OceanSide church of Christ
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HONOR TO OUR SOLDIERS
Victor M. Eskew
A. Tomorrow, May 26, 2008 is Memorial Day.
1. Some view this day as nothing more than the first day of the summer season.
2. In reality, it is a “Day of Remembrance” for those who died in our nation’s service.
a. It was officially proclaimed on May 5, 1868 by General John Logan. The General’s Order stated:
“The 30th day of May, 1868 is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or other-wise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet church-yard in the land. In this observance no form of ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances permit.”
May 30, 1868 was used as the first Memorial Day. Flowers were placed upon the graves of both
Union and Confederate soldiers in the
B. Romans 13:7.
Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.
C. Thus, this morning we want to briefly honor our fallen soldiers of the past.
I. THE ELEMENTS FOR WHICH THEY ARE HONORED
1. Definition: one’s love for and devotion to country.
2. A soldier loves our constitution, our government, our freedom, and all the people who make up our nation.
He is devoted to the
preservation of the
1. To be good soldier, one must prepare himself both mentally and physically.
2. They spent hours upon hours preparing themselves for the day of battle.
1. Definition: the ability to endure with courage.
2. In the face of the enemy and in the face of horrifying conditions, the soldier keeps on keeping on.
1. Definition: the ability to remain firm under suffering or misfortune without yielding.
2. Soldiers continue to fight battle after battle. In hunger and thirst, they fight. In heat and cold, they fight. They do not give up until the victory is won.
1. Definition: to suffer loss or injury.
2. Many soldiers have sacrificed much: time, family, personal success, health, limbs, and even life. They had done this to preserve the welfare of our nation.
F. For these reasons, we honor every soldier who has fought for this nation. In the words of General John Logan: “If other eyes grow dull, other hands slack, and other hearts cold in the solemn trust, ours shall keep it well as long as the light and warmth of life remain to us.”
II. A SPIRITUAL APPLICATION
A. The New Testament teaches that the Christian is engaged in a spiritual warfare (I Tim. 6:12). In this fight, we are soldiers in the Lord’s army (II Tim. 2:3).
Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.
B. Every quality that we listed that brings honor to our military personnel is a quality that we as soldiers in the Lord’s army are to possess.
1. We must have patriotism for the Lord, the truth, and the Lord’s body, the church.
a. Remember: Patriotism is love and devotion for.
b. II Timothy 1:8.
Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God.
2. The soldier of Christ must also prepare himself for the day of battle.
a. We must put on the armor of God and know how to wield the sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God (Eph. 6:10-17).
b. II Timothy 2:15.
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
3. We must be brave.
a. The enemy will do all he can to fill our hearts with fear.
b. The apostle Paul insisted that prayers be offered up on his behalf that he might be bold in his proclamation of the gospel (Eph. 6:19-20).
And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.
4. We must have the ability to endure.
a. Wars and hardships of warfare may last for several years. To be victorious, the soldier must endure.
b. The Christian will also face trials and tribulations. However, his fight will last for the rest of his life. He, too, must endure to the very end in order to be saved.
c. Mark 13:13.
And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
5. We, too, must be willing to sacrifice for the cause of Christ.
a. Philippians 3:7-8.
But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea, doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ.
b. This loss, just like that suffered by the soldier, could involve our very lives (Rev. 2:10).
A. Tomorrow is “Memorial Day.” Our fallen troops will be honored by many for their service to our great nation.
B. There’s coming a day when the heavenly Commander will honor His forces. The faithful, the loyal, the dedicated, the committed, the brave will hear His words: “Well done thou good and faithful servant.” He will then turn to the Father in heaven and confess each one of them before His throne (Matt. 10:32).
C. If you desire His commendation, you must enlist in His army and serve him faithfully until death.