Friday, November 12, 2010

Flashback Friday: Armistice

***Originally posted for Veteran's Day last year. Although the holiday has passed, the message still applies today. Wars are still being fought, physical and spiritual. There are victors and victims in both. One day is not enough to remember this. I also added the clip from one of the most powerful movies I've ever seen, To End All Wars. If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend it.***

[Yesterday was] Veterans' Day, where we honor and remember those who serve or have served in the Armed Forces. My wife asked me why this holiday falls on November 11. At 11:00 on November 11, 1918, (the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month) armistice (or truce) was signed between the Western Allies and Germany ending hostilities on the Western Front of World War I. World War I was called "The War to End All Wars". We know how that turned out. But the holiday remained and is still celebrated throughout Europe as well as here in the United States.

Pause and think of that for a moment- The War to End All Wars. How we wish that were true. So we honor those who serve in battles across the globe while we enjoy the comfort of our home, hoping that the next battle will be the last.

Now think about Jesus. His sacrifice was The Sacrifice to End All Sacrifices so to speak (ref: Hebrews 10). He fought our sins for us so that we wouldn't have to fight on our own, and ultimately someday to never have to fight again. But like The War to End All Wars, it was not the end and battles continue. So we honor Christ, who fought and still fights for us, while we enjoy the comfort of our own lives.

While we remember the physical conflicts our Armed Forces are engaged in worldwide, let us not forget the spiritual conflicts that continue in our own lives and the soldier, Christ, who fights alongside us.

"For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ." (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)

"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God." (Ephesians 6:10-17)

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