Monday, February 18, 2008

A Battle Not Worth Fighting

I wish I had written down the details, and if there is someone more an expert on WWII history than I, I would love to hear the details. I was watching a program on the War on the History Channel. It described the ground war after D-Day as the Allies pushed the Nazi army back across Europe. The show focused for a few minutes on a battle that took place in a forest, I think it was in France. An Allied general determined that the Nazis had to be chased from this forest on the path to Berlin. A fierce battle ensued that cost many troops their lives.

The problem was, the battle did not need to be fought. The Allies could have just gone around the forest, let the Germans have it and pushed on. They could have just posted some troops to guard the forest and pushed on. The expenditure of time and lives wasted in that forest was a great blunder by that general.

Here's my point. Some battles need to be fought and others are a waste of time and resources. The Nazis needed to be dealt with. That war was just. But that particular forest battle did not need to be fought. It was a mistake.

I think the battle for the SBC conservative resurgence needed to be waged. There were mistakes in the campaign and some folks got their hands bloody, but it was something that needed to be done for the kingdom of God. We could not allow the SBC to continue its drift toward liberalism.

But now, I think we are waging some wars for forests that don't need to be won. The so-called "Baptist Identity" movement is an example of that. They have waged war to win the Private Prayer Language, and decent Baptists have been excluded from service as SBC missionaries. Why? I have no idea. Who cares how a person prays privately? Why would anyone care if in my quiet moments of prayer, I speak English, French, Hebrew or spiritual gibberish.

We waged war to prevent people who were baptized by churches that don't believe exactly as we do from serving as missionaries? Why? I don't know. As long as someone was baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Spirit by a church that believes the Gospel of grace, who cares if they have all their doctrinal ducks in a row?

We waged war to prevent a woman from teaching Hebrew to men. In the process, her family has suffered and that seminary is facing a lawsuit that could cost our Cooperative Program a lot of bucks. Why? I don't know. I don't believe women should pastor, or even teach adult men, but where does the Bible restrict women from teaching in an academic setting.

I think the Conservative Resurgence was a just war (with a few war crimes on both sides). I think some of our current battles are just bloody fights for forests that do not need to be conquered.

That's my opinion.


Rev. said...

Are you thinking of Hürtgenwald?

I agree, my friend, the SBC does not need to fight needless battles. Fundamentalism, however, knows little else.

Dave Miller said...

Based on the Wikipedia article, it is probably that one. They had a little different perspective on history channel - questioning whether it was even necessary to fight.

Thanks. I knew there would be a WWII buff out there.

Rex Ray said...

I did not see the TV program, but my chaplain father was in that battle and received the bronze star. They learned more men were killed by wooden splinters than metal.

I agree with a lot you said, but not all.

BTW I’ve been a SB all my life. Saved at 10 and now 75. I’m in the same BGCT church now where I was a charter member in 1944. Guess I’d rather fight than switch. smile

CB Scott said...




Dave Miller said...

Rex, you are 75? I always thought you were about my age (50). I will start showing you more and greater respect, now that I know you are my elder.