|Moses (Painting by Philippe de Champaigne)|
Bruce Feiler points out that the Mayflower journey was viewed as an Exodus by the Pilgrims. He states, “By the time of the Revolution, the Exodus was the go-to narrative of American identity.”
King George was called “Pharaoh” by none other than Thomas Paine. This quote from a Book of Moses (Leviticus 25:10) was chosen for the Pennsylvania State House bell: Proclaim Liberty thro’ all the Land to all the Inhabitants Thereof.
When Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and Benjamin Franklin were asked to design the first national seal, all three “proposed that Moses be the face of the new United States.” Centuries later, images of this Hebrew prophet grace the United States Supreme Court, as well as the House chamber.
When Lincoln was assassinated, “two-thirds of the eulogies compared him to Moses.” On the night before Martin Luther King, Jr.’s murder, King proclaimed: I’ve seen the promised land. And I might not get there with you, but I want you to know that we as a people will get to the promised land.
Inspired by Moses, we struggle on toward that glorious goal.
Copyright July 3, 2016 by Linda Van Slyke All Rights Reserved