Men Without Fear

(The story)

During the Persian Gulf War, I served with the 3rd Group Army Special Forces, (Airborne). In preparation for the ground war, and as one of the soldiers selected to go forward with the invasion into Kuwait City, I was required to meet with members of our military intelligence section. The purpose of this meeting was to discuss the possibility of capture and of being an Iraqi prisoner-of-war. We were asked a myriad of questions for possible use by those who would be involved in a rescue attempt. One scenario was a rescue attempt after many years as an Iraqi POW.

During this extensive interview we were asked many questions. Our responses were written down and recorded. These questions and our answers were to be used to ensure the correct identification of POW’s by those who would attempt to rescue us. I remember one question vividly because of my answer. The question was, “What number or series of numbers would I give to those who, during a rescue attempt, would ask for my numerical code number?” We were instructed not to use birthdays, anniversaries, phone numbers or ID numbers because the enemy might have access to them.

I decided on the number 777. My reasoning was spiritual. Many Bible scholars believe the number 7 to be an important number because of its use in the Bible. I felt the number 777 would be easy to remember because I would remember the number 7 for God the Father, the next 7 as God the Son and the last 7 as God the Holy Spirit.

At the end of the interview I remember my disbelief when I was informed that if I was not recognized by those who were sent to rescue me, and if I was unable to answer their questions, then I would be left behind. I remember asking the question, “You mean you would really leave us behind?” The response was, “You will be offered two choices. One is, we will leave you.” I asked, “What’s the second choice?” The response was, “Do you really want me to answer that question?”

II. Men Without Fear
(777 Biblical Reference)

With my return home from the Gulf, my faith, already strong, continued to increase. I began to make a conscious effort to seek God daily and made a decision to live a life dedicated to Him. During one of my daily times of Bible study, I remembered my 777 answer. I began to search the Bible for the number 777. The only mention of the number 777 was that Noah’s father lived to be seven-hundred and seventy-seven years old. Still searching I decided to look in the seventh book of the Bible, the seventh chapter and the seventh verse.

I turned to Judges, the 7th book of the Bible, to the 7th chapter and read the 7th verse. “And the Lord said unto Gideon, By the three hundred men that lapped will I save you and deliver the Midianites into thine hand: and let the other people go every man unto his place.” As I began to read and re-read this story about Gideon, I realized a truth in the passage that is relevant even today.

Let me quickly review the story with you. Verse 2 reads “The Lord said the people are too many, lest Israel will say my own hand hath saved me.” In verse 3, God told Gideon to “proclaim whoever is fearful let him return.” Twenty-two thousand returned, only ten thousand remained. I concluded, two-thirds of the men were fearful. This meant that only one-third were MEN WITHOUT FEAR. In verse 4 the Lord said, “The people are yet too many bring them down to the water.” There were 10,000 men without fear, but God would use only 300 men.

In verse 5 the Lord said, “Everyone that lappeth of the water set by himself; likewise everyone that boweth down to drink.” Verse 6 tells us about the 300 hundred men who, while standing lapped water with their hand to their mouth: the rest bowed down.

Although 9,700 men were MEN WITHOUT FEAR, they bowed down to drink. Only 300 remained erect, drinking water from their hand. In my opinion these men remained upright, looking for the enemy. They were PREPARED for battle. In verse 7, the Lord said, “By the 300 men will I save you.” The number 300 is less than one percent of the original 32,000 soldiers.

III. Men Without Fear
(Relevance for today)

As I studied and re-studied this passage, I tried to understand its relevance for today. I came to the realization and the conclusion that even today, God continues to use only a small number of men. He uses a similar plan, a similar equation, spiritually speaking. In my experience, about one-third of men seem to be MEN WITHOUT FEAR – men seeking to serve God. These are men and women who have decided to follow God. God however, will only use a very small number of people to fulfill His divine plan.

IV. Men Without Fear
(How can I be used by God?)

How does God determine and then select these individuals? God uses only a few men to fulfill His divine plan. He does not intend for man to receive the glory for His plan or for what He is doing. I believe that God separates His people by selecting those who are WITHOUT FEAR, those WILLING to be used, those SEEKING to be used, those who have PREPARED themselves to be used by God and possibly most important: those WILLING TO GIVE GOD THE GLORY for the victory.

You might ask the question, how can I become one of the few who are really used by God to fulfill His divine plan? I am convinced that first, you have to be in the WORD every day. Second, you have to be in PRAYER every day, and third, you must FREQUENTLY MEET with others of a like heart, mind, soul, and purpose. This will help you to be PREPARED to be used by God! Finally you must be willing to GIVE GOD THE GLORY for what HE is doing, what He has done and what He is going to do!