Summary: The Christian Soldier needs to learn to put Duty to God First and THEN incorporate into their lives 3 core values: Courage, Commitment, and Selfless Sacrifice FOR THE Commander In Chief.

Duty First

Thesis: The Christian Soldier needs to learn to put Duty to God First and THEN incorporate into their lives 3 core values: Courage, Commitment, and Selfless Sacrifice FOR THE Commander In Chief.

Scripture Texts:

1 Corinthians 16:13: 13Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. 14Do everything in love.

I Peter 4:19: 19So then, those who suffer according to God¡¦s will should commit themselves to their faithful Creator and continue to do good.

Romans 12:1: 1Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God¡¦s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God¡Xthis is your spiritual act of worship.


Sixty years ago America was engulfed in a struggle for survival. Swindoll notes, ¡§We were sandwiched between two massive military powers bent on world domination. Our fighting forces were at their peak, performing at heroic levels of determination. Every magazine , every newspaper, every radio news report (there was no television), and virtually every conversation between neighbors and fellow employees included words about the war. It was, except for the bloody Civil War, the most significant war in our nations history. Such a conflict called for stouthearted leaders who were not afraid¡Kwho could see the big picture ¡Kwho were able to make tough and lonely decisions as well as motivate others who were willing to carry them out to the point of sacrifice. Happily, Americans were not alone during those difficult and demanding years. Across the Atlantic the people of the United Kingdom remained staunch allies. A major part of the reason they stood with us so firmly was the courageous commitment of England¡¦s prime minister, a man whose leadership was nothing short of remarkable. William Manchester refers to that man in his excellent volume. The Last Lion- Winston Spencer Churchill¡¨ (3,4).

For Winston Churchill backing away from or surrendering was never an option with Germany. He showed courage and determination in the midst of devastation from the bombings to battlefield. He knew that sacrifice of one for another was the key to the greater success of the nation. He knew that uniting the people of Britain against the enemy would bring victory.

In his first address to the House of Commons on May 13, 1940, he said, ¡§I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears, and sweat.¡¨ And again on June 4, 1940:

Even though large tracts of Europe and many old and famous States have fallen or may fall into the grip of the Gestapo and all the odious apparatus of Nazi rule, we shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be; we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender¡K (Swindoll, 6).

Churchill reflects the character traits of a true soldier. He demonstrates to us today the importance of having 3 core values which drove him into the fight with evil and also lead to their victory against the forces of evil. These three values I saw in Churchill are also taught at West Point.

The 3 fundamental Values of West Point are courage, commitment, and selfless sacrifice. The military icon seeks to institute these values into their officers so that when they graduate they are prepared to lead others into battle.

West Point¡¦s recent history, in particular the move away from what is now considered ¡¥abusive¡¦ leadership. ¡¥No one is going to be in their faces yelling at them when they make a mistake,¡¦ a second class squad leader says. ¡¥But we¡¦re going to be right there making sure they do things right. That¡¦s harder on them and us.¡¦ ¡¥You don¡¦t want them doing things just because they¡¦re afraid to mess up,¡¦ another squad leader says. ¡¥You want them to do things because they don¡¦t want to let people down.¡¦ This theme is repeated over and over again at West Point¡¨ (24).

Courage is the ability or attitude of dealing with a dangerous, difficult, or painful situation instead of withdrawing or fleeing from it. This quality at West Point is driven into the cadets over and over. They know that this quality is an absolute must in warfare. This mindset of being brave and fearless in the face of dangerous situations is a key to overcoming the danger. To deal with it you must face it and defeat it.

Commitment is the act of being given a charge or trust to deliver something for safe keeping. It is the idea of to entrust someone with something of value. Webster says this about the word commit- The basic term here, implies the delivery of a person or thing into the charge or keeping of another. The idea is interesting to West Point each graduate will leave West Point and be placed in a leadership position over another human being. They are being entrusted with someone who is very valuable therefore they are to do everything within their ability to lead and protect them effectively. They must commit to do their very best in extremely dangerous and difficult situations because the life of others and the cause of the fight warrants it.

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