‘Remove Not the Ancient Landmarks’

Editor, Wisconsin Christian News:

   “Remove not the ancient landmarks, which thy fathers have set.”  Proverbs 22:28.

   Our text is generally understood as referring to property markers, and is a charge to never take advantage of our neighbor by moving the property line in order to diminish that which is his, and thereby enlarge our own borders through deceit.

   Adam Clarke believed, however, that this passage is not limited to property lines alone. He wrote that this passage teaches us more broadly that we should “take not what is not thine own in any case. Let all ancient divisions, and the usages connected with them, be held sacred.  Bring in no new dogmas, nor rites, nor ceremonies, into religion, or the worship of God, that are not clearly laid down in the sacred writings,” and he referred to Jeremiah 6:16, which says, “Stand in the way; and see, and ask for the old paths, which is the good way, and walk therein; and ye shall find rest for your souls.”

   The whole point of our text is to honor and respect those who have gone before us — to respect our heritage and not try to change things to suit ourselves.

   Yet this is exactly what many are doing in modern day America. Somebody or some group doesn’t like a statue or some other landmark or memoria ...

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