Daily Meditations Published by IT Fellowship of North America & Europe Diocese of Mar Thoma Church
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Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
SOLDIERS OF CHRIST - MEMORIAL DAY Joshua: 4: 1-9 Vs. 7b: So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever.
The last Monday in May is officially observed as Memorial Day in the United States. It was inspired by the way people in the southern states honored their dead soldiers. A common explanation is that the civil war was fought on the moral issue of slavery. The economical and political control of the system of that particular period was central to the conflict and resultant war. Likewise we may remember the World war II memorial in Washington D.C., recollecting the war veterans who went through the worst of the times and the best of the times thereafter.
We can read a similar event that happened, when we study the book of Joshua chapter 4. The Israelites under the leadership of Joshua, were also memorializing a significant period in the history of their people.
In this passage, the Israelites were completing their forty years of wandering in the desert. They had finally crossed the river Jordan and entered the promised land. Then, the spirit of the Lord asked the people through their leader Joshua to memorialize what they have been through, and to remember God's faithfulness during their stressful journey. They erected monuments of 12 stones symbolizing each tribe of Israel, over the place they stepped in after crossing the river – called Gilgal. Joshua also set up 12 stones in the middle of Jordan where the priests' feet stepped in while carrying the ark. Immediately the flow of the river was stopped, and it held back allowing the people to cross over.
This remained as a memorial to the people of Israel and their children even today, reminding them that they had crossed the river, not on their own, but through the power and faithfulness of the eternal God. The stones on the river bank symbolizes the victory of new life by our savior's resurrection, and the stones on the midst of the river symbolized the savior's tomb where he experienced death on our behalf.
Dear Lord, may your sacrifice on the cross and the empty tomb shall stay as an everlasting memorial to us and our children forever, reminding us the victory over sin and death. Amen.
Thought of the day
Not by strength nor by might, but by my spirit says the Lord of Hosts. (Zech: 4:8)
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