The story of the Old Testament is of a people chosen by God who continually reject him. Again and again, the Lord calls His people back and sends messengers calling His people to repent. Finally, the Lord sends them into exile. Their temple is destroyed, and they are scattered. Still, God remains faithful to His people even then. God keeps His promises. God keeps his covenant.

There is a civic, religious strand that runs through American culture that suggests we have some divinely intended covenant. Our nation is on the planet for something great. It was once a manifest destiny to stretch from sea to sea. Then it was that we were set apart as the torch bearers of liberty in the world, bringing light to darkness.

What set our nation apart was that we were not tied to blood and soil, but to an idea and truth. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”