During the persecution of 18, the saints of Madagascar were being butchered and killed by drunken soldiers. They were marched to the end of a high cliff, and, looking down 2000 feet to the rocks and death below, were given a chance to recant.
The saints of God would join hands, and start to sing, "Jesus, lover of my soul, let me to Thy bosom fly, while the nearer waters roll, while the tempest still is high. Hide me, O my Savior, hide me until the storms of life have passed." However, before they could finish, they were hurled over the edge – but their hearts stayed committed to the Lord. Those saints were too big for compromise, and too strong to wilt, even in the face of martyrdom.
In Joshua 23:6 – 8, we have some of the closing words of Joshua to the people. In verse 6, he exhorts them to "be very courageous," meaning "to prevail against something; to stand strong in the face of something." In verse 8, he tells them to, "hold fast to the Lord your God." "Hold fast" means "to glue yourself; to stick close to; to cleave to!" This speaks of unwavering commitment.
The French Dominican, Henri Didon (1840 – 1900) stated, "I do not want people who come under certain reservations. In battle, you need soldiers who fear nothing."
On a memorial stone to a fallen soldier are the carved words:
"The Hour of Conflict,
The Day of Defeat,
The years of Oppression,
Brought to his Courage
And to his Loyal Service
Paul wrote, in Romans 12, that we are to "present our bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God." He is talking of a binding commitment, a sacrifice of complete consecration, made once for a lifetime.
Remember, "Our Lord is not seeking compliments, but commitments!"
Dave Arnold, Pastor
Gulf Coast Worship Center
New Port Richey , Florida 34654