Today we are finishing our look at the Declaration of Independence by talking about the rights to liberty and the pursuit of happiness. At first read this may sound like our founding fathers had the idea that they wanted everyone to do whatever they wanted and that this would result in happiness. I don't think this was the case, however. The liberty that this country was founded on was not a liberty from law, but a liberty of conscience. It was a liberty to obey a law, a higher law. The result of obedience to the law of God is happiness. America was founded as a land of opportunity, where anyone could be anything they wanted to be. They could chase the American dream. This dream, however, would only bring true happiness if it was grounded in obedience to the law of God.
David said, "Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them" (Psalm 119:165). This peace that the law brings is security, assurance, a deep joy that exist no matter what is going on in the world around us. Jesus said it this way: "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid" (John 14:27). As we hear about the things going on all around us, let's be thankful that we don't have to be afraid. We have a peace, an assurance, a deep abounding joy that cannot be taken away. It's a joy that is found in knowing our Savior and loving His law.
Finding happiness through liberty,