1 Chronicles 16:8-12
8 Oh, give thanks to the LORD! Call upon His name; make known His deeds among the peoples!
9 Sing to Him, sing psalms to Him; talk of all His wondrous works!
10 Glory in His holy name; let the hearts of those rejoice who seek the LORD!
11 Seek the LORD and His strength; seek His face evermore!
12 Remember His marvelous works which He has done, his wonders, and the judgments of His mouth, (NKJ)
This message was preached May 26, 2002 at FBC Toulon, by Albert Harmon. See it at toulonbaptist.com
Every nation has those who have died for their country in a time of war.
But not all have died for freedom's cause. Some have died on the other side of freedom. The side of domination and oppression.
War springs from the very heart of man. His desire to conquer, to control, to dominate. But it is that very inner working that makes man difficult to be subdued. Not only does man have a desire to control others there is that hunger for freedom for himself.
Today we enjoy the freedoms we do because of that yearning for freedom that those who came before us were willing to obtain at such a great price.
I read this week that some 40 million have served in our armed forces, and of that number 1 million have given up their lives. Tomorrow at the court house they will unveil a new veterans memorial to commemorate the Stark County residents who gave their lives.
And some people are upset and maybe rightfully so. They want to return Decoration Day (as it used to be know by) to May 30 each year, as it was before 1968.
In 1968 congress moved the holiday to the last Monday in May so that we could all have a three day weekend. But changing the holiday has not brought more attention to the memory of our fallen defenders. Instead it has allowed us to enjoy the freedoms they died to preserve without giving them hardly a though. I confess that I have been just as guilty as the rest.
But then I remember another Memorial Day; Sunday. You see for the Christian, Sunday is a day of remembrance of the one who died to set us free. It was on Sunday that Jesus rose from the dead. It was on Sunday that He first appeared to His followers, to comfort and strengthen them. It was on a Sunday that the Spirit of God descended upon the church.
So Sunday has been set aside by Christians down through the centuries to worship our great God and remember His Love Sacrifice for us.
But we have turned Sunday into a holiday. In very few, even Christian families is Sunday regularly set aside for worship. Almost any thing can set it aside, a picnic, a parade, a ball game, visiting relatives, or even just a sleep in.
Are we really saying that all those things are more important to us than Jesus?
Is it appropriate for us to squander our freedom on frivolous things every day of the week, without giving even a portion of one to remember Him.
Maybe those who want to change the date back to May 30 are right. It was wrong to move the date on which we remember the ones who sacrificed all that we might have freedom. Because we have not been very faithful with that freedom.
Along with the great psalm writer of 3000 years ago, I call on each of us here today to remember the one who died to set us free. But more than that, I call on us to know the one who died for us. Let us look at our text.
- Oh, give thanks to the LORD! Call upon His name; make known His deeds among the peoples!
- Three things a laid out in the first verse.
- Give thanks
- Call upon His name
- Tell other about what the Lord has done.
- When do you do that?
- Sing to Him, sing psalms to Him; talk of all His wondrous works!
- Next we are sing to Him.
- Also to talk about His wonderful works.
- When does that happen?
- Glory in His holy name; let the hearts of those rejoice who seek the LORD!
- We are to glorify His holy name.
- We are to worship Him with our hearts.
- Seeking Him is to be the rejoicing for our hearts.
- When does that happen.
- Seek the LORD and His strength; seek His face evermore!
- We are to seek the Lord.
- Seek His strength.
- Always seek His face.
- When do you do that?
- Remember His marvelous works which He has done, his wonders, and the judgments of His mouth,
- Remember all that He has done.
- His marvelous works.
- All that He had done for us.
- Consider His judgments.
- When do we do that?
I submit to you that the most intensive spiritual exercise that you will do this week is right here, right now.
24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works,
25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.
26 For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,
27 but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. (NKJ)
How are you doing?