By Alan Bailey
Anyone wanting to go to Gallipoli next year for the 100 year anniversary will need to book now. Apparently, there will be a capacity crowd of people mainly from Australia who will be there to remember the battle that claimed thousands of young lives. Over recent years, more and more people have made the journey to that fatal spot to honour those who fought and died.
It is surprising to see the number of young people who make the effort. There has been a great increase in awareness that the freedoms we now enjoy were won at a terrible cost.
For most of us, the horrors of war are something we read about and have never experienced first-hand. But we don't need to be told that wartime spells misery.
There are many heroes made through acts of bravery and many families that have made the sacrifice of the lives of husbands, fathers and brothers.
Possibly the most often quoted line in connection with memorial services says, "No one has greater love than the one who lays down his life for his friends." We salute the many who in two world wars and other campaigns laid down their lives.
The person who first said these words was Jesus. Not long after this statement, He hung on a cross just outside the walls of Jerusalem. He was involved in a great battle. The greatest battle in all of history. And it was being fought to save the lives of others. The penalty of man's rebellion against God had to be paid. The power of this rebellion in human lives and hearts had to be broken. The Devil, the enemy of souls had to be trodden down and the anger of the Father turned away. Just what agony and pain He endured, physically, mentally and spiritually is beyond us to know. But it was all for us.
No, Christians do not remember a grave and a deceased identity, they rejoice in a risen Saviour. He was successful in all He undertook to do. He is the only Saviour the world has ever seen and the only one it needs. Yes, some of us have been to the place where He died. But simply as a matter of interest. He rules in the hearts of those who have yielded their lives to Him and in a coming day He will come back to us. Yes, right here on planet Earth. Will you be prepared to meet Him? Have you ever thanked Him for all that He has done?