The Great Commission
Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” – Matthew 28: 16-20 (NIV)
When I read these words of Jesus, I cannot help but reflect on the condition of the church today. Certainly, we are not on fire as the early church. These words of Jesus are not suggestions, ideas, opinions, or job requirements restricted to clergymen. If you are a born-again Christian, that means you were baptized into God’s family through regeneration. The salvation package includes a commitment to righteous living. No, Christians won’t go to hell for not fulfilling their godly purposes. But, Christians who don’t become disciples will not experience all there is to salvation: knowing God (John 17:3).
These thoughts are what inspired me to start a blog, write books, and talk about my faith on my YouTube channel: Bible Journey Book. My greatest desire is to inspire people to want to know God for themselves through biblical application. You can read my about section here.
I am in no way a perfect person. Before coming to Christ, I was stubborn and hard as a rock. I know where I came from, so I have patience and grace for those that aren’t here yet. But I cannot help but burn with passion to help people get on the right track. In this passage, Jesus commands us to make disciples out of converts. Disciples are learners who follow Christ by doing as he did. So in essence, to be Christian is to be like Christ. The disciples learned of Jesus by literally following him, today we do the same by following Jesus in his word and living by the power of the Holy Spirit. So when we only call on the name of the Lord for salvation, we forfeit a real relationship with him. Discipleship is not automatic, it takes discipline!
So why are so many of us still living like lost Gentiles? The Jews are God’s people set apart (made holy) to influence the entire world for God. Likewise, we Gentiles are to do the same. The problem that the Jews in the time of the NT writings had, was that they did not accept Gentiles because of their foolish behavior. So, Paul constantly taught that Gentiles are saved by grace for good works. Meaning, although we are saved by grace through faith, we must bear good fruit because it shows that the Holy Spirit is within us. Good works ought to come natural in our lives as a result of God’s power and our faith to activate it.
There are so many Christians who are living far below the norm because they simply aren’t disciples. They have received the gospel, but they have not received discipleship training or they are simply disobedient to God’s will. This is a sad thing, because we are not obeying Jesus’ command. Therefore, we are not generating enough converts in these days as we could. Many people that have careers in ministry are juggling different hats as they work overtime to do the Lord’s work. This shouldn’t be! The whole church is suppose to work together so that we can be more efficient. Islam should not be dominating the world in great numbers close to our faith! We have to do better. We must do better so that the gospel is preached to the entire world. But let’s remember, that the Great Commission is included in the gospel. We need fully committed followers of Jesus Christ, not just professed Christians that have no works to prove their faith (James 2:14-26). We cannot win the world if we blend in with the world. We have to be different and devoted to what we say we believe. This is why God’s sets his people apart (make us holy). We must become disciples so that we can let our light shine in our dark world and bring glory to God.