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Life & death have value, Akin tells SEBTS grads

WAKE FOREST, N.C. (BP) — As followers of Jesus, death and life hold great significance and allow for what Danny Akin, president of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, calls “the ultimate win-win scenario.”

Akin challenged 234 graduates from the seminary and The College at Southeastern with a message from Philippians 1:21 during the 65th SEBTS commencement ceremony May 12. The seminary commencement was held at 10 a.m. and the college commencement was held at 3 p.m.

“To those who are graduating today, I want to say to you, wherever you go, whatever you do, whether in life or by death, I hope that you never forget it is all about Christ,” Akin said, underscoring the personal, practical and powerful nature of living a life abandoned to Jesus.

Quoting Maltbie Babcock, writer of the hymn, “This Is My Father’s World,” Akin said, “Life is what we are alive to.” He asked graduates, family members and friends what they were passionate about, drawing the connection to the apostle Paul’s sole passion for making Jesus known to others.

Drawing from John 11:25 and John 14:6, Akin reminded gradates that Jesus was the embodiment of life itself.

Akin also spoke on the value of death in the Christian life, citing Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 5:8, “We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.”

“There is a life worth living on the front end, but there is also a death worth living on the back end,” Akin said, noting that Christ is worth more than anything on this earth.

As he ended his address, Akin gave an invitation for those in attendance to know Christ as Lord and Savior.

To view Akin’s commencement address, click here. Or to see spring 2017 commencement photos, click here.

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  • Lauren Pratt