Herald Journal Columns
Nov. 11, 2002
Pastor's Column

Remembering all who have died for our freedom

By Rev. Daniel Runke
Albion Evangelical Free Church

Veterans Day, also known as Remembrance Day in Canada, was set aside in commemoration of the end of the hostilities of 1918 and 1945.

It is a time for us to remember the many in the armed forces who gave of their lives to stop the terrible atrocities that were going on.

Having had the opportunity in the past to visit three of the "death camps" set up by the Nazi regime, I am thankful that those atrocities were stopped.

Yes, even today there are many atrocities that still need to be stopped ­ abortion, exploitation of the poor by the rich, are just a few of the many that need to be stopped. And, we owe a deep gratitude to those who are serving and have served.

But, in order for us to help prevent such hostilities from happening again, it might be wise for us to take a look at what is the source of these terrible atrocities.

We know that a lack of education certainly isn't the source or cause, as today, more people can read and write than ever before. Neither is a lack of employment or guns the real issue. No, the problem lies much deeper.

What is the problem?

Jesus identified the problem and the source of all evil in man, when He said, "For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies" (Matthew 15:19).

Yes, I think if we were honest and took a look at our own hearts, (mine included) we have to admit as people, we have a built-in propensity to evil.

Can anything be done about it? Do we have any hope?

We can hear the Apostle Paul asking the same question when he said "Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death?" (Romans 7:24).

Thankfully, there is hope.

The very next verse the Apostle Paul shares his answer: "Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!" (vs25a).

As we think about Veterans Day and those who served and died for us, let us also remember Jesus Christ. He paid the ultimate sacrifice with His death paying our penalty, so that atrocities every where would come to an end.

And, just as ingratitude for those who served our country is a rejection of them, so is ingratitude for what Jesus did a rejection of Him.

Everything we do should demonstrate a profound gratitude for His sacrifice. Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31).

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