Summary: This Memorial Day message seeks to point out the Christianâ€™s need to remember that Christ paid the ultimate price for our spiritual freedom.
Memorial To The Master
Text: Ps. 77:11, 12
Intro: You are no doubt aware that this is Decoration Day (the holidayâ€™s original name)â€”Memorial Day weekend. To some this holiday may mean nothing more than a three-day weekend away from work. To others who have lost loved ones in battles and skirmishes around the world, this holiday is a rather meaningful one.
Memorial Day is a day set aside for our nation to remember those fallen in battle. It is a time to reflect upon the conflicts of the past, to be thankful for the peace of the present, and pray for its continuance in the future. It is a time of remembrance. It is a time to remember that freedom is never really free.
But as we remember those who have paid the ultimate price for our national freedom, we need to also remember the One who paid the ultimate price for our spiritual freedom: the Lord Jesus Christ.
There are three very important facts that we must remember today concerning the battle that Christ fought for every believer.
Theme: Letâ€™s be careful to rememberâ€¦
I. THE BODY THAT WAS BROKEN FOR US
1 Cor. 11:24 â€œAnd when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.â€
A. Christâ€™s Body Was Sacrificed For Us.
Eph. 5:2 â€œAnd walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.â€
Heb. 9:24 â€œFor Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us:
25 Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with blood of others;
26 For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.â€
1 Pet. 2:24 â€œWho his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.â€
NOTE: Folks, Jesus willingly and gladly sacrificed Himself so that we might live. The following doesnâ€™t do justice to the sacrifice of Christ, but it gives us some small idea of the sacrifice He made for us.
Boarding the SS Dorchester on a dreary winter day in 1943 were 903 troops and four chaplains, including Moody alumnus Lt. George Fox. World War II was in full swing, and the ship was headed across the icy North Atlantic where German U-boats lurked. At 12:00 on the morning of February 3, a German torpedo ripped into the ship. â€œSheâ€™s going down!â€ the men cried, scrambling for lifeboats.
A young GI crept up to one of the chaplains. â€œIâ€™ve lost my life jacket,â€ he said.
â€œTake this,â€ the chaplain said, handing the soldier his jacket.
Before the ship sank, each chaplain gave his life jacket to another man. The heroic chaplains then linked arms and lifted their voices in prayer as the Dorchester went down. Lt. Fox and his fellow pastors were awarded posthumously the Distinguished Service Cross.1
B. Christâ€™s Body Was Shamed For Us.
1. He was stripped of His clothing.
John 19:23 â€œThen the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also his coat: now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout.
24 They said therefore among themselves, Let us not rend it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be: that the scripture might be fulfilled, which saith, They parted my raiment among them, and for my vesture they did cast lots. These things therefore the soldiers did.â€
NOTE: One commentator says of this incident:
That Jesus died naked was part of the shame which He bore for our sins. At the same time He is the last Adam who provides clothes of righteousness for sinners.2
2. Jesus was spit upon by the crowds.
Isa. 50:6b â€œâ€¦I hid not my face from shame and spitting.â€
C. Christâ€™s Body Endured Suffering For Us.
1. Jesus endured a horrible scourging (Matt. 27:26).
2. Jesus was beaten with menâ€™s fists and slapped in the face (Matt. 26:67).
3. Jesus wore a crown of thorns that was driven into his brow by being struck on the head with reeds (Mark 15:17).
4. Jesusâ€™ beard was plucked out by the roots by the angry mob.
Isa. 50:6a â€œI gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hairâ€¦â€