These ring leaders for Jesus paid the price for their faithfulness to the Gospel and the freedom to proclaim it openly and individually. These faithful pastors and leaders gave their very own lives and made many sacrificial commitments to the cause of religious freedom. England’s King did not like what he heard being preached in the pulpits of America and the public statements of her leadership. These men and women risked it all for the sake of the Gospel and for religious freedom in Christ.These ring leaders for Jesus were not afraid to preach about living the truth but they even put their own lives into action and on the line to show that what they preached they wholeheartedly believed and lived.
Marshall and Manuel stated in their book The Light and the Glory the following, “…Were the exhortations of their ministers confined to words. These men did not hesitate to put their own lives on the line. During the battles of Lexington and Concord, Chelsea’s minister, Philips Payson, captured two British supply wagons single handedly. John Craighead raised a company of militia from his parish and led them off to join Washington in New Jersey, where it was recorded that he “Fought and preached alternately,” So numerous, in fact, were the fighting pastors that the Tories referred to them as “the black regiment,” and blamed much of the resurging zeal of the Colonial troops. One of the most colorful examples is what happened in a staid Lutheran church in the Shenandoah valley of Virginia, one Sunday morning in 1775, the thirty-year-old pastor, Peter Muhlenberg, delivered a stirring sermon on the text, ‘For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven’ (Ecc. 3:1) He reached the end of his sermon and said a solemn prayer-and then continued to speak. ‘In language of the Holy Writ, there is a time for all things. There is a time to preach and a time to fight” he paused, and then threw off his pulpit robe to reveal to the startled congregation the uniform of a colonel in the Continental Army, ‘And now is the time to fight!’ The drums rolled, and that same afternoon he marched off at the head of the column of three hundred men. His regiment was to earn fame as the 8th Virginia, and Muhlenberg was to distinguish himself in a number of battles, rising to the rank of brigadier general, in charge of Washington’s first light infantry brigade” (290-291).