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The Chocolate Soldier
Heroism - The Lost Chord of Christianity!
by C. T. Studd
Heroism is the lost chord; the
missing note of present day Christianity! Every true soldier is a hero! A
SOLDIER WITHOUT HEROISM IS A CHOCOLATE SOLDIER! Who has not been stirred
to scorn and mirth at the very thought of a Chocolate Soldier? In peace true
soldiers are captive lions, fretting in their cages. War gives them
their liberty and sends them, like boys bounding out of school, to obtain their
heart's desire or perish in the attempt.
EVERY TRUE CHRISTIAN IS A SOLDIER of Christ - a hero "par excellence"! Braver than the bravest - scorning the soft seductions of peace and her oft-repeated warnings against hardship, disease, danger, and death, whom he counts among his bosom friends.
THE OTHERWISE CHRISTIAN IS A CHOCOLATE CHRISTIAN! Dissolving in water and melting at the smell of fire. "Sweeties" they are! Bonbons, lollipops! Living their lives on a glass dish or in a cardboard box, each clad in his soft clothing, a little frilled white paper to preserve his dear little delicate constitution.
Here are some PORTRAITS OF
CHOCOLATE SOLDIERS taken by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. "He said,
'I go, sir' and went not"; he said he would go to the heathen, but stuck
fast to Christendom instead. They say and do not. They tell
others to go, and yet do not go themselves. "Never," said
General Gordon to a corporal (as he himself jumped upon the parapet [earthen or
stone embankment protecting soldiers] of a trench, before
To the Chocolate Soldier the very thought of war brings a violent attack of ague (feverish chills), while the call to battle always finds him with the palsy. "I really cannot move," he says. "I only wish I could, but I can sing, and here are some of my favorite lines:
"I must be carried to the skies
On a flowery bed of ease,
Let others fight to win the prize,
Or sail thro' bloody seas.
Mark time, Christian heroes,
Never go to war;
Stop and mind the babies
Playing on the floor.
Wash and dress and feed them
Forty times a week.
Till they're roly poly-
Puddings so to speak.
Round and round the nursery
Let us ambulate
Sugar and spice and all that's nice
Must be on our slate.
"Thank the good Lord," said a very fragile, white-haired lady, "God never meant me to be a jellyfish!" She wasn't! GOD NEVER WAS A CHOCOLATE MANUFACTURER, AND NEVER WILL BE. God's men are always heroes. In Scripture you can trace their giant foot-tracks down the sands of time.
Noah walked with God, he didn't
only preach righteousness, he acted it. He went through water and
didn't melt. He breasted the current of the popular opinion of his
day, scorning alike the hatred and ridicule of the scoffers who mocked at the
thought of their being but one way of salvation. He warned the
unbelieving and, entering the ark himself, didn't open the door an inch when
once God had shut it. A real hero untainted by the fear of man.
Learn to scorn the praise of men.
Learn to lose with God;
Jesus won the world through' shame!
And beckons us His road.
Abraham, a simple farmer, at a word from the Invisible God, marched, with family and stock, through the terrible desert to a distant land to live among a people whose language he could neither speak nor understand! Not bad that! But later he did even better, marching hot foot against the combined armies of five kings, flushed with recent victory, to rescue one man! His army? Just 318 odd fellows, armed like a circus crowd. And he won too. "He always wins who sides with God." What pluck! Only a farmer! No war training! Yet what hero has eclipsed his feat? His open secret? He was THE FRIEND OF GOD.
Moses -the man of God -was a
species of human chameleon-scholar, general, lawgiver, leader,
etc. Brought up as the Emperor's grandson with more than a good
chance of coming to the throne, one thing only between him and it-TRUTH-what a
choice! What a temptation! A throne for a
lie! Ignominy, banishment, or likely enough death for the
truth! He played the man! "Refusing to be called the
son of Pharaoh's daughter, he chose rather to suffer affliction with the people
of God than to enjoy the pleasures of sin and success for a season, accounting
the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of
Again I see him. Now
an old man and alone, marching stolidly back to Egypt, after forty years of exile,
to beard the lion in his den, to liberate Pharaoh's slaves right under his very
nose, and to lead them across that great and terrible wilderness. A
WILD-CAT AFFAIR, if ever there was one! When were God's schemes
otherwise! Look at
Tame tabby-cat (tabby: domestic cat; rich watered silk) schemes are stamped with another hall mark- that of the Chocolate Brigade! How dearly they love their tabbies yet think themselves wise men!
REAL CHRISTIANS REVEL IN DESPERATE VENTURES FOR CHRIST, expecting from God great things and attempting the same with exhilaration. History cannot match these feats of Moses. How was it done? He consulted not with flesh and blood, he obeyed not men but God.
Once again I see the old gray-beard, this time descending the Mount with giant strides and rushing into the camp, his eyes blazing like burning coals. One man against three million dancing dervishes drunk with debauchery. Bravo! Well done, old man! First class! His cheek pales not, but his mouth moves, and I think I catch his words, "If God be for me who can be against me? I will not be afraid of 10,000 of the people that have set themselves against me. Though a host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear." And he didn't. He wins again. Whence this desperate courage? Listen! "Now the man Moses was very meek above all the men which were upon the face of the earth." "The Lord spake unto Moses face to face as a man speaketh unto his friend." "My servant, Moses," said his Master, "is faithful in all Mine house, with him will I speak mouth to mouth." Such is the explanation of Moses the chameleon, the man and friend of God and consequently a first-class hero.
David- the man after God's own
heart- was a man of war and mighty man of valor. When all
David's secret was that he had but one Director, and He, the Infallible One. He directed the stone, as He directed the youth. Too many directors spoil the sport, and two are too many: just the One. Thus Christ said to His soldiers: "HE shall teach you all things; HE shall guide you into all the truth."
"THIS is My Beloved Son: HEAR HIM." ONE MEDIATOR ONLY, between God and Man, the man Christ Jesus." ONE DIRECTOR OF CHRISTIAN MEN - GOD THE HOLY GHOST. Whose directions require indeed instant obedience, but not the endorsement of any man.
THE DEVIL NEEDS RED-HOT SHOT, FRESH FROM THE FOUNDRY OF THE HOLY GHOST. He laughs at cold shot or lukewarm, and as for that made of half-iron and half-clay, half-divine and half-human, why you might just as well pelt him with snowballs.
Whence did this raw youth derive his pluck and skill? NOT from military camps, nor theological schools, nor religious retreats. "To know The Only True God and Jesus Christ," is enough. Paul determined to know only Jesus Christ, and look at the grand result! Whilst others were learning pretty theories, David, like John, had been alone with God in the wilds, practicing on bears and lions. The result? HE KNEW GOD AND DID EXPLOITS. He knew God only. He trusted God only. He obeyed God only. That's the secret. God alone gives strength. God adulterated with men entails the weakness of iron and clay - Chocolate - brittleness!
Yet hero as he was, even David
alas! once played the role of Chocolate Soldier. HE STAYED AT HOME
WHEN HE SHOULD HAVE GONE TO WAR. His army, far off, in danger,
fighting the enemy, won. David, at home, secure, within sight of
God's house and often going there, suffered the one great defeat of his life,
entailing such a bitter, lifelong reaping as might well deter others from the
folly of sowing wild oats. David's sin is a terrific sermon (like
In his simple, quick, and full confession, David proved himself a man again. It takes a real man to make a true confession - a Chocolate Soldier will excuse or cloak his sin. He tumbles in the mud, flounders on, wipes his mouth to try to get the bad taste of his acted lie out of it, and then goes on his way saying, "I have done no wickedness." A self-murdering fool! Killing his conscience to save his face, like Balaam beating the ass who sought to save his master's life. Being a Chocolate Soldier nearly did in David. Beware!
Nathan was another real Christian Soldier. He went to his king and rebuked him to his face, like Peter's dealing with Ananias (only David embraced his opportunity and confessed), and unlike the Chocolate Soldiers of today who go whispering about and refusing either to judge, rebuke, or put away evil because of the entailed scandal in truth. Genuine Soapy Sams. They say "It is nothing! nothing at all! A mere misunderstanding!" As though God's cause would suffer more through a bold declaration and defense of the truth and the use of the knife, than by the hiding up of sin, and the certain development of mortification in the member, involving death to the whole body. "He that doeth righteousness is righteous," and "he that doeth sin is of the devil," and ought to be told so. He that is a second time led captive by the devil needs neither plaster nor antidote for poison, but the stiff rebuke and summons to repentance of a righteous man to effect his salvation. WE ARE BADLY IN NEED OF NATHANS TODAY, who fear God and nought else, no, not even a scandal.
Daniel was another
hero. Of course he was! Was he not the man greatly
beloved of God who sent an angel to tell him so? I love to watch him as he
walks, with firm step and radiant face, to the lions' den, stopping but once -
like his Master en route to
A man is known by his works, and the works of Daniel were his three friends, who, rather than bow down to men or gold, braved the fiery furnace. Again we see him going to the banquet hall, and hear his conductor whisper in his ear, "Draw it mild, Daniel, be statesmanlike. Place and power again for you if you are tactful and wise - especially tactful!" And Daniel's simple reply, "Get thee behind me, satan!" There he stands before the king, braving torture or instant death - but it's the king who quails, not Daniel - who tells him to his face the whole hot truth of God, diminishing not a jot.
JOHN THE BAPTIST
John the Baptist - a man taught and made and sent of God - good old John! Who doesn't love and admire him? Why, even Herod did. A genuine deficiency of oil and an antidote for poison in his composition. He always told the flat truth, with emphasis. As he loved, so he warned. He knew not how to flatter. HE WOOED WITH THE SWORD, AND "MEN" LOVED HIM THE BETTER FOR IT. They always do.
The leaders of religion sent to John to ask him the dearly loved question of every Pharisee, "By what authority doest thou these (good) things?" They asked that of Christ Himself, and crucified Him for the doing of them. John's answer was plain and pungent, "I will tell you what you ask, and more. John was always liberal! I am nobody, but ye and your masters are a generation of vipers." A good hot curry, that! John never served his curries with butter sauce, but he was always very liberal with pungent relish - a man of God - NO SUGAR PLUM NOR CHOCOLATE SOLDIER HE!
Thus also he faced Herod after six months in an underground dungeon, and he a man of "God's Open-air Mission." Brought straight in before the king; surrounded with all the might and majesty of camp and court; blinking at the unaccustomed sight of light, but by no means putting blinders on the truth, he blurted out his hot and thunderous rebuke, "Thou shalt not have that woman to by thy wife." A whole sermon in one sentence, as easy to remember as impossible to forget. John had preached like that before; like Hugh Latimer, he was not above repeating a good sermon to a king, word for word, when the king had not given sufficient heed to it.
John received the unique distinction of a first-class character from both God and the agent of the devil. Hark to the Savior indulging in an outburst of exquisite sarcasm, "What think ye of John? A reed shaken by the wind? A man clothed in soft raiment?" A Chocolate Soldier? (How delicious! The Chocolates were right in front of Jesus at the time - Pharisees, Sadducees, priests, scribes, lawyers, and other hypocrites. How the crowd must have enjoyed it!) A prophet?
Nay, much more than prophet! "Of men born of women there is none greater than John." And what did the devil's agent say when, after John's death, he heard of Jesus? "This," I tell you, "is John risen from the dead." What a character! Fancy Jesus being mistaken for anyone! He could have been mistaken only for John. Nobody envies him the well-deserved honor, great though it was, for John was a man - pure granite right through, with not a grain of Chocolate in him.
Had John but heard Jesus say,
"Ye shall be My witnesses unto the uttermost parts of the
earth," I very much doubt if Herod's dungeon, or his soldiers, could
have detained him. He surely would have found some means to escape,
and run off to preach Christ's Gospel, if not in the very heart of
But here are other foot-tracks - outrageous ones: they can belong only to one man - THAT GRANDEST OF CHRISTIAN PARADOXES - THE LITTLE GIANT PAUL - whose head was as big as his body, and his heart greater than both. Once he thought and treated every Christian as a combination of knave and fool. Then he became one himself. He was called "fool" because his acts were so far beyond the dictates of human reason, and "mad" because of his irresponsible fiery zeal for Christ and men. A first-class scholar, but one who knew how to use scholarship properly; for he put it on the shelf, declaring the wisdom of men to be but folly, and determined to know nothing else save Jesus Christ and Him crucified. The result - he made the world turn somersault. His life was a perpetual gamble for God. Daily he faced death for Christ. Again and again he stood fearless before crowds thirsting for his blood. He stood before kings and governors and "turned not a hair". He didn't so much as flinch before Nero, that vice-president of hell. His sufferings were appalling; read them. He trod in his Master's footsteps, and so received (God is always just in His favors) the same splendid compliment that Jesus did. "All forsook him." So there were some Chocolate Christians in those days too. Anyone who forsook Paul must have been made of Chocolate.
Doubtless the "CHOCOLATES" excused themselves as they do today. "Who could abide such a fanatical, fiery fool? Such an uncompromising character? Nobody could work with him, or he with them!" (What a lie! Jesus did, and they got on well together.) A tactless enthusiast, who considered it his business to tell every man the unvarnished truth regardless of consequences. He won his degree hands down, and without a touch of the spur. A first-class one, too (that of the headman's axe) next best to that of the cross.
And so the tale goes on. Go where you will through the Scriptures or history, you find that men who really knew God, and didn't merely say they did, were invariably Paragons and Pluck; Dare-Devil Desperadoes for Jesus; Gamblers for God. "Fools and Madmen," shout the world and the Chocolates. "Yes, for Christ's sake," add the Angels!
"Nobly they fought to win the prize,
Climbing the steep ascents of heaven,
Through' peril, toil, and pain.
O God, to us let grace be given,
To follow in their train."
CHOCOLATES A LA RUEBEN
The Chocolate Christians of today
can at least boast of having ancient pedigrees. There are CHOCOLATES
A LA RUEBEN, who have great searchings of heart, and make great resolves of
heart too. But somehow they still sit among the sheepfolds,
listening to the pipings of their much-loved organs and church
choirs. It's good to have a great heart searching. It's
better to make a great heart-resolve. But, if instead of obeying, we
squat among the sheep, leaving our few hard-pressed brethren to tackle the
wolves by themselves, verily we are but Chocolate Christians. You made
a great resolve to go to
There are CHOCOLATES MEROZ, who
earned the curse of the angel of the Lord. War was declared; the
battle about to begin; the odds were outrageous, and Meroz remained in
CHOCOLATES DU BALAAM
CHOCOLATES DU BALAAM begin first-class, and earn the name of prophets. Then they develop a squint, melt, and finally run out of the frying pan into the fire, thus Balaam. One day he couldn't get his left eye to look at God. It would look at earth and mammon and that chit of a girl, Miss Popularity. He ought to have done as God told him, and plucked it out. But he said that was too much to ask of any man, and besides he wanted the best of both worlds. He had a hearty desire to die the death of the righteous, but he wasn't willing to pay the price of a righteous life. He hadn't the pluck to curse God's people, so he made plans for others to make them sin. But one day, while his dupes were putting his chestnuts into the fire, they fell in themselves, and Balaam with them (Numbers 22-24).
"I counsel thee to buy of me eye salve, that thou mayest once again have a single eye, and be enabled to see the folly of flirting with the world."
CHOCOLATE DEMAS, who left old fiery hard-hitting Paul for an easier path. He said he thought Paul should wink at, or slobber over sin, instead of rebuking it. "He was so very fond of the knife, you know; and he never would use sticking-plaster, because he said it never healed the sore but made it burrow underneath and become bigger, worse, and dangerous" (2 Tim. 4:10).
MARK joined the Chocolate Brigade
once. He left Paul and Barnabas in the lurch, and went back to
MANY FINE YOUNGSTERS ARE TURNED INTO CHOCOLATES BY OLD PROPHETS. Old prophets who have lost their fire, or fire off words instead of deeds, usually become Great Chocolate Manufacturers. That poor young prophet. He did so well when he obeyed God only, but it was all over with him when he listened to another voice, even though that of an old prophet. Didn't the old prophet say he was a prophet? And say he'd got the message straight from God? What a damnable lie! The floor of Christendom and elsewhere is littered with wrecks made by old prophets. God won't stand nonsense from any man. Every man has to choose between Christ and Barabbas, and every Christian between God and some old prophet. Better be a silly donkey in the estimation of an old prophet than listen to his soft talk and flattery, and afterwards become a wreck. "This is My beloved Son, hear HIM." No! Not even Moses, nor Elijah, nor both. "HEAR HIM." "You have an anointing from God, and you have no need that any man teach you." You say you believe the Bible! No your deeds give the lie to your words? (I Kings 13)
THE TEN SPIES WERE CHOCOLATES
THE TEN SPIES WERE
CHOCOLATES. They melted and ran over the whole congregation of
JONAH became a Chocolate Soldier
once. Told to go to
There's nothing that shows up
CHOCOLATES so much as a bit of a breeze among God's people. Paul and
Barnabas had one once. Judging from experience, I guess there were
some Chocolates about then who got into a fog right away! Before
that, they had vowed they would go to the heathen; but this breeze between Paul
and Barnabas put them off. If they hadn't been MADE OF CHOCOLATE
they would have said, "This affair between Paul and Barnabas only makes it
more necessary for me to keep close to God, and do what He told me to do more
exactly and punctually; so I shall go a bit sooner to
Difficulties, dangers, disease, death, or divisions don't deter any but Chocolates from executing God's Will. When someone says there's a lion in the way, the real Christian promptly replies, "That's hardly enough inducement for me; I want a bear or two besides to make it worth my while to go."
CHOCOLATES are very fond of talking loud and long against some whom they call fanatics, as though there were any danger of Christians being fanatics nowadays! Why, fanatics among Christians are as rare as the "dodo bird". Now, if they proclaimed against "lukewarmness", they would talk sense. God's real people have always been called fanatics. Jesus was called mad; so was Paul; so was Whitfield, Wesley, Moody, Spurgeon. No one has graduated far in God's School who has not been paid the compliment of being called a fanatic. We Christians of today are indeed a lukewarm crew. Had we but half the fire and enthusiasm of the Suffragettes in the past, we would have the world evangelized and Christ back among us in no time. Had we the pluck and heroism of the Flyers, or the men who volunteered for the North or South Polar Expeditions, or for the Great War, or for any ordinary dare-devil enterprise, we could have every soul on earth knowing the name and salvation of Jesus Christ in less than ten years.
Alas! What stirs ordinary men's blood and turns them into heroes, makes most Christians run like a flock of frightened sheep. The Militants daily risked their lives in furtherance of their cause, and subscribed of their means in a way that cried "Shame" on us Christians, who generally brand the braving of risks and fighting against odds as a "tempting of God".
CHOCOLATE CARAMELS - "stick-jaw", boys call them - jawing, "I go, sir," and sticking fast in Christendom. No conquest is made in assured safety, and conquest for Christ certainly cannot so be made.
We Christians too often SUBSTITUTE PRAYER FOR PLAYING THE GAME. Prayer is good: but when used as a substitute for obedience, it is naught but a blatant hypocrisy, a despicable Pharisaism. We need as many meetings for actions as for prayer - perhaps more. Every orthodox prayer-meeting is opened by God saying to His people, "Go work today; pray that laborers be sent into My vineyard." It is continued by the Christians response, "I go, Lord, whithersoever Thou sendest me, that Thy Name may be hallowed everywhere, that Thy Kingdom may come speedily, that Thy Will may be done on earth as in heaven." But if it ends in nobody going anywhere, it had better never have been held at all. Like faith, prayer without works is dead. That is why many Prayer-Meetings might well be styled "much cry, yet little wool". Zerubbabel didn't only hold prayer-meetings; he went and cut down trees, and started to build. Hence God said, "From this day will I bless thee."
Report says that someone has rediscovered the secret of the old masters. Cannot we Christians rediscover, and put into practice, that of our Great Master and His former pupils, Heroism? He and they saved not themselves; they loved not their lives to the death, and so kept on saving them by losing them for Christ's sake.
WE ARE FRITTERING AWAY TIME AND MONEY IN A MULTIPLICITY OF CONVENTIONS, conferences, and retreats, when the real need is to go straight and full steam into battle, with the signal for "close action" flying.
The "Vox Humana" plays too important a part in our Christian organs and organizations today. The music, whoever plays, is bound to be thin when the tops of "Instant Obedience" and "Fiery Valor" are missing or unused, and without them to play the "Lost Chord" of Heroism is an impossibility.
"Whatsoever he saith unto
you, do it," said the Blessed Virgin. Do what? Not
put oil and spice into the soft holy vessels inside the house, but pour the
Water of Life into those empty stone ones outside.
DO LET US MAKE A REAL START NOW - AT ONCE. For years, like Mr. Winkle, we've declared we were just about to begin, and then never began at all. We must divorce Chocolate and Disobedience, and marry Faith and Heroism.
"Who shall begin the battle?" asked the king. "Thou," replied the prophet, and when the king and the young princes led the way, though the odds against them were terrific, they won with ridiculous ease.
So, too, THE APOSTLES LED IN THE WAR OF GOD to the uttermost parts of the earth. Likewise in the Crusades, the kings and the princes of State and Church led; then why not today in THE CRUSADE OF CHRIST TO EVANGELIZE THE WORLD?
GOD'S SUMMONS TODAY IS TO THE
YOUNG MEN AND WOMEN OF
Listen: "And it shall be in the last days, I will pour forth of My Spirit upon all flesh. Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions (of faith), your old men shall dream dreams (of courageous obedience); yea, and on My bondmen and on My bond maidens in those days will I pour forth of My Spirit, and they shall prophesy; and I will show wonders in the heaven above and signs in the earth beneath; and it shall be that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
But how can they call on Him of
whom they have not even heard? Must you stay, young
man? Can't you go, young woman, and tell them? Verily we
are in the last (the Laodicean stage) that of the
Wilt thou be to Christ the partner of His throne or a medicine which induces vomiting (Rev.3:21); a Militant or a Chocolate Christian? Wilt thou fear or wilt thou fight? Shall your brethren go to war and shall ye sit here? When He comes, shall He find faith on the earth? A thousand times you have admitted Christ's Love so amazing, so divine, Demands your life, your soul, your all.
Wilt thou be a miser and withhold what honor demands of thee? Wilt thou give like Ananias and Sapphira, who, pretending to give all, gave only part? Possessing and enjoying the vineyard, wilt thou, like the husbandman, refuse the agreed rent? Wilt thou fear death, or devil, or men? AND WILT THOU NOT FEAR SHAME? Some shall rise to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. Shall we refuse to emulate the heroes of old, or shall we accomplish the double fulfillment of those glorious words?
All these being men of war came with a perfect heart to make Jesus King over all the world. They were all mighty men of valor for the war! He that was least was equal to a hundred, and the greatest to a thousand! They were not of double heart! Their faces were like the faces of lions! They were as swift as the roes upon the mountains (to do their Lord's commands)! Ye sought in time past, for Jesus to be King over you. NOW, THEN, DO IT. (Compare I Chronicles 12:8,33, 38, and II Samuel 3:17-18).
Shall we not reply: Thine are we, Jesus, and on Thy side. God do so to me, and more also, if as God has sworn unto Him, I do not even so to Jesus - to translate the kingdom from the house of satan, and set up the throne of Jesus Christ over all the world. (Compare I Chron.12:18 and 2 Sam.3:10)
Come, then, let us restore the "Lost Chord" of Christianity - HEROISM - to the world, and the crown of the world to Christ. Christ Himself asks thee, "Wilt thou be a Slacker or a Militant?" To your knees, man! And to your Bible! Decide at once! Don't hedge! Time flies! Cease your insults to God, quit consulting flesh and blood. Stop your lame, lying, and cowardly excuses
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THE FISHLESS FISHERS FOLLY
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