NOT PEACE, BUT A SWORD
What did Jesus Christ mean when he said, “I came not to bring peace, but a sword.” Over the centuries, I can imagine this verse caused many of the faithful to scratch their heads. The current events of this post-modern world are beginning to give meaning to this verse. It seems obvious to me that this verse is a reference to the parable of the wheat and the tares (Matt13:25-30); as this verse refers to the enemy planting weeds among the wheat and at the end of the harvest, the weeds are burned.
We are in a most unique time for our country and for the world because the unfolding events and circumstances are dividing everyone on the planet. In the world today, unpredictable anomalies in the political, cultural and social realms have everyone “stressed-out” psychologically from the constant barrage of bad or fake news from biased sources. People are becoming aware of the nefarious motives of: governments, corporations, news media and technological institutions as well as the unchecked, advancing AI technologies which put people and countries in danger.
There are also the extreme agitation and often, violent reactions of people who see life differently. In America, we live in the understanding that we have inalienable rights God has bestowed upon His children, yet those on the left want to steal our freedoms and disparage the values by which we live. From the roiling and turbulent circumstances in the world, we all are being psychologically changed within, whether we like it or not. This rapid, ongoing transformation of the individual and collective consciousness of humanity will present “life-altering” circumstances. As Jesus said in Matt12:25, “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and ever city or house divided against itself shall not stand.”
The dual realities of this world affect and guide individual consciousness, like right/wrong, good/bad, etc. However, division is what occurs when the values of this world are muddled, distorted and twisted: e.g., good is bad; lawlessness is acceptable; morals are not valid, etc. Each side of this skewed duality represents a political, cultural, moral, social and spiritual reality which is at odds with the opposite perspective.
Christian American patriots have no choice but to stand strong in the Light of Christ; our highest “standard of living” is being challenged, threatened and disparaged. Even families and neighbors are at variance with one another about a variety of political, educational and social issues which adversely affect and undermine the values by which we live; and it seems as if each side is getting more heated and intense.
The universal principle of order and chaos means we are in for more chaos before the cycle peaks and changes. We are seeing violence and aggression grow throughout the world today. It is not only the devastation of the war in Ukraine or the war between Israel and Hamas, but violent protesters and the usual “grievance groups” are creating chaos in most of the cities and countries around the world.
This is what John Keegan wrote about in The History of Warfare. At the conclusion of his book, he said, “World III will be the final war; it will not be countries against countries, it will be the war of all against all.” This is the direction in which we seem to be headed; it reminds me of George Washington’s Vision.
I believe this account of the vision to be true for many different reasons. You decide for yourself if GW’s vision was about the future of our country, here it is:
The following is an account of George Washington's vision from an old soldier, Anthony Sherman, who recalled it in 1859 and gave it to Wesley Bradshaw, a writer. The vision depicted three great wars on American soil. The first was the revolutionary war, the second was the civil war and the third was a war yet to come. Sherman informed Bradshaw that the vision would soon be confirmed by a second war in America.
This came to pass two years later when the Civil War broke out in 1861. Washington received the vision at Valley Forge in the bitter, cold winter of 1777. The revolutionary army was facing its darkest hours and most difficult challenge. The bitter cold, disease, and starvation were on the verge of destroying the army and all hopes for independence. Sherman's account of Washington's vision was reprinted in December of 1880 by The National Tribune, the U.S. war veterans' paper, and on December 21, 1950 by The Stars and Stripes.
George Washington’s Vision Valley Forge – Winter 1777-8; The 3 Wars of America
This afternoon, as I was sitting at this table engaged in preparing a dispatch, something seemed to disturb me. Looking up, I beheld standing opposite me a singularly beautiful female. So astonished was I, for I had given strict orders not to be disturbed, that it was some moments before I found language to inquire the cause of her presence. A second, a third and even a fourth time did I repeat my question, but received no answer from my mysterious visitor except a slight raising of her eyes.
By this time I felt strange sensations spreading through me. I would have risen but the riveted gaze of the being before me rendered volition impossible. I assayed once more to address her, but my tongue had become useless, as though it had become paralyzed.
A new influence, mysterious, potent, irresistible, took possession of me. All I could do was to gaze steadily, vacantly at my unknown visitor. Gradually the surrounding atmosphere seemed as if it had become filled with sensations, and luminous. Everything about me seemed to rarefy, the mysterious visitor herself becoming more airy and yet more distinct to my sight than before. I now began to feel as one dying, or rather to experience the sensations which I have sometimes imagined accompany dissolution. I did not think, I did not reason, I did not move; all were alike impossible. I was only conscious of gazing fixedly, vacantly at my companion.
Presently I heard a voice saying, `Son of the Republic, look and learn,' while at the same time my visitor extended her arm eastwardly, I now beheld a heavy white vapor at some distance rising fold upon fold. This gradually dissipated, and I looked upon a stranger scene. Before me lay spread out in one vast plain all the countries of the world - Europe, Asia, Africa and America. I saw rolling and tossing between Europe and America the billows of the Atlantic and between Asia and America lay the Pacific.
"Son of the Republic," said the same mysterious voice as before, "look and learn." At that moment I beheld a dark, shadowy being, like an angel, standing or rather floating in mid-air, between Europe and America. Dipping water out of the ocean in the hollow of each hand, he sprinkled some upon America with his right hand, while with his left hand he cast some on Europe. Immediately a cloud raised from these countries, and joined in mid-ocean. For a while it remained stationary, and then moved slowly westward, until it enveloped America in its murky folds. Sharp flashes of lightning gleamed through it at intervals, and I heard the smothered groans and cries of the American people. (Revolutionary War)
A second time the angel dipped water from the ocean, and sprinkled it out as before. The dark cloud was then drawn back to the ocean, in whose heaving billows it sank from view. A third time I heard the mysterious voice saying, "Son of the Republic, look and learn," I cast my eyes upon America and beheld villages and towns and cities springing up one after another until the whole land from the Atlantic to the Pacific was dotted with them.
Again, I heard the mysterious voice say, "Son of the Republic, the end of the century cometh, look and learn." At this, the dark shadowy angel turned his face southward, and from Africa I saw an ill-omened specter approach our land. It flitted slowly over every town and city of the latter. The inhabitants presently set themselves in battle array against each other. (Civil War) As I continued looking I saw a bright angel, on whose brow rested a crown of light, on which was traced the word "Union," bearing the American flag which he placed between the divided nation and said, "Remember ye are brethren." Instantly, the inhabitants, casting from them their weapons became friends once more, and united around the National Standard.
"And again I heard the mysterious voice saying "Son of the Republic, look and learn." At this, the dark, shadowy angel placed a trumpet to his mouth, and blew three distinct blasts; and taking water from the ocean, he sprinkled it upon Europe, Asia and Africa. Then my eyes beheld a fearful scene: From each of these countries arose thick, black clouds that were soon joined into one. Throughout this mass there gleamed a dark red light by which I saw hordes of armed men, who, moving with the cloud marched by land and sailed by sea to America. Our country was enveloped in this volume of cloud, and I saw these vast armies devastate the whole country and burn the villages, towns and cities that I beheld springing up.
As my ears listened to the thundering of the cannon, clashing of sword, and the shouts and cries of millions in mortal combat, I heard again the mysterious voice saying, "Son of the Republic, look and learn" When the voice had ceased, the dark shadowy angel placed his trumpet once more to his mouth, and blew a long and fearful blast. "Instantly a light as of a thousand suns shone down from above me, and pierced and broke into fragments the dark cloud which enveloped America. At the same moment the angel upon whose head still shone the word Union, and who bore our national flag in one hand and a sword in the other, descended from the heavens attended by legions of white spirits. These immediately joined the inhabitants of America, who I perceived were well-nigh overcome, but who immediately taking courage again, closed up their broken ranks and renewed the battle.
Again, amid the fearful noise of the conflict, I heard the mysterious voice saying, "Son of the Republic, look and learn." As the voice ceased, the shadowy angel for the last time dipped water from the ocean and sprinkled it upon America. Instantly the dark cloud rolled back, together with the armies it had brought, leaving the inhabitants of the land victorious!
Then once more I beheld the villages, towns and cities springing up where I had seen them before, while the bright angel, planting the azure standard he had brought in the midst of them, cried with a loud voice: "While the stars remain, and the heavens send down dew upon the earth, so long shall the Union last." And taking from his brow the crown on which blazoned the word "Union," he placed it upon the Standard while the people, kneeling down, said, "Amen."
The scene instantly began to fade and dissolve, and I at last saw nothing but the rising, curling vapor I at first beheld. This also disappearing, I found myself once more gazing upon the mysterious visitor, who, in the same voice I had heard before, said, "Son of the Republic, what you have seen is thus interpreted: Three great perils will come upon the Republic. The most fearful is the third, but in this greatest conflict the whole world united shall not prevail against her. Let every child of the Republic learn to live for his God, his land, and the Union." With these words the vision vanished, and I started from my seat and felt that I had seen a vision wherein had been shown to me the birth, progress, and destiny of the United States.