I Corinthians 15:3 “For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day….”
First importance. At the risk of sounding redundant, I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the importance of what’s of first importance. When life starts spinning out of control, rather than getting sucked into the old familiar whirlpool of worry, I’ve been shifting gears. I’ve been going back to the foundation. Been thanking Jesus that he died for my sins and was buried and raised on the third day rather than launching into my woes. That simple re-focus has fortified my faith. It’s caused me to remember exactly what I bank my whole life upon….
God warned Israel repeatedly not to forget what was of first importance. In Psalm 78, he described how they “turned back on the day of battle.” Although they were equipped to take out the enemy, they wouldn’t even engage! Why? Because they forgot what God had done—his wonders and miracles in delivering them from Egypt (verses 9-12). The words “disloyal and faithless” (verse 57) reveal the sad consequence of their forgetfulness. They became a people devoid of loyalty. Devoid of faith.
Although I doubt that any true believer actually fails to remember the cross and resurrection, I can’t help but wonder if we take what ought to be of first importance in our faith so casually that it plays an increasingly minor role in our practical living. Do we, like Israel, tend to retreat from the spiritual battles we encounter? Do we forget the same God who raised Jesus from the dead is the One who lives in us? Beth Moore says faith rests its case on the resurrection. Wimpy faith is faith that fails to remember that most important truth.
There are many things in life we forget. Some we want to forget. Some we should. But if we hope to remain loyal to God and faithful to his promises, if we long to know victory over our enemies, then let’s remember this one thing:
Christ died for our sins according to Scriptures, was buried and resurrected on the third day.
That, my friends, is of first importance.