Abraham Lincoln's speech, made some months later, is one of the most famous documents in American history, and one of the most eloquent and elegant speeches ever given. The principal speaker of the day gave a two-hour oration. Abraham Lincoln was only invited to speak as a courtesy to the President, and he said what needed to be said in two minutes. Lincoln did not differentiate between the motives of the brave men of the North and the South. He recognized the courage and honor of all. Lincoln said the great Civil War was testing whether our nation, "conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal," can long endure." Then Lincoln called on all of us to "highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth." That is the lesson again for us today. We, too, should answer Lincoln's call to dedicate ourselves to the great task of making sure that government "of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth."
Listen to the radio commentary here: