Most countries have a memorial day. A time to remember those who fought battles for the country’s protection.
Before the citizens of our great country begin to enjoy periods of summer recreation, it is very fitting that we pause for one day to remember all those who have fought in battles allowing us to have the privilege of living our lives in freedom.
According to the Bible, the children of Israel observed the weekly Sabbath and the annual Passover feast. These memorial feasts were designed to cause them to remember their exodus from Egyptian bondage and their wilderness travels.
The Bible lists those who were in these battles when the Israelites were conquering the promise land. The two most popular were Joshua and Caleb. There is also a list of those who have fought the spiritual battles.
Hebrews Chapter 11 gives a very long list of people who “by faith” did certain things which pleased God and were considered by God as faithful to Him. There is Abel, who after offering a sacrifice pleasing to God, was killed by his brother. Moses, who because of his stand for God and God’s people, had to flee Egypt. There were those who “became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight” (Hebrews 11:34). There were those who were tortured because of their faith, while “others suffered mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment” (Hebrews 11:36).
All of these serve as a “great cloud of witnesses” encouraging others to live the Christian life. However, there is one more whom we should remember — Jesus. Think momentarily only about His humanity; a man, who was “flesh and bones” like you and I, freely gave of Himself so all people of all nations might have the opportunity to have their transgressions of God’s law forgiven and thereafter, living faithfully to God, will have a place in heaven with those mentioned in Hebrews.
Jesus, knowing people needed memorials in order to remember things, established what is called “the Lord’s Supper,” a weekly memorial so Christians would remember the sacrificed body of Jesus and His shed blood for a new covenant, thus allowing all humanity to be part of God’s kingdom and not just the Jews (Acts 20:7; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26). In remembering this event, Christians “proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.”
While the saying, “All gave some, some gave all” is very true, Jesus is one who not only gave all, but He gave all for all. Even though His death is very important, more important is that He was raised from the dead never to die again. Because of His death and resurrection we truly can be living God’s way.
Carlton G. McPeak is an evangelist working in the Florida Gateway region. All Scriptural quotations are from the New American Standard Bible, Holman Bible Publishers, unless otherwise stated. He may be contacted at email@example.com.