Precious Testimonies Ministry Encourager
WHAT WILL BE YOUR LEGACY?
Jesus Did It!
By: Norm Rasmussen
When your time is done here on Earth, what will be your legacy? What will others remember about you? What will those in heaven have to say about your legacy when you get there?
Get ready for a possible shocker. It won't matter a hill of beans what others think about you, or what they remember about you, on the Judgment Day, if it didn't translate into sowing into the things that are important to Jesus Christ.
There is only ONE THING that is going to truly matter regarding your legacy when you stand before Jesus Christ and give an account of your life: Did you do what was pleasing to Him?
If you've never heard this, I would strongly encourage you to ponder it deeply and often. In New Testament truth, Jesus clearly communicated that 'seeking the Kingdom of God and His righteousness FIRST' has always been God's very top priority regarding humanity. (See: Matthew 6:33). The Kingdom of God is built on the foundation of none other than the Lord Jesus Christ, who died on the cross for all our sins.
So much confusion has been written about what the 'Kingdom of God' truly is. Simply defined, what it IS ' is God's complete control of everything in that kingdom. It is God being fully ruler and KING of all living creatures in that kingdom. Picking and choosing what we want to believe about God and all matters spiritual in that kingdom will NOT be optional for us like it is now. In God's kingdom, God fully runs the show. There won't be any rebels in that kingdom trying to do their own thing. There will only be obedient sinners saved by grace who have come to realize that the sole means of obtaining maximized joy is to first sow into what is important to God. Right now, there is nothing more important to God than obeying New Testament truth wisely.
Those who will be in God's kingdom are those who have displayed to God that they have one burning desire and nothing will ever stand in the way of putting out that desire in their being. That desire will be to glorify and please Jesus Christ in every way imaginable by allowing the Holy Spirit to direct them in applying New Testament truth wisely ' starting now ' in this life.
In one's seeking to obey New Testament truth, if one does not come to realize that everything starts with Jesus Christ and ends with Jesus Christ ' to the glory of God the Father ' they will be sadly missing the mark God desires that they aim for. Folks ' Jesus happens to be THE King. God the Father has appointed Him as King. Pleasing the King is truly all that matters the most.
Is that what rules your life right now -- diligence to learn and apply New Testament truth to please Jesus Christ? If it isn't, a legacy is being left by you that you're going to one day in the future regret come Judgment Day.
Now, in our applying the New Testament truths to please Jesus Christ, if what we are doing spiritually is not somehow directed toward reaching lost souls in some fruitful manner, we're totally blind to God's priorities here on Earth. Engaging oneself in soul winning is high on God's agenda. How can I confidently say that and not have to apologize to God for it when I stand before Him at the Judgment Seat of Christ? Because that was one of the main functions of the Church after Jesus resurrected back to heaven. Yes ' God is the One who saves souls, but He uses people frequently in the process of doing so. He CAN do it without our help, but He has chosen not to do it all by Himself, but to also include individual members of the Body of Christ to help accomplish the task.
Helping disciple others in accordance with the Word of Truth is right up alongside of soul winning in God's top priorities. Once a soul gives his/her life to Jesus Christ, that person becomes a member of the Church, which is also called the Body of Christ. Discipleship encompasses many different aspects. It involves helping people understand what God wants them to understand regarding the Bible. It involves being willing to encourage others when called for. It involves confrontation with people who are not doing right when they should be, for their own good, and the good of others. It involves praying for people when called for. It involves helping others learn what God's call on their life is, and assist them in that call as the Holy Spirit leads. It involves putting our money, our time, our talents, our energies into people ' because people ' lost souls - is what Jesus Christ primarily came to Earth for.
When Jesus Christ returns a second time, He will come to reward those who are truly His, and to punish those who aren't truly His. He will establish His rule here on planet Earth 1,000 years, and once that is done, He will sentence the fallen angels to their eternal torment. After that ' Christians ' prepare yourself for new heavens and a new Earth that you can't possibly conceive God has in store for us and His angels. The unsaved have their reward in this life only. The saved will have nothing but reward once they are with Jesus Christ for day, after day, after day, after eons of time without end.
Here is a quote from Evangelist Bill Keller that says it very clearly:
'With the understanding that this is a brief journey we are on, we should be motivated to get the most out of each and every day. Our focus each day should be on fulfilling our reason for being alive, and this is to serve and glorify the Lord through our lives. The greatest legacy we can leave is the lives we have influenced for Christ throughout our journey.'
Does all this mean we are to quit our careers and jobs and go stay in church the rest of our lives? Stop being responsible fathers and mothers and students? Never have a hobby or enjoy some recreation time? Not at all. It means that these things are not the soul purpose for living, but as we go about doing these things, if we're wise, we will constantly discipline ourselves to stay in touch with the Holy Spirit to be used of Him to somehow minister to others as the Holy Spirit nudges us to do.
Let's look closer at legacy. We have two choices in life when it comes to legacy. We can focus our time, talents and treasures by leaving a legacy behind ' or we can focus our time, talents and treasures by sending our legacy to heaven ahead of us, so it will keep expanding throughout eternity.
I can assure you the legacy you leave behind will not keep expanding through eternity if you didn't sow into what pleases Jesus Christ. In time, it will die out, and essentially, come to naught. But a person who makes it their priority to 'seek the Kingdom first' ' they will have written themselves a legacy that will only keep growing and expanding forever.
When you stand before the King at the Judgment Seat of Christ, what will there be that He finds in you that He should reward ' for eternity? Did you diligently spend any time in prayer for lost souls, or were you content to always let others do that? Did you look for opportunities to share the Good News of the Gospel with people, or did you allow fear and apathy and lies keep you from it? ('God saves who He wants to save, so surely He doesn't need me to help Him do that, would He?' That's one of the biggest lies Satan wants us to believe). Did you ever leave salvation tracts where the unsaved could find them, or were you always content to let someone else always do that? Did you constantly find reasons not to sow any finances into the cause of Christ, or were you content to constantly come up with excuses to keep from it? Did tomorrow never quite seem to come when there was a need for helpers in the local church you attended, and you left that mostly up to others? Could you never quite find the time to write out your born again testimony or share it on video and release it to God to be used as He sees fit to touch others?
It is truly sad that so many Christians have listened to Satan's lies about this topic of legacy. Satan has fed them the lie they've believed that everyone gets the same rewards in heaven, and so it really doesn't matter all that much what we do for the cause of Christ. How wrong they are! God has clearly told us in His Word:
Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward according to his own labor. For we are God's fellow workers; you are God's field, you are God's building. According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one's work will become manifest; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one's work, of what sort it is.
If anyone's work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone's work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as though fire. ' 1 Corinthians 3:8-15
Nowhere will you find in the New Testament that God is going to reward anything we've done during our life that isn't built on the foundation of Jesus Christ with precious materials (not wood, hay and stubble).
What you will consistently find in the New Testament is that when we do the same work the Church began to do when it first started functioning as the Body of Christ after Christ resurrected ' God is going to make certain there will be rewards for those who sowed generously into the cause of Jesus Christ.
What you won't find in the New Testament is famous Hollywood and TV stars promised any reward; famous sports figures promised any reward; billionaires promised any reward; politicians and military commanders being promised any reward; rock stars promised any reward, famous authors promised any reward; etc. This scripture pretty much sums up the reason why:
Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you seems to be wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, 'He catches the wise in their own craftiness'; and again, 'The Lord knows the thoughts of the wise, that they are futile.'
Therefore let no one glory in men. For all things are yours: whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas, or the world or life or death, or things present or things to come ' all are yours. And you are Christ's, and Christ is God's. ' 1 Cor. 3:18-23
The apostle Paul wasn't concerned in the least bit about what legacy he was leaving behind. The world would say the legacy Paul left behind was: 'This man did nothing but stir up trouble everywhere he went!' Paul knew what being 'a wise master builder' was all about. He had been translated to the third heaven and was allowed to hear about the future glory of believers in Christ, and although he was not allowed to share all that he had specifically seen or heard, Paul had precious revelation about future rewards that would be given to soul winners ' Christian disciple makers.
Dear reader ' this can't be repeated enough, because there are so many deceitful voices screaming at us to try to convince us that this is all a bunch of nonsense, so don't pay it any heed. 'Hey ' I just want to make it to heaven. I don't care about any rewards. Just getting to heaven is reward enough for me anyway!'
Okay ' if that's the kind of legacy a Christian wants to take to heaven with them, so be it. It sure wasn't the legacy the Apostle Paul wanted to take to heaven with him. The Apostle Paul wanted to take every lost soul headed for hell that God would allow him to speak to, to make it to heaven. Paul even so wanted the hardened Jewish people who refused to believe that Jesus was the Messiah to be saved from going to hell that he would even be glad to go to hell in their place if God would so allow it, which He wouldn't of course.
Maybe you've been wasting a lot of precious time that could have been more wisely used for the cause of Jesus Christ. Perhaps God has given you talents and giftings that you've tried to make money at, or somehow translate into some recognition, but it seems like doors just never open for you. Dear one, maybe God has purposely kept it from happening to help you realize that those gifts He has given you need to be channeled into His Kingdom work ' so you'll receive some reward from Him for it in eternity.
Don't let the devil lay any guilt trips on you. Tomorrow is a new day. It is never too late to change priorities. Do both yourself and God a huge favor. Determine this very moment that you are going to take daily inventory of your priorities, and seek the help and direction of the Lord in how you spend each new day from here pleasing Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ didn't die for you just to save you from your sins. That's just the beginning! God wants to invest in you, and keep investing in you. God wants to see how loyal you will be in this life to what is truly important to Him ' so He can entrust to you blessings in eternity none of us can conceive of right now.
And remember, the legacy that truly matters is the one that God will be impressed with. Not what this world will be impressed with. The legacy God is impressed with is founded and centered on what is most important to Jesus Christ.
When you life is over, the ONLY things that will matter for eternity are those lives you impacted for Jesus Christ.
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"And this gospel of the
died for sinners] shall be preached in all the world for a witness
unto all nations; and then shall the end come."
(Quote from Jesus Himself: Matthew 24:14).
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Dear Reader -are you at peace with God? If not, you can be. Do you know what awaits you when you die? You can have the assurance from God that heaven will be your home, if you would like to be certain. Either Jesus Christ died for your sins, or He didn't (He did!). Are you prepared to stand before God on the Judgment Day and tell Him that you didn't need the shed blood of Jesus Christ on the Cross to have your sins forgiven and get in right-standing with God? We plead with you ... please don't make such a tragic mistake.
To get to know God; to be at peace with God; to have your sins forgiven; to make certain heaven will be your home for eternity; to make certain that you are in right-standing with God right now ... pleaseclick here to help understand the importance of being reconciled to God. What you do about being reconciled to God will determine where you will spend eternity, precious one. Your decision to be reconciled to God is the most important decision you'll ever make in this life.
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