Of course all Christians know the Great Commission. As most remember it we are to go out into the world baptize them and tell them about Jesus and how he died for our sins. But what many seem to conveniently forget is the words just beyond that where Jesus says to tell them to do what he commands! Many seem to think that being a Christian is just taking an “alter call” and saying the “sinners prayer”. Jesus says there is more to it than that. He spent his three year ministry helping us to understand just what we are suppose to be doing while we are here on earth. And he expects us to “obey what I have commanded”
Here is the entire Great commission at least according to the NIV Bible: Matt 28:19-20 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, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Some say our presence on this earth is a probationary period to determine if, by our free will, we choose to be sheep or goats. By our actions it will be easy to tell the difference. Come Judgment Day, yes there will be a day where you are judged on how you lived your life, you will have to explain the Jesus why you ignored his words. Will it keep you out of heaven? I don’t know. As James said in his epistle faith without works is dead. Will a “dead faith” get you into heaven? Why take the change. Obey what Jesus commands! Or at least die trying…
Epilog: I had a surprising insight about judgment day recently. It seems that some Christian sects, some very large,believe that only non-Christians will be judged. They say that God has completely forgotten the sins of all Christians and therefore there is no judgment for them. I personally don’t buy that. Jesus, or Paul, never put that exception in any of their words! (Matt 7:1-2, Matt 12:36-37, Rom 14:10-12, 2Cor 5:10)
2 thoughts on “The forgotten words of the Great Commission”
The interesting corollary to this which occurred to me earlier this year, is that the Great Commission still applies to those who are ALREADY IN THE CHURCH! We still need to be taught to obey everything Jesus commanded. So the GC is not satisfied when someone is “saved.” It’s a life-investment.
Of course, this Matthew passage is only one of our job descriptions from Jesus. The other comes from a combination of John 20:21 “As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.” And what did the Father send Jesus for? Luke 4:18-19. Put those two together and we have enough work for all the church for many lifetimes.
Thanks for the insight Dan. It is definitely food for thought.