My country, 'tis of Thee,
Sweet Land of Liberty
Of thee I sing
From the song "America"
I will also praise thee with the psaltery, even thy truth, O my God: unto thee will I sing with the harp, O thou Holy One of Israel. -Psalm 71:22
I will sing of mercy and judgment: unto thee, O Lord, will I sing. -Psalm 101:1
I will sing a new song unto thee, O God: upon a psaltery and an instrument of ten strings will I sing praises unto thee. -Psalm 144:9
Why is singing to God so prevalent in the Bible? It is because the act of singing can be a form of worship. What we sing can resonate in our souls; literally, I truly mean resonate. Certainly, many people singing hymns in churches are just singing robotically, and are not even paying attention. They are not singing unto God, but doing lip service. There is no resonance there:
This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. -Matthew 15:8
Therefore they are not actually singing unto God, they are just giving the appearance of it. However, those who actually sing to the Lord with their hearts and lips are using song to praise the Lord. Music is a deep, spiritual thing, and while it can be used for the good - for praising God, it can also be used in idolatry, and for darkness:
Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created. -Ezekiel 28:13
The above, speaking of Satan, says he had 'the workmanship of ... tabrets ... and pipes.' These are musical instruments. Before Lucifer fell and became Satan, he produced and possibly led praise music unto God. Now that he is fallen, he leads praise music to idolatry.
My country, 'tis of Thee,
Sweet Land of Liberty
Of thee I sing
From the song "America"
We are what we sing. We live what we sing. We are to sing praise to God, not to an idol, a flag, or a country.
Beware of the cult of patriotism. A person who stands for the Constitution is a good thing, but not if he is pledging allegiance to a flag, or to the country, or singing songs of praise to the flag or to our country. Allegiance and praise are to be to God the heavenly Father, and that's it. Patriotism - "devoted love, support, and defense of one's country; national loyalty." -From Dictionary.com
I pledge allegiance to the flag, and to the United States of America...
Children in public schools used to say this every morning, with their right hand clapped over their heart, while staring at a flag. That doesn't occur in public schools anymore. Many homeschoolers lament that, and therefore do the allegiance at home. But, is this right? No, because:
1) Pledge - A pledge is "a solemn promise or agreement to do or refrain from doing something," according to Dictionary.com.
2) A pledge is a promise, and a promise is a type of oath, or swearing.
3) The Bible says Christians are to let their yes be yes, and their no be no, and not to swear oaths, AKA promise or pledge:
But I say unto you, Swear not at all; neither by heaven; for it is God's throne: Nor by the earth; for it is his footstool: neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great King. Neither shalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst not make one hair white or black. But let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil. -Jesus said this, in Matthew 5:34-37
But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, neither by the earth, neither by any other oath: but let your yea be yea; and your nay, nay; lest ye fall into condemnation. -James 5:12
4) Therefore, pledging allegiance to a flag, any flag, is against the word of God.
5) Allegiance - According to Dictionary.com, allegiance is "the loyalty of a citizen to his or her government or of a subject to his or her sovereign."
6) The Scriptures say that we are to follow the laws of our government:
Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well. For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men: As free, and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as the servants of God. Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king. -1 Peter 2:13-17
But, because there is a spiritual struggle, we also have evil rulers:
For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. -Ephesians 6:12
Therefore, we follow the rules of the land, until or unless they conflict against God's Laws:
Saying, Did not we straitly command you that ye should not teach in this name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man's blood upon us. Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men. -Acts 5:28-29
7) America is not our country, as no country in this current world is our country. This isn't even currently our world. Christians are indeed pilgrims and strangers here:
Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul -1 Peter 2:11
Our country is not America, Canada, or the UK, or any other current country. The Christian's country is:
These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country. And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city. -Hebrews 11:13-16
8) All saved, born again Christians, regardless of blood lineage or gender, are children of Abraham:
For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise. -Galatians 3:27-29
By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went. By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise: For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God. -Hebrews 11:8-10
As seed of Abraham, we too are in temporary dwellings, while we await the city/country whose builder and maker is God.
What is the name of that city? Let me introduce you to the city and country wherein all saved, born again Christians are (hopefully patriotic) citizens of:
Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name. -Revelation 3:12
10) While Christians await their heavenly country, the holy city New Jerusalem, what are we, as strangers and pilgrims, to do on this earth? Well, we are not to commit spiritual fornication and whoredoms with songs of praise to the country, or pledging allegiance to the flag. No, those would be appearances of evil, and 1 Thessalonians 5 says "no" to that. Here's what we're supposed to do, while we wait:
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. -Matthew 5:16
And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. -Mark 16:15
I will not sing praises to any country, and I will not pledge allegiance to any flag. This is all idolatry. I will sing praises to my God and Saviour, and I will pledge allegiance to Him. Will you join me?
What about Independence Day? Yes, do celebrate the birth of our country, and be thankful to live here. Thank God. America was originally founded on the Holy Scriptures. Fall to your knees, and pray for men of God to rise up, in this dry and thirsty land, in Jesus' name.