Summary: This is a Memorial Day sermon. There is also a Lord’s Supper included in this service.
Series: Memorial Day
After being married for 14 years have learned a couple of things. I have learned that my wife seems to be able to remember things I did when we were dating in High School that I have tried to forget. I have learned that my wife doesn’t forget how many times she had to ask me to take out the trash before I acknowledged that she was speaking. I have learned that dates such as my Wedding Anniversary and my wife’s birthday are worth remembering. On this Memorial Day weekend, we are going to look at some things that are worth remembering.
In April 1863, in Columbus, Mississippi after decorating graves of her two sons who served during the Civil War as Confederate soldiers, an elderly woman also decorated two mounds at the corner of the cemetery. An observer asked, "What are you doing? Those are the graves of two Union soldiers." The reply, "I know. I also know that somewhere in the North, a mother or a young wife mourns for them as we do for ours." That little group of ladies set in motion what became Memorial Day. Memorial Day is set aside each year to remember those who gave their lives in the armed forces. We remember those who died battle fields to bring freedom and democracy to oppressed people. We commemorate their actions by honoring them in ceremonies across the land. It is sometimes called “Decoration Day” because we decorate the graves of fallen heroes with flags and flowers.
The Necessity For Memorials
Memorials are necessary. We have short memories. God will get us through some difficult situation; but when the problem is solved it’s not long before we seem to forget what God had done.
How about September 11, 2001? How quickly we have forgotten about the terrible tragedy at the World Trade Center. I remember that worship attendance was up at almost every church in the United States. I remember that people were going to special prayer services. I remember our city blocking off Turner St. in order to have a prayer and worship service and that there were several local radio stations that broadcasted the service. I remember the revival that was seeming to break out was already wearing off by January 1, 2002.
There are some things that are worth remembering.
The Purpose Of Memorials
Those things that are worth remembering have a purpose. One purpose of memorials is to…
1. Teach our children of God’s power and mercy. Memorial stones were to serve as a basis of sharing faith with their children. Christianity is never more than one generation away from extinction.
Another purpose of memorials is to…
2. Reach others with our message. Joshua 4:24 says, “He did this so that all the peoples of the earth might know that the hand of the Lord is powerful and so that you might always fear the Lord your God."
How quickly we forget that without the sacrifices of our military personnel through the many years of our country’s history that we could be like many other countries. We take for granted that we could get up this morning when we wanted to, eat what we wanted to, wear what we wanted to, get into the vehicle we chose, and drive to a church that we chose to attend, and worship our God in our way. Many have already died and many others will die in order for us to have obtained and keep these freedoms. They are worth remembering.
[Pray for military personnel and families of military personnel.]
John 15:13 says, “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends”. I thank God for those who were and are willing to lay their lives down for me and my family; but I thank God even more for the One Who laid down His life for my eternal life. The fact that Jesus Christ gave His life willingly for the sins of the world is definitely worth remembering.
The Lord’s Supper is a memorial to what Christ has done for us. The bread represents the giving of His body and the drink represents the giving of His blood. The participation in this memorial is only for Christians.
Pass out bread.
“The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, "This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me."
Pass out juice.
“In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.’"
“When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives” (Matthew 26:30).