The Great Commission: Join the Book of Matthew's Online Bible Study Journey
“And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” - Matthew 28:18-20 ESV
This verse is known as the Great commission or great duty Jesus has given the Apostles and all Christians.
Jesus’ disciples were commissioned to make ‘disciples of all people’. Throughout the gospel of Matthew he shows us that the Kingdom of God crosses all social boundaries.
Knowing this it should not come as a surprise to us that Jesus sends out his disciples to “all nations”. Disciple-making is two things:
Baptizing includes the proclamation of the Gospel of God’s kingdom and the call to repentance from sin and to turn to faith in Jesus. Water baptism is symbolic of the inward work the Holy Spirit does within us, it represents the cleansing that God effects when people turn from sin and turn to faith in Him through forgiveness.
Teaching involves instructing people to follow Jesus’ commands concerning how God wants his people to live, commandments such as those in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5).
The order of these two elements of discipleship is important. One cannot be baptized without truly grasping the gospel message and believing in it. Without true repentance, there shouldn’t be a baptism. People also do not become followers of Jesus by following his commands, salvation is something that cannot be earned (Ephesians 2:8-9).
It is a free gift from Christ. His sheep will hear his voice and they will believe in Him, hearts and lives will be changed forever but not by our own merit but by his grace alone.
As true followers of Jesus, His disciples joyfully do this great commission because they are truly transformed by the Holy Spirit.
When you are born again, there is nothing that gives you more joy than serving Jesus, your heart beats for him. If you feel like you need this joy, you need to pray that the Holy Spirit fills you, and He will give you the love for the lost and the desire to share the gospel even though you are shy and even though you have to walk up to strangers and sometimes make a fool out of yourself.
With what you have learned from this, what are you going to start doing differently? Are you ready to go out there and obey this command that Jesus has given us? Are you ready to join other believers around-the-world as study the Book of Matthew together?
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