Sacrifice of Love
As Americans today we honor the fallen soldiers who left for war and never returned home to their families. We call this the ultimate sacrifice in our culture. We are thankful for our fallen heroes, and we honor the war dead with parades and concerts. It is even a work holiday for many in our nation. Be Transfigured Ministries is extremely grateful for their sacrifice. We could not have our ministry if it were not for them, but there was a sacrifice greater even than that of soldiers.
At that time, the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered the council, and said, “What are we to do? For this man performs many signs. If we let him go on thus, every one will believe in him, and the Romans will come and destroy both our place and our nation.” But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, “You know nothing at all; you do not understand that it is expedient for you that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation should not perish.” He did not say this of his own accord, but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus should die for the nation, and not for the nation only, but to gather into one the children of God who are scattered abroad. So from that day on they took counsel how to put him to death. Jesus therefore no longer went about openly among the Jews, but went from there to the country near the wilderness, to a town called Ephraim; and there he stayed with the disciples. – John 11.47-54
It is one thing to sacrifice for a nation. It is quite another to sacrifice for the whole world. If we honor our fallen American heroes with parades and concerts, how do we honor God for His sacrifice? His death was truly the greatest sacrifice because it conquered death. He died not so that we could have political freedom, but spiritual freedom. That was Judas’ and the other zealots’ mistake.
Even today we tend to think of God’s blessings in terms of earthly benefit. We ask him for better jobs, for a place for our family to live, to be healed from our illnesses, and even to find a spouse. These are earthly benefits that are not inherently bad for us. In fact, a home for our family and a good job to provide food and clothing for our children is important, but when was the last time we asked God to save our souls from torment?
As we honor our fallen heroes today, take a moment and thank God for His sacrifice. Take a moment and honor His love, not with a BBQ, but in quiet prayer. His sacrifice saved us from death with is much better than any political war has ever accomplished, because His sacrifice was a sacrifice of love.