In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul makes the statement that all of Christianity hinges upon one event and if this event were to be proven false, Christianity would not only be useless and untrue, but it would be the laughing stock of world religions. That event is Jesus of Nazareth’s physical resurrection from the dead. The text of this sermon, Romans 10:9, tells us that belief in the resurrection of Christ is necessary for our salvation. Do you know why the resurrection matters? Do you truly believe it happened and are you prepared to defend it against objections?
Jesus worked in memorable ways. Jesus spoke in memorable ways. Jesus raised up memorable men. Jesus brought into being memorable churches. Yet, Jesus did not specifically ask to be remembered by His miracles, His words, His disciples or the churches which He instituted. Do you know how Jesus specifically asked to be remembered? You may be surprised, but you may also be inspired.
Winning Christians answer these kinds of questions: When life is over, what have you got? When the moment comes for stepping into eternity, is there anything you can take with you? When the horn sounds, does it really matter whether you were a winner or loser as a believer? If you have asked these questions, how have you answered? It’s not too late to change the answer or to improve the answer. Paul shows us how.
Practice is not the point; playing is the point. However, no one wins on the playing field without first winning on the practice field. That is true in the realm of athletics and also true in the realm of Christianity. Paul not only encouraged his readers to live as gold-medal followers of Christ, he also provided powerful advice on the kind of practice that that produces championship disciples. The winning strategy is clear, and the winning results cannot be denied.
The Lord’s Supper is addressed on five occasions in the New Testament. The coming again of Jesus, however, is mentioned twenty-three times. As Paul brings together the Lord’s Supper and the second coming of Christ, he links the Lord’s Supper not merely to what Jesus did but also to what Jesus will do. There can’t be one without the other. Consequently, when we participate in this experience we celebrate three expectations that change our lives as followers of Christ.