RSS Feed

Tag Archives: fireworks

Not Just a Holiday

The first official federal holiday in the United States was not enacted until 1870. This initial legislation recognized four holidays: Easter, Independence Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Due to secularism and the modern interpretation of the separation of Church and State, these religious holidays have been watered down over the years. July 4th was declared a day of prayer and thanksgiving for being free.

In [this] freedom Christ has made us free [and completely liberated us]; stand fast then, and do not be hampered and held ensnared and submit again to a yoke of slavery [which you have once put off], Galatians 5:1.

The Chinese were the first to invent fireworks, sometime between 960 and 1279 AD. The original intent of fireworks was to ward off evil spirits. Yet, the Chinese set off fireworks to celebrate the Emperor’s birthday and other major holidays. This tradition was embraced by the United States on July 8th, 1776, following America’s Declaration of Independence. July 4th, 1777 was the first official Independence Day highlighted by the firing of guns, cannons, bonfires and fireworks in Philadelphia which was America’s first capital.

For [if we are] in Christ Jesus, neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith activated and energized and expressed and working through love. You were running the race nobly. Who has interfered in (hindered and stopped you from) your heeding and following the Truth? – Galatians 5:6-7

The Bible speaks of a different type of Independence Day in Romans 10:9-11. In the passage above, the apostle Paul writes about the external and internal forces that limits a Christian’s spiritual freedom. Paul goes on to blame this on human nature, pointing the finger on sinful desires of the flesh, Galatians 5:16-18. As you turn out to watch fireworks ceremonies throughout the nation, don’t neglect the freedom that can only be found in Jesus Christ.

by Jay Mankus

S.A.N.S. Episode 138: Breaking Through

Melodie Tunney, Marty McCall, and Bonnie Keen are the original members of First Call. First Call was one of the first Christian groups to follow the trend of the late 80’s and early 90’s of having a lead female vocalist. Marty was the front man for a band called Fireworks while Bonnie had been trained in musical theatre before this duo met and joined forces at First Call.

Understand [this], my beloved brethren. Let every man be quick to hear [a ready listener], slow to speak, slow to take offense and to get angry, James 1:19.

Breaking Through is about how the love of God can miraculously break through at any time in your life. Just as Jesus called first centurion Christians to be salt and light, love should be your inspiration every day you wake up. Unfortunately, if you’re not attentive and listening, you’ll block God from breaking through. May this classic song by First Call inspire you to share the love of Jesus with others.

by Jay Mankus

Where Did Independence Go?

The concept of Independence Day was approved by the 2nd Continental Congress of the United States on July 4th, 1776.  The first celebration of Independence Day began a year later, evolving as time has passed.  Believe it or not, fireworks was part of the first 4th of July celebration, 1777 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  Since the earliest forms of pyrotechnics can be traced back to the first century in China, fireworks had become a common form of celebration.

For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery, Galatians 5:1.

As the 13 original colonies declared their independence from a foreign dictator, England, this decision fueled the Revolutionary War which began April 19th, 1775 and ended in victory on September 3rd, 1783.  The thought of being free and independent inspired young men to fight for 8 plus years.  Despite the deaths of 17,000 fellow soldiers and another 25,000 who were maimed or wounded, these 13 colonies were united under one flag.  This common goal ignited a spirit of perseverance to will Americans on to victory.

For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another, Galatians 5:13.

The recent demise of the Nike shoe inspired by a replica of a Betsy Ross flag suggests that independent minds are disappearing.  As soon as Colin Kaepernick, a Nike spokesperson complained, this influenced Nike to stop production of the Betsy Ross Flag Shoe.  This recent fiasco is an example of a growing problem.  If an atheist doesn’t like a new law or ruling, the ACLU goes judge shopping to stop this legislation.  Meanwhile, if a store owner follows their religious convictions to not participate in a specific celebration, fines, law suits and even jail time may follow.  Thus, I am troubled as this Independence Day highlights the disappearance of freedom and independence.  May God raise up future leaders to alter this trend so that independence is a reality and not just a word.

by Jay Mankus

%d bloggers like this: