"We All Stepped Forward, Sir"

The story is told of five army volunteers that were needed to undertake a dangerous mission. The colonel lined up his regiment of men and asked that all those willing to volunteer take one step forward. During the process, he said he would turn his back. When he turned around refacing his men, the line was still intact. As he expressed his disappointment that not a single man of the entire group was brave enough to volunteer for the task, a corporal interrupted him saying, “We all stepped forward, sir.”

Think what it would mean to the church if this was the attitude of all the people in the Lord’s army! (2 Timothy 2:1-4). In spite of all the good that is being done in congregations throughout the brotherhood, know that it is still being done by a very small percentage of those who are members. Perhaps this is why Jesus said, “For many are called, but few are chosen” (Matthew 22:14). Too many people desire to be counted only as members of the church — not “workers” in the church. For that reason, someone else must carry the load that they should carry.

Only a few are willing to really work for the Lord (Matthew 9:37; Luke 10:2). Others allow weeks to pass into years without doing more than worshiping once per week and not even that short period of time if something else more important comes up. They neither advertise nor attend gospel meetings, much less invite and bring visitors to the services of the church. Thousands of folks die every day without the gospel, but it is not any of their concern. Religion has never meant much to them, except as an escape from the burning fires of hell.

But let’s just suppose for a moment, that all of the people in God’s army would step forward. The outcome of the war we are engaged in would then be much different (1 Timothy 1:18-19; cf. Acts 20:17-27; 2 Timothy 4:1-7).

Let us in prayer, ask the Lord to give us the desire to be fervent in obeying the commands of our Commander-in-Chief (Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 16:15-16; cf. 1 Corinthians 15:58). As soldiers of Christ, let us this day have the courage to volunteer and step forward to undertake the most dangerous mission of all (Ephesians 6:10-13; cf. 2 Corinthians 10:1-6).

Mike Riley, Gospel Snippets