I often have people tell me that those involved in the early history of our country were not followers of the Christian faith. If I had more time I would go through a list of early leaders and presidents of our country and show you how fervently many of them believed in the God of the bible. But with little time, I want to focus today on just one of the folks who had such an impact on our country…Francis Scott Key. Francis Scott Key was an attorney and a poet who wrote the lyrics to what would become The Star Spangled Banner.
During the War of 1812, Francis Scott Key was asked to help negotiate the release of his friend, Dr. William Beanes, who had been captured by the British. That negotiation process had led Francis Scott Key to Baltimore and put him in a position to watch the British bombard Fort McHenry. After continual bombing, the British were not able to destroy the fort. However, at the conclusion of the attack on the fort, Francis Scott Key observed a large American flag being flown over the fort. He quickly penned the words for a poem called The Defense of Ft. McHenry that was widely published. Years later John Stafford Smith put this poem to music and it became what we now know as The Star Spangled Banner.
Most of us are familiar with the first verse of our national anthem…at least I hope so:
Oh Say can you see? By the dawn’s early light.
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming?
You know the rest of the verse.
We always hear the first verse but seldom hear the other three verses. I bet you didn’t even know The Star Spangled Banner has four verses. Here is a portion of verse four:
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: “In God is our trust.”
History has recorded the faith in God that many of our country’s founders and leaders have possessed. History has also recorded their prayers to God for our country.
Don’t be fooled when people tell you our country has no history and foundation in faith in God. I am thankful for people like Francis Scott Key who understood that we must put our trust in God…not in man.
Do your own research and you will be amazed at the wonderful Godly tradition of the United States of America.