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Tribute To The Fallen Warrior

With the fall of the symbol of tyranny this morning in Iraq - that hollow statue of Saddam, we should remind ourselves that tyranny is nothing more than an empty lie. It is led by those who think only of themselves, it is characterized by those who demand loyalty through brutality, and it is represented by the many posters, statues, palaces, and various symbols of a leadership which squandered a nations wealth and citizenry, for its own lust and shallow ego.

Who can stand up now and deny those peoples a chance at freedom from the brutal regime of Saddam and his gang of thugs? With the discovery of outlawed chemical arms, torture chambers, rape rooms, terrorist training camps, who can deny the right of nations to rise up and destroy a threat to freedom worldwide?

There are many who will voice their opinions both for and against these events, but there are a few who have no voice, having given their lives for the cause of freedom for those of us who remain. It is to these that a tribute was written by Douglas MacArthur decades ago:

'The symbol of freedom through an epic struggle goes to the multitudes of unnamed others who fought for that which is right and true. It is their heroism, their sacrifice, their success, that is honored in so unforgettable a struggle. Most of them are citizen soldiers, sailors, and airmen, from the farm, from the city, from the schoolroom, from the college campus. Men and women not dedicated to the profession of arms, not primarily skilled in the arts of destruction, but men and women amazingly like those whom you see and meet and know each day of your lives. Men and women animated, inspired, and ennobled by a sublime cause of the defense of their country, of their native land, of their very hearthstones. The most divine of all human sentiments and impulses guided them, the spirit and willingness to sacrifice. He who dares to die, to lay his life on the alter of his nations need, is beyond doubt the noblest development of mankind. In this he comes closest to the image of his Creator, who died on the Cross that the human soul might live.

These men and women are our comrades in arms. They knew the far call of bugles of reveille, the distant roll of the drums at nightfall, the endless tramp of marching feet, the incessant whine of sniper bullets, the ceaseless rattle of sputtering machine guns, the ominous roar of threatening cannon, the sinister wail of air sirens, the deafening blasts of crashing bombs, the stealthy stroke of hidden torpedoes, the amphibious lurch over perilous waves, the dark majesty of fighting ships, the mad din of battle lines, and all the stench and ghastly horror and savage destruction of a stricken area of war. They suffer hunger and thirst, the broiling suns of relentless heat, the torrential rains of tropical storms, the loneliness and utter desolation of battle trails, the bitterness of separation from those they loved and cherished. They went on and on and on, when everything in them seemed to stop and die. They grew old in youth. They burned out in searing minutes all that life owed then of tranquil years. They express patience under adversity, courage under fire, and modesty in victory. Many trod the path of unknown fame that leads to the stark white cross above a lonely grave. And from their tortured dying lips, with the dreadful gurgle of the death rattle in their throats, always comes the same gasping prayer, that we who remain will go on to victory. We do not know the dignity of their birth, but we do know the glory of their death, and that is that a merciful God has taken them unto Himself.'

And now to Him who is able to keep us from falling and to present us without blemish before the presence of His glory, with exceeding joy, to the only wise God and savior, even Jesus Christ our Lord, to Whom be glory and majesty and dominion and power, before time, now, and forevermore. Amen.

End Of Lesson

Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.

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