Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Building a True Legacy

Today would have been the 307th birthday of the great American preacher Jonathan Edwards. 9 out 10 of you (based on the Pew Religious Knowledge Survey) are probably asking, "Who is he and why should I care?" To which I say, that Jonathan Edwards is America's greatest theologian and pastor. With one sermon, Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God, he launched the First Great Awakening. His theological books are still being published (much to the chagrin of the liberal controlled Yale University).

What was even more outstanding about Edwards, however, was his impact upon his descendants. Here is what is said of Edwards' progeny:
  • practically no lawbreakers
  • more than 100 lawyers
  • 30 judges
  • 13 college presidents
  • one hundred and more professors
  • sixty physicians
  • 100 clergymen, missionaries, and theological professors
  • 80 elected to public office, including 3 mayors, 3 governors, several members of congress, 3 senators, and 1 vice president (Aaron Burr)
  • 60 have attained prominence in authorship or editorial life, with 135 books of merit
  • 75 army or navy officers
  • 2 more physicians and a comptroller of the U.S. treasury

If you are serving God, then you are building a legacy. If you lived a debauched life prior to God saving you, then you can build a legacy like this for your descendants.

The culture in which we live is so focused on the here and now, that this "me first" attitude has even crept into the church. All one has to do is turn on TBN and see how materialistic the messages broadcast on that channel are. However, Christians are not to be focused on prosperity and health, but instead on preaching the gospel and training the next generation. If we perform these two duties, then we also can have a legacy like that of Edwards'.

The point of the post today, is to show Christians that it's not just about you. It's not about the here and now, but it's about a future. A future with God should He return, and a future for your descendants should He tarry longer. What sort of legacy are you building?

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