expelled from our children’s classrooms. The great majority of our people support voluntary prayer in schools.” {Remarks at the Annual Convention of the National Religious Broadcasters – 1/30/1984}

 

“The time has come for this Congress to give a majority of American families what they want for their children — the firm assurance that children can hold voluntary prayers in their schools just as the Congress, itself, begins each of its daily sessions with an opening prayer.

 

With this in mind, last May I proposed to the Congress a measure that declares once and for all that nothing in the Constitution prohibits prayer in public schools or institutions. It also states that no person shall be required by government to participate in prayer who does not want to. So, everyone’s rights — believers and nonbelievers alike — are protected by our voluntary prayer measure.” {Radio Address to the Nation on Prayer – 9/18/1982}

 

“George Washington believed that religion, morality, and brotherhood were the pillars of society. He said you couldn’t have morality without religion. And yet today we’re told that to protect the first amendment, we must expel God, the source of all knowledge, from our children’s classrooms. Well, pardon me, but the first amendment was not written to protect the American people from religion; the first amendment was written to protect the American people from government tyranny.

 

Indeed, there is nothing in the Constitution at all about public education and prayer. There is, however, something very pertinent in the act that gave birth to our public school system — a national act, if you will. It called for public education to see that our children — and quoting from that act — ‘learned about religion and morality.’

 

Well, the time has come for Congress to give a majority of American families what they want for their children — a constitutional amendment making it unequivocally clear that children can hold voluntary prayer in their schools.” {Remarks at a Spirit of America Rally in Atlanta, Georgia 1/26/1984}

I believe that faith and religion play a critical role in the political life of our nation — and always has — and that the church — and by that I mean all churches, all denominations — has had a strong influence on the state. And this has worked to our benefit as a nation.

 

Those who created our country — the Founding Fathers and Mothers — understood that there is a divine order which transcends the human order. They saw the state, in fact, as a form of moral order and felt that the bedrock of moral order is religion.

 

The Mayflower Compact began with the words, ‘In the name of God, amen.’ The Declaration of Independence appeals to ‘Nature’s God’ and the ‘Creator’ and ‘the Supreme Judge of the world.’ Congress was given a chaplain, and the oaths of office are oaths before God.

 

James Madison in the Federalist Papers admitted that in the creation of our Republic he perceived the hand of the Almighty. John Jay, the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, warned that we must never forget the God from whom our blessings flowed.

 

George Washington referred to religion’s profound and unsurpassed place in the heart of our nation quite directly in his Farewell Address in 1796. Seven years earlier, France had erected a government that was intended to be purely secular. This new government would be grounded on reason rather than the law of God. By 1796 the French Revolution had known the Reign of Terror.

 

And Washington voiced reservations about the idea that there could be a wise policy without a firm moral and religious foundation. He said, ‘Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, Religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man (call himself a patriot) who (would) labour to subvert these . . . finest [firmest] props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere Politician . . . (and) the pious man ought to respect and to cherish (religion and morality).’ And he added, ‘. . . let us with caution indulge the supposition, that morality can be maintained without religion.’

 

I believe that George Washington knew the City of Man cannot survive without the City of God, that the Visible City will perish without the Invisible City.

 

Religion played not only a strong role in our national life; it played a positive role. The abolitionist movement was at heart a moral and religious movement; so was the modern civil rights struggle. And throughout this time, the state was tolerant of religious belief, expression, and practice. Society, too, was tolerant.

 

But in the 1960’s this began to change. We began to make great steps toward secularizing our nation and removing religion from its honored place.

 

In 1962 the Supreme Court in the New York prayer case banned the compulsory saying of prayers. In 1963 the Court banned the reading of the Bible in our public schools. From that point on, the courts pushed the meaning of the ruling ever outward, so that now our children are not allowed voluntary prayer. We even had to pass a law — we passed a special law in the Congress just a few weeks ago to allow student prayer groups the same access to schoolrooms after classes that a young Marxist society, for example, would already enjoy with no opposition.

 

The 1962 decision opened the way to a flood of similar suits. Once religion had been made vulnerable, a series of assaults were made in one court after another, on one issue after another. Cases were started to argue against tax-exempt status for churches. Suits were brought to abolish the words ‘under God’ from the Pledge of Allegiance and to remove ‘In God We Trust’ from public documents and from our currency.

 

Today there are those who are fighting to make sure voluntary prayer is not returned to the classrooms. And the frustrating thing for the great majority of Americans who support and understand the special importance of religion in the national life — the frustrating thing is that those who are attacking religion claim they are doing it in the name of tolerance, freedom, and openmindedness. Question: Isn’t the real truth that they are intolerant of religion? They refuse to tolerate its importance in our lives.

 

If all the children of our country studied together all of the many religions in our country, wouldn’t they learn greater tolerance of each other’s beliefs? If children prayed together, would they not understand what they have in common, and would this not, indeed, bring them closer, and is this not to be desired? So, I submit to you that those who claim to be fighting for tolerance on this issue may not be tolerant at all.

 

When John Kennedy was running for President in 1960, he said that his church would not dictate his Presidency any more than he would speak for his church. Just so, and proper. But John Kennedy was speaking in an America in which the role of religion — and by that I mean the role of all churches — was secure. Abortion was not a political issue. Prayer was not a political issue. The right of church schools to operate was not a political issue. And it was broadly acknowledged that religious leaders had a right and a duty to speak out on the issues of the day. They held a place of respect, and a politician who spoke to or of them with a lack of respect would not long survive in the political arena.

 

It was acknowledged then that religion held a special place, occupied a special territory in the hearts of the citizenry. The climate has changed greatly since then. And since it has, it logically follows that religion needs defenders against those who care only for the interests of the state.

 

There are, these days, many questions on which religious leaders are obliged to offer their moral and theological guidance, and such guidance is a good and necessary thing. To know how a church and its members feel on a public issue expands the parameters of debate. It does not narrow the debate; it expands it.

 

The truth is, politics and morality are inseparable. And as morality’s foundation is religion, religion and politics are necessarily related. We need religion as a guide. We need it because we are imperfect, and our government needs the church, because only those humble enough to admit they’re sinners can bring to democracy the tolerance it requires in order to survive.

 

A state is nothing more than a reflection of its citizens; the more decent the citizens, the more decent the state. If you practice a religion, whether you’re Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, or guided by some other faith, then your private life will be influenced by a sense of moral obligation, and so, too, will your public life. One affects the other. The churches of America do not exist by the grace of the state; the churches of America are not mere citizens of the state. The churches of America exist apart; they have their own vantage point, their own authority. Religion is its own realm; it makes its own claims.

 

We establish no religion in this country, nor will we ever. We command no worship. We mandate no belief. But we poison our society when we remove its theological underpinnings. We court corruption when we leave it bereft of belief. All are free to believe or not believe; all are free to practice a faith or not. But those who believe must be free to speak of and act on their belief, to apply moral teaching to public questions.

 

I submit to you that the tolerant society is open to and encouraging of all religions. And this does not weaken us; it strengthens us, it makes us strong. You know, if we look back through history to all those great civilizations, those great nations that rose up to even world dominance and then deteriorated, declined, and fell, we find they all had one thing in common. One of the significant forerunners of their fall was their turning away from their God or gods.

 

Without God, there is no virtue, because there’s no prompting of the conscience. Without God, we’re mired in the material, that flat world that tells us only what the senses perceive. Without God, there is a coarsening of the society. And without God, democracy will not and cannot long endure. If we ever forget that we’re one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under.” {Remarks at an Ecumenical Prayer Breakfast in Dallas, Texas 8/23/1984}

city on a hill

Ronald Reagan believed that America is a special place in which the Creator set apart by two oceans for the purpose of preserving the gift of freedom to mankind. He believed America was a shining city on a hill of which the Messiah spoke of in regards to the people of God (Matthew 5:14). Amazingly, the Lord promised David that there would be a time in which His people would dwell safely in a land in freedom (2 Samuel 7:8-10). This promise to David came at a point in time in which Israel was already dwelling safely and in freedom, but God gave David a promise of another time and place.

 

2 Samuel 7:8 Now therefore so shalt thou say unto my servant David, Thus saith the LORD of hosts, I took thee from the sheepcote, from following the sheep, to be ruler over my people, over Israel:

2 Samuel 7:9 And I was with thee whithersoever thou wentest, and have cut off all thine enemies out of thy sight, and have made thee a great name, like unto the name of the great men that are in the earth.

2 Samuel 7:10 Moreover I will appoint a place for my people Israel, and will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own, and move no more; neither shall the children of wickedness afflict them any more, as beforetime,

Later, the Lord spoke through Isaiah likening this planting of Israel in another land as a transplanting of His vine (Isaiah 5:1-7) and was reiterated through the words of Messiah (Matthew 21:33-43). Jesus said that the kingdom of God would be taken from the people of that time and given to a nation producing the fruits of which God desires. This has multiple layers of meaning, one of which was believed by the Founders of this nation as applying to the land of America. The word America comes from the Hebrew word עמל ‘amal’ which means to work or labor, as in working to produce the fruit of which the Lord desires (Matthew 21:41-43).

 

Ezra Stiles, who was the United States foremost preacher during the days of the Founders referred to this nations as ‘God’s American Israel’ and declared this nation as being this very vine in which Isaiah and Jesus spoke of.

 

“I have assumed the text only as introductory to a discourse upon the political welfare of God’s American Israel, and as allusively prophetic of the future prosperity and splendor of the United States.”

 

“Already does the new constellation of the United States begin to realize this glory. It has already risen to an acknowledged sovereignty among the republics and kingdoms of the world. And we have reason to hope, and, I believe, to expect, that God has still greater blessings in store for this vine which his own right hand hath planted, to make us high among the nations in praise, and in name, and in honor. The reasons are very numerous, weighty, and conclusive.

 

Our degree of population is such as to give us reason to expect that this will become a great people…. This will be a great, a very great nation…. Should this prove a future fact, how applicable would be the text, when the Lord shall have made his American Israel high above all nations which he has made, in numbers, and in praise, and in name, and in honor!” (Deuteronomy 26:19) {The United States Elevated to Glory and Honor – 5/8/1783}

 

Ezra Stiles spoke of America being a fulfillment, at least in part, of the church in the wilderness whose task is to spread the Gospel to the world.

 

It is of the Lord, that a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars, should flee into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, and where she might be the repository of wisdom, and keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus. It may have been of the Lord, that christianity is to be found in such great purity, in this church exiled into the wilderness of america; and that its purest body should be evidently advancing forward, by an augmented natural increase and spiritual edification, into a singular superiority— with the ultimate subserviency to the glory of God, in converting the world.”

reagan spirit of america rally

Reagan used this Gospel message, the message of liberty, to gain victory in the Cold War. History calls it the doctrine of human rights, but these ‘unalienable human rights’ that come forth from the Creator are just another way of saying the law or Word of God.

 

“We are a nation under God. I’ve always believed that this blessed land was set apart in a special way, that some divine plan placed this great continent here between the oceans to be found by people from every corner of the Earth who had a special love for freedom and the courage to uproot themselves, leave homeland and friends, to come to a strange land. And coming here they created something new in all the history of mankind — a land where man is not beholden to government, government is beholden to man. {Remarks at a Spirit of America Rally in Atlanta, Georgia, 26 January 1984}

 

In the code, the Cold War represents the conflict between Israel and the Canaanite nations where Israel was to overthrow the Canaanite nations and set up a kingdom from whence the Word of God would go forth to the nations.

 

After World War II, the Cold War began as tensions grew between Harry Truman and Joseph Stalin over postwar Europe. This time period corresponded to the days of Moses in which victory over the Canaanite nations was promised (Exodus 23:31; Deuteronomy 11:24). This victory was obtained during the days of David and Solomon which correspond to the Presidencies of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush when the Cold War was ‘won’ by the United States. Israel was victorious because of their reliance up on the Word of God during these days (1 Kings 2:3-4; 6:12; Psalm 132:12) and so too, America was given the victory because of Ronald Reagan, acting as head of the nation, declaring America’s reliance upon the Word of God.

 

“The history of the American Nation is one of conviction in the face of tyranny, courage in the midst of turmoil and faith despite the roils of doubt and defeatism. Throughout our 208 years of freedom, the people of the United States have drawn upon the lessons learned at the dawn of our liberty by acting ‘with a firm reliance on Divine Providence’ and expressing gratitude for the many blessings a loving God has showered upon us.” {Proclamation 5296 – National Day of Prayer, 1985}

 

The Cold War was ‘won’ by the propagation of human rights which are based upon a belief in the Creator who gives man unalienable rights which are based upon the natural law. John Locke spoke of this natural law as the law of God.

 

“Thus the Law of Nature stands as an Eternal Rule to all Men, Legislators as well as others. The Rules that they make for other Men’s Actions, must, as well as their own, and other Men’s Actions, be conformable to the Law of Nature, i.e. to the Will of God, of which that is a Declaration, and the fundamental Law of Nature being the preservation of Mankind, no Human Sanction can be good, or valid against it.” {John Locke – Of Civil Government}

 

Ronald Reagan also recognized that the law of God is that which man must recognize as supreme in their lives. This is the root of the conflict between Democracy and Communism which will be discussed in more detail later in the article.

 

It is time for the world to know our intellectual an spiritual values are rooted in the source of all strength, a belief in a Supreme Being, and a law higher than our own.” {At the Commencement Exercises of the University of Notre Dame – 5/17/1981}

 

I also believe this blessed land was set apart in a very special way, a country created by men and women who came here not in search of gold, but in search of God. They would be free people, living under the law with faith in their Maker and their future. Sometimes it seems we’ve strayed from that noble beginning, from our conviction that standards of right and wrong do exist and must be lived up to.” {At the Annual National Prayer Breakfast 2/4/1982}

reagan evangelicals

Ronald Reagan articulated that the Cold War was not merely a conflict of political ideology between Communism and Democracy but a spiritual battle between belief in God as the authority in man’s life versus the state where man is ‘god.’ Following are excerpts from Ronald Reagan’s address to the National Association of Evangelicals on March 8th 1983. Reagan eloquently laid out his view on the Cold War which is indeed based upon the age old struggle amongst men of whom they will serve. God or a tyrant who wishes to usurp God’s role as head of the nations.

 

“So, I tell you there are a great many God-fearing, dedicated, noble men and women in public life, present company included. And yes, we need your help to keep us ever mindful of the ideas and the principles that brought us into the public arena in the first place. The basis of those ideals and principles is a commitment to freedom and personal liberty that, itself, is grounded in the much deeper realization that freedom prospers only where the blessings of God are avidly sought and humbly accepted.

 

The American experiment in democracy rests on this insight. Its discovery was the great triumph of our Founding Fathers, voiced by William Penn when he said, ‘If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants.’

 

Explaining the unalienable rights of men, Jefferson said, ‘The God who gave us life, gave us liberty at the same time.’

 

And it was George Washington who said that ‘of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports.’

 

And finally, that shrewdest of all observers of American democracy, Alexis de Tocqueville, put it eloquently after he had gone on a search for the secret of America’s greatness and genius — and he said, ‘Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits aflame with righteousness did I understand the greatness and the genius of America. America is good. And if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.’

 

Well, I’m pleased to be here today with you who are keeping America great by keeping her good. Only through your work and prayers and those of millions of others can we hope to survive this perilous century and keep alive this experiment in liberty — this last, best hope of man.

 

I want you to know that this administration is motivated by a political philosophy that sees the greatness of America in you, her people, and in your families, churches, neighborhoods, communities — the institutions that foster and nourish values like concern for others and respect for the rule of law under God.

 

Freedom prospers when religion is vibrant and the rule of law under God is acknowledged. When our Founding Fathers passed the First Amendment, they sought to protect churches from government interference. They never intended to construct a wall of hostility between government and the concept of religious belief itself.

 

The evidence of this permeates our history and our government. The Declaration of Independence mentions the Supreme Being no less than four times. ‘In God We Trust’ is engraved on our coinage. The Supreme Court opens its proceedings with a religious invocation. And the members of Congress open their sessions with a prayer. I just happen to believe the schoolchildren of the United States are entitled to the same privileges as Supreme Court Justices and Congressmen.”

 

“There’s a great spiritual awakening in America, a renewal of the traditional values that have been the bedrock of America’s goodness and greatness.

 

One recent survey by a Washington-based research council concluded that Americans were far more religious than the people of other nations; 95 percent of those surveyed expressed a belief in God and a huge majority believed the Ten Commandments had real meaning in their lives. And another study has found that an overwhelming majority of Americans disapprove of adultery, teenage sex, pornography, abortion, and hard drugs. And this same study showed a deep reverence for the importance of family ties and religious belief.

 

I think the items that we’ve discussed here today must be a key part of the Nation’s political agenda. For the first time the Congress is openly and seriously debating and dealing with the prayer and abortion issues — and that’s enormous progress right there. I repeat: America is in the midst of a spiritual awakening and a moral renewal. And with your Biblical keynote, I say today, ‘Yes, let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream.’

 

Now, obviously, much of this new political and social consensus I’ve talked about is based on a positive view of American history, one that takes pride in our country’s accomplishments and record. But we must never forget that no government schemes are going to perfect man. We know that living in this world means dealing with what philosophers would call the phenomenology of evil or, as theologians would put it, the doctrine of sin.

 

There is sin and evil in the world, and we’re enjoined by Scripture and the Lord Jesus to oppose it with all our might. Our nation, too, has a legacy of evil with which it must deal. The glory of this land has been its capacity for transcending the moral evils of our past. For example, the long struggle of minority citizens for equal rights, once a source of disunity and civil war, is now a point of pride for all Americans. We must never go back. There is no room for racism, anti-Semitism, or other forms of ethnic and racial hatred in this country.

 

The commandment given us is clear and simple: ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.’ But whatever sad episodes exist in our past, any objective observer must hold a positive view of American history, a history that has been the story of hopes fulfilled and dreams made into reality. Especially in this century, America has kept alight the torch of freedom, but not just for ourselves but for millions of others around the world.

 

And this brings me to my final point today. During my first press conference as President, in answer to a direct question, I pointed out that, as good Marxist-Leninists, the Soviet leaders have openly and publicly declared that the only morality they recognize is that which will further their cause, which is world revolution. I think I should point out I was only quoting Lenin, their guiding spirit, who said in 1920 that they repudiate all morality that proceeds from supernatural ideas — that’s their name for religion — or ideas that are outside class conceptions. Morality is entirely subordinate to the interests of class war. And everything is moral that is necessary for the annihilation of the old, exploiting social order and for uniting the proletariat.

 

Well, I think the refusal of many influential people to accept this elementary fact of Soviet doctrine illustrates an historical reluctance to see totalitarian powers for what they are. We saw this phenomenon in the 1930’s. We see it too often today. This doesn’t mean we should isolate ourselves and refuse to seek an understanding with them. I intend to do everything I can to persuade them of our peaceful intent, to remind them that it was the West that refused to use its nuclear monopoly in the forties and fifties for territorial gain and which now proposes 50-percent cut in strategic ballistic missiles and the elimination of an entire class of land-based, intermediate-range nuclear missiles.

 

At the same time, however, they must be made to understand we will never compromise our principles and standards. We will never give away our freedom. We will never abandon our belief in God. And we will never stop searching for a genuine peace. But we can assure none of these things America stands for through the so-called nuclear freeze solutions proposed by some.”

 

“A number of years ago, I heard a young father, a very prominent young man in the entertainment world, addressing a tremendous gathering in California. It was during the time of the Cold War, and communism and our own way of life were very much on people’s minds. And he was speaking to that subject. And suddenly, though, I heard him saying, ‘I love my little girls more than anything — — ‘And I said to myself, ‘Oh, no, don’t. You can’t — don’t say that.’

 

But I had underestimated him. He went on: ‘I would rather see my little girls die now, still believing in God, than have them grow up under communism and one day die no longer believing in God.’

 

There were thousands of young people in that audience. They came to their feet with shouts of joy. They had instantly recognized the profound truth in what he had said, with regard to the physical and the soul and what was truly important.

 

Yes, let us pray for the salvation of all of those who live in that totalitarian darkness — pray they will discover the joy of knowing God. But until they do, let us be aware that while they preach the supremacy of the state, declare its omnipotence over individual man, and predict its eventual domination of all peoples on the Earth, they are the focus of evil in the modern world.

 

They preach the supremacy of the state, declare its omnipotence over individual man and predict its eventual domination of all peoples on the Earth. They are the focus of evil in the modern world…. So, in your discussions of the nuclear freeze proposals, I urge you to beware the temptation of pride, the temptation of blithely declaring yourselves above it all and label both sides equally at fault, to ignore the facts of history and the aggressive impulses of an evil empire, to simply call the arms race a giant misunderstanding and thereby remove yourself from the struggle between right and wrong and good and evil.”

 

“The real crisis we face today is a spiritual one; at root, it is a test of moral will and faith.”

 

“Whittaker Chambers, the man whose own religious conversion made him a witness to one of the terrible traumas of our time, the Hiss-Chambers case, wrote that the crisis of the Western World exists to the degree in which the West is indifferent to God, the degree to which it collaborates in communism’s attempt to make man stand alone without God. And then he said, for Marxism-Leninism is actually the second oldest faith, first proclaimed in the Garden of Eden with the words of temptation, ‘Ye shall be as gods.’

 

The Western world can answer this challenge, he wrote, ‘but only provided that its faith in God and the freedom He enjoins is as great as communism’s faith in Man.’

 

I believe we shall rise to the challenge. I believe that communism is another sad, bizarre chapter in human history whose last pages even now are being written. I believe this because the source of our strength in the quest for human freedom is not material, but spiritual. And because it knows no limitation, it must terrify and ultimately triumph over those who would enslave their fellow man. For in the words of Isaiah: ‘He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might He increased strength But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary.’

 

Yes, change your world. One of our Founding Fathers, Thomas Paine, said, ‘We have it within our power to begin the world over again.'” {Addess to the National Association of Evangelicals on March 8th 1983}

 

Reagan understood and spoke of the struggles of which the nation was facing as spiritual. King David had this same understanding as can be seen in his battle against Goliath (1 Samuel 17:45) as well as the battles he faced throughout the rest of his life (Psalm 3:8; 20:7; 33:16-17; 118:10-11; 124:8).

 

We have God’s promise that what we give will be given back many times over, so let us go forth from here and rekindle the fire of our faith. Let our wisdom be vindicated by our deeds. We are told in II Timothy that when our work is done, we can say, ‘We have fought the good fight. We have finished the race. We have kept the faith.’” {At the Annual National Prayer Breakfast 2/4/1982}

 

The Book of St. John tells us, ‘For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” We also have His promise that we could take to heart with regard to our country ‘That if my people who are called by my name humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and heal their land.’…To preserve our blessed land, we must look to God….Rebuilding America begins with restoring family strength and preserving family values.” {At the National Religious Broadcasters Annual Convention 2/9/1982}

 

The public expression through prayer of our faith in God is a fundamental part of our American heritage and a privilege which should not be excluded by law from any American school, public or private. One hundred fifty years ago, Alexis de Tocqueville found that all Americans believed that religious faith was indispensable to the maintenance of their republican institutions. Today, I join with the people of this nation in acknowledging this basic truth, that our liberty springs from and depends upon an abiding faith in God.” {Message to the Congress Transmitting Proposed Legislation on a Constitutional Amendment on Prayer in School 5/17/1982}

reagan star wars

Militarily, the defeat of the Soviets was associated with the arms race which bankrupted their nation and Reagan’s proposal of the Strategic Defense Initiative in which America would build up a ‘shield’ against any nuclear attack. Interestingly, the Psalms of David speak of such a ‘shield’ and link it to abiding under the ‘shadow’ of the Almighty. Recall that Reagan’s survival of the Hinckley assassination attempt was linked to David abiding under the shadow of the wings of the Almighty (Psalm 57:1).

 

Psalm 91:1 He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

Psalm 91:2 I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.

Psalm 91:3 Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.

Psalm 91:4 He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.

Psalm 91:5 Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;

Psalm 91:6 Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.

In the code, the Berlin Wall was a symbol of the divide between Democracy and Communism. In 1963, John F. Kennedy visited Berlin and gave a speech which displayed this concept. So too, Ronald Reagan visited Berlin and gave a speech which led to a phrase of which he became famous for ‘Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.’

 

“We welcome change and openness; for we believe that freedom and security go together, that the advance of human liberty — the advance of human liberty can only strengthen the cause of world peace.

 

There is one sign the Soviets can make that would be unmistakable, that would advance dramatically the cause of freedom and peace.

 

General Secretary Gorbachev, if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, if you seek liberalization: Come here to this gate.

 

Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate.

 

Mr. Gorbachev — Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!”

 

“Years ago, before the East Germans began rebuilding their churches, they erected a secular structure: the television tower at Alexander Platz. Virtually ever since, the authorities have been working to correct what they view as the tower’s one major flaw: treating the glass sphere at the top with paints and chemicals of every kind. Yet even today when the sun strikes that sphere, that sphere that towers over all Berlin, the light makes the sign of the cross. There in Berlin, like the city itself, symbols of love, symbols of worship, cannot be suppressed.

 

As I looked out a moment ago from the Reichstag, that embodiment of German unity, I noticed words crudely spray-painted upon the wall, perhaps by a young Berliner:

‘This wall will fall. Beliefs become reality.’

 

Yes, across Europe, this wall will fall, for it cannot withstand faith; it cannot withstand truth. The wall cannot withstand freedom.” {Address at the Berlin Wall 6/12/1987}

 

Due to Reagan’s method of dealing with the Soviets, he was seen as a warmonger. In reality, Reagan sought peace. The same can be said of David. He was a man of war, yet in reality sought peace.

 

Psalm 120:7 I am for peace: but when I speak, they are for war.

reagan protests

While overall, Ronald Reagan was the most popular President of this generation, he was not without opposition. In his first term he had to deal with a large amount of people who wanted a freeze on the production of nuclear weapons as well as a growing amount of people who were dissatisfied with the slow improvement of the economy. So too, David had to deal with the rise of Abshalom who stole the crown for a short period before David regained the throne (2 Samuel 15-18). Interestingly, one of Reagan’s greatest opponents in the nuclear arms issue was his daughter, Patti Davis, which corresponds with Abshalom who was David’s son. As with David, Reagan was able to recover from the issues of his first term to win in a landslide election against former Vice President Walter Mondale in 1984 where Reagan won all but one state.

reagan iran contra

As with David, Reagan was not without fault. The Iran Contra affair greatly tainted Ronald Reagan’s Presidency. This links to David’s sin with Bathsheba (2 Samuel 11). Reagan portrayed himself in words and deeds as a Constitutionalist but when it came to the sales of arms to Iran in order to support the Nicaraguan contras, he blatantly went against the legislation of Congress and hence, overstepped the bounds of his Constitutional authority.

So too, David walked according to the ways of the law of God (1 Kings 3:6; 8:25; 9:4; 11:33), yet in the situation with Bathsheba blatantly committed adultery and murder. Reagan’s high popularity rating dropped, virtually overnight, but after openly confessing and apologizing to the nation his esteem was regained. This links to David’s confession and apology seen in Psalm 51.

reagan astrology

Another aspect of Ronald Reagan’s Presidency which did not line up with his Biblical worldview was his use of astrology. Reagan’s wife Nancy believed in, and was greatly influenced by astrology. Her day to day life, and consequently Reagan’s, was dictated by this belief. This corresponds to David and his wife Michal who had idols in their home (1 Samuel 19:13). The idol in which Michal had was in fact a ‘teraphim’ which many believe were images of men under a particular constellation made in the same belief of astrology.

reagan great communicator

Ronald Reagan was known as the ‘Great Communicator.’ On his nickname Reagan said “I won the nickname the great communicator. But I never thought it was my style that made a difference.”

 

“I wasn’t a great communicator, but I communicated great things, and they didn’t spring full blown from my brow, they came from the heart of a great nation, from our experience, our wisdom, and our belief in the principles that have guided us for two centuries.”

 

A look at his speeches, some of which have been reproduced in this article, and the writings of his diary agree with this assessment. This displays another character connection to David who wrote most of the Psalms in the Bible. Research into the Dead Sea Scrolls reveal that David wrote three thousand six hundred psalms and four hundred sixty four songs. David was the ‘sweet psalmist’ (2 Samuel 23:1) of Israel, the ‘Great Communicator.’ Ronald Reagan also wrote a daily diary which was later printed for the public and became a New York Times Bestseller, furthering the connection with David as the books of 1st and 2nd Samuel focus on the life of David, his “biography.”

reagan alzheimers

Ronald Reagan would die of Alzheimer’s. It is believed that the early symptoms of the disease were seen at the end of his Presidency where he would have significant losses of memory at times. This links to the weakened state of David at the end of his reign as king where he transferred the crown to Solomon while he was yet alive (1 Kings 1:48). The transferring of the crown from David to Solomon points to the transfer of power from Ronald Reagan to his Vice President George H.W. Bush.

reagan bush

At his farewell address, Reagan said the following in regards to continuing the ‘Reagan Revolution.’

 

If we’re to finish the job, Reagan’s regiments will have to become the Bush brigades. Soon he’ll be the chief, and he’ll need you every bit as much as I did.”

 

So too, David asked the people to help his son Solomon of whom Bush pictures (1 Chronicles 22:17).

 

The victories of which Reagan attained as President were more fully manifested in the early years of George H.W. Bush’s Presidency. This pictures the kingdom of peace in which Solomon inherited from his father (1 Kings 4:21).

 

The fall of the Berlin Wall, the solidarity movement in Poland which led to a change towards Democracy, free elections in Nicaragua and the eventual collapse of the Soviet Union occurred during the Presidency of Reagan’s ‘heir’ George Bush but the credit is often given to Reagan.

 

Margaret Thatcher said “Ronald Reagan had a higher claim than any other leader to have won the Cold War for liberty and he did it without a shot being fired.” Mikhail Gorbachev echoed these sentiments “[He was] a man who was instrumental in bringing about the end of the Cold War.”

reagan gorbachev

In 1986, Reagan and Gorbachev signed the first nuclear arms reduction treaty called the INF treaty (Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty). Reagan also proposed a START (STrategic Arms Reduction) treaty which was later signed during Bush’s Presidency. This displays the Reagan – Bush, David – Solomon connection. Bush was seen as the ‘heir’ of Reagan as Solomon was the heir of David. David conquered the land of Canaan but the fullness of this victory was not seen until the days of Solomon.

 

The Reagan Revolution led to another political ‘realignment’ in the nation’s history, a time of conservatism and desire for small government. While this political ideology still exists today, the implementation only lasted throughout Reagan’s Presidency and for a short period into George H.W. Bush’s Presidency. This points to the time period of David and Solomon before his ‘fall from grace.’ This was a time period in Israel’s history of righteous leadership and dominion over the promised land. So too, this was short lived as wicked kings would spring forth after Solomon went astray.

 

As with Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan’s popularity has greatly increased after his Presidency. This parallels King David, whose reign as king was not as important as the promises given him of Messiah, the Prince of Peace that would come from his lineage (Psalm 72:1-17; 45:1-17; Jeremiah 23:5-6; 33:15; Isaiah 9:7; 11:1-5; 40:10-11; Zechariah 9:9; Daniel 9:24; Luke 1:32; Acts 2:30; Hebrews 1:8-9).

Both the Jimmy Carter’s and Ronald Reagan’s Presidencies portrayed the life of King David whose life was a foreshadowing of Jesus Christ (1 Chronicles 17:17). Jimmy Carter‘s Presidency foreshadowed Barack Obama. Does this mean that Ronald Reagan’s Presidency will foreshadow the next President?

Donald Trump Ronald Reagan

In numerous ways, Donald Trump is bringing forth this “next Reagan” narrative.

Reagan Make America Great Again

The overriding theme that Donald Trump is bringing forth is that of an outsider to Washington who wants to make America great again.  This is identical to Ronald Reagan.  Trump’s campaign slogan of “Make America Great Again” is even a re-capitulation of Reagan’s slogan “Let’s Make America Great Again”.

The establishment sought to stultify Reagan as they are currently opposing Donald Trump.  Critics did not consider Reagan a serious candidate and criticized him for his simplistic talk.  The same is happening to Donald Trump.

Both Reagan and Trump rose to national prominence as “Democrats” who later changed their views to Conservatism.  Both were media stars and talked “tough” in regards to foreign policy.  Due to his  “tough talk” many in the nation feared Reagan would ignite World War 3, many fear the same thing with Donald Trump.  However, Reagan’s “tough talk” caused fear in the Russians, and coupled with his desire for peace prevented war and ultimately led to the end of the Cold War.

There are numerous other parallels between Trump & Reagan which will be examined in more detail if Trump becomes the President.  Time will tell how the 2016 election plays out.

The Presidents Code

The Presidents Code

blessing 4

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