Lest We Forget
The phrase “Lest We Forget” is commonly used around remembrance Sunday in commemoration of the soldiers (and others) who gave their lives during the First World War and later conflicts. It is right that we take time to remember those, many of whom were young, who ended up laying down their lives for their country.
Where does the phrase come from? It was first used in an 1897 Christian poem, written by Rudyard Kipling, to mark Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee, called “Recessional”. The first stanza goes:-
‘God of our fathers, known of old,
Lord of our far-flung battle line,
Beneath whose awful hand we hold
Dominion over palm and pine—
Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
Lest we forget—lest we forget!’
Kipling himself took inspiration from the Bible – likely Deuteronomy Ch 6 v 12, which reads “then beware, lest you forget the LORD who brought you out of the land of Egypt”.
We are urged to remember because “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it”.
In the upper room on the night of his betrayal the Lord Jesus instituted the “Lord’s supper” to commemorate His death that was about to take place. He took the bread and wine and gave them to His disciples and said “this do in remembrance of me”. The bread speaks about His body that was about to be broken and the wine speaks of His blood that was about to be shed on the cross at Calvary.
Why did Jesus die on the cross? 1 Cor 15v3-4 tells us “that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures”.
So the Lord’s Supper becomes a powerful reminder of the redemption that the Lord Jesus achieved for His people in releasing us from slavery to sin. This gift of salvation is offered freely to all:-
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John Ch 3 v 16).
Let us remember Him today.