Matthew 28:18-20 (NKJV)
Today we are looking at Matthew 28:18-20, which is considered the Great Commission given by Jesus to His disciples and still the same commission to us as well. To understand how important this commission is, we have to be reminded that these are some of Jesus’ last words before He ascended to Heaven. Usually, when a person knows that they are sharing their last words, they make it their most important words for the other person to hear. Because Jesus referred to His authority and His command, we recognize that these words are a commission for us. A commission as described in military terms and in the dictionary is an authorization or command to act in a prescribed manner or to perform prescribed acts. That means that Jesus was commanding us and counting on us to do what Matthew 28 tells us to do and that is to go make more disciples. This is not an option, it’s a command.
When a commission is given in the military there are things that have to be clear and that is the specific instructions and the importance of the task. So let’s take a look and see what we find in this Great Commission from Jesus.
- I have clear instructions on what I am to accomplish. We are to be making disciples or leading people to come to know and serve Jesus.
- Going – The structure of verse 19 is actually telling us, as you go about your everyday life, make disciples. Share with others you encounter about Jesus and lead them to come to accept His gift of salvation. Luke 14:23 tells us to go out into the highways and hedges and compel them.
- Baptizing – We not only share with others, but we are to lead them to baptism. The Bible not only tells us in Acts 2:38 that people are to repent and be baptized, but we know that being baptized represents three things, that your sins have been washed away, that you want to be an obedient follower of Christ and that you are not ashamed of Jesus.
- Teaching – We are to teach those that come to know Christ as Savior to learn His word and to be obedient to it. Making disciples requires a complete follow through after that person accepts Christ.
- I have compelling importance of why I must accomplish this task. Prior to Jesus giving the Great Commission about making disciples or winning souls to the Lord, He told us how important a soul is and how important it is to live for Him.
- The Cost of A Soul – the Great Commission carries great importance because the souls of people we know are at risk if we don’t fulfill our responsibilities. In Mark 8:36 we are told, What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? In Rev 20:15 we read these sobering words: Whosever name was not written in the Lambs Book of Life was cast into the Lake of Fire.
- The Casualty of Saints – the Great Commission tells us to teach others to observe or obey the Lord’s commands. Basically to learn and live according to God’s word. If a person accepts Christ but doesn’t learn and live out God’s word, they can become a casualty. Their life can go in a wrong direction. In Eph. 5:1-5 Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints. Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving. For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.
Do you see the clear instructions and the compelling importance of fulfilling the Great Commission in your life? If so, what are you waiting on?
Testimony by Josh Davis