Summary: We have all had success and failures in life. Yet, without Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior none of it will matter. What will our legacy be? What was the legacy of the disciples and their witness? What will others say about our faith in Jesus Christ?
DON’T EVER FORGET THIS
Text: I Corinthians 15:1 -11
1 Corinthians 15:1-11 Now I would remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news that I proclaimed to you, which you in turn received, in which also you stand, (2) through which also you are being saved, if you hold firmly to the message that I proclaimed to you—unless you have come to believe in vain. (3) For I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, (4) and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, (5) and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. (6) Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. (7) Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. (8) Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me. (9) For I am the least of the apostles, unfit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. (10) But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me has not been in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them—though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. (11) Whether then it was I or they, so we proclaim and so you have come to believe (NRSV).
History tells us about many great men who were ahead of their time as pioneers in the days when they lived. Among them was Sir Michael Faraday (Sept. 22, 1791 - August 25, 1867). Faraday was known and famous for his discoveries in the field electricity that paved the way for “modern electric motor(s), generator(s), and transformer(s)”. It is said that “Albert Einstein was known to have had a portrait of Faraday on his wall in his study, where it hung alongside pictures of legendary physicists Sir Isaac Newton and James Clerk Maxwell”. [https://www.thoughtco.com/michael-faraday-inventor-4059933. Aside from his accomplishments, it is worth noting that Faraday was a Christian who believed in the resurrection of Jesus Christ!
“When that great and Christian scientist Sir Michael Faraday of was dying, some journalists questioned him as to his speculations for a life after death. “Speculations!” said he, “ I know nothing about speculations. I’m resting certainties. ‘I know that my redeemer liveth,’ and because He lives, I shall live also.” (Roy. B. Zuck. The Speaker’s Quote Book. 1997, p. 327). Faraday knew that every good and perfect gift especially the gift of eternal life comes from God (James 1:17). Do we stand with Faraday and the Apostle Paul believing in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ?
We have all had success and failures in life. Yet, without Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior none of it will matter. What will our legacy be? What was the legacy of the disciples and their witness? What will others say about our faith in Jesus Christ?
When we breathe our last breathe will we declare to others that we are Christians?
1) Legacy of belief: We might not be famous and have inventions that we will be known for but we will all have a legacy that will live on after us. “Thomas Paine [author of Common Sense pamphlet] was called the god of “modern skeptics.” He was idolized by infidels even though by all standards of decency he was little more than a drunkard and a thief. Yet on his deathbed, he begged the Savior for mercy. Apparently in the final moments, atheists cannot resist the light of conscience and the sense of eternity that God has instilled within them”. (Roy. B. Zuck. The Speaker’s Quote Book. 1997, p. 22). Does he remind you of anyone in the Easter story? Does he remind reminds you of the repentant thief that crucified beside Jesus?
2) Homing device in the heart: I recently read where John Wesley once wrote that he believed that a man could be saved between falling off a horse and hitting the ground. Like it says in Ecclesiastes 3:11, God has placed eternity in our hearts. God is not willing that anyone should perish but that all should come to repentance (II Peter 3:9).
3) Who do we resemble Faraday or Paine?: It is God’s will that we will come to the conclusion of the gift of eternal life through the resurrection of Jesus Christ with the faith and assurance like that of Michael Faraday, rather than the fear and uncertainty of Thomas Paine (February 9, 1737 – June 8, 1809).
Aren’t we the Easter People?
1) The promise: In a way, that is what the Apostle Paul asked the people of Corinth in I Corinthians 15:12: “So if the message that is preached says that Christ has been raised from the dead, then how can some of you say “There’s no resurrection of the dead? ” (CEB).