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Mentoring Our Future Leaders by Dr Marshall Foster

Posted by on May 20, 2013 in Articles, Marshall Foster/World History Institute, Recent Posts | 0 comments

Mentoring Our Future Leaders by Dr Marshall Foster

Throughout the centuries the godly strategy of defeating evil has always been an internal to external, generational family plan. From there God’s power and blessing influences every area of culture. God’s worldwide covenant of blessing was initiated through Abraham. Speaking of Abraham in Genesis 18, God says, “For I have chosen him so that he may teach his children and the sons of his house after him to keep the way of the Lord and to do what is just and righteous.”

The most powerful force in America is not our government, our economy or our military.  The force that has created the freest nations in history, is the peaceful and virtually unreported armies of godly families. If we mentor our families and friends to live out God’s Word in their own lives we can once again impact all areas of society. Here is a story to inspire and challenge your family. Notice how the power of only a few individuals from one family tree helped build two great nations.

John Knox, a former bodyguard and defrocked priest turned reformer, returned to his native Scotland, in 1560. He had spent 15 years in prison and exile.  He preached the liberating Gospel with such power from the pulpit of St. Giles Cathedral that much of his nation was converted. So much so that “Mary Queen of Scots feared the prayers of John Knox more than all the assembled armies of Europe.” As a result of Knox’s faithfulness, the lives, culture and government of Scotland was transformed in a decade.

Four generations later, a descendant of John Knox married a minister named John Witherspoon.  By this time, in the 1740’s, Scotland had once again entered a time of economic turmoil, famine and persecution from its powerful overlord to the south, England.  The Witherspoon/Knox family endured trials and even imprisonment, as they worked to revive the true faith in their homeland. They persevered.  Elizabeth and John had ten children. Five survived childhood.

Prior to the founding of America, John left Scotland and accepted the invitation to become President of the College of New Jersey (Princeton University.)  In the 1760’s the colonies were being pressed toward war with England.  They were determined to create the world’s first constitutional republic rather than fall back into the European model of divine right kings and impoverished commoners. If the colonists were to succeed they would need political, military and spiritual leaders that would surpass any in history.

John Witherspoon, as the head of the College of New Jersey, became the teacher of those future leaders.  He combined a deep faith in the Biblical Christianity of the Reformation with an understanding of how to apply that faith to every academic discipline, including nation-building.  During his tenure there were 478 graduates of his college.  With only three professors including himself, John was able to mentor all who came to his school using the tutorial method in six academic fields.  He was then able to preach to them each Sunday in the campus chapel. Until 1902, every President of Princeton was a minister. America’s youth were largely mentored by ministers like Witherspoon until the 20th century.

Of his graduates, at least 86 became active in civil government and included: one president (James Madison), one vice-president (Aaron Burr), 10 cabinet officers, 21 senators, 39 congressmen, 12 governors, a Supreme Court justice, and one attorney general.

Nearly one-fifth of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, one-sixth of the delegates of the Constitutional Convention, and one-fifth of the first Congress under the Constitution were graduates of the College of New Jersey.  It can truly be said that John Witherspoon discipled his new nation by training the leaders, just as his ancestor John Knox had done in Scotland 200 years before.

Along with leading a college, and serving in the Presbyterian Church, Witherspoon threw his efforts into the political drive for freedom. He was elected to the Continental and impoverished commoners. If the colonists were to succeed they would need political, military and spiritual leaders that would surpass any in history.

John Witherspoon, as the head of the College of New Jersey, became the teacher of those future leaders.  He combined a deep faith in the Biblical Christianity of the Reformation with an understanding of how to apply that faith to every academic discipline, including nation-building.  During his tenure there were 478 graduates of his college.  With only three professors including himself, John was able to mentor all who came to his school using the tutorial method in six academic fields.  He was then able to preach to them each Sunday in the campus chapel. Until 1902, every President of Princeton was a minister. America’s youth were largely mentored by ministers like Witherspoon until the 20th century.

Of his graduates, at least 86 became active in civil government and included: one president (James Madison), one vice-president (Aaron Burr), 10 cabinet officers, 21 senators, 39 congressmen, 12 governors, a Supreme Court justice, and one attorney general. Nearly one-fifth of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, one-sixth of the delegates of the Constitutional Convention, and one-fifth of the first Congress under the Constitution were graduates of the College of New Jersey.  It can truly be said that John Witherspoon discipled his new nation by training the leaders, just as his ancestor John Knox had done in Scotland 200 years before.

Along with leading a college, and serving in the Presbyterian Church, Witherspoon threw his efforts into the political drive for freedom. He was elected to the Continental Congress and sat on 100 different committees.  As the debate over independence raged in Philadelphia on July 2, 1776, John stood to his feet and declared, “We are ripe for independence and in danger of becoming rotten for want of it, if we delay any longer!”  He was the only formal minister to sign the Declaration of Independence (22 others had ministerial training.)  The next year the British took out their revenge on him, ravaging his college and burning his personal and college libraries.  He also lost two of his sons in the War for Independence.

John Witherspoon was an indispensable leader used by God to help found this freest and most blessed of all nations. His words on the National Day of Prayer in 1776 still ring with the spiritual power of his relative, the fiery reformer of Scotland. “While we give praise to God, the supreme disposer of all events, for His interposition on our behalf, let us guard against the dangerous error of trusting in, or boasting of an arm of flesh [human power]…If your cause is just, if your principles are pure, and if you conduct is prudent, you need not fear the multitude of opposing hosts.”

John Witherspoon’s words and life speak to us from the “great cloud of witnesses.” This is our day on the stage of history. God is orchestrating world events and our lives so that “all things work together for good for those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”

I believe that around our kitchen tables are seated the “Knoxes” and “Witherspoons” of our day who will be used to disciple the nations in our time. May God give us the eyes to recognize them and the commitment to train them, while they are still in our sphere of influence!

-Dr. Marshall Foster

 

Original article posted here.

Re-Igniting the Torch

Posted by on Jan 31, 2013 in Articles, Marshall Foster/World History Institute, Recent Posts | 0 comments

Re-Igniting the Torch

“Did you know that our American ancestors and Founders went through the same struggles we are facing today? They endured a stock market and financial meltdown, immigration crises, waves of corrupt politicians, and power grabs at the highest levels pushing for worldwide control of the economy and business. Facing an impossible struggle for liberty, they persevered and birthed the finest constitutional republic in history. Only if we learn and understand what they knew and what they did, can we recover our freedom and prosperity and pass the torch of liberty to our posterity.” Read more.

America’s Answer to Socialism

Posted by on Aug 18, 2012 in Articles | 0 comments

America’s Answer to Socialism

America’s Answer to Socialism. Ancient Rome was founded on a culture of death…. America on a culture of life. America is facing a crisis so severe that many people are beginning to compare our cultural deterioration to the fall of the mighty Roman Empire.  A survey of the symptoms that led to Rome’s demise, which parallels America’s downward trends, should be a wakeup call for all of us. This is the sixth in a series by the World History Institute on the must-know landmark documents of liberty that led up to the U.S. Constitution.

2010 Yearbook

Posted by on Sep 3, 2011 in PHF Resources | 0 comments

Now you can enjoy the stories and events from last year’s 2010 Festival. Read the speeches, see the pictures, study the table displays, and more!

 

See 2010 Yearbook here.