Appomattox Christianity


In 1865 General Lee surrendered to General Grant at Appomattox Court House, Virginia, leading to the end of the American Civil War. Christianity is about surrendering. Jesus put it this way: “Deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow Me.”

What if General Lee had signed the surrender papers and then stood up and announced that it was now time for a meeting with a detailed agenda that included a long talk by him? Wouldn’t that have contradicted his surrender?

Of course it would have. To surrender is to give up your control, your agenda, and your rights to another person or group. William Booth, co-founder of The Salvation Army put it this way: “The greatness of a man’s power is the measure of his surrender.”

Lincoln sums up Appomattox Christianity this way: “My concern is not whether God is on our side; my greatest concern is to be on God’s side, for God is always right.”

So why don’t we Christ-followers, when we gather for worship, surrender the meeting to the risen Jesus by giving up our control, our agenda, and our rights. Instead of following a program that someone has put together and printed on a bulletin to be passed out to everybody present, why can’t we do like General Lee and just surrender the meeting to the risen Jesus and let Him do whatever He wants to?

I call that Appomattox Christianity. Meet with two or more Christ-followers, surrender the meeting to Jesus, and then wait and see what Jesus does. Are you ready to give it a try? Why or why not?

Learn more about Appomattox Christianity here.



About Steve Simms

I like to look and think outside the box. In college I encountered Jesus Christ and I have been passionate about trying to get to know Him better ever since. My wife and I co-lead a non-traditional expression of the body of Christ in Nashville based on open participation and Spirit-led sharing. We long to see the power and passion of the first Christ-followers come to life in our time. I have written a book about our experiences called, "Beyond Church: An Invitation To Experience The Lost Word Of The Bible--Ekklesia" that is available in Kindle & paperback @
This entry was posted in be on God's side, church, cross, deny yourself, God is on our side, greatness, history, Jesus, Quotations, Uncategorized, Virginia, William Booth and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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