THE ANGELS OF MONS - OUR PROTECTIVE GOD
THE ANGELS OF MONS AND THE WHITE CALVARY - PART ONE
Bruce HornerIN 2 Kings 6:17 we read,
"And Elisha prayed, and said, LORD, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain [was] full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha."
The Book of Isaiah is full of promises of Heavenly aid to Israel, and reiterates this fact in Isaiah 41:8-14,
"But thou, Israel, [art] my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham my friend. [Thou] whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, and called thee from the chief men thereof, and said unto thee, Thou [art] my servant; I have chosen thee, and not cast thee away. Fear thou not; for I [am] with thee: be not dismayed; for I [am] thy god: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. Behold, all they that were incensed against thee shall be ashamed and confounded: they shall be as nothing; and they that strive with thee shall perish. Thou shalt seek them, and shalt not find them, [even] them that contended with thee: they that war against thee shall be as nothing, and as a thing of nought. For I the LORD thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee. Fear not, thou worm Jacob, [and] ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith the LORD, and thy redeemer, the Holy One of Israel."
We are also told in subsequent chapters that God created Jacob, and Israel is redeemed; and we are similarly instructed of deliverance by the Psalmist in Psalm 50:15
"And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me."
During the World War of 1914-18, there were certainly two outstanding occasions when God fulfilled His Promise, as far as Great Britain was concerned, in a most noticeable manner. In the early months of World War 1 the contemptible little British Army, as the Gerrnan High Command termed it, was hurriedly equipped and sent across the Channel to support the French and Belgian Allies; but these combined forces were far weaker in guns and man power than the Gerrnans, and so, fighting a dogged rearguard action, they fell back before the terrific impact of massed enemy attacks. Serious defeat and tremendous losses appeared inevitable; but, during two days fighting around Mons, the German advance was halted long enough to allow the British Expeditionary Force to withdraw.
Much has been written on the subject of the Angels of Mons and there have been many versions of the phenomena, but it is not inconsistent to believe that they are all substantially true though they differed in certain aspects. A number of accounts are gathered together and examined by Harold Begbie in his book, "On the Side of the Angels", and few readers will remain unconvinced that both British and German troops were aware of supernatural intervention during the battle.
The magazine This England subsequently recalled these events in its pages in the following words:
In the summer 1982 edition of "This England", a correspondent in "Post-box" inquired about the mystery from the First World War which became known to our troops as "The Angels of Mons". Apparently, though outnumbered three to one and on the verge of annihilation by advancing Germans, a heavenly host intervened between the rival armies thus saving the British and causing the enemy to flee in panic.
True or false? Controversy has raged on the subject ever since it was first reported and in an attempt to present all the known facts this is a reprint of the entire testimony of a principal witness, Captain Cecil Wightwick Hayward, formerly Staff Officer in the '1st. Corps Intelligence, British Army Headquarters.
He refers to two incidents, the "Angels of Mons", an event claimed to have been seen in late August 1914 and an even more remarkable phenomenon known as "The White Cavalry" which occurred during July, 1918 and was witnessed by the Germans. Captain Hayward's testimony is printed below
The first of these visions was near the town of Mons, during the battle of that name between the German forces and the British Army, towards the end of August, 1914. The German Army, after sweeping all resistance aside, had advanced on a wide front right into the heart of Belgium and France. Although the Belgians, French and British put up a stout defence, it was principally against the British that the heaviest enemy attacks were launched. Our troops greatly outnumbered, had been fighting continuously for several days, with little or no rest, and our men were almost dropping from fatigue after a prolonged rearguard action during which we lost numbers of men and guns. Serious defeat appeared inevitable, especially as we had practically no reserves ready. It was realised that a "Day of Trouble" had arrived, and that God alone could help us. Churches were crowded with the whole of the British Nation at prayer.
Then occurred the event afterwards known as the appearance of the "Angels of Mons", in answer to national prayer. Of several accounts referring to the appearance of "Angels" the following two are typical, both having been related by British soldiers who vouched for the occurrences as having been observed by them personally.
While a detachment of British soldiers was retiring through Mons under very heavy German artillery and machinegun fire in August 1914 they knelt beside a hastily erected barricade and endeavoured to hold up the enemy advance. The firing on both sides was very intensive, and the air reverberated with deafening crashes of exploding shells.
Suddenly, firing on both sides stopped dead and a silence fell. Looking over the barrier, the astonished British saw four or five wonderful beings much bigger than men, between themselves and the halted Germans. They were white robed and bareheaded, and seemed rather to float than stand. Their backs were towards the British, and they faced the enemy with outstretched arm and hand as if to say: "Stop. Thus far and no further." The sun was shining quite brightly at the time. Next thing the British knew was that the Gerrnans were retreating in great disorder.
On another occasion, the British were in danger of being surrounded by the Germans, and had lost numbers of men and guns. Just when matters seemed hopeless, the heavy enemy fire suddenly stopped dead and a great silence fell over all. The sky opened with a bright shining light and figures of "luminous beings" appeared. They seemed to float between the British and the German forces, and to prevent the further advance of the enemy. Some of the German cavalry were advancing and the officers and men were unable to get their horses to go forward.
Before the surprised British were able to realise what had happened, the whole of the apparently victorious enemy force were retreating in great disorder. This allowed the British and the Allied Armies to reform and fall back upon a line of defence several miles further west, where they "dug in". Then began the period of "trench warfare" which continued for over three years, with varying fortunes to either side until the Spring of 1918.
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