America Almost Not


Here’s a neat story of God and man working together to birth a nation. Did you know that the early American settlers were almost wiped out before the US ever became a nation. Back in 1745, France made an all-out effort to bring the colonists under their control. This strike happened just 31 years before our nation was birthed.

In 1745 the American settlers in New England (Boston Area) had a good relationship with the British. The settlers decided to be ruled by the people and for the people and to not allow the State to force a particular religious beliefs on the people. The 1600’s and 1700’s were filled with nations declaring all people Catholic, Protestant, Reform, or other faiths. Many of those who would not take on the national decree were forced to run for their lives and many of them came to America.

In England, King William of Orange was of the Protestant faith while those in France practiced the Catholic religion. This immediately put the British and the French people at odds with each other. Where ever the French ruled Catholicism was the only faith allowed. They were not going to stand by with a new nation coming forth and a people with religious freedom.

In 1745 the American Settlers, with the aid of a British squadron, captured Louisbourg in Nova Scotia (an area control by France). In the battle, God used the weather to the advantage of the Settlers. “The English appeared to have enlisted heaven in their best interest” wrote one of the town’s residents. “So long as the expedition lasted they had the most beautiful weather in the world”. No storms, no unfavorable winds, and no fog, which was most surprising for that area.

After the capture of Louisbourg, the French sent half of their navy, under the command of the Duc d’ Anville, “to lay waist the entire seacoast from Nova Scotia down to Georgia”. On June 20, 1746 the French fleet took sail with 70 ships. The eluded the British and crossed the Atlantic heading for Halifax. No one knew they were coming as the New Englanders were depending upon England to protect them on the other side of the Atlantic.

Fleet of Galian ships

After the ships left port they were delayed at first because of abnormally calm winds. Then they encountered storms in which several ships were disabled by lightning strikes. Pestilence broke out and the entire fleet was scattered to the four winds of the ocean by a tremendous storm. By these means, “they were … so dispersed in the midst of the Ocean that by Aug 26th, they had but twelve ships of the line and forty-one others… On Sept 2 as they were nearing the dangerous shoals off the Island of Sables and they encountered another storm and lost several more vessels.

When the Duc d’ Anville’s ship finally reached Halifax, a lonely, isolated area, he expected to rendezvous with other ships sent from the West Indies to meet him there. The West Indies squadron had indeed been there, but discouraged by the long delay of the French fleet, had given up a left, leaving Duc d’ Anville to fend for himself.

During all this, what had the New England colonists been doing? A New England pastor, Rev Jonathan French wrote that as soon as the French vessels were sighted off the coast, the people were filled with consternation. The streets filled with men, marching for the defense of the sea ports and the distress of women and children. But never did the religion, for which the country was settled appear more important, nor prayer more prevalent, then on this occasion. God heard their prayers and stretched forth his arm of power destroying that mighty Armament in a manor almost as extraordinary as the drowning of the Pharaoh and the Egyptian Army in the Red Sea.

New England Colonists in Prayer

Shortly after his arrival in Halifax, Duc d’ Anville was so appalled at the loss of the major part of his fleet, finding his ships few and scattered with so many men dead and sickly, and with no more help coming, he sunk into discouragement, and on Sept 15th died. It was generally thought that he poisoned himself and was buried without ceremony. More ships finally limped into port, but many of the men on the ships were ill and food supplies were running out. The commander taking Duc d’ Anville’s place also committed suicide by falling on his sword. The third in command ordered men ashore to recruit the French and Indians so an attack on Annapolis could proceed. But before they could leave Halifax, approximately three thousand men died of pestilence.

The fleets new commander, La Jonquiere finally set sail on Oct 13th 1746 intending to attack Annapolis. He was probably unaware that the New England Colonists set Oct 16th aside as a day of fasting and prayer asking God for their deliverance.

Galleon ships sunk in storm

Rev French describes the events that followed, “On this great emergency, and day of darkness and doubtful expectations, the 16th of October was observed as a Day of Fasting and Prayer throughout the Providence. Wonderful to relate, that very night God sent upon them a more dreadful storm than either of the former storms and completed their destruction. Many ships overset, some floundered, and only a remnant of the fleet returned to France to carry the news. Thus New England colonists stood still and saw the salvation of God.

So why do you think God intervened in the affairs of men on this occasion. Consider the fact that most of the Colonists were devote Christians who were not afraid to activate their faith and unite themselves with God. So much so, that they were willing to face extreme hardships to birth a Christian nation. They combined action with their beliefs and God supported them in their cause.
They birthed a nation where beliefs in God were not going to be forced upon them by the State, but a place where every man had the freedom to express his faith in God without being persecuted.

First Amendment states; Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

In other words, the government shall not decree an establishment of religion, or force all to be Catholic, Protestant, Pentecostal, Christian, or any other form of religion. But Government shall also not hinder the free exercise thereof. This is something that the people of the US need to stand for as government officials are not understanding what our Founding Fathers put in place. Our current Government is limiting or stopping the free expression of Christianity in Government places, simply said, they are not supposed to do that. We need to be a people of resolve, willing to activate our faith and stand for what we believe in. Remember, if your faith in God doesn’t change the way you live, it’s not real faith.