Memorial Day is a solemn holiday, a remembrance of our military men and women who gave their lives for our freedom.
We enjoyed a few Memorial Day tribute videos today at CrossHope Chapel, including Toby Keith’s “American Soldier” and George Jones’ “50,000 Names on the Wall” and Tim McGraw’s “Letter from Home.” I was glad that we didn’t run out of tissue.
I shared a few thoughts after the video tributes, and I would like to reiterate those again, with some additional thoughts…
• Memorial Day reminds me of a verse in Nehemiah when he prayed “Remember for my good, O my God, all that I have done for this people.” Nehemiah 5:19 (ESV). On this holiday we truly remember “the good” of our fellow citizen soldiers.
• A national day of remembrance is a worthy cause for a nation to remember and honor its warriors who have died in service to its flag. Someone has said that if a nation does not honor its dead, it will not honor its living.
• Military service is a noble calling and to give one’s life for the price of freedom is worthy of honor.
• War is God’s ordained means against evil, and because of that we know how serious sin is in His eyes and how deeply evil diverts and destroys the lives of generations.
• War began in Heaven as instituted by God Himself to bring about the end of sin. “Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back, but he was defeated, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven.” Revelation 12:7-8 (ESV)
• The Bible records the histories of war and mentions it as part of our human condition: “a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace.” Ecclesiastes 3:8 (ESV)
• As believers in the biblical worldview we do not seek or wish to advance war or death, but we certainly acknowledge war is a fearful tool to right the wrong of unrighteous aggressors of evil who are advancing war and death.
• It is important to note that the command “Thou shall not kill”* implies and is best translated to be understood as meaning “murder, unprovoked attack” and the command is not a prohibition against killing in self defense or defense of others.
• Lastly, let me say that Memorial Day to me is a reminder to be in prayer for families who grieve the death of a loved one who has died serving our country so we can have freedom, and that freedom allows me to devote my life to “prayer and the ministry of the word”** like writing this.
* Exodus 20:13
** Acts 6:4