Reading: Psalm 106
In the camp they grew envious of Moses
and of Aaron, who was consecrated to the LORD.
The earth opened up and swallowed Dathan;
it buried the company of Abiram.
Fire blazed among their followers; a flame consumed the wicked.
At Horeb they made a calf and worshiped an idol cast from metal.
They exchanged their glorious God
for an image of a bull, which eats grass.
They forgot the God who saved them,
who had done great things in Egypt,
miracles in the land of Ham and awesome deeds by the Red Sea.
So he said he would destroy them—
had not Moses, his chosen one,
stood in the breach before him
to keep his wrath from destroying them.
Then they despised the pleasant land;
they did not believe his promise.
They grumbled in their tents and did not obey the LORD.
So he swore to them with uplifted hand
that he would make them fall in the wilderness,
make their descendants fall among the nations
and scatter them throughout the lands (NIV).*
Annually we pause to commemorate Veterans Day in United States, or Remembrance Day as it is known in Canada. That day was chosen to honor and remember our fallen soldiers because November 11, 1918 marked the end of the First World War. It is fitting that we remember those who sacrificed their lives in the defense of their country and its way of life. To forget them would be a disgrace to them and to the nation. We owe our liberty to these brave men and women. Lest we forget is the oft repeated motto of this day of solemn remembrance.
Today’s reading from Psalm 106 highlights the importance of a nation’s collective memory. Israel was redeemed and set free from slavery in Egypt by the miracle working power of God, yet in a few short years they forgot, or chose to ignore the LORD who rescued them. They forgot the God who saved them, who had done great things in Egypt, miracles in the land of Ham and awesome deeds by the Red Sea.
There are serious consequences for the nation that forgets, or turns its back on the God who called its people out of darkness. The same is true on a personal level. We need to routinely remind ourselves that Jesus paid the ultimate price to redeem us and make us his very own.
Response: Father God, I thank you for my personal redemption. Lead me in the right path for my life. Guide our nation. May there be a collective turning to you in repentance and faith. Amen.
Your Turn: Is there such a thing as national redemption or salvation, or is it always personal?