I looked at the calendar and noticed it Veteran's Day was coming. Originally, November 11 was called "Armistice Day" to commemorate the end of the "War to end all Wars." Of course World War II changed the name of that word to simply "World War I," and Armistice Day became "Veteran's Day."
For some reason, I don't remember very many (if any) sermons growing up that were offered in connection with Veteran's Day. There were sermons connected with Thanksgiving, Easter, and even Christmas (even though we all know that is not when Christ was born). However, Veteran's Day came and went many times and no one seemed to notice. I wonder why? Is it because we think that honoring our Veterans means we are glorifying war? I don't think so. I do not believe that one who has fought in a war would glorify war. However, war is sometimes inevitable and even necessary.
"Because of violence to your brother Jacob, You will be covered with shame, And you will be cut off forever. On the day that you stood aloof, On the day that strangers carried off his wealth, And foreigners entered his gate And cast lots for Jerusalem-- You too were as one of them (Obadiah 1:10-11)."
This prophecy against Moab came because they stood aloof when Jerusalem was attacked. There is such thing as just military action.
And so men and women sacrifice some of their freedom to give it to others. They give up an arm or leg so others may walk about freely. They lay down their life so others may live. Jesus said, "Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13)."
They don't ask for medals. They don't ask for parades. So why not take the time to thank our men and women who have served this country. Why not offer a simple - "we appreciate what you have given up for us," or just a simple "thank you?" It was the blood of soldiers that bought you the freedom to worship God today. It was the blood of sailors that bought you the freedom to speak out against what they do. It was their blood that bought you the potential to live a life a freedom.
Most of all, it was the blood of Christ that bought you freedom from sin and a home in Heaven. The greatest vet of all went to Calvary to do battle with sin, death, and evil. He laid down his life and was killed. Thank God he took it back and won the war!
"When He ascended on high, He led captive a host of captives, And He gave gifts to men (Eph 4:8)." Jesus won the war and brought back gifts for us! Don't forget to thank him for the indescribable gifts he has given us.
We set aside a day to honor our veterans. Let us set aside our life to honor the greatest veteran of all - Jesus Christ.