Alexandra Solzhenitsyn stated, "A decline in courage may be the most striking feature that an outside observer notices in the West today
and the decline in courage, at times attaining what could be termed a lack of manhoodA statesman who wants to achieve something important and highly constructive for his country has to move cautiously and even timidly; thousands of hasty and irresponsible critics cling to him at all times; he is constantly rebuffed by parliament and the press. He has to prove that his every step is well-founded and absolutely flawlessThus mediocrity triumphs under the guise of democratic restraints"+
Contrast Solzhenitsyns comments with the accomplishment of Johnny Unitas, quarterback of the Baltimore Colts,
"Unitas was famous as a quarterback who ran the team exactly as he saw fit. The field general demonstrated his command of tactics in whats called the greatest football game ever played, the 1958 National Football League championship match. Heres how the game went [January 5, 1959]:
"Baltimores Colts trailed the New York Giants 17-14. Johnny Unitas, Baltimore quarterback, glanced quickly at the clock. In the next 2 minutes, 30 seconds he had to move the Colts from their own 20-yard line into field-goal range, tie the score and force the first sudden-death playoff in a National League championship game. Unitas had to do the job against the toughest defense in Pro Football. Unitas went to work. Throwing hook passes to the side lines that got just enough for vital first downs, he drove the Colts to the Giants 13. There, with a precious 9 seconds left, Steve Myrha booted the tying field goal. Once the Colts got the ball in overtime, Unitas put the game away. He waited until the last second in the face of Giant tackling, hit his receivers with bullet passes, sent fullback Alan Ameche the final yard for a hair-raising 23-17 victory and the Colts first N. F. L. title."
The Scriptures are replete with men of unbridled courage. For example:
"stood his ground and struck down the Philistines till his hand grew tired and froze to the sword." (2 Sam. 23:10a)
"used his spear against 800 men whom he killed in one encounter." (2 Sam. 23:8)
St. Paul: "I know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me–the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace." (Act. 20:23b,24) (See Num. 13:30; 14:6-12)
Robert J. McCracken stated, "The world is not perishing for want of clever or talented or well-meaning men. It is perishing for the want of men of courage and resolution who, in devotion to the cause of right and truth, can rise above personal feeling and private ambition."
: With Gods help are you choosing to be such a man or woman of courage? (See Ezek. 22:30)
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, imprisoned and later exiled by the Soviet government, came to the United States in 1976 and delivered this commencement address at Harvard University on June 8, 1978
++Time Magazine, October 14, 2002