May 30, 2021

“Freedom Still Isn’t Free.”

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Passage: Joshua 4:1-7 and Psalm 27:1-5
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What are we remembering on Memorial Day? Ask those 19 year old teenagers, the average age of the First U.S. Marine Division, who landed August 7, 1942, on the north shore of Guadalcanal, a small tropical island not far from Australia. Guadalcanal was the first time that American forces stopped the Japanese sweep in the South Pacific, turning the tide of war. But at what cost? Under fire during the landing, the naval forces pulled away, leaving the young marines without air support, without most of their heavy weapons, tanks, and all the rest of their supplies. But those teenagers hung on in that rain soaked, malaria ridden land, fighting off the snakes, leeches, jungle rot, and a well entrenched enemy. For the next six months Guadalcanal became hell for both the young marines and the defenders. When, in early 1943, the Japanese pulled out, only 10,000 soldiers were left of their original 40,000. The First Marines required a full year of rehabilitation before they could be called a fighting unit again, having lost many thousands, dead and wounded. The cost of our nation's freedom is incalculable.
    On a rocky hill two thousand years ago a young man sacrificed his life for your freedom. In the horror of a that gruesome scene was the cost of our spiritual freedom and eternal liberty.
    This Memorial Day we worship the Savior who bought our liberty and honor those brave warriors who lost their lives defending our country.

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