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Editor’s note: Last week The Herald Journal published an article on an Independence Day television special filmed at the Weston-area ranch of conservative commentator Glenn Beck. Subsequently, Beck gave an interview about the event to our sister newspaper, The Preston Citizen. Following is an article resulting from that interview by Citizen Editor Necia Seamons.

On July 2, commentator Glenn Beck and his partners will issue a challenge from Beck’s corner of Franklin County to anyone who will listen: “Learn the truth, commit to the truth, then act on the truth.”

Over the last few weeks, he has brought about 1,000 people to his ranch to record different portions of the program that accompanies the challenge. On June 19, about 400 members of the Millennial Choir and Orchestra met at West Side High School before boarding WSSD buses to travel to a still spring-green section of Beck’s ranch to record their portion of the program.

For years via radio broadcasts, Blaze TV programming and his internet presence, Beck has called attention to ideas and philosophies he believes impact the freedom of Americans. “We are about to lose it,” he said. “Is this the sunset of America? Is this it? Or is it the beginning of a new sunrise?”

“We are pretty unrighteous as a nation. … We can’t say ‘God is on our side.’ We need to say ‘I’m on God’s side.’ … We have to live a life worthy of God’s blessings, which means living, not preaching, the Golden Rule and the Ten Commandments,” he said.

“The solution is going to come from each individual living it,” he continued.

Beck and his business partners pulled those ideas together into what he describes as his finest work: “Restoring The Covenant.” Its premise is that this continent is God’s land and when people live the Golden Rule and the Ten Commandments, they are protected.

He intended to share the free program with Americans as a roadshow in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Gettysburg, and Washington D.C. “It was going to be incredible,” he said.

But his plans for “The Covenant” evaporated as the country shut down under the fear of COVID-19. With them went two years of work and a half-million-dollar investment. Beck and his family left their Dallas home several weeks ago to leave his disappointments behind and shelter from coronavirus-related concerns at his Southern Idaho ranch near Weston. His respite, however, was short-lived.

In the peace and quiet of his Franklin County ranch, Beck “realized that COVID was a blessing.” As other commentators have noted on the pandemic’s impact, it gave him time to stop, reconnect, rest

“It stopped me from making something loud and big and garish,” he said.

With that realization, Beck settled on what he feels is a better way to share the message of “The Covenant” — a message he says is of critical importance to freedom-loving Americans.

The invitation is to “come home.”

“We want to remind you how good it feels when you are under his protection, and you are on his land and you know it’s his land,” Beck said in reference to divinity.

Beck described that feeling by noting the feeling international travelers have often described of feeling “safe” once they return to the United States.

“Rights were given to us to protect. They belong to us, but more importantly, they belong to ‘Him,’” Beck said.

In recent years, Americans have failed to live what Beck believes is their side of a covenant they have with God to keep his commandments in exchange for his protection. Beck believes that the attacks of 9/11 were evidence that the country is no longer under God’s protection.

“If people start to pick up arms, add to the chaos, we’re lost,” he said.

With his entire plan scrapped, Beck said he listed hundreds of people and organizations that could help him share the message. Most of them told him there was no way they could fit the project into their schedules on such short notice. But with those that said they could, he moved forward.

Among those who have come to help record Thursday’s program are Tim Ballard of Operation Underground Railroad and the Nazarene Fund, which focus on human trafficking and religious persecution in the Middle East, respectively; Tim Barton of the evangelical organization The Wall Builders; and Robert Woodson, a former civil rights activist who founded the Woodson Center in 1981 to help residents of low-income neighborhoods address the problems of their communities.

Musical performers include David Osmond’s orchestra and The Millennial Choir and Orchestra.

Beck considers this version of “The Covenant” his best work. It is a family program that encourages people to pick up the covenant Beck believes Abraham Lincoln made with God.

“During the 400 years of the slave trade there were 11 million slaves. There are over 40 million slaves in captivity today! That’s over four times the problem, today!” Beck said.

“The Covenant” will be broadcast July 2 at 6 p.m. MDT. It can be found on Blaze TV, on Beck’s Facebook page and on his YouTube channel.

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