Summary: To challenge disciples to make becoming mighty in the scriptures a legacy they leave behind.
Title: Legends and Legacies: Part 2 One to Strive For
Text: Acts 18.22-28
Time: August 17, 2008 Asbury UMC
[TITLE SLIDE] Friday night my family and I were glued to the TV as we watched Michael Phelps win his seventh gold medal by a fingernail. It was the closest race I think I’ve ever seen. And with that win Michael became one of only two to ever win that many gold medals in a single Olympics. Any idea who the other won was? Mark Spitz who also happened to be a swimmer. As was expected the legends of the games are rising to the top leaving amateurs and professionals with something worthwhile to strive for. As the Olympics approached and legends were used to market the games I found myself wondering what makes for a worthy legacy. Is it really about how many gold medals were hung around a neck or how many trophies and awards someone received? Is it being known for how many boards a person sat on in this life or what position they attained in their place of employment or how well known they were in the social circles of the community? I know what the sports world and society says, but is that the case for Disciples of Jesus the Christ or is there something else we’re to strive for when it comes to being legends that leave life changing legacies?
Those are the questions and issues that we’ll face together for the remainder of this month as we look to see what the word of God has to say regarding legends and their legacies.
Last week we learned that God considered an unnamed woman who poured $14,600 worth of perfume on Jesus head, a legend, and that her legacy of loving Jesus more than anything was a legacy that God wants us to pursue as well. Today, we take a look at a look at another legend that left a legacy to strive for.
[S] “And when he (Paul) had landed at Caesarea, and gone up and greeted the church, he went down to Antioch. After he had spent some time there, he departed and went over the region of Galatia and Phrygia in order, strengthening all the Disciples. Now a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man and mighty in the Scriptures, came to Ephesus. This man had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he spoke and taught accurately the things of the Lord, though he knew only the baptism of John. So he began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Aquila and Priscilla heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately. And when he desired to cross to Achaia, the brethren wrote, exhorting the disciple to receive him; and when he arrived, he greatly helped those who had believed through grace; for he vigorously refuted the Jews publicly, showing from the Scriptures’ that Jesus is the Christ.” (Acts 18.22-28, NKJV) [S]
The word of God for the people of God. Thanks be to God.
Apollos. Of all the things a man could have been noted and remembered for, Apollos was remembered as someone who knew the Tanakh, the Hebrew Scriptures, our Old Testament. [S] Apollos’ legacy was that he was a man mighty in the Scriptures! He wasn’t known as someone who knew the scriptures just a little bit. He wasn’t known as someone who knew just enough to get by. He wasn’t someone known for shelving his bible or rarely used it. He was known as someone who was mighty in the Scriptures. He mastered the text. He read and studied and memorized the word of God. The word of God was in his spiritual DNA. He knew the Tanakh forward and backwards. He could tell you about the word of God. You wanted to know who God was, go see Apollos. You wanted to know where to find a story or a proverb, go see Apollos. You wanted to know God’s will regarding something, go see Apollos. You had any questions about what the bible had to say about anything, go see Apollos. When it came to knowing the Holy Scriptures Apollos was legendary.
Oh, that United Methodists would become legendary when it comes to knowing the Scriptures! O that our pastors would be described as men and women who were mighty in the Scriptures. Oh that the leaders of the local church would be known as men and women mighty in the Scriptures. O that the people who go by the name of Methodist would be mighty in the Scriptures.
But, the truth of the matter is that there are a lot of Disciples of Jesus, United Methodist as well as others, whose legacy is not going to be that they were mighty in the scriptures, but that they were ignorant in the scriptures unless there is a change.