Chuck Terrill: Our civilization is not so civil — that needs to change

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

The word “civil” means “courteous and polite,” unless the word “Civil” is followed by the word “War.” 

Civil War means “a war between political factions in the same nation.” In that case, Civil War describes civilians fighting against civilians. When that happens, civil becomes not at all civil.

From 1861 until 1865, a bloody war raged in the United States. The northern states were pitted against the southern states because a new president, Abraham Lincoln, was determined to push a new ideology.

Declared or undeclared, there is a new “Civil War” in our nation. Instead of southern states facing off against northern states, blue states are opposing red states. Three years ago, a new president, with new ideologies, was sworn into office. Those who didn’t accept those ideologies declared war. But against whom?

It would almost seem that this new Civil War is being fought against President Donald J. Trump. Neither sign waving protests, nor glass breaking, nor flag burning will change the fact that Donald Trump is the President of the United States. And, it is doubtful that Trump will change his mind about policy because of the hatred that is sweeping our nation.

Those who believe they are waging war against Trump are many, and confused. Truthfully, the protesters are protesting their fellow Americans. The fight is between those who voted “for” Trump and those who voted “against” Trump.

The Civil War being waged is citizens against fellow citizens, who both have strongly held beliefs.

History will record who was right. For now, tension continues to grow because of growing disrespect, by both parties.

Never in the history of our nation have citizens of our country been so divided. Except of course, in the original Civil War. There was a new president, a new ideology. There was the destruction of property with citizens killing citizens. During that short, four-year term of bloodshed, an estimated 750,000, once “civil’ people killed each other. Our nation never suffered as many casualties in a war as we did, during the “Civil” War.

History has a way of repeating itself. Americans are free to choose a better way, today. I am praying that we will choose a better way. It is time for selfish people, on both sides of the aisle, to settle down, and agree to work for the good of our Nation.

Averting another Civil War will take a miracle. But, Jesus is still in the miracle working business.

“Work at living in peace with everyone, and work at living a holy life, for those who are not holy will not see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14).

Chuck Terrill, who has doctorates from Master Theological Seminary and Trinity Seminary, is the senior minister at First Christian Church in Cassville. He may be reached at 417-847-2460.