David, I think you meant to ask, "what do you think Lincoln meant by those words". If so, I cannot answer the question. If you really want to know what it means to me, then I believe that Lincoln was a very cynical politician who had to find ways to make an immoral invasion appear to be patriotism after two years of Americans slaughtering each other. He did what lawyers are taught to do, use colorful language to beguile people. The "new birth of freedom" is the United States becoming a nation of states who answer to the federal government and not the other way around. How would that truthful language look in the speech?