Ever notice how popular Sunday morning church service is, compared to Sunday evening discipleship hour, or Wednesday evening prayer service, or perhaps men/women Bible Study? Based on this comparison, we might seriously ponder how much of the Gospel (or how little) we take with us in our work places, or our social events, etc. after Sunday is over. But we have a huge assignment form Jesus in today’s Scripture, so meditate with me on His commands.
BIBLE REFERENCE: Matthew 28:18-20
TRANSLATION: The Passion Translation (TPT)
BIBLE TEXT: 18 Then Jesus came close to them and said, “All authority of the universe has been given to me. 19 Now wherever you go, make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. 20 And teach them to faithfully follow all that I have commanded you. And never forget that I am with you every day, even to the completion of this age.”
OBSERVATION: Ever notice how popular Sunday morning church service is, compared to Sunday evening discipleship hour, or Wednesday evening prayer service, or perhaps men/women Bible Study? Based on this comparison, we might seriously ponder how much of the Gospel (or how little) we take with us in our work places, or our social events, etc. after Sunday is over. But we have a huge assignment form Jesus in today’s Scripture, so meditate with me on His commands.
APPLICATION: Jesus’ disciples had just encountered the risen Lord for the first time after His crucifixion, death, burial and resurrection. While they tried to celebrate the risen Lord, some were still in a state of shock and disbelief. Surprised, because you thought these were Jesus’ dedicated followers who learned first-hand from Him and saw His many miracles? I know, but don’t think for a moment that they were weaker than you and I, or filled with doubt any more than we are. Notice how Jesus didn’t nurse their feelings by trying to help them overcome their doubt and fear, but instead He immediately told them about their next, and ongoing assignment. Now I believe that this message was also for Jesus’ disciples of today also – my fellow believers and I. So I believe it is important that we understand the command, so that we too can be obedient servants:
-> Go – In other words, as you go, or everywhere you go, do what I am about to tell you. Since retiring, I have been privileged to travel a bit, and I find it extraordinarily rewarding how people are no different in cities considered below poverty level, or cities with the most wealthy. Many still need the Lord, but it is so, so comforting to fellowship with those who know the Savior as you do;
-> Make disciples – based on what I just said above, I am commissioned to not merely look the other way and expect pastors to evangelize those in their city who need the Lord, but I am also expected to make disciples there, or preach the Gospel there, or minister to the unsaved there, regardless of their national origin, color or gender;
-> Baptize the disciples – Don’t just see them accept Jesus as their Savior, but lead them to be baptized, as evidence to their family and friends that they have arisen in newness of life through the power of the triune God;
-> Teach them – Share with the new believers all that God has taught you through His Word. Teach them how to study the Word so that they may know what God expects of them. Oh, you’re not a teacher? No problem, just pretend that you are a beggar helping another beggar to find food. You are not expected to share what the preacher said in yesterday’s sermon, you are commissioned to tell your story of how Jesus saved you and watches over you every day until He returns to take you home to glory!
So it is very obvious that God never intended for us to soak and sour in His goodness, but to share His amazing goodness with everyone that we come into contact with. Friends, how will they know that change is necessary unless, through God’s grace, you share the love of Christ with them, and the assignment He has given to us? Be a faithful servant and obey the commands of our Lord.
PRAYER: Thank You Father for showing us Your love, teaching us Your Word and not just leaving us where we are, but showing us the importance of passing along what we have experienced and learned from You, so that the unsaved too might surrender to Your perfect will for their lives. Please touch the heart of every believer that reads this devotional, and use Your Word to speak miraculously into their lives. Please touch us with Your grace, Your power, Your wisdom, and Your encouragement to share every day what You have poured into our lives. May You be glorified today because of our obedience, followed only by the changed lives of those who accept You as Lord. AMEN!