(Article for publication week of 6-4- AD 2015)
"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose" (Romans 8:28).
Back during the month of April we commenced a series for the Narrow Way column on the Great Revival in the Confederate Armies in conjunction with Confederate Heritage Month and Confederate Memorial Day. This week I would like to present for your consideration the real reason for the War.
Now, when I say the "War", my regular readers will know, as will informed Christian Southerners that when we refer to the War, we refer to the War for Southern Independence, also known as the War Between the States and the War of Northern Aggression , more generally known as (though erroneously), the "Civil War." First of all you should be clear that the War that was fought on this continent from 1861 through 1865 was not, in fact a "civil" war. A "civil" war is a war fought between opposing factions for control of the same country or government. Our Southern Forefathers never attempted to overthrow or take over the government of the United States. They seceded from the United States as the original thirteen colonies seceded from Great Britain. When we refer to the War for Southern Independence as the "War", it is because well informed Christian Southerners know and understand that for the South in particular, but in reality for all of America, the Country was changed by this War more than any other war in which our people have ever been engaged. The defeat of the South destroyed the Old Constitution and headed the whole country, South and North toward communism. Most all of the social and political ills now facing America have their roots in the overthrow of the Constitution by the Red Republicans who took control of the federal government in 1860.
When we begin to consider the real reason for the War for Southern Independence the Southern Partisan would quickly assert that the War was over the Constitutional sovereignty of the States which was being usurped by an increasingly intrusive federal government. Those who have been brainwashed by the Godless public school system would insist that the War was fought to free the slaves. More careful students of history would say that the unfair tariffs that made the South a captive trading partner of the northern Industrialists and capitalists was the real cause. The truth is that humanly speaking all of these and other issues were factors that led to the division between the South and the North. But the real reason for the War, and indeed the real reason for all things is found in my text in Romans 8:28.
The real reason for all things are found in the eternal purpose of our great God who has foreordained all things for two great purposes. God's first purpose in all things is HIS OWN GLORY! Though God's Sovereign purpose does not force any man to sin, He does cause all things, including sin to work out for His Own Glory. Psalm 76:10 declares, "surely the wrath of man shall praise Thee: the remainder of wrath shalt Thou restrain." Evil men do things for evil, but God always means it for good (Genesis 50:20), which is God's second great purpose in all things, the eternal and spiritual good of His elect. Only those who believe the Bible ever have a true understanding of history, for history is indeed His- Story. The history of man is the story of the unfolding of God's sovereign purpose to get glory for Himself and do good to His people.Now let us come to a more direct point. We may not know until the Great Day all of God's purposes in the War, but we do know that God used the War to save about 150,000 Confederate soldiers. God is sovereign in the time of every elect person's conversion (Psalm 102:13; Galatians 1:15), and in the particular instruments He uses. On the surface we see the Red Republicans agitating for a strong central government, and the South ready to defend her Constitutional Rights. But behind the scenes we see a Sovereign God putting 150,000 Southern men in the camps where the gospel was preached. You will ask, why in the world would God do that when there were faithful preachers all over the South from whom these men could have heard the gospel and been converted?! All I can tell you is, you will have to ask God Who works all things out in history for His glory and the good of His people! Go read my text and Romans 11:33-36.