Texas History is exciting. But aside from the fascinating stories of truth and legend, there is an underlying theme of reliance upon God for success. My focus in this series of articles is to show the Hand of God at work in the founding of Texas. But there is more. The USA was also founded by Godly people who reverenced Christ. They were not ashamed, timid, or politically correct. They unabashedly called on the Lord in war and peace. We should remember and do the same.
When your read the illustrious stories of the Texas fight for Independence, you will see our heroes crying out to God for help. You see it at the Battle of Velasco, Gonzales, Goliad, and the Alamo. Each of these battles were stepping stones to the deciding battle, San Jacinto. Life is like that. It usually takes a series of events before freedom is achieved. You win some and you lose some. But no battle was more important than the other. It took each one to make the whole. The Bible says: “Precept upon precept, line upon line, here a little, there a little.” Isaiah 28:13
It is an uncommon personal goal to die in battle. Staying home and sipping iced tea is always more attractive. But occasionally, the time comes to fight. The cause must be defended. The price for liberty must be paid. Tomorrow must be captured today. It is at that moment, as the helpless prayed, the person of destiny steps upon the battlefield of hope. Sam Houston was not better than William B. Travis, or Jim Bowie, or Davy Crockett. But the door of opportunity opened for him and he was ready and willing to step forward.
Sam Houston was not a perfect patriot. He had his flaws like we all do. Being holy and righteous was probably not on his bucket list. But on the morning of April 19, 1836, something overwhelming got ahold of his spirit. Sam got serious with God as they prepared to fight a much larger army. Here is part of his speech to the troops:
“Victory is certain! Trust in God and fear not! The victims of the Alamo and the names of those who were murdered at Goliad cry out for vengeance. Remember the Alamo! Remember Goliad! Victory or death! But there will be no defeat! Victory is as certain as God reigns. I feel the inspiration in every fiber of my being. Trust in the God of the just and fear not!”
The Battle of San Jacinto lasted for 18 minutes. The Texans had 2 heroic men killed and 23 wounded. The Mexican Army had 630 men killed and 208 wounded. Santa Anna was captured, and victory belonged to Texas,…and God! Dr. Nicholas Labadie, one of the Texan soldiers who fought at the Battle of San Jacinto, wrote this poem after the battle (in part):
They worked carefully their plans of attack., Their goal was: "Texas Freedom for a Fact!"
Had God not been on their side in this peril, The victory would not have been the 21st of April.
"Texas, Free Texas!" it was then proclaimed, The enemy defeated just as He had aimed;
It's no wonder Texans feel so proud, ’Cause they're certainly of God's chosen crowd!
God cares about Texas, Texans, and all living beings. May we not turn our backs on Him.