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The date was December 7th, 1941. The time was 7:55am. To the complete surprise of American forces in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Japanese planes began to sweep down and drop devastating bombs onto our fleet and also our planes on the ground. When the attack was done, 18 of our ships were sunk or sinking and nearly all of our planes were destroyed. Over 3500 of our servicemen were dead. We were shocked at such a bold and devastating attack on our U.S Navy. Many wondered if the Navy would ever recover. Even worse, we wondered if our liberty would shortly be ended and we would be required to worship the Emperor of Japan as god.
In the midst of this despair, President Franklin Roosevelt replaced the commander of our Pacific fleet with an Admiral named Chester Nimitz. Nimitz arrived at Pearl Harbor on Christmas Eve, 1941. He immediately went for an inspection of the harbor. Sunken ships and twisted metal were everywhere. Once Nimitz had inspected the whole harbor, the young seaman at the helm of his boat asked him, “Well, Admiral, what do you think after seeing all this destruction?” Nimitz’ reply shocked everyone listening. He said,
“The Japanese made three of the biggest mistakes an attack force could ever make, or God was taking care of America. Which do you think it was?”
“Reflections on Pearl Harbor” by Admiral Chester Nimitz
He then listed the three mistakes:
- They attacked on Sunday morning when most of the men were on shore. He stated we would have lost ten times the men we did if it had been at a different time.
- They didn’t touch with their bombs the dry docks just across the Harbor from the ships they attacked. The dry docks are where ships are repaired. Repairing them here would be much easier than towing them to America to be repaired.
- They didn’t touch our gasoline storage tanks which were easy targets just five miles away.
It would certainly seem that “God was taking care of America” on December 7th, 1941. But will He do it again? That depends on those of us who are Americans today. He promises in His word that, for those who walk in covenant with Him,
“No weapon formed against you will prosper.”
So the real question to be asked is “Am I walking in covenant with God?” The word covenant means “the meeting of minds.” Thus, if my thoughts are agreeing with the mind of God, I’m in covenant with Him and can thus expect His protection and provision to accomplish what He put me here to do. But if we think we can live anyway we want to and God will protect us because our grandparents had faith in Him, or just because “I’m an American”, we are badly deceived! He made plain in His word to Moses that if we forget His law he will turn us over to our enemies. He warns:
“But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee: A nation whom you have not known shall eat the fruit of your land and the produce of you labor; and thou shalt be only oppressed and crushed always: The LORD shall cause thee to be smitten before thine enemies: thou shalt go out one way against them, and flee seven ways before them: and shalt be removed into all the kingdoms of the earth.”
(Deuteronomy 28:15, 25, 33)
Was God taking care of America on December 7th, 1941? Will He take care of America today? You and I decide that—by whether we live according to His laws.
Think about it; because if you don’t, someone else will do your thinking for you—and for your children! And you won’t like what that brings to you. I’m Don Pinson; this has been Think About It.