Today is the 19th anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City. The pain is still real. The memories are still there. And there are very real reasons why we can never forget such a tragedy.
Flight 11, Flight 175, Flight 77, and Flight 93 were all used to carry out attacks against Americans. In all, 2,986 people died in these events. 2,986 souls. 2,986 names. Men, women, and children. Not merely statistics, but people with names, and faces, that we should never forget.
I think everyone can remember exactly where they were that day. I remember walking outside of my middle school in Artesia, New Mexico. I was wearing red K-Swiss shoes, and someone came over the intercom, directing all of us inside. Once inside we all sat and watched the television in the classroom, until the second plane hit the towers. It was all so surreal, and at age 11, I didn’t really know what to think. I remember vividly people saying, “We will never forget this day.”
God gave us all memories. Our brains store images, emotions, situations, and although they can become cloudy at times, they are still there. God gave us memories for a reason, so that we don’t forget.
It’s important for Christians to remember certain things. We should always remember that we live in a fallen world. We should always remember that this fallen world hates us. We should always remember this isn’t our final destination. We should always remember that we are loved. Let’s unpack these things that we can’t forget.
- Remember that we live in a fallen world:
“Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned.” -Romans 5:12
This world can become appealing at times, and it’s easy to forget that it is a fallen world system. If we are not diligent, careful, and awake, we can fall asleep at the wheel. Then we end up embracing what God despises. We can end up embracing false religions, false ideologies, and false teachings. When we see tragedies like what happened on September 11th, 2001, it should always etch into our memories this truth, we live in a fallen world.
2. Remember that this world hates us:
“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.” -John 15:18-19
The towers were struck by people who hate Christians. Who think that they are doing a service for God when they kill a Christian. Every muslim who kills a Christian today fulfills this prophecy by our Lord Jesus,
“Indeed the hour is coming when whoever kills you will think he is offering service to God.”
We should always remember that we are not called to be loved by the world. Rather, when the world hates us, we should rejoice that our names are written in heaven.
When we remember tragedies like what happened on September 11th, 2001, it should always etch into our minds, that the world hates Christians.
3. Remember that this world is not our final destination:
“But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.” -Philippians 3:20
Tragedies should serve as a reminder that this world is not heaven. This world is not our home. We are simply passing through, and while we’re here, we should be salt and light.
It should grieve us anytime we see tragedy. Remembering what happened on September 11th, 2001, should cause us all to long for heaven. To long for the day when Christ returns. To long for the day our bodies are made new. To long for all things to be made right. To long for Christ to execute judgement on His enemies.
When we remember tragedies like what happened on September 11th, 2001, it should always etch into our mind that this world is not our home.
4. Remember that you are loved:
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, ‘For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.’ No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” -Romans 8:35-39
No circumstance, no person, no people group, no radical religious group, no weapon, absolutely nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. This is our greatest hope in times of tragedy, that even tragedies cannot separate us from the love of God.
When we remember tragedies like what happened on September 11th, 2001, it should always etch into our mind that we are loved, and even tragedies cannot separate us from the love of God.
So, today, and everyday, we should remember. We should remember the lives that were lost here on earth, and the eternal lives that were gained through our Lord’s perfect work. We should remember that we have an enemy, but that our Lord has overcome him. And since our Lord overcame, we will overcome.
We should never forget, because God designed us to remember.