Field Marshall Montgomery

“EIGHTY years ago tonight …”

My father was present at El Alamein. He seldom spoke of his wartime experiences, but I remember him becoming emotional whenever he heard the pipe tune ‘My Home’, because that was one of the tunes played by the pipers of the 51st Highland division El Alamein as they led the troops into Battle on the night of 23rd October 1942. He knew many of those brave men would never come home. He later regretted his involvement as a Christian in military service, and after the war, prayed that God would give him a second chance to conscientiously object. He subsequently got his wish.

The photos I have posted below are of a leaflet he wrote several years before he died.

[Article by Henry Getley: Alamein 1942, the turn of the tide]

Here is the text of his gospel leaflet:

As Liaison Officer in an Anti-tank Regiment during fierce mountain warfare in Italy, I was sent to the Brigadier’s Command Vehicle and arrived just in time to hear him speaking with an Infantry Commander on the radio telephone. The Commander was requesting permission to “dig in,” as his men were exhausted. 

No! You must keep going.” said the Brigadier. The Commander tried again, “But sir, my men are exhausted …” and he started to list the difficulties. Then the Brigadier emphatically ended the conversation with “You must reach your objective – even if you only get there with one man! Everything depends on you!

I’ve often wondered how many of those soldiers ever reached their objective.

When Jesus Christ left Heaven, His great purpose was to save sinners. His final objective – the cross of Calvary. The night before He died, He went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane. The fierce counter-attack of the Devil was about to begin. Even worse, “the fierceness of the wrath of Almighty God” was soon to fall on Jesus, the only sinless man. Three times He prayed there, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup [the awful experience of the cross] be taken from me…” (Mat. 26:39). And three times in effect, He got the same answer as the Infantry Commander: “Everything depends on you.” The eternal future of millions depended on Him.

As infantry get close to the enemy, the casualties mount up. Between Gethsemane and Calvary, Jesus underwent the cruel crossfire of mocking, spitting, scourging and being crowned with thorns. Yet from the cross He prayed “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:34) Was He not exhausted? Had He not suffered enough? But He must reach the objective; He must endure the wrath of God for sinners. Everything depended on Him. On the cross He became the God-forsaken Man. But praise God, He did it! Victoriously He shouted, “It is finished!” (John 19:30). 

Jesus rose from the dead and because of Calvary, He offers salvation from the judgement of Almighty God if you will believe on him.

Speak to Him now in quiet prayer, and say, “Thank you Lord Jesus for dying for a sinner like me.” 

John Holmes Johnson