99 score and 1 year ago God, our Father, brought forth on this planet, a new nation, conceived in the covenant of Grace, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are loved equally by their Creator.
Now we are engaged in a great civil debate, testing whether Grace, or any covenant so conceived and so dedicated, can mend the ills of sinful men. Today we pause to reflect on the great battle-field where this war was first waged. We have come to dedicate our hearts as holy ground and residence for our Creator, and our lives in covenant with those who gave themselves as living sacrifices that this message of Grace might be spread to the ends of the Earth. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should choose this day to rededicate our house to the service of the Lord.
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate - we can not consecrate - we can not make this ground holy. The Son of God, Jesus Christ, who suffered, died, and was raised to life by God has consecrated it, far above the poor power of our self-righteousness. This world may little note, nor long remember what we say today, but it can never forget what God accomplished on the cross and through the empty tomb. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which Jesus sacrificed Himself to advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us - that from the honor of His death and the promise of His resurrection we take increased devotion to that cause for which He gave the last full measure of devotion to the Father - that we here highly resolve that He shall not have died in vain - that this creation shall be transformed by Grace into a Heavenly nation of His people, by the power of His Spirit, which shall not perish, but shall prosper eternally through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Phil Nash, 4.19.2014