Memorial Day Article 2016
By Rev. Rusty Lee Thomas
    On May 12, 1962, Douglas MacArthur, famed General of World War Two, addressed the cadets at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He stated:
    The soldier, above all other men, is required to practice the greatest act of religious training – sacrifice. In battle and in the face of danger and death, he discloses those Divine attributes which his Maker gave when He created man in His own image.
    No physical courage and no brute instinct can take the place of Divine help which alone can sustain him. However horrible the incidents of war may be, the soldier who is called upon to offer and to give his life for his country is the noblest development of mankind.
    The Scriptural principle MacArthur was highlighting is found in the words of Jesus Christ, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13). This truth was not just articulated by our Lord, it was exemplified by Him. In fact, this truth goes much deeper. The Apostle Paul in the book of Romans explains, “For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:6-8).
    On May 30th, 2016, America will observe Memorial Day. It is proper and fitting that America takes time to honor her military veterans and their sacrifices―sacrifices made on behalf of our cherished freedoms. There are many who gave their last ounce of devotion “for the land of the free and the home of the brave.”
    Charles M. Province wrote a poignant poem that expresses the honor due our brave military veterans. The poem is simply called, “It Is the Soldier.” One clarification must be made concerning this poem. The soldier did not give us any rights. Unalienable rights come from God, as expressed in the Declaration of Independence. The soldier fights, bleeds, and dies to preserve those God-given rights if they are threatened.
It is the Soldier, not the minister who has given us freedom of religion.
It is the Soldier, not the reporter who has given us freedom of the press.
It is the Soldier, not the poet who has given us freedom of speech.
It is the Soldier, not the campus organizer who has given us freedom to protest.
It is the Soldier, not the lawyer who has given us the right to a fair trial.
It is the Soldier, not the politician who has given us the right to vote.
It is the Soldier who salutes the flag, who serves beneath the flag,
And whose coffin is draped by the flag, who allows the protester to burn the flag.
    President Woodrow Wilson, a progressive back in his day, certainly got it right with this quote. He stated:
    A nation which does not remember what it was yesterday, does not know what it is today, nor what it is trying to do. We are trying to do a futile thing if we do not know where we came from or what we have been about…America was born a Christian nation. America was born to exemplify that devotion to the elements of righteousness which are derived from the revelations of Holy Scripture.
    It was the Psalmist who declared that righteousness cannot long endure in the land of forgetfulness (Psalm 88:12). Throughout history, altars, memorials, and Ebenezer Stones have been built to recount the miraculous interventions of God and the brave deeds of men. Without memorials that recount true history, the intervention of God, and the sacrifice of our soldiers, America cannot discern from whence she has come. If she does not know her past, she will surely lack the proper vision to know where she is going or what to do once she arrives.
    A Russian philosopher once said, “The surest way to destroy a people is to sever their roots.” Sadly, our roots have been damaged. Our history has been revised and rewritten; our godly heritage has been purposely ignored. The current occupier of the White House has made several apologies to the nations of the earth on the behalf of America. He is fond of saying, “Whatever we once were, we are no longer a Christian nation.” Tragically, Obama thinks this revision of America is good, yet our nation falters under his watch. Obama has created a hostile environment where good in America is mocked, vilified, and marginalized and what is dreadfully wrong is celebrated with demonic glee.
    We are a nation adrift. The rudder that steers the great ship called America through the dangerous seas of life, has become suspect. Since we cannot rely on our rudder, we are in peril of being tossed to and fro with “every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting” (Ephesians 4:14). Without a sound rudder to keep us on course, without a strong root system to ground us, America will fail to preserve liberty for her posterity.
    We see this consequence today. One undeniable evidence of America being “tossed to and fro” is abortion. The war is raging against life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It is a common practice in the “land of the free” to slaughter American children in the wombs of their mothers. This holocaust is responsible for the deaths of over 60 million little baby boys and girls since January 22nd, 1973. This shocking figure greatly surpasses American lives lost in all our combined wars. More American citizens have been killed by domestic terrorism (abortion), than foreign terrorism could only dream of committing.
    When George Washington viewed his rag-tag group of soldiers, soldiers who suffered extreme deprivation, exposure and were outgunned and outmanned, he inspired them with these words:
The time is now near at hand which must probably determine whether Americans are to be freemen or slaves; whether they are to have any property they can call their own; whether their houses and farms are to be pillaged and destroyed, and themselves consigned to a state of wretchedness from which no human efforts will deliver them. The fate of unborn millions will now depend, under God, on the courage of this army. Our cruel and unrelenting enemy leaves us only the choice of brave resistance, or the most abject submission. We have, therefore to resolve to conquer or die.
    Our Founding Father pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor. They were willing to spill their blood and die to pass on to the preborn a legacy of freedom. Tragically, we have taken that same freedom that came with the price of blood, and now abuse it to slay the preborn and shed their innocent blood. This betrayal of our heritage flourishes with the blessing of the State and the silent consent of the Church. What a travesty. God have mercy on us! This is a desecration against the blood of our veterans who died in freedom’s cause.
    Dr. Leo Alexander, who studied the Nazi war criminals at the Nuremberg Trials, came up with a profound and concise definition of Nazism. He implied, “Nazism occurs when a government or a culture utilizes death to solve its economic and moral problems.” Tragically, what the World War Two generation fought against in Germany is now alive and well in America.
The Jews in the aftermath of the Nazi Holocaust came up with a motto that declares “Never Again.” Well, “Never Again” is most certainly happening again and it is happening under our watch.
Can anyone imagine our brave World War Two soldiers fighting and dying so “Never Again” could happen again, but this time defiling our own beloved land? Can anyone believe that what inspired and sustained those who were dropping from planes on D-Day and storming the beaches of Normandy were the “right” of parents to kill their babies and the “right” of homosexuals to parade their sin like Sodom? I think not! The idea is absolutely repugnant and ludicrous and yet, it is now mainstream in the land of the free and the home of the brave.
    We tragically proclaim abortion and homosexuality are Constitutional rights. But what does our Constitution actually say? It states, “We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”
    Notice the Constitution is not just for us, but for our posterity. Abortion is the height of selfishness. Abortion and homosexuality produces death, not life. These sinful acts and crimes against nature cannot pass on anything to posterity. Their immoral lifestyles can only destroy posterity. If our nation today is not willing to grant life and freedom to our own flesh and blood, are we worthy of it ourselves?
    The French historian, Alexis De Tocqueville, once stated that “America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.” America was great because America’s foundation was Christianity. The reason why we were so successful militarily is because we used our strength to help aid and defend the weak nations of the world against strong, tyrannical, oppressors. Right made might! Currently, because we have abandoned God, excluded Him from the public life of our nation, and disobey His Holy Laws by which men are to live, we now believe might makes right. We use our strength to exploit and destroy the most vulnerable amongst us, the preborn child. These things ought not to be America!
    I leave you with these words uttered by President Abraham Lincoln during his famous Gettysburg Address. Clearly, he was wondering if America would survive the Civil War and bring forth “a new birth of freedom.” I know there are many who struggle with our national survival today. If so, we must “highly resolve that these dead (Our military veterans and preborn children) shall not have died in vain–that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom–and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”