CHARLOTTE, N.C.—The faithful around the nation will dedicate time tomorrow, May 5, for the National Day of Prayer, “an important and timely opportunity for Americans to go before God for much-needed intercession for a nation with critical and crippling concerns,” said Southern Evangelical Seminary (SES, www.ses.edu) President and Evangelical leader Dr. Richard Land.
Land will speak at a National Day of Prayer event at Charlotte Christian School to mark the observance.
“From upheaval in the streets of Baltimore to violence in Texas spurred by radical Islamic jihadists,” Land said, “our nation is in dire need of prayer. When man attempts to fix the ills on an evil world on his own, he quickly learns no nation can survive and thrive without God.
“Now is the time for God’s people to come together in repentance and prayer and to lift up our nation’s leaders, problems and future to the Lord,” he continued. “The question in America is not whether politicians will fix things, but whether Christians will repent, humble ourselves and pray. The future of our nation and whether we will experience God’s blessing and protection or see His hand removed from America, depends not on what the secular world does, but on what God’s people do. As God’s word instructs us, ‘If My people which are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face, then will I hear from heaven and forgive their sins and heal their land’ (2 Chronicles 7:14).”
The National Day of Prayer event, sponsored by the National Day of Prayer Task Force, is in its 65th year, but Americans throughout history—through the colonial Puritan days up through the Revolution, the Civil War and World Wars I and II—have been called by American leaders and presidents to days of prayer—to pray for divine intercession and blessing in times of great crisis, Land said.
For example, Land added, Franklin D. Roosevelt spent most of the afternoon and the early evening of June 6, 1944, composing a prayer that he led the nation in praying that night as part of his “Fireside Chat” national address, as he announced the D-Day landings at Normandy when the Allies began the liberation of Europe from Nazi tyranny. President Roosevelt led the nation to “the throne of grace” praying these words:
Almighty God: Our sons, pride of our Nation, this day have set upon a mighty endeavor, a struggle to preserve our Republic, our religion, and our civilization, and to set free a suffering humanity. Lead them straight and true; give strength to their arms, stoutness to their hearts, steadfastness to their faith. … And for us at home—fathers, mothers, children, wives, sisters, and brothers of brave men overseas— whose thoughts and prayers are ever with them, help us, Almighty God, to rededicate ourselves in renewed faith in Thee in this hour of great sacrifice.
“Whether America has a future worth having depends not on what secular people do, but on what saved people do,” Land said. “We must humble ourselves, we must pray, we must seek His face, we must turn from our wicked ways, we must confess our sins, our rebellion, where we fall short, where we have gone our own way. Revival must start with God’s people on their faces, before God, confessing sin, seeking His forgiveness and His blessings.
“When Christians get right with God, then God will heal the land,” Land concluded. “When we ask God to bless America, we must do so understanding that we must also pray for God to make America a country He can bless. As President Lincoln put it in the middle of the Civil War, we shouldn’t be as concerned about whether God is on our side, but rather whether we are on God’s side. Being on God’s side is where the blessings are, individually, as families, as a country.”
The 2016 theme for the National Day of Prayer is “Wake Up America,” which emphasizes the need for people, corporately and individually, “to return to the God of our Fathers in reverence for His Holy Name.” To further highlight the theme, the verse of Isaiah 58:1 will be the focus: “Shout it aloud, do not hold back. Raise your voice like a trumpet.” To find a local National Day of Prayer event, visit www.nationaldayofprayer.org/events and search by zip code or city.
Created in 1952 and signed into law by President Harry S. Truman, the National Day of Prayer has continually united Americans from all socio-economic, political and ethnic backgrounds in prayer, while also encouraging personal repentance and righteousness in the culture. The National Day of Prayer belongs to all Americans and is a day that transcends differences, bringing together citizens to celebrate our most beloved freedom—the freedom to humbly go before God and seek His guidance in prayer.
Southern Evangelical Seminary recently announced its 23rd annual National Conference on Christian Apologetics hosted by Calvary Church in Charlotte, N.C., on Oct. 13-15. SES will welcome such top name speakers as Norman Geisler, Richard Howe, Richard Land, Josh and Sean McDowell, Hugh Ross, Jay Sekulow, Lee Strobel, Frank Turek and J. Warner Wallace, along with many others. The theme of the 2016 conference, “The Defense Never Rests,” focuses on the ongoing charge to Christians to defend their beliefs rationally, intelligently and lovingly.
SES is a leader in apologetics education—teaching students to defend their faith and talk intelligently, passionately and rationally about what they believe and why they believe it. Many courses focus on societal issues from a Christian worldview, delve into scientific apologetics or contemplate creation research.
SES explores ethical issues through its “Ethics in Emerging Technology” program; for more information, visit www.ethics.ses.edu. Southern Evangelical Seminary also recently unveiled a new apologetics blog at www.WhyDoYouBelieve.org, where Land and other SES voices address the most pressing issues of the day.
Land is featured in his nationally syndicated daily radio commentary, “Bringing Every Thought Captive,” which airs on almost 400 stations nationwide, including nearly 200 on the American Family Radio Network and 100 on the Bott Radio Network. “Bringing Every Thought Captive” is also podcast daily on the free SES mobile app and airs locally in the Charlotte, N.C., area every weekday. The “Bringing Every Thought Captive” television program, hosted by Land, airs on the NRB Network Wednesdays at 8 p.m. and midnight EST. “Bringing Every Thought Captive” also reaches nearly 2 million households in the Chicago area on the Total Living Network. For details about stations, times, downloads and more, click here.
Land has taught as a visiting or adjunct professor for several seminaries and has authored or edited more than 15 books. He earned his Doctor of Philosophy degree from Oxford University in England and his bachelor’s degree (magna cum laude) from Princeton University. Land also earned a Master of Theology (Honors Program) degree from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, where he received the Broadman Seminarian Award as the Outstanding Graduating Student. Dr. Land was the 2013 Watchman Award recipient from the Family Research Council for his leadership on moral and cultural issues. He also received the Phillip E. Johnson Award for Liberty and Truth from Biola University in 2010. Land served previously (1988-2013) as president of The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, the Southern Baptist Convention’s official entity assigned to address social, moral and ethical concerns, with particular attention to their impact on American families. In 2014, he was appointed as a Senior Research Fellow of the ERLC’s Research Institute, and in 2015, he was named in the top 15 of Newsmax’s “Top 100 Christian Leaders in America.”
Southern Evangelical Seminary invites visitors to its web site to join the more than 20,000 people who have already downloaded the SES Apologetics App for Windows mobile devices and Android and Apple phones and tablets. Those with the app can get the very best news and information in Christian apologetics, including articles, audio, video, blogs and more from today’s most able defenders of the Christian faith—William Lane Craig, Lee Strobel, Josh McDowell, William Dembski, Frank Turek, Hugh Ross, Gary Habermas and other well-known speakers, authors and teachers.
Southern Evangelical Seminary has been ranked as one of the top graduate programs for General Christian Apologetics by TheBestSchools.org’s “Top 10 Graduate Programs in Christian Apologetics.”
For more information on SES, visit its web site at www.ses.edu or its Facebook page, follow the SES Twitter feed, @sesapologetics, or call (800) 77-TRUTH. For more information about SES’ “Ethics in Emerging Technology” program, visit www.ethics.ses.edu.
For information on SES or to set up an interview, contact Deborah Hamilton at 215-815-7716 or 610-584-1096, ext. 102, or Beth Harrison, 610-584-1096, ext. 104, Media@HamiltonStrategies.com.
Southern Evangelical Seminary is a leader in apologetics education—teaching students to defend their faith and talk intelligently, passionately and rationally about what they believe and why they believe it. The accredited Christian college and seminary offers a wide variety of bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees. Programs can be completed through residence in the Charlotte area or online. The award-winning education at SES is distinctively Christian and focused on evangelism and world-engaging defense of the Christian faith—Christian Apologetics.
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