Remembering Our Missionaries
Sunday, May 29, 2005
1. Tomorrow is Memorial Day--a day set aside to remember the sacrifices of those who have given their lives in defending our most precious freedoms, a day we remember the men and women of past wars and conflicts, the thousands upon thousands who have died for freedom. We especially remember the brave young men and women who have died in Afghanistan and Iraq--in our President's words; "those who have died for a just cause, defending liberty, so that others will not have to live in fear." According to the Department of Defense, as of May the 24th, we have suffered 1,647 fatalities, and 6,263 wounded in action. We thank God for their bravery, and we pray for their loved ones--the mothers and fathers--the wives and husbands--the sons and daughters--we pray for their comfort and for the abiding peace of God.
2. As we remember our brave heroes and those who have sacrificed so much for freedom, I want to turn our attention to another group of brave men and women who are often overlooked. I would call them our "unsung heroes." I am referring to God's missionaries. The freedom for which they live and die is a different kind of freedom. It is freedom from sin...and just as surely as men are bound and shackled by tyranny, slavery and bondage to social and political injustices, so also men are enslaved by sin--and it is the worst kind of bondage. Thank God, there is help! Jesus said, The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised ( Luke 4:18). To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house. (Isaiah 42:7).
ILLUS: This week Paul Hooper, our missionary to the military in German ...
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