Strength in Sacrifice (Excerpt from One of the Few)
An excerpt from One of the Few. Click here to receive updates on the release in November 2015!
The Christian can boldly act in the face of death with an assurance not guaranteed by other worldviews: a promised inheritance of a perfect life hereafter. There is no compelling reason for me to leap from the parapets and charge the enemy foxhole knowing should I perish, I might return as a cockroach or a grub. Karma is a poor motivator for altruism. Neither could I find reason not to abandon my brother and save my own skin if this life is all we get. Posthumous justice for sacrificial heroism has no place in the mind of the Naturalist.
Jesus tells us, “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends” (John 15:13). He also assures us, “Our citizenship is in heaven” (Phil. 3:20). Others with different worldviews can be heroic; however, they have no reason to be heroic. Telling myself “everything is going to be okay” in the heat of battle only makes sense if in the end, everything really is going to be okay. Total annihilation is not an “okay” state of affairs. It is a non-state of affairs.
As the title of Eric Metaxas’s biography reveals, Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a pastor, martyr, prophet, and spy. He was a theologian and co-conspirator in an assassination plot on Adolf Hitler in 1943. Principles based on Christian morality compelled him to return to Germany in 1939 when he could have remained in the United States. His life ended on the gallows one month before the fall of the Nazi regime, but he finished the race. He lived his life proclaiming the gospel and defending the faith even unto death.
On Christianity, he wins. On naturalism, he loses. What evolutionary advantage is there in allowing for your own demise? We are not doing our genes (or memes) any favors by getting ourselves killed.
Photo Credit: Ernest Brooks / PD
About Jason B. Ladd
Jason is an author, speaker, Marine, and father of seven. He has flown the F/A-18 Hornet as a Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron 1 (MAWTS-1) Instructor Pilot and the F-16 as an Instructor Pilot. His award-winning book One of the Few: A Marine Fighter Pilot’s Reconnaissance of the Christian Worldview has been optioned for film adaptation. He is represented by Julie Gwinn of The Seymour Agency.