A SACRIFICE TO END HITLER’S REIGN
Last week marked the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landing in Normandy, still the largest amphibious operation in history. Around 156,000 Allied troops stormed the beaches and began fighting their way across France, with the goal of marching into Berlin and bringing down Adolf Hitler’s Nazi regime. The D-Day landing was a great victory and is considered the tipping point in World War 2, but 4,414 Allied troops gave their lives on that one day. The total casualty count for both sides (not counting civilian deaths) in the months-long campaign to liberate France and topple Berlin is estimated at 425,000. The cost of freedom is very steep indeed and is sometimes paid in blood.
A SACRIFICE TO END SIN’S REIGN
Jesus offered His own blood to pay the cost of freedom for all people. In the Jewish sacrificial system, no forgiveness was granted without the shedding of innocent blood. The High Priest would offer annual sacrifices for his own sins and for those of the people, but that ritual had to be performed every year. On the cross, Jesus served as both High Priest and blood sacrifice, providing His blood to cleanse and redeem us—not with a sacrifice that had to be repeated every year, but for all time. The cost of freedom for humanity was the death of God’s only Son.
- What connection, if any, do you have with D-Day or World War 2 in general? Tell about someone you know who has given his or her life in the effort to bring freedom to others.
- How would you, in your own words, explain the significance of Christ’s death on the cross?
- Last week, we commemorated the sacrifice of those who fought and died on D-Day. How can we commemorate the sacrifice that Jesus made for us?