Forgotten Memorials
John D. Telgren

I remember reading an article in a newspaper a few years ago about the discovery of a cemetery in Wise county, Texas, that had long since been abandoned. It had become so overgrown with weeds and bushes that no one knew it was there. As near as anyone could tell, the cemetery was forgotten for over fifty years. The historical society tried to do some research on those who were buried in the cemetery and locate relatives. After months of work, the brush was finally removed revealing the long forgotten monuments of those who had passed on.

It is not unusual for burial places to be forgotten after several centuries. There are old burial grounds that archaeologists discover from time to time. People want to be remembered after they are gone. Those still living want to remember those who have passed on. So we place stone memorials to remind us of our family and friends. Sometimes it is just a name and some dates. Other times there may be an epitaph, poem, or something else to remind us. In the distant future, the memorials will probably be forgotten. In the case of the cemetery in Wise county, it was forgotten in a much shorter amount of time.

I was reminded of another memorial that has not been forgotten for 2000 years. Before Jesus left this earth, he instituted a weekly memorial meal we call the Lord’s Supper or Communion (Matt 26:26ff). This is a memorial to help us remember Jesus and the great price he paid to redeem us to God. This will never be forgotten because Jesus said that the gates of Hades shall not prevail against his church (Matt 16:18). The unleavened bread reminds us that Jesus had a body. He became flesh and lived among us. As a man, he was sinless and became the atoning sacrifice for our sins. The fruit of the vine reminds us of the life that Jesus gave. He suffered a horrible death through torture on a Roman cross.

Because of what Jesus has done for us, our names will never be forgotten. God does not forget those who are faithful to him.

“Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the Lord gave attention and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the Lord and who esteem His name (Mal 3:16).”

“And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds (Rev 20:12).”

Our names are recorded in Heaven not on a monument of stone that may some day be forgotten. Our names are recorded in The Lamb’s book of life. The day will come when we pass from this life. We will be remembered because our names are recorded in Heaven. God remembers those who are his. So we do not have to worry that we will be forgotten if we are faithful to God. Our names will be in the book of life.