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The Day Independence Came

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly
The Truth Network Radio
July 4, 2022 6:00 am

The Day Independence Came

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly

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July 4, 2022 6:00 am

In this Adventures in Odyssey drama, Irwin Springer, a middle schooler interested in history, takes a wild journey back to the American Revolution, where he meets the men who shaped the United States.

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In his second letter to the Corinthians, the Apostle Paul wrote, Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. Well, freedom, liberty, was the pressing need felt by the leaders of 13 American colonies more than 200 years ago.

They had a deep faith in God and decided to take a stand against the mightiest empire in the world when they signed the Declaration of Independence. I'm John Fuller. This is Focus on the Family with Focus President and author Jim Daly. Jim, I suspect that there are many, many people who really don't understand and fully comprehend the circumstances surrounding that document and this special day. Well, it's true, John. We weren't present at the moment. All the subtlety of what was going on in the culture of early America is lost.

We don't know it, but we can try to feel it through creative efforts. And, you know, think about the wonder that we have today when we celebrate July 4th. It's friends and family and barbecue and maybe going for a hike here in the beautiful Rocky Mountains or going to the beach if that's what you live by.

We celebrate it with fun and recreation and family. But we've got to remember this is a serious issue back in 1776. These founding fathers, as they were putting their lives on the line, the Declaration of Independence was seen as a document of treason by the British.

In fact, I didn't know this, but they had to keep the name secret of the signers of the Declaration just to protect their lives. And that's the environment. That's the subtlety that we're talking about that's lost on us today. But our good colleagues that produce Adventures in Odyssey produced a fabulous, creative recollection of 1776. And we want to play that today for you.

As we do that, let me give some background. Adventures in Odyssey is a radio program that we've produced since 1987. It's intended for children, families across the land listen to it, though it's so well done. And it weaves together entertainment and biblical truth. And the setting is the small fictional town of Odyssey. And the grandfather type character named Mr. Whitaker or Whit runs an old fashioned ice cream shop.

In addition to being a radio program, Adventures in Odyssey is also available on CD or in download form. And we have details at focusonthefamily.com slash radio. Today's episode is called The Day Independence Came and features a young history buff named Erwin Springer, who is currently playing a game of historical trivia with Whit and his friend Tom. But in a few minutes, who knows where he'll be. OK, here's one for you. Who commanded the British forces during the revolution?

That's easy. General Charles Cornwallis. Oh, boy.

How do you know all that stuff, Erwin? Oh, I love the Revolutionary War. There were so many great heroes like Washington and Adams and Nathan Hale. It's my favorite period in history. Oh, speaking of Franklin, that reminds me.

I have a book about him for you, Erwin. It's a big thick one, too. I found it in a sale downtown. Really? Where is it? It's on one of the shelves in the Bible room.

I didn't want any of the kids to handle it before you got to it. Great! Look at him go.

You'd think he was looking for buried treasure or something. Well, what makes you think he isn't? Great. There's nobody here.

I'll be able to read it right now. Let's see. There it is on the top shelf. Now, where's the step ladder? Hmm. Well, here's a chair.

Mr. Piddicoe doesn't like us to climb on chairs. I'll just do it real quick and nobody will ever know. There we go.

Still pretty high. I think I can stretch up and get it, though. Got it. Ah! Oh, my head! Ouch! Oh, my head! The book must have hit it when I fell down. Hey, where is my book? Come to think of it, where's Fitz End?

This looks like the old dirt road up to Triple Lake, except it isn't. Boy! You, boy!

Who, me? Yes. Follow me if you value your hide.

Uh, excuse me, but I was taught never to go with strangers. Oh, right behind you! Did he say rebels?

Yes. We have to get out of this clearing. Over there!

Get behind those bushes! Where are they? I don't know. They run like rabbits. Now, they've got to be about here somewhere. Let's take a breather for a moment, shall we, Alfie? Right. They look like redcoats.

Yes, they are redcoats, and deadly ones, too. We have to think of some way out of this. We could fight, but unfortunately, I have no more shot left.

Still, there must be some way. Hey, look up there, above the soldiers. What? You see it? That big white looking thing? Yes, so?

It's a wasp's nest. So it is. How's your aim?

Uh, not too good. All right. Looks like it's up to me, then. Hand me that rock over there. Okay. Now, we only have one shot, so it has to count. Are you ready?

Yep, ready. Hey, lobsterbacks, how about some company? Yeah, look at them go.

Oh, we fixed them for fair, eh? Ouch. Oh, the wasps are turning. We'd best beat a hasty retreat, or we'll end up as fools with the wasps ourselves.

You said it. Let's get out of here. Ouch.

They're still coming. There's a lake ahead. Can you swim? No. Ah, well, there's no time like the present to learn. Whoa. Well, now, don't struggle. Don't struggle. I've got you. I have you. Now, that's it.

Just move your arms and legs. That's good. That's it. Now, up under the shore. Well, we've had quite an adventure. And I don't even know your name or where you're from. I'm Irwin Springer from Odyssey. Well, Irwin Springer from Odyssey, I thank you for saving my life. Likewise, I'm sure.

And you are? My name is Hale. Nathan Hale. Nathan Hale?

The Nathan Hale? You've heard of me? Who hasn't heard of you? Well, I don't know.

Everyone, I would imagine. Wait a minute. If you're Nathan Hale, then this must be... What year is this? 1776. July, to be precise. We're just outside of the township of New York.

New York? Oh, wow! Oh, wow! Mr. Springer, are you all right? Yeah, yeah, I just can't... You're really Nathan Hale? Yes. I think I'd better get you back to camp.

You seem a bit delirious. Can you walk? Oh, yeah, yeah, sure. Are you sure?

It's a good stretch of the legs. No, I'm okay, really. Let's go. Good fellow. All right.

This way, then. Uh, wait a minute. What camp? The camp of the Continental Army, of course. Oh, wow!

Oh, wow! Hall, who goes there? Nathan Hale and Master Irwin Springer from the township of Odyssey. Nathan, thank God you're all right. You're long overdue.

If it hadn't been for this young man, I might not have made it at all. Well, you're to report to headquarters right away. Yes, I do have information that won't wait. Master Springer, follow me. Oh, wow! Oh, wow! I can't believe this. I'm in the middle of the Colonial Army.

Well, we don't have much, but we call it home. This is everything I've ever dreamed about come to life. I'm glad it meets with your approval. Ah, here we are, the headquarters tent. Wait here.

There's someone I want you to meet. This is incredible! Incredible! The kids at Wits End are never gonna believe this. I'm not even sure I believe it. Maybe I should pinch myself to see if I'm awake.

No, if I am dreaming, I don't want to wake up. This is great! Master Springer, come in. What next? So, this is the young man who saved my captain's life. Yes, sir. This is Master Erwin Springer of Odyssey. I'm pleased to make your acquaintance, Master Springer.

I'm George Washington. Oh, wow! Oh, wow! Oh, wow! Is that some sort of Indian greeting? I don't know, sir.

He does seem to say it often, though. Well, in the interest of maintaining good relations with the people of Odyssey, I say, oh, wow to you, Master Springer. Thank you, sir. In saving Captain Hale, you have done me a great service. I am in your debt.

You? In my debt? Oh, no, sir. I just pointed out where the wasps were.

It was Captain Hale who did all the work. And modest, too. Master Erwin, we were just about to retire for prayers. Will you join us? Prayers? Unless, of course, you don't pray. Oh, oh, no, I do pray every day. I'm a Christian. A patriot and a Christian, too.

There's no better combination. Let's do it, then. My tent's this way. Oh, most glorious God, I acknowledge and confess my faults in the weak and imperfect performance of the duties of this day. Direct my thoughts, words, and work. Daily, frame me more and more into the likeness of Thy Son, Jesus Christ. In His name, amen.

Amen. Master Erwin, you seem perplexed. I just can't believe that I'm praying with General Washington. I never knew you were so, I mean, I've always read that you were religious, but I didn't realize how much Jesus really meant to you. How of you, Erwin Springer, do you hold those truths in your heart? Well, I guess I never thought about it before.

I mean, I've read about it and everything, but until now I never realized how God really does rule countries, and He is in control of what happens to them. So, I guess the answer to your question is, yes, sir, I do hold these truths in my heart. Then Captain Hale was correct. You are the right man for the job. Uh, job?

What job? Listen carefully. Even as we speak, the Second Continental Congress is preparing a statement of independence from England.

But I fear that some in that assembly do not feel, as you and I do, that God must be first in our country. And so I have written a message to them, urging them to remember the ruler of nations as they ready the document. I wish you, Erwin Springer, to deliver this message.

Me? I know the journey will be tiring, and there is little time, but will you do this for me? Oh, yes, sir.

Excellent. Your horse is waiting outside. Uh, horse? Yes.

You do ride, don't you? Well, uh, there's no time like the present to learn. Are you coming with me, Captain Hale? No, I'm afraid I must travel a different path.

Back to New York. But you'll be caught. I mean, if you're caught, won't you be... Hanged?

Yes, in all probability. But if that is the Lord's will, then who am I to stand in the way? I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country. Now, up you go!

Godspeed, Erwin Springer. You carry our best hope. Onward to liberty! To liberty!

To liberty! You're listening to Focus on the Family with Jim Daly. I'm John Fuller, and today we're featuring a special radio drama called The Day Independence Came. It's just one of twelve imaginative, history-based dramas from our Adventures in Odyssey collection called For God and Country.

Now, the collection is available as a CD set or an audio download. You can learn more about Adventures in Odyssey when you contact us. Today, of course, we're closed for the 4th of July holiday, but head on over to the show notes.

You'll find all the details right there. And now for the conclusion of today's special Independence Day presentation of Adventures in Odyssey on Focus on the Family. Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa! Oh, why did I ever think riding a horse was fun?

But this is it, the Pennsylvania State House. Oh, wow! Shh, I'm sorry, I... Mr. Whitaker? Who?

Oh, nothing, you just look like someone from my hometown. Really? Poor fellow. Yeah, uh, is this where the Second Continental Congress is meeting? Well, indeed it is.

That's them in there. Uh, come, have a seat, Master, um... Erwin Springer. Oh. Thanks, but I've been sitting too long already. Besides, I have a message for the Congress from General Washington. Oh, well, we can't keep that waiting, can we?

Here, help me up then and we'll deliver your message. But they're talking. Oh, that's merely Adams and Dickinson.

They're always talking. Come on now. ...destroying our house in winter and exposing a growing family before we have got another shelter.

It is Britain who has already destroyed the shelter. President Hancock. Mr. Franklin, we're in debate. Benjamin Franklin? I realize that, sir, and I apologize for the outburst, but this young gentleman has just arrived with a message from General Washington.

Oh, well, then, by all means, do read it. All right, go ahead, Master Springer. Oh, wow! Gentlemen of the Congress, I write you at a most delicate time. Our cause faces its most trying days. General Howe has gathered 30,000 troops ready to strike our position. As usual, we are short on ammunition, rations, and men, but we stand ready to fight, awaiting the outcome of your decision for or against independence.

There. What do you think of your precious king now, Mr. Dickinson, a king who has massed 30,000 troops to attack one of his own colonies? A colony that rebelled against him, sir. Discipline where discipline is due.

Discipline? Have you forgotten the causes for which we fight? Taxation without representation?

The oppression of our citizens? Unlike you, Mr. Adams, I cannot so easily remove myself from the most powerful empire on the earth. We have no hope of winning better live Englishmen than dead patriots. There are many, Mr. Dickinson, who would say that to live under English rule is to be dead. Hear, hear.

Really, Mr. Franklin. And does this cause merit sending our small army to certain defeat against such overwhelming numbers? But it's not certain defeat.

We'll win, honest. Master Springer, you are a guest of this assembly. Please remember that. Yes, sir. The cause of freedom merits any price, Mr. Dickinson. And as for myself, this great force only spurs my belief that we must strengthen our unity, not weaken it.

We must indeed all hang together, or most assuredly, we will all hang separately. I think General Washington will not find his opponents so amusing. Of what concern is the size of the enemy? I feel no anxiety at the large army against us. Have we forgotten the remarkable interventions of heaven in our favor? God will not forsake a people engaged in so righteous a cause if we remember his loving kindness.

And are we so sure that God is with us? General Washington thinks so. Master Springer. I'm sorry, President Hancock. I know I shouldn't talk, but I haven't finished the message. I firmly believe that God is on our side, as long as we are on his. And so, my only request is that you seek the counsel of Almighty God and humbly implore his providence in this most solemn task.

G. Washington. Well, the General's faith does him credit, to be sure. But most military men believe that God is with them. It hardly makes it so. More likely, God doesn't care at all about this conflict. He cares, Mr. Dickinson. I have lived so a long time.

And the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his aid? You speak of empires, Dr. Franklin.

But I see no empire here. Only 13 colonies trying to bind together into a commonwealth. And what will happen to that commonwealth in 20 or 30 years, gentlemen? Might not this great union itself become unwieldy and split into separate commonwealths? No, it won't.

It'll stay together and grow. What you're doing here today is the beginning of a great nation, the greatest in the whole world. You can't give it up now.

You can't. The idle dreams of youth. But what does reality say, gentlemen? Does it not tell us that this union you hold so dear will dissolve? And the many who have been sacrificed on the altar of freedom will have died in vain.

I implore you, gentlemen, don't let that happen. Vote against independence! Mr. Adams, have you anything to say? What can I say that hasn't already been hackneyed back and forth a hundred times in this room?

The issue is plain. Before God, I believe the hour has come. Live or die, survive or perish, I am for the declaration. It is my living sentiment, and by the blessing of God, it shall be my dying sentiment. Independence now, independence forever! Right order, gentlemen, gentlemen, order, please.

It must still be put to the vote. Mr. President, may I say something? Mr. Dickinson. I'm sure that my behavior today will finish off my popularity in this land. But I would rather be unpopular forever than vote away the blood and happiness of my countrymen. It's clear I can't stop you, but I also can, in good conscience, vote with you. Therefore, I respectfully take my leave.

A noble fellow, indeed. To the vote, gentlemen. Resolved that these United States are and of right ought to be free and independent states, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British crown, and that all political connection between them and the state of Great Britain is and ought to be totally dissolved. New Hampshire. Aye. Massachusetts.

Aye. It becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political band. Rhode Island.

I want these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, and so they never are. To declare that these united colonies are and of right ought to be free and independent states, and for the support of this declaration, with firm reliance on the protection of divine providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor. New York. New York respectfully abstains.

That's twelve to zero with one abstention. The motion passes. Ride, Erwin Springer, proclaim the news that these United States under God are now and forevermore free. The colonies have independence. The declaration has passed.

The United States of America are free. Hooray! Whoa! Oh, boy! Whoa! Oh, the United States are free.

The United States are free. Erwin. Erwin. Oh, come on. Now, wake up.

Atta boy. Oh, ow, my head. Oh, Mr. Franklin? Franklin?

No, it's Mr. Whittaker. Easy now, easy. You took quite a fall.

I was in Philadelphia with Benjamin Franklin and John Adams. Oh, it sounds like he's going to be okay. Well, I'll go check on the ambulance. What happened? Oh, your chair slipped out from under you. Looks like the book hit you and you hit the floor.

You were only out for a couple of seconds, but we'll take you to the hospital just in case. Now, what were you talking about when you woke up? Oh, I had this incredible dream.

I was in the revolution with Nathan Hale and I prayed with George Washington and he sent me back to the Continental Congress with a message and I saw them sign the Declaration of Independence. Whoa, whoa, whoa. Wait a minute. Wait a minute.

Easy now. Sounds like you've had quite an adventure. Oh, I know it was only a dream, but it seems so real.

Dreams are that way sometimes. Yeah, but you know what was really weird, Mr. Whittaker? What? Benjamin Franklin looked and sounded just like you. Really?

Poor fellow. Oh, wow. And that concludes our Independence Day presentation on Focus on the Family, a radio drama called The Day Independence Came, and it was produced by our tremendously talented Adventures in Odyssey team. And, Jim, I love the creativity and the fun throughout that whole episode. It was a lot of fun. You know, my boys loved listening to Adventures in Odyssey as children right about bedtime. That was when we would sit and listen, they'd lay in bed, and it was great. And they did really love it, and so many great lessons for them, biblically-based lessons.

There's so much humor and creativity in the way the team describes that moment in history, and I trust it gave you another perspective about the Fourth of July and what it means to live in these wonderful United States. Isn't it amazing to be able to celebrate this holiday even though our Founding Fathers were flawed? Of course, they're human.

There are no perfect people. The Lord brought together some incredibly intelligent and insightful men to form this country, and we're still benefiting from the wisdom that they put in place many, many years ago. That's right, and so many of them, as you know, Jim, had a deep religious faith, and that was evident when you read the writings, when you go back and look at history. It seems to be forgotten by so many today, and there are even active forces that want to remove God from all public conversation and public view, which does seem wrong, doesn't it?

It sure does. We're losing kind of the foundation of what this country was built upon. We talk about what's happening with religious liberty and the other freedoms that we've enjoyed for over 200 years. These freedoms were brilliant measures that the Founding Fathers put into place, and no other nation was created with these kinds of liberties in mind, and we are all so blessed to experience that here. Hopefully, God's mercy will continue to flow through this nation so these deep foundational beliefs can be protected. And it's true, if we lose these freedoms, I really believe we're on the road to tyranny. You only need to look back at history to see that pattern repeated over and over again, and I hope we've been able to give you an educating and entertaining perspective on the founding of our nation. Our Founding Fathers deserve respect, and our nation deserves our steadfast diligence to continue being a nation of freedoms and a nation under God. Well, those are some good thoughts, Jim, and I trust that you and your family will consider those in light of the celebrations that accompany Independence Day. Learn more about Adventures in Odyssey and this specific drama from our For God and Country collection.

You'll see the link in the show notes. While you're there, let me invite you to help us produce more creative, faith-building programs like this one. These programs have a profound impact on a child's understanding and love for God, and your financial gift of any amount today helps us plant more seeds of biblical truth in our Adventures in Odyssey series.

Make a monthly contribution or a one-time gift of any amount, and thank you in advance for being generous. Coming up next time, you'll hear about creating healthy rhythms for your marriage. It's our job to evaluate what brings us life and make decisions based on those values, and that's where the peace comes from when we make decisions for our family and for our marriage that line up with those values. On behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team, thanks for joining us today for Focus on the Family. I'm John Fuller inviting you back as we once more help you and your family thrive in Christ. I had the opportunity to attend one of their marriage intensives for couples in crisis, and they prayed with us. They helped me believe that my marriage could be saved. I agreed to go but was very skeptical that anything could help us.

But the whole environment was so safe and nonjudgmental. I felt my heart start to open up as we worked with the counselors. Both of us still have work to do in our marriage, but for the first time in a long time, we have hope again. Focus on the Family's Hope Restored Marriage Intensive Program has helped thousands of couples who thought that their marriage was over. Find out which program is right for you at HopeRestored.com
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-28 01:31:41 / 2023-03-28 01:42:34 / 11

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