To set the stage, let me quote from www.History.com:
The Battle of Waterloo, which took place in Belgium on June 18, 1815, marked the final defeat of French military leader and emperor Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821), who conquered much of continental Europe in the early 19th century. Napoleon rose through the ranks of the French army during the French Revolution (1789-1799), seized control of the French government in 1799 and became emperor in 1804.
Through a series of wars, he expanded his empire across western and central Europe. However, a disastrous invasion of Russia in 1812, coupled with other defeats, led to his abdication and exile in 1814. He returned to France in 1815 and briefly resumed power.
On June 18, Napoleon led his army of some 72,000 troops against the 68,000-man British army, which had taken up a position south of Brussels near the village of Waterloo, Belgium. The British army, which included Belgian, Dutch and German troops, was commanded by Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington (1769-1852), who had gained prominence fighting against the French during the Peninsular War.
In a critical blunder, Napoleon waited until midday to give the command to attack in order to let the waterlogged ground dry after the previous night’s rainstorm. The delay gave Blucher’s remaining troops, who, by some accounts, numbered more than 30,000, time to march to Waterloo and join the battle later that day.
Although Napoleon’s troops mounted a strong attack against the British, the arrival of the Prussians turned the tide against the French. The French emperor’s outnumbered army retreated in chaos. By some estimates, the French suffered more than 33,000 casualties (including dead, wounded or taken prisoner), while British and Prussian casualties numbered more than 22,000.
Reportedly fatigued and in poor health during the Belgian campaign, Napoleon committed tactical errors and acted indecisively. He also was blamed for appointing inadequate commanders. Ultimately, the Battle of Waterloo marked the end of Napoleon’s storied military career. He reportedly rode away from the battle in tears.
Of course, news of the outcome of such battles did not travel as quickly and/or as accurately in that day as it would today. It is the precisely the mistaken report of the outcome of that battle that is depicted in the House of Rothschild movie.
Following the decisive blow to Napoleon, a Morse-like message, delivered with light, was flashed across the English Channel to a nervous nation anxious to hear the outcome. When the message came though, it read “WELLINGTON DEFEATED…”
As one might imagine, panic swept through the British Isles. The Board of Trade collapsed. All was feared lost. And what was the cause of all this panic? Much of the intended message had simply been obscured by fog. When the message was finally deciphered correctly, it said: “WELLINGTON DEFEATED NAPOLEON AT WATERLOO”
As we approach Easter, I am reminded that, for three days, the world mistakenly thought that the forces of evil had defeated Jesus Christ. After all, the man from Nazareth who had claimed to be the very Son of God had been both crucified and buried.
But on Easter Sunday morning, a different message came through. And that message, loud and clear, was that Jesus Christ was not dead after all! In fact, He was very much alive and well! Panic, grief, and despair among His disciples quickly turned to relief, joy, and celebration.
And new meaning was given to the words of that same Jesus, Who had earlier stood outside the tomb of Lazarus and said (Gospel of John 11:25-26), “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
Of course, not having been there to witness this on our own, we must now trust the testimony of God’s word. Which makes the question Jesus asked of Mary and Martha all the more important for us: “Do you believe this?”
I hope you do. For, according to the New Testament Book of Hebrews (11:6): “without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”
But, as John also writes in his First General New Testament Epistle, or Letter (1:12): “Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.”
So, then, the question remains. Do you believe this?!