by Richard Mansel, managing editor
Students of the American Revolutionary War era know that the minutemen were ready in a minute’s notice to defend the colonies. They served valiantly in the struggle for independence.
Minutemen actually started in their earliest form in 1645, in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. In 1689, they were called the “Snowshoesmen,” because they were to “provide [themselves] with a good pair of snowshoes, one pair of moggisons [sic] and one hatchet.”/1
“By the time of the Revolution, Minutemen had been a well-trained force for six generations in the Massachusetts Bay Colony.”/2
Eventually, they faded away when the Continental Army came into existence.
One weakness of the minutemen system was that they lacked a central command. Yet, they were “better organized and battle-tested than any other part-time military.”/3
America owes a great debt of gratitude to the minutemen.
We need spiritual minutemen today, and they can be either men or women. They will be brethren who will be there for other Christians at a moment’s notice. They stand ready to pray or assist a spiritual family member against spiritual attack. They believe explicitly in the words of Paul, “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2. NKJV).
Spiritual minutemen understand the fierceness of the enemy that we face. “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8).
Satan wishes to destroy us spiritually and lead us to an eternal hell (Matthew 25:46). To save someone from this fate is one of the greatest things a human can do (James 5:19-20). Accordingly, we should be eager to do so to the best of our abilities and opportunities.
Spiritual minutemen of the church will have a deep love for souls. They realize the unparalleled value each one possesses. “For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Matthew 16:26).
They will be people who cannot bear to give up their friends to Satan. While we cannot control the actions of others, we can actively battle to influence their behavior through the utilization of love and Scripture. Our love and concern can seek to separate them from the dangerous paths of life.
Elton Trueblood said, “Evangelism occurs when Christians are so ignited by their contact with Christ that they in turn set other fires.”/4
It also cannot occur unless we have a fire within us to save souls from Satan’s clutches. We know what the Evil One will do with them.
“Love reaches for the hurt and takes bold steps without self-interest. It can accomplish unbelievable things merely because it is so void of self-interest.”/5
Spiritual minutemen must be so invigorated by the gospel that their commitment to the cause will have them stand strong whenever the call comes. We will be tireless to fight when the bugle blows.
Minutemen suffered from a lack of a central authority. Yet, their courage overcame this shortcoming. Spiritual minutemen have the Lord as our commander and the passion that comes from being filled with the Spirit of God and his holy Word. Couple with the courage of our convictions, we can be an unstoppable force for God.
Are we ready to be spiritual minutemen?