Scripture: Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them.
And when (the disciples) saw him the worshipped him, but some doubted.
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.” Matt 28:16-20
Observation: Precise directions are stated here. So why do I get hung up with the “Great Commission?”
Application: Confession: From my youth I have been hung up with the “Great Commission.”
Why is that? I had the sense that believers around me were looking for notches in the spine of their Bible first and foremost—like gunslingers of old notched the handle of their gun of people they shot. Others looked to the nations across the world but didn’t look at their neighborhood. There were others that preached getting baptized but didn’t preach discipleship. And lastly, being a Charismatic, you couldn’t get to the “deeper life in Christ” without a direct experience with the Holy Spirit.
All true, and at the same time, rubbish. Where was the whole Gospel in all of this?
So, I waited my years. I learned, I experienced, I fell, I got back up again and promptly fell again—repeated this over and over. I actually thought that somewhere around in my early 30’s (just like Jesus) I would be raised up to powerfully preach.
Now I am in my 6th decade and am confident of this: The Father has me right where He wants me. I have had some influence, but certainly not Billy Graham scale. I have a disciple in my wife where, as God intended, I learn from her far more than I think I teach. I have become systematic in Christian theology, both Reformed and Charismatic (which I happen to think is Orthodoxy).
And I have learned so much of the whole Gospel—and feel so better prepared to talk about it.
Early on, I felt like cannon fodder. Now, I think I am coming up to be a trained soldier for the Kingdom. The preaching of the Gospel has only one end: To make Disciples. That is what I want to be a part of.
Prayer: Father, Only You call people to yourself. Some are not chosen. It is erroneous to think I didn’t try hard enough, I wasn’t persistent enough—all those adjectives that describe my “effort” in evangelism—when the truth is that “many are called, few are chosen” and that You are the generator of the change in a human heart. But, making disciples… Help me keep my eyes totally and solely on You. AMEN.