Church of God, New World Ministries

Ascent To Greatness - Part 1

America at the Pinnacle

Winston S. Churchill, speaking at a dinner in his honor in New York on May 25, 1949, said that America had “arrived at the summit of the world.”

This 242-year old nation is by far the richest and most powerful country on earth! Truly, America’s ascent to greatness has placed the United States at the pinnacle of power and prosperity. How did this all come about?

How did the 13 struggling colonies become the world’s super nation with a GNP roughly double that of Russia? Russia’s income is $416.80 billion compared to American’s 2.45 trillion, six times greater than Russia.

How could this latecomer on the world scene rise meteorically to such an unprecedented pinnacle of economic and military dominance dwarfing all other nations?

Is America’s success story primarily the result of cleverly engineered American bootstrap philosophy? Did American ingenuity produce all this wealth and power?

Or has an Unseen Hand guided this nation unerringly from its inception in 1607 when the struggling Jamestown colonists from England barely managed to establish the first permanent English toe-hold in the New World?

How different the course of world history would have been had Spain, France, or Russia come to dominate North America!

In 1493, Pope Alexander VI assigned to Spain all the land which later became Canada and the United States. Subsequently, Spaniards claimed Florida, much of the southern part of the U.S., and all of western America as far north as Canada.

In the 16th and 17th centuries Frenchmen explored much of North America and claimed vast territories for France. Later, Napoleon Bonaparte planned to establish a French Empire west of the Mississippi River for the express purpose of counterbalancing the Anglo-Saxon dominated nations east of the Mississippi.

In the 18th and 19th centuries the Czars of Russia claimed Alaska and the western part of Canada. In 1812 the Russians even established a thriving colony in northern California. Russia, like Spain and France, coveted North America.

Holland and Sweden also made feeble attempts to create toeholds in North America in the early 1600s. But these Dutch and Swedish settlements were soon swallowed up by the English colonies. The Finns also began a trading station in North America during this period.

Spain, France and Russia all grasped for control and possession of North America, yet they all failed! But why?

Why did their attempts to gain control of this indescribably rich, virgin continent utterly collapse? How did it happen that the peoples of Britain, a tiny island nation of only 3 or 4 million people, gained possession of this fabulously wealthy land?

And did the Anglo-Saxon-Celtic-descended British succeed in acquiring this rich continent because of their cleverness, foresightedness, skill and cunning? Or did these British-descended peoples succeed in spite of themselves?

The true history of America the account of how we became the earth’s most affluent, most powerful nation is a fascinating chronicle. The real struggle for national dominance in North America is a most interesting, yet little known, story. Many of the thrilling highlights of this American story have been very sadly misunderstood.

It is imperative that Americans be given the facts of their national success story as we -both during and in the years following our Bicentennial reflect on the highlights of our history.

As a nation, America is still young. But she is no longer an infant or even an adolescent nation. We have come of age. We have matured. Some would even say we are “aging.” They see in us many social wrinkles of injustice. Gray hairs of moral decadence, they say, are everywhere in evidence.

Some even go so far as to claim that this once virgin land like its once virtuous peoples has lost most of its virtue. Greedy Americans have ravished, despoiled and polluted their lovely land.

Some radicals and extremists are even preparing to destroy America through the convulsive blows of a bloody revolution. To them, our beloved country is sullied, corrupt so morally deformed as to be beyond redemption!

Such gloom and doom mongers believe national rigor mortis is already setting in. The undertaker is waiting impatiently. America’s funeral will, they think, soon become part of the dusty pages of history. But before we can speculate on America’s future “history,” we need to examine America’s past, and we also need to understand present-day America.

Look at America today. In spite of our social, economic and moral wrinkles, how greatly have we been blessed in comparison with the other nations of this earth!

We shall now take a critical look at these United States of America from three different perspectives: 1) the goodly heritage of this rich land of plenty, including our marvelous climate: 2) our thriving unparalleled economy; and 3) the U.S. military dominance in the world.

Our national heritage, when rightly viewed, can only elicit open-mouthed astonishment, awe and wonderment.

Truly, no nation or people has even been so fortunate as the peoples of these Untied States of America.

President Abraham Lincoln aptly stated this when he proclaimed a day of fasting and prayer in 1863. The President said: “We find ourselves in the peaceful possession of the fairest portion of the earth, as regards fertility of soil, extend of territory, and salubrity of climate. We find ourselves the legal inheritors of these fundamental blessings. We toiled not in the acquirement or the establishment of them.”

He continued: “We have been the recipients of the choicest blessings of heaven. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power as no other nation ever has grown.”

Lincoln was right but in the 155 years since his words were penned, we have been blessed even more.

In size, the United States is the 4th largest nation after Russia, China, and Canada. We also have the 4th largest population after China, India, and Russia.

Though we occupy only about 6% of the earth’s land surface, we possess 18% of the world’s croplands. Very few nations have as much “arable land” per capital as the U.S. with 3 acres per person. Russia has only 2:8, France has 1.2, India 0.9, Norway 0.6. (Canada, our sister country, has a whopping 6.7 per capita.)

These United States lie between the 26 and 55 degrees N. latitude in the north temperate zone. As you go north of the U.S. border, the growing season is drastically reduced and the weather becomes harsh during much of the year. When you travel south of our border, you quickly descend into humid heat and subtropical weather.

As a direct result of our being as abundantly blessed with one of the worlds’ most varied and enticing climates, and with our possession of the earth’s most productive land. America has become the “breadbasket “of the world.

In 1973 the U.S. exported over 17 billion worth of farm produce. This figure rose to about $20 billion in 1974; and burgeoning shipments of food continued in 1975. U.S. food exports will undoubtedly continue to climb higher in coming years as America tries to stave off famine in the world’s undernourished countries, as long as her own crops remain bountiful.

The U.S. has quadrupled in size since 1790, when there were only 889,000 square miles in the nation. By 1890 we had grown to 3 million square miles.

While Canada occupies about half of North America (it has 3,851.809 square miles), the United States possesses 3,608,787 square miles, and our southern neighbor, Mexico has 761,000 square miles.

Furthermore, much of the U.S. is laced with rivers and streams, and there are many thousands of lakes, including the important Great Lakes which we share with Canada. The Mississippi-Missouri river is the 5th longest river in the world. The Indian word Mississippi means “Father of Waters.”

The entire world would be much poorer today if America had not been discovered and colonized. Few Americans realize how many important foods are indigenous to their continent. Here are only a few of them: Corn, potatoes, cacao, peanuts, squashes, pumpkins, avocados, peppers, pineapples, tomatoes, cocoa, and many others.

The total wealth produced by the original Thirteen Colonies at the time of the American Revolution was miniscule in comparison with today’s gross national product of 2.45 trillion dollars! America’s accounts for over one third of the total world GNP! This mind-boggling figure represent the total value of both goods and services produced annually by the U.S. And this is nearly double the GNP of that of Russia.

Another index of U.S. affluence can be seen in the average family income compared with other nations. In America, as of 2016, was $59, 035. One of the reasons for this very high average family income is the fact that 70% of all women are now employed; and there are more than 3,000,000 women who earn more than their husbands.

In 1776 the annual income per person was less than $500. A century later 1876 it had risen to $800. Today the average annual income per person in the U.S. is running at the high mark of over $31,099 in 2016.

Another sign of unprecedented U.S. prosperity is the number of motor vehicles choking our highways. The U.S. now has over 268.8 million cars, plus 235.605 buses and trucks

Never before have the peoples of any nation been so blessed (or glutted!) with material possessions! Nearly two thirds of all American now own their own homes over 60% to be more precise and over two million own second homes. Eighty present own at least one car while millions have two cars, and many own three or more.

In 1971, 99.8% of American homes had radios; 94% had vacuum cleaners; 84% had electric food mixers; 91% had automatic coffeemakers;

America’s friends and foes alike around the world continue to criticize, all the while gaping and envying her realizing that they are just not able to compete with this industrial and military colossus.

In 1957, Premier Khrushchev boasted Russia would soon overtake the U.S. in her annual GNP. He worked hard to convert Russia from a “goulash economy” to a modern technologically advanced, computer-run nation. But this modernization process has been slow. Since that time, droves of Russian’s agricultural experts have constantly toured America farms and factories to see what it is that enables the U.S. to far outproduce Russia in so many vital areas even though Russia is about two and one-half times the size of America.

Many Americans simply don’t realize just how greatly blessed they have been. Even the “poor” of the U.S. are much better off than are the masses of most countries.

Ordinary items of food, clothing, shelter and appliances articles which are commonplace in America things which we take for granted are luxury items in most nations. We have been so blessed with fine homes, nice cars, nice clothes, innumerable appliances, varied and exotic foods that we tend to take all these blessings for granted. And all too often we seem to feel or express no real thanks or gratitude for our superabundance.!

The late Prime Minister of Japan, Kakuei Tanaka, seemed to sense our national ingratitude when he commented: “I often wonder why you (Americans) worry so much about domestic problems when you have such an abundance of resources. For example, look at American agricultural production. It’s easy for the U.S. to expand its output whenever it chooses. We can’t do that in Japan. When I compare the situation here in Japan with the situation in your country, I think that as a nation you are too privileged.”

When he was asked if he really believed we were “too privileged,” he replied: “Yes, I think God has not been very fair in the distribution of resources.”

“When you think in terms of a capability in exercising economic, political and military power, the weight of the U.S. in world affairs has not declined at all. I expect it to continue to be as important as it has been in the past.”

Was the late Prime Minister of Japan right in thinking that the U.S. is “too privileged” by having “such an abundance of resources”? Was he really right in saying: “I think God has not been very fair in the distribution of resources”?

It is certain that America has been blessed by Heaven with the “fattest land” in the whole earth if one considers, as originally stated, the fertility of our soil, the abundance of our natural resources and the temperate climate with which we have been favored.

But how did it all come about?

Have all these great blessings come to us as a result of our own cleverness, brilliance, ingenuity?

Is it merely by “chance” that we have received them? Were our forefathers especially gifted above other men, or more lucky? Or was this bounty fore-ordained by Providence?

Before we can truly understand the answers to these questions, we must survey the historical setting which led to the establishment of the original Thirteen Colonies along our eastern seaboard.

What world conditions led up to the colonization of the New World by Europeans? How did the British come to win the struggle for control of the North American continent?

This is the first in a series of articles explaining America’s “Ascent to Greatness.” Most American’s have no idea why we have been so blessed. After reading these amazing articles you will learn how God’s promises to one man, Abraham, have been fulfilled and we are recipients of those promises.

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