Sermons

Summary: I believe to honor our vets we must place God first in our thoughts and relate military service to that of our service to God. We need to ask ourselves, “What is involved in serving Christ?

Soldiers for Christ

Scripture: 2 Timothy 2: 3-4 Date: 7 November 2010

Purpose: I believe to honor our vets we must place God first in our thoughts and relate military service to that of our service to God. We need to ask ourselves, “What is involved in serving Christ?

U.S. President Woodrow Wilson first proclaimed an Armistice Day for November 11, 1919. In proclaiming the holiday, he said

"To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country's service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations."

The United States Congress passed a concurrent resolution seven years later on June 4, 1926, requesting that the President (Calvin Coolidge this time) issue another proclamation to observe November 11 with appropriate ceremonies. An Act approved May 13, 1938, made the 11th of November in each year a legal holiday.

In 1953, an Emporia, Kansas shoe store owner named Alfred King had the idea to expand Armistice Day to celebrate all veterans, not just those who served in World War I. King began a campaign to turn Armistice Day into "All" Veterans Day. The Emporia Chamber of Commerce took up the cause after determining that 90% of Emporia merchants as well as the Board of Education supported closing their doors on November 11 to honor veterans. With the help of then-U.S. Rep. Ed Rees, also from Emporia, a bill for the holiday was pushed through Congress. President Dwight Eisenhower signed it into law on May 26, 1954.

Congress amended this act on June 1, 1954, replacing "Armistice" with Veterans, and it has been known as Veterans Day since.

All veterans need to be honored for their dedication to our country. For their hardships they have endured, for the Warfare they have battled, and for the struggles that each has battled within their lives.

Being a soldier and serving this great nation is an honor and it is one thing that I am personally very proud of within my life. But as I think of my military service, I can’t help but to think of a greater calling to a service that God has called all of us to. We are all called to be Soldiers of Christ!!

2 Timothy 2: 3-4 You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. 4 No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier.

Looking at this Scripture really drives home the importance of serving in His mighty service and I believe to honor our vets we must place God first in our thoughts and relate military service to that of our service to God. We need to ask ourselves, “What is involved in serving Christ?

I.ENDURE HARDSHIP

A. In the first portion of our Scripture this morning, Paul tells us: You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. I believe this has a lot of meaning to it that deserves some thought.

1. Most people would generally agree that serving as a soldier during wartime is no fun to say the least. Being a soldier during a time of war is a difficult thing to deal with.

2. Soldiers often go without water, food, sleep, medical treatment, seeing their family, not to mention other unimaginable hardships. Sacrifice is the major hardship for the soldier.

3. The hardship of being a soldier is un-comprehendible unless you’ve served yourself. For me to stand here before you this morning and try to paint the picture for you will never truly bring it to life.

4.This is a truth that many of us seem to forget or really don’t understand in the first place. Once we gave our lives to Jesus, we enlisted into His Army. By joining His Army hardships are to follow…. Sacrifices!

Illustration: I have known many recruiters in my life. Very few of them were totally honest to say the least. If you were to ask one of them if they ever lied to their potential recruits, they would tell you “of course not, I just didn’t tell them everything.” Many recruiters I knew would somehow forget to mention the hardships that comes with such a glorious high paying job.

If you were to ask the mass majority of soldiers today that are actively serving if they knew totally all the hardships that came with serving? They would probably answer “nope, not even close.”

5. Isn’t this the same for us? When we joined in His service, maybe we didn’t realize the hardships that came with giving our lives to Him? Maybe we never truly thought about what we had to deal with and do without in this world as we serve.

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