54 Words Sold for $16,000

 •  2 min. read  •  grade level: 8
Abraham Lincoln's 54 word "autobiography", written while he was still a congressman, was purchased for $16,000 at an auction sale in 1973.
In 1858 Congressman Lincoln received a letter asking him for a biographical sketch. He wrote the information on the bottom of the letter and mailed it back. His reply was:
“Born February 12, 1809, in Hardin County, Kentucky. Education, defective. Profession, a lawyer. Have been a Captain of Volunteers in the Black Hawk War; Postmaster at a very small office; four times a member of the Illinois Legislature; and since a member of the Lower House of Congress.
Yours sincerely, A. Lincoln.
John Newton, born in 1725, and author of the well known hymn, "Amazing Grace," wrote the following 54 word "autobiography," to be his epitaph, and requested that nothing be added or deleted. It appears on his gravestone today:
JOHN NEWTON
Once an infidel and Libertine
A servant of Slaves in Africa,
was by the rich mercy of our Lord and Savior
JESUS CHRIST
Preserved, restored, pardoned
And appointed to preach the faith
He had long labored to destroy,
Near 16 years at Olney in Bucks;
And (28) years in this church.
The Apostle Paul by inspiration wrote the following 54 words which sum up the "biographies" of countless millions of Christian past and present:
“We ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.
Lincoln's 54 words were worth $16,000 to the Boston doctor who made the purchase. He bought them to keep in his private collection. How much are the following 57 words of God worth to you to believe, act upon and keep in your heart?
“If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the Scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed." Rom. 10:99That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. (Romans 10:9).10.11.