Faithlife Sermons


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saw at the end of them. At that mo­ment a man stepped forward, stood stiffly to attention, and calmly said, 'I did it.' The guard unleashed all his whipped-up hatred; he kicked the hapless prisoner and beat him with his fists. StilLthe man stood rigidly at at­tention/ The blood was streaming dowrpnis face, but he made no sound. His silence goaded the guard to an ex­cess of rage. He seized his rifle by the barrel and lifted it high over his head. With a final howl, he brought the butt down on the skull of the man, who sank limply to the ground and did not move. Although it was perfectly evi­dent that he was dead, the guard con­tinued to beat him and stopped only when exhausted. The men of the work detail picked up their comrade's body, shouldered their tools, and marched back to camp. When the tools were counted again at the camp guardhouse, no shovel was, in fact, missing."

"I have given you an example." Now be one yourself.

Being One

There's a story that comes out of World War II that demonstrates vivid­ly this Biblical message. It is found in Ernest Gordon's book, Through the Valley of the Kwai, dealing with his prisoner of war experience in Thailand. He described a work detail that came together at the end of a hard day. But let Gordon tell it:

"The day's work had ended; the tools were being counted. When the party was about to be dismissed, the guard declared that a shovel was miss­ing. He insisted someone had stolen it to sell to the Thais. He strode up and down in front of us, ranting and rav­ing and denouncing us for our wickedness and stupidity. Screaming in broken English, he demanded that the guilty one step forward to take his punishment. No one moved. The guard's rage reached new heights of violence.

'All die! All die!' he shrieked.

To show that he meant what he said, he pulled back the bolt, put the rifle to his shoulder, and looked down the sights, ready to fire at the first man he


"I hear my Dad's sermon when he tapes it, 1 hear it again in church and now the parrot repeats some of it!"


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