Extremely kind, extraordinarily brave, exceedingly honest, he was the greatest Christian of 1800s. “He was a foe without hate, a friend without treachery, a soldier without cruelty, a Christian without hypocrisy, a man without guile, a leader without pride, and private citizen without wrong.” Born on January 19, 1807 at the Stratford Hall on the Potomac, Westmoreland County, Virginia, in the same county in which George Washington was born, he was the descendent of General Light Horse Harry Lee of the War for Independence. He Was the Most Famous and Beloved Christian General of the Civil War. After the war he became president of a college. After his death, his christian character became an example for many to follow. He was Gen. Robert Edward Lee
Nearing the end of the Civil War, General Robert E. Lee was defending Richmond, Virginia from the well-equipped and well-fed union soldiers. General Lee out-maneuvered and out-witted General Grant battle after battle, but always gave the glory were it was due, to God who holds everything in his hands. When the Confederate lines were breaking, Lee prayed to God that they would win the battle, but not that his will but God’s be done, then he rode bravely to the front and reestablished the breaking line. Above the sound of battle, Lee clearly heard his devoted men shouting, “Go back, go back, Lee to the rear. We’ll take care of it.” Finally, the Confederates pushed back Grant’s army and Lee and the army thanked God for the victory. The war was ending. Lee surrendered on April 9, 1865 at Appomattox where he signed the terms of surrender. Why was it that all his men loved him? They loved him because he was a great Godly general. Throughout history was never a general so devoted to God and his country, as General Robert E. Lee.
After the long terrible war ended, Lee told southerners to forgive their enemies just as Christ forgave us our miserably rotten sin. Surprising everyone, Lee became president of a little war-ransacked college in a wonderfully beautiful valley near Lexington, Virginia. Immediately Lee, who wanted to rebuild Virginia, set about rebuilding the college and chose a curriculum, which would help the young students to rebuild their country instead of holding a grudge against the Union. When asked what Lee desired most in life, Lee replied “If I could only know that all the young men in the college were good Christians, I should have nothing more to desire”. What else could he have wanted? Lee did his duty well. Walking home one day from the daily routine in a downpour of rain, Lee caught a feverish cold. Lee did a lot for the college.
About two weeks later, on October 12 1870, Lee, the christian, closed his eyes, his soul passed from earth to heaven to ever be with the Lord. Lee had fought the good fight, he had finished the course, he kept the faith; henceforth there is laid up for him a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give him at that last day. Lee won his greatest victory. Coming from all over the south, people traveled to pay their respects to their dearly beloved general. Kindly and tenderly, they sung his favorite hymn “How Firm a foundation ye saints of the Lord” as the coffin was lowered into the vault. When compared with all the great leaders of the past and present he surpassed Alexander the Great who believed in himself, Caesar who believed in his legions, and Napoleon in his destiny. Lee, on the other hand, believed in his God whom he loved greatly, just as a child loves his father.
Robert E. Lee was man who loved God more than anything, he summarized his love for God and His Word in these two quotes, “No one is ever too old to study the precious truths of the Bible” and “How good God is to us! Oh that I could praise Him and Thank Him as I ought.” During the Civil War, he prayed that God’s will be accomplished. He prayed to God to have mercy on the students when he was president of Washington College. Dying, he calmly looked heavenward and pointed his finger up and said to the all in the room if it is my time, I am more than ready to go. What made Robert E. Lee different was his Savior who saved him from his sins. Lee teaches us what it means to be a true Christian and a real man.