Generous Orthodoxy  




Thursday, February 03, 2005

General Jackson, Prayer for enemies

The example of Stonewall Jackson
I have recently been reading biographical material about Stonewall Jackson. The great Confederate general was certainly one of the most devout Christians that the Lord ever made. His whole adult life was devoted to constant prayer, worship and Bible reading, and he started a Christian education program for a group of slaves. One of the most touching details of his life was his friendship with the young daughter of a family with whom some of the Confederate officers were billeted during the war. When she died of one of the many illnesses that killed people in those days before modern medicine, the general was overwhelmed with grief.

The point of this is that it is possible to be a sincerely devout Christian and a warmly loving human being and still be on the wrong side of a war or an issue. This does not seem to be well understood in the midst of the acrimony that colors our disputes today.