Jesus said, “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13)
During this season of Remembrance, it is a blessing to walk around town and see the banners that have been raised in memory and honour of the veterans who invested their lives in defending our freedom.
Behind each name and picture is a story. Connected to each hero is a family. Beneath the banners is a grateful community, able to go about our daily lives in peace.
These banners serve as “a great cloud of witnesses,” reminding us that freedom has a cost, and peace is worth pursuing. They also remind me of a passage in the Bible.
Hebrews 11 is the Bible’s “Faith Hall of Fame.” It lists the names of many peoplewho lived their lives by faith in God, even though they faced great challenges. After mentioning these heroes of the faith, the writer of Hebrews wrote this:
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith…” (Hebrews 12:1-2a)
“Witnesses” does not mean these Bible heroes are watching us. (God is the One who is doing that.) It means their stories bear witness to the importance of living by faith.
A good way to honour our veterans is to live our daily lives, embracing the freedom they secured for us. The best way to live our daily lives is by faith in the Lord Jesus—the only One who can secure our eternal freedom.
Pastor Kent Babbey
Blenheim Baptist Church