The Devil and the 20th Maine


Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

Spiritual lessons are everywhere you turn. We had a good quality family outing to this historic battlefield last week. I am not a military historian; my personal heros/heroines from this conflict as a child were civilians. I have come to admire and appreciate several military actors in this great drama of our nation’s history. One of them is Joshua Chamberlain and the 20th Maine under his command.

[Disclaimer: I am NOT comparing the Confederates to the Devil. My three-greats grandfather fought for the Grey and survived to the age of 104. I live in the lovely state of Virginia. Just keep reading to get the analogy…]

The 20th Maine was formed out of a group of men who were threatening desertion just before the battle because many of their enlistments had just expired. Col. Chamberlain mustered them just before the battle began on July 1st, giving them his pledge to plead their cause and putting those who refused to fight under arrest.


Colonel Strong Vincent, seeing that the bare rocky hill at the southern end of the Union line was undefended, ordered his brigade to take the hill. His initiative could have landed him in a court martial. Col. Vincent placed the 20th Maine and told Col. Chamberlain to hold that position “against all hazards”, meaning to defend that position to the last bullet and last man. The Union line formed up only within minutes of the first charge of the Confederates.


You can continue reading how the story unfolded at the link above. πŸ˜‰ The spiritual lesson follows:

The small rocky outcropping on Little Round Top was the end of the line. If the 20th Maine had not done their utmost, down to a bayonet charge when they had run out of bullets, the Confederates would have flanked the Union troops and gained the strategic higher ground. Our history books may have been much, much different if it were not for the bravery of the 20th Maine.

As a Christian, I am the end of the line for the onslaught of sin. I am charged with holding my little patch of earth against all hazards of the enemy. But not just hold it, but charge forth, boldly surprising the demons and capturing more territory.

ja-on-little-round-topThe meek shall inherit the earth…


5 Responses to “The Devil and the 20th Maine”

  1. 2 alana August 19, 2009 at 7:03 pm

    Love the pic! Ya’ll are adorable. Can I adopt you? πŸ˜‰

  2. 3 faithforlife August 19, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    Agree completely Anna. Why do some people think it is just all rosy and nice when you become a Christian? That all we have to do is sit on our seats and everything will work out?

    There is so much more to the Christian life than being a passive recipient.

    Blessings to you Anna, in Yeshua’s name.


  3. 4 Kristy August 19, 2009 at 8:35 pm

    Aw, you guys look so sweet. πŸ™‚

  4. 5 Amber August 20, 2009 at 8:01 am

    Three things,

    Lovely, lovely pictures. You two are adorable!

    And, yes, excellent lesson. *nods*

    Third, utterly random thing, I swear there’s a picture of that statue somewhere with a ‘ghost’ standing next to it. Kind of cool…

    Gettysburg is on my list of places to go one day.


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"I can't say I don't believe in your God, but I don't believe He meant the world to be as it is." ~Nicholas Higgins. North and South.

"I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It's when you know you are licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what." No idea where that last quote came from, but I like it!

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