The following observations were offered by Nadiia Hundert:
“Today, as a consequence of an atheistic upbringing, we are knee-deep in alcoholics,
drug addicts, other chemically dependent individuals, loafers, bums, criminals, savages, cruel
and frightening juveniles who commit crimes for the fun of it. These are people who were
brought up by nonbeliever parents and an atheistic society, Christians lived with religion for
years and provided us with a rich heritage, which we have succeeded in destroying.”
Ms. Hundert wrote these words and sent them to the periodical Soviet Ukraine in 1989.
Were you thinking that the preceding paragraph was written about the United States of America?
It certainly could apply.
In 1964, an English teacher in a public school, Mr. Holmes, included this question in an
examination covering Herman Mehlville’s novel Moby Dick, “Discuss biblical themes in Moby
Dick.” Someone must have objected, because later the teacher defended this question by
explaining that the Bible is a part of our culture; We need to know it.
Mr. Holmes was correct. In whatever reading that I have done I have found biblical ideas
throughout American literature. Christianity is a major part of the nation’s heritage and history.
However, I deem that the previous sentence is less true now than it was in 1964. We are in
danger of losing a very important legacy, and we are in jeopardy of fitting Ms. Hundert’s
description of the Soviet Union.
The American culture of 2017 has received a gift form the past. That bequest is the
Christian faith. That particular faith has informed and guided the decisions of many of our
country’s leaders. For instance, would President Lincoln and others have been driven to press for
the emancipation of the slaves if not for the Christian ethic of protecting human
dignity? Would Secretary of State George Marshall have instituted his unique policy of restoring
war-torn Europe without the Christian principles of mercy and grace?
Our Christina legacy is a treasure.
Each generation has a choice. Are we to honor that legacy or destroy it? It is a question if
survival. If we honor our Christian heritage and seek to follow the principles of Jesus Christ, we
will not only survive, we will flourish. On the other hand, if we betray that trust, we are
Our responsibility is to pass the Christian faith and practice on to the generations which
will follow us.
The words of Moses are golden. “…I have set before you life and death, blessing and
curse. Therefore, choose life, that you and your offspring may live…” (Deuteronomy 30:19
The past is a gift from our ancestors; the future is our responsibility to our descendants.
Cherish our heritage. Consider our heirs.