- General in Charge: Union--George C. Meade (left); Confederate--Robert E. Lee (right).
- How many soldiers were at Gettysburg? 88,000 Union, 73,000 Confederate (rough numbers)
- Where was it fought? Near the town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
- How long did the battle last? 3 days, July 1, 2, and 3, 1863.
- Who won? Day 1--draw: Day 2--Confederate: Day 3--Union, and Lee falls back to Virginia
- Why is it important? Gettysburg was General Lee’s last invasion of the North. From then on, all battles were fought on Confederate soil.
Monday, May 30, 2011
Friday, May 27, 2011
This is a short chronology of battles, events, etc. of the American Civil War.
Confederate victories denoted by gray; Union victories by blue. Draws are orange.
1860 December 20 South Carolina secedes from United States
1861 April 12-13 Fort Sumter, SC (begins Civil War)
1861 July 26 First Bull Run, VA (First major battle, Federals crushed)
1862 March 9 Hampton Roads VA, Draw (U.S.S. Monitor vs. C.S.S Virginia)
1862 June 25-July 1 Seven Days’ Battles, VA (McClellan retreats north, abandons campaign to capture Richmond)
1862 April 6-7 Shiloh, TN, (Confederates fail to block union of two Federal armies)
1862 August 28-30 Second Bull Run, VA (Lee crushes Pope’s army, rolls McClellan toward Washington D.C.)
1862 September 17 Antietam MD, Draw (McClellan defeated, but stops Lee’s invasion of North)
1862 December 11-15 Fredericksburg, VA (Burnside’s rush on Richmond halted)
1863 May 3 Chancellorsville, VA (Lee crushes Hooker, but Stonewall Jackson killed)
1863 May 14-July 4 Vicksburg, MS (Confederate fortress on Mississippi River captured)
1863 July 1-3 Gettysburg, PA (Lee’s second invasion of North stopped)
1863 September 19-20 Chickamauga, TN (Confederate victory, but Chattanooga still in Union hands)
1864 May 5-7 Wilderness, VA, Draw (Grant’s invasion of Virginia continues)
1864 May 8-21 Spotsylvania Court House, VA, Draw (Grant’s invasion of Virginia continues)
1864 November 15-December 21, Sherman’s March to the Sea, GA (Sherman fights and burns from Atlanta to Savannah)
1865 March 29-April 9, Appomattox Campaign, VA (Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia surrenders to General U.S. Grant)
1865 April 26 Johnston surrenders, NC (Confederate General Johnston of the Army of Tennessee surrenders to General Grant and Sherman)
1865 May 5 Confederate Government dissolved, VA (President Davis declares government dissolved and flees)
1865 May 10 Jefferson Davis captured, VA (4th Michigan Cavalry captures Confederate President)
1865 May 26 Kirby Smith surrenders, LA (General Smith surrenders last major Confederate army)
1865 June 23 Stand Watie surrenders, OK (General Watie surrenders last Confederate force under arms)
Thursday, May 26, 2011
When General Lee surrendered at Appomattox, General Ulysses S. Grant allowed the Confederates to keep their horses for spring plowing. He also sent rations to feed Lee’s army.
Brigadier General Joshua Chamberlain accepted the surrender of General John B. Gordon’s troops at Appomattox. As the former enemy soldiers came to surrender, Chamberlain ordered his men to salute. Gordon returned the salute. Gordon later called Chamberlain, “one of the knightliest soldiers in the Federal Army.”
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
“I am nothing but a poor sinner, trusting in Christ alone for salvation.”
- Robert E. Lee
On August 29, 1862, during the Second Battle at Bull Run (known as Second Manassas by the South), the Confederates held their position at Stony Ridge despite six tremendous Union assaults. That night a friend told Jackson (who was leading the troops), “We have won this battle by the hardest kind of fighting.” Jackson replied, “No, no, we have won it by the blessing of Almighty God !”
Tuesday, May 24, 2011
What Lessons Can We Learn from the Civil War for Today? (Part 2)
- There is no distinction between secular and sacred work, but all is sacred - From the lives of Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson, we learn that the application of Christian principles can be brought to every lawful work performed by man. The idea that only religious work is sacred unto the Lord is foreign to the text of Scripture which teaches that “...whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord” (Colossians 3:23, KJV)
- The virtues of honor and respect can be maintained toward enemies - From the acceptance of the surrender by Brigadier General Joshua Chamberlain and the provisions given by General Grant to the South after the completion of the war, we see examples of the Christian character of treating others honorably and with respect.
- The importance of understanding the times - With the Civil War providing for a stronger centralized federal government and the decline into socialism within the United States ever since, we are taught that we must understand the times so that we as Christians can respond rightly and biblically in our day. This understanding is based not only on current events, but also on the unchanging and perfect Law of God.
- A gratitude for the Providence of God - The Lord God Almighty is in control of all things and is working things out for His honor and glory. In the Civil War we see elements of God’s love, grace, and mercy as shown through a spiritual awakening and hunger within the camps, as well as God’s judgment and justice for the Church compromises and national sins. May these lessons cause us to say “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created” (Revelation 4:11)
Monday, May 23, 2011
What Lessons Can We Learn from the Civil War for Today? (Part 1)
As we look at the people and the events of the Civil War, there is much we can learn that we can apply today. Consider the following lessons:
- The Bible is the foundation for all of life - From the theological compromises of the Church, we can see the necessity of being firmly grounded in God’s Holy Word. Compromise within the church affects the body of Christ and the nation as a whole.
- The importance of unity within the body of Christ - From the splits within the Church, we learn about the significance of unity. While unity should never be maintained at the expense of the truth of Holy Scripture, those within the Church should be fighting together to advance the kingdom of the Lord.
- The significance of studying history from primary sources - From the distortion of the truth about the reasons popularly given for the Civil War, we should be inspired to look to primary source material (records written by people actually involved in the events). As you study and understand the events in history, you will be able to discern errors being espoused and not be led by those teaching those errors.
- An appreciation for God’s sovereign grace - From the inspiring testimonies of salvation that occurred during the Civil War, we should stand in awe of the Lord for how He can use many different, difficult, and trying situations to build His Kingdom.
Friday, May 20, 2011
Just as we see in the Word of God, the judgment of the Lord on nations is tempered with the blessings of God on His people for the sake of His Name, so we see that God tempered His judgment on our country with His divine blessing. The result of maintaining a unified nation rather than two separate nations has provided numerous benefits for all those residing within the United States of America, including the following:
- A stronger military power to aid in the upcoming World War I and World War II conflicts.
- A stronger economic power fueled by an increase in the sharing and development of technology in the country without the need to export to a foreign nation.
- A stronger political power providing the country with a greater international influence due to their military and economic strength.
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
How Do We See God’s Providential Hand of judgment After the Civil War?
But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another. (Psalm 75:7, KJV)
- With the Union victory in the Civil War, we see God’s judgment on the nation through a stronger central government that was established. This centralization of power has served to propel the United States along the course of socialism, which we have seen rising in this country ever since the end of the Civil War. Property rights and religious liberty (particularly for Christians) have markedly decreased, while unbiblical social programs and new federal departments have drastically increased. This socialist agenda has served to further establish the governmental tyranny over the people. As an example of the socialism of this country brought about by the Civil War, consider the following:
- Prior to the War Between the States, people would use the phrase “The United States are ...” which demonstrates a recognition that the individual states were the source of the majority of the power and that these states voluntarily federated together to form a union.
- After the War Between the States, people would use the phrase “The United States is ...” which shows that the strength was primarily concentrated in the federal government and that the states were being held together via that centralized power.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
- God’s salvation comes to the President of the United States "When I left Springfield, I asked the people to pray for me. I was not a Christian. When I buried my son — the severest trial of my life — I was not a Christian. But when I went to Gettysburg, and saw the graves of thousands of our soldiers, I then and there consecrated myself to Christ.” (Abraham Lincoln)
- God builds His army from the soldiers in North and South “The best estimates of conversions in the Union forces place the figure between 100,000 and 200,000 men - about 5-10 percent of all individuals engaged in the conflict. In the smaller Confederate armies, at least 100,000 were converted.” (taken from Dr. Gardiner H. Shattuck, Jr., author of A Shield and Hiding Place: The Religious Life of the Civil War Armies)
- God brings the “Great Revival” to forces of Robert E. Lee From fall 1863 through the winter of 1864, a spiritual awakening took place in the Confederate camp that was headed by General Lee with an estimated 7,000 soldier conversions.
- God sparks a spiritual hunger in the Union camp There were times on the Union side that preaching and praying continued all day and night. Chapels were insufficient in size to hold the soldiers who wanted to get inside.
Monday, May 16, 2011
A wrathful man stirreth up strife: but he that is slow to anger appeaseth strife. (Proverbs 15:18, KJV)
While the first shot was fired by the Confederates at Fort Sumter in South Carolina on April 12, 1861, it was the instigation of the Northern states that resulted in the start of the hostilities. Seven Southern states seceded from the Union (including SC) and Fort Sumter was under Union control prior to the start of the war. Abraham Lincoln sent supplies to Fort Sumter even though doing so would be considered an act of foreign aggression since the fort was in a Confederate State. When General P.G.T. Beauregard from the South issued an ultimatum to Union Major Robert Anderson to surrender the fort or else be attacked, Anderson refused to yield. This resulted in firing on the fort, thus marking the start of the war.
Saturday, May 14, 2011
Painting: Leaving Home by Gilbert Gaul, found at http://www.military-art.com/mall/more.php?ProdID=6131
For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? (1 Peter 4:17, KJV)
The theological compromises within the American churches coupled with the church splits along the regional lines between North and South set the stage for the Civil War. Without a strong theology, the Church did not speak from the basis of biblical authority to the issues of the day. With division in the church, unity was directly weakened within the nation. These two problems within the Church were major components of the backdrop of the Civil War.
In addition to the problems within the church, there were also economic and political tensions between the states in the North and those in the South. These events demonstrate the truth of God’s Holy Word which teaches that judgment begins at the house of God and then spreads to those that are not followers of the Lord God Almighty. God’s hand of providence can be seen through the events leading up to the Civil War as He shows us His faithfulness to His Word.
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
- Karl Marx supported the Union Army, the Republican Party, and Abraham Lincoln
- After Lincoln’s re-election in 1864, a letter was sent congratulating him on this victory by the International Workingmen’s Association penned by Karl Marx
- In this letter, Marx referred to Lincoln as “the single-minded son of the working class, to lead his country through the matchless struggle for the rescue of an enchained race and the reconstruction of a social world.”
- The move toward a more centralized government power represented by Abraham Lincoln was a necessary step toward socialism
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Did Abraham Lincoln Hold to the Conviction that Owning Slaves was Immoral?
“My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union. I shall do less whenever I shall believe what I am doing hurts the cause, and I shall do more whenever I shall believe doing more will help the cause.” - Abraham Lincoln in a letter to Horace Greeley on August 22, 1862
Monday, May 9, 2011
What Evidence Is There That the Civil War Was Not About Slavery?
If Civil War was intended to end slavery, then how are the following explained:
- Why did the Emancipation Proclamation first go into effect more than a year and a half after the start of the war?
- Why did Emancipation Proclamation only free slaves in states that were in rebellion to the United States rather than all slaves?
- Why did the Emancipation Proclamation allow for Southern states to keep their slaves if they would re-join the Union?
- Why did the Emancipation Proclamation have a specific provision for allowing the slaves to enlist in the Union Army?
Friday, May 6, 2011
- The Emancipation Proclamation was an executive order drafted by Abraham Lincoln that went into effect on January 1, 1863
- It freed only those slaves that were held in Southern states (those that were deemed in rebellion to the United States) - NOT in the Northern states, which are referred to as the “border states”.
- The border states were the slave-holding Union states of Delaware, Maryland, Kentucky, Missouri, and West Virginia
- It allowed those slaves freed from the South to enlist in the Union Army
- It was enacted “as a fit and necessary war measure for suppressing said rebellion”
Thursday, May 5, 2011
No, not really. A complex set of circumstances were present between the North and the South which led to the conflict that saw nearly 620,000 people die. The popular view that the Civil War was a conflict over slavery with the North wanting to provide freedom to those people that were enslaved in the South is a distortion of the truth. The issue of slavery did play an important role in the Civil War. However, the fight over slavery between the North and South centered on who had the jurisdiction over the institution of slavery in the individual states. The South embraced the position that the states should be sovereign and that the federal government was overstepping its rightful bounds by attempting to regulate and restrict slavery in all states. The North believed that the centralized federal government held the right to dictate this policy to the states.
Wednesday, May 4, 2011
There were numerous significant church splits prior to the Civil War:
- 1837 - Presbyterian Church split into Old School and New School
- The New School held to the conviction that man could come to Christ without the Holy Spirit and embraced revivalism techniques to get people to respond to the message of the Gospel
- The Old School members disagreed with the theological compromises in the New School and expelled the members holding to these erroneous views
- 1841 - Michigan Methodists (who were opposed to slavery) split away from the remaining Methodist denomination to form the Wesleyan Methodist Church
- 1844 - Methodist denomination split over whether clergy members could be slaveholders, with the new Southern Methodist Church formed
- 1845 - Baptist denomination split with the new Southern Baptist Convention formed after James Reeves (who was a slave owner) was refused a missionary position to the Cherokee Indians by the Baptist General Assembly
Tuesday, May 3, 2011
What Was the Condition of the American Christian Church Prior to the Civil War?
In the mid-1800s, numerous theological compromises were adopted in American churches
- Rejection of the historical, grammatical interpretation of Genesis 1 by holding to the erroneous belief that the days of creation were not literal
- Note that this re-interpretation occurred decades prior to the publication of Charles Darwin’s book On the Origin of the Species
- Embracing of the goodness of man and his ability to come to Christ by a decision without the need for the re-generating work of the Holy Spirit
- Acceptance of revivalism techniques to have people respond to the Gospel of Christ - particularly as embodied in the teaching of Charles Finney