13th November 2016

Remembrance Sunday 

“Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed—in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.”
1 Corinthians 15:51-52 (NIV UK) 

During the second and third centuries AD, the church would meet in the catacombs and bury the dead in a ritual of remembrance. The term to describe these ancient resting places is cœmeterium, from the Greek which translates to ‘dormitory’. This designation stresses the fact that the graves were merely a temporary holding place until Christ’s return and the final resurrection. In the Gospel of John Jesus says the following words: “For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day” (John 6:40 ESV).

Here in the United States, as in many other countries, we take a day to remember our country’s armed forces, Memorial Day. Remembering the fallen fills us with a mixture of sadness and gratitude. It is through this act of remembrance that we maintain a connection with those who have given their lives to protect our freedom.

When we do this, these casualties of war remain present with us even though they have passed on. Isn’t it also true how the martyrs of the Bible—everyone from the twelve apostles to Stephen and Paul and beyond—come back fresh and alive when we read the Scriptures? Isn’t it with joy that we as Christians remember that the death of the body is not the end of existence, but rather a gateway to eternal life, a truer life with the One who created us? That is the greatest encouragement of all: to know that through Christ’s life, death and resurrection, we too can share the lifespan of our God.

So here in Britain on Remembrance Sunday, let’s honour our fallen warriors by recollecting their sacrifices, remembering that their deaths kept us safe and alive. But let’s also cling to the promises of Jesus, knowing that he has conquered death and shared that victory with those who believe. After all, when we think of what God has done for us, we do not just recall a grave, but an empty grave.

Prayer
Mighty Father, thank you for the future you have mapped out for every one of us, including eternal life. Let us remember on this special day those who gave their tomorrows in this life to we who remain. Our post-World War 2 world, especially in the prosperous West came from their sacrifices, even as our futures depend on Him who gave his life for our eternal futures. In His name, Jesus’ name, we pray.
Amen

Study by Joseph Tkach

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About the Author: joeandtammy
Joseph Tkach is the President of Grace Communion International (the Denominational name of The Worldwide Church of God UK), and resides in California, USA.

You are welcome to attend one of our local Church congregations located throughout the UK and Ireland. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.gracecom.org.uk under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Contact:
Email: admin@daybyday.org.uk

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