Eminently Qualified Soldiers
(Thoughts built upon the Jocko Podcast #174 - Set Standards. Aspire To Achieve)
”Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?” II Corinthians 13:5
“For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.” II Corinthians 10:12
Luke sent me that podcast a couple of weeks ago. I just finished it this morning. We were on vacation last week and I didn’t listen to any of it. Plus, I’ve been greatly enjoying podcasts by Eddie Chumney. He’s a messianic fellow that I came in contact with through Brad Scott and Wildbranch Ministry.
In the podcast, Jocko talks about the Marine Corps Fitness Report. It highlights the basic skill sets required to be a good … anything, quite honestly. It also lays out how the leader is to evaluate each member of his team and score them accordingly. The goal is to produce Eminently Qualified Soldiers (a cohesive team) that are, and will be, fit for battle at a moment’s notice. It’s awesome.
While I was listening to this (and getting beat up along the way) I realized that we believers have our own set of Standards and Guidelines, our own Manual, so to speak — it’s called the Bible, the Inspired Word of God.
In this Manual we’re instructed on how to become Eminently Qualified Soldiers.
If leaders aren’t reading it, living it, and teaching it … and, if pew sitters (us) aren’t applying what we hear as well as reading it for ourselves … then what do we have?
We have the present eminently DISqualified condition we’re in!
If anybody would have at least a half an ounce of concern to notice, they’d have to conclude that the body of Christ is slowly dying on the vine. We’re not fit for much of anything, let alone battle.
But the thing is … we actually think we ARE fit for battle. Just ask your nearest neighborly believer.
When in reality …
We’ve become like the fat, indolent weekend Civil War reenactor that dresses up, plays at maneuvers and would, if not careful, start to believe his own stuff — until thrown into battle. And you know who wouldn’t want them in battle along side of them: the real eminently qualified soldiers.
Hence, Gideon told the majority of the bunch to go on back home. He knew he could do better with 300 alert and ready soldiers than a whole bunch of knuckle heads that would mess everything up when the battle got hot.
We have to stop playing soldier. It’s time to “examine ourselves.”
By not “commending ourselves.” Let’s stop patting ourselves on the back. It’s time for us priests (preachers/believers) to get down on our faces and cry out to God like Joel instructed in his writings.
By not “measuring ourselves by ourselves and comparing ourselves among ourselves.” You know what? I think it would be good to have Jocko come to our congregations and do an assessment on our state of battle readiness. He’d be appalled. And … HE’S UNSAVED. But yet, he gets it and we don’t. Why?
Perhaps it’s like what Jesus said: “For the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light.” (Luke 16:8)
It seems like, at least to me anyway, as soon as we get saved we progress along the path of increasing … STUPID. We loose objectivity. We become so cloistered and removed from the real world within our Edifices of Community that we no longer examine and measure ourselves as to our actual state of battle readiness.
We gather and play “war games.” We win our controlled skirmishes. We smile. We raise our hands. We praise Jesus …
But would Gideon want any of us?
Don’t you ever wonder if you would have been chosen as one of Gideon’s 300? I do. I think about it all the time.
When I read my Manual and take stock as to how it evaluates me ….
I’m a good paper soldier, but I don’t think I stack up to the likes of:
Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Gideon, David, Isaiah, Elisha, Elijah, Stephen, Paul, Peter, James, John ….
Tyndale, Bunyan, Spurgeon, Moody, Hudson Taylor, John Patton, Adoniram Judson, George Mueller, Jim Elliot, Lester Roloff …. Do we even know anything at all about these past giants of the faith that walked this earth? I fear we’ve forgotten, purposely shelved, these Godly, manly role models. Warriors all. They shame us.
I know I keep saying it but, we’re in a spiritual battle. It’s a battle against our own flesh as well as the forces of spiritual darkness.
And, I do believe we’re getting toward the end. That being the case, Satan is going to bear down and bring upon us forces that are going to crush us.
We immerse ourselves, on a personal level, in the Word of God like we’ve never done before.
All military warfare depends upon the standing readiness of the ones that will be engaged in battle.
All spiritual warfare also depends upon the standing readiness of the ones that will be engaged in battle.
God is looking for A Few Good Eminently Qualified Soldiers.
Listen to the Jocko podcast. Measure yourself against it using the Believer’s Manual.
I believe you’ll be encouraged to start taking steps toward becoming battle ready for God’s army.
The battle is coming.