The fall of Singapore in 1942
I recently had the opportunity to visit a museum in Singapore dedicated to the memory of what took place during the Second World War. There I learnt much.
The British prior to 1942 did not expect the Japanese to succeed in any invasion attempt on Singapore, because they reckoned the Malayan jungle protected them from attack from the north.
If an attack did come, they were sure it would be by sea from the south – so all the heavy artillery emplacements were constructed pointing south.
It was inconceivable to British military planners that the island could be attacked any other way, least of all through the jungle and mangrove swamps of the Malay peninsula. But this was exactly the route the Japanese took.
On that fateful day of 15 February 1942 the Japanese army came across the Straits of Johore, having raced down the 550 miles of Malay peninsula in 55 days.
They came with 65,000 troops and though they were outnumbered by 90,000 British, Indian and Australian Forces, they pushed these troops in full retreat all the way to Singapore.
Many of the Japanese moved stealthily through the jungle on stolen bicycles, outflanking and bypassing surprised and demoralised allied forces, finally to rout an unsuspecting and unprepared Singapore.
Why should we be reminded of this? Because it is a powerful illustration of the church today, which is in a very similar position over the creation-evolution issue.
Many professed evangelicals have given way in crucial areas of doctrine, especially the inerrancy of scripture, and have allowed a false view of Genesis to govern their theology.
We find ourselves surprised, demoralised and outflanked, with no resistance to blatant secularism. But this comes in the wake of doctrinal compromise and the neglect of our proper defences. The Lord does not honour a church which disbelieves its own book, the Bible.
We need to adhere resolutely to the foundations of the faith, if we are going to reach our own generation for Christ. The integrity of the gospel is inseparably bound up with the historic Genesis account of the Creation and Fall.
As Martin Luther once said: ‘If I profess with the loudest voice and clearest expression every portion of the truth of God, except precisely that little point which the world and the devil are at that moment attacking, I am not confessing Christ, however boldly I may be professing Christ.
‘Where the battle rages, there the loyalty of the soldier is proved, and to be steady on all the battlefield besides, is mere flight and disgrace if he flinches at that point’.
Evangelicals are in a battle; let us not forget this. There are certainly other battle fronts; this is not the only one. But we are living with our eyes closed if we do not realise that creation-evolution is probably the most important front in the spiritual war today. The enemy of souls has come in like a flood with false evolutionary sophistry in order to ensnare hundreds of thousands to unbelief.
But we are not alone in this fight. ‘For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds’ (2 Corinthians 10:4).
Prof. Andy McIntosh