Romans 1:28-32 A Letter To America
28 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a depraved mind, to do those things that are not proper, 29 people having been filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, and evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, and malice; they are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, untrustworthy, unfeeling, and unmerciful; 32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.
On June 3rd of, 1958, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, preached a sermon titled “Paul’s Letter to the American Christians.” Notice the sermon title to the American Christian. Dr. King even knew not all Americans are Christian. Still, the USA is supposed to be one nation under God. Sadly, as President Obama said, America is no longer a Christin nation. This sermon was done early in Dr. King’s ministry and civil rights movement, so he took advantage that he was being asked to deliver more speeches. Be the Americans of modern times, need to hear Dr. King’s sermon and the letter Paul would write to the American Christian. Dr. King tries to make Paul’s letter real and severe. Notice what he says here.
“What I have to say this morning will be as a letter. I would like to share with you an imaginary letter that comes from the pen of the Apostle Paul. The postmark reveals it comes from the island of Crete. After opening the letter, I discovered it was written in ill-formed, sprawling Greek. At the top of the letter was this inscription: “Please read when the people assemble themselves together and pass on to the other churches.” For many weeks now, I have been laboring with the translation. It has been difficult, but now I believe I have deciphered its true meaning. And if in presenting the letter, the contents sound strangely Kingian instead of Paulinian, attribute it to my lack of complete objectivity rather than Paul’s lack of clarity. It is miraculous indeed that the Apostle Paul should be writing a letter to you and to me nearly nineteen hundred years after his last letter appeared in the New Testament. How this is possible is something of an enigma wrapped in mystery. The important thing, however, is that I can imagine the Apostle Paul writing a letter to American Christians in 1958 A.D. And here is the letter as it stands before me: I, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the will of God, to you who are in America, grace, and peace be unto you through our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
As Dr. King preaches his sermon, pretending to read an imaginary letter from the apostle Paul, he tells the congregation Paul marvels at the United States’ advancement in technology, medicine, and the economy. Paul is a little jealous of how fast the American Christian can travel a great distance in such a brief time. Americans have automobiles, trains, subways, and airplanes. Dr. Kings says the apostle is amazed that Christians can have breakfast in New York City and supper in Paris on the same day. Even without transportation, the modern American Christian and other people of the world can text, have telephone conversations, and real-time video chat with anyone anywhere in the entire world. Even with such technology, Christians do not know how to communicate with the person beside them or even within their own household. Before the COVID-19 pandemic hit the world, church attendance and membership were meager. Now the church wasn’t allowed during the lockdown. Spiritual matters and godly behavior are hardly noticeable. Children and adults spend more time on electric devices, like PlayStation, X-Box, android, or iPhones, so real-time in-person human relations hardly exist. Americans and American Christians barely have a relationship with God or each other. There is too much love for self, for any Christian or American, to fulfill God’s most meaningful commandments, to love God and others. God bless you all; the Lord Jesus loves you, and so do I. His bondservant, Samuel J. Head.
Romans 1:8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, because your faith is being proclaimed throughout the world. 9 For God, whom I serve in my spirit in the preaching of the gospel of His Son, is my witness as to how unceasingly I make mention of you, 10 always in my prayers requesting if perhaps now, at last by the will of God, I will succeed in coming to you. 11 For I long to see you so that I may impart some spiritual gift to you, that you may be established; 12 that is, that I may be encouraged together with you while among you, each of us by the other’s faith, both yours and mine.