WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT “THE GREAT COMMISSION” – IS IT IMPORTANT TO CHRISTIANS ?

   “Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted. And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”

  Matthew 28:16-20 KJV

  After Jesus Christ‘s death on the cross, he was buried and resurrected on the third day. Before he ascended into heaven, he appeared to his disciples in Galilee and gave them these instructions: Matthew 28:16-20. This section of Scripture is known as the Great Commission. Jesus the Messiah has given marching orders to his followers. His first Church in Jerusalem received the Great Commission. This Commission tells how they, and all true Churches since then, are to be His Witnesses. The main verb in the Great Commission is TEACH (evangelize = make disciples of) all nations. The other verbs — GO (going or as ye go) BAPTIZING and TEACHING are all participles in the Greek New Testament, built around the main command — EVANGELIZE. Therefore, true Christianity is evangelistic. It has the Glad Tidings (Gospel) of Jesus Christ,  the Gospel is not good advice, but good news. It does not tell us what we are to do to earn salvation, but proclaims to us what Christ has done to save us. True Churches are missionary Churches. They seek to spread the Gospel. They seek to win people to the Lord Jesus Christ. They GO. They go to their relatives, neighbors, friends, and acquaintances, even to their enemies, with the Gospel. They go to strangers. In obedience to the Great Commission, they send Missionaries to language schools, then to foreign lands. They use all lawful means to reach others. They hand out Bibles, New Testaments, Gospel Tracts and Videos. They preach in the Churches, in home, school and workplace, Bible studies, on the Radio, TV, and on the Internet. Christians are GOING. Missionary Churches BAPTIZE new converts,, those who repent and believe in Christ.  The word “baptize” means to immerse, and it is clear that the rite of immersion was observed in the ancient church. Immersion bests shows union with Christ in His Death, Burial and Resurrection. The new convert goes under the water (burial) and comes up out of the water (resurrection) according to Romans 6:3,4. It also best symbolizes the washing away of sins (Acts 22:16). Thus, Churches should serve as training schools for Pastors and Missionaries. These Missionaries are not just preachers. They are Church-planters. They do not just evangelize. As they go and make disciples, they baptize those new disciples, and teach them all things, whatsoever Messiah commanded. To do this, they set up new Churches. Messiah is with true Churches, from the time of His first Church in Jerusalem, until the end of the world, or age as we know it. This promise implies that Christ has always had some true Churches in existence, somewhere in the world, in every generation. Thus, those who obey the Great Commission are part of a long train of witnesses. They have Messiah’s authority to do what they do. And they have His blessing, guidance, provision and divine presence with them — even unto the end of the world. As the last recorded personal directive of the Savior to his disciples, it holds great significance to all followers of Christ. It is the foundation for evangelism and cross-cultural missions work in Christian theology. Because the Lord’s instructions were to go to all nations and that he would be with us until the very end of the age, Christians of all generations have embraced this command. As many have said, it’s not “The Great Suggestion.” No, the Lord has commanded us to put our faith in action. It is also found in the following Gospel texts. Though each version varies, these accounts record a similar encounter of Jesus with his disciples after the resurrection. In each instance Jesus sends his followers out with specific instructions. He uses commands such as go, teach, baptize, forgive and make disciples. It says in the Bible, “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” Mark 16:15-18 KJV  Also He said to them, “And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things. And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.” Luke 24:44-49 KJV  And in the book of John He told them, “Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the LORD. Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you. And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost: Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.” John 20:19-23 KJV   The Great Commission is one of the most significant passages in the Holy Bible. First, it’s the last recorded personal instruction given by Jesus to His disciples. Second, it’s a special calling from Jesus Christ to all His followers to take specific action while on this earth. In the Great Commission, Jesus calls every Christian to step out in faith and spread the Good News. This is faith in action! People who obey this command change their spiritual lives forever! It could be spreading the Good News to a neighbor or moving to another country to reach the people there. It could be sharing with less fortunate kids down the street or spreading the Word in a town two hours away. Wherever we go, every faithful Christian is compelled through obedience to share the Gospel. If you’re a believer in Jesus Christ, where has He called you to go? Who has God put on your heart to share the gift of salvation? What small or large steps can you take, with the knowledge that Christ will be by your side, “to make disciples of all the nations”?  Do we have the same kind of concern for people who are starving, sick, and suffering from cruel oppression? And what about the multitudes who, without Jesus Christ, will spend eternity in hell? How concerned are we about their future? Do we share the compassion that motivated our Savior? The Bible says, “But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.” Matthew 9:36 KJV  The apostle Paul had that kind of concern. He wrote in the Bible, “That I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart.” Romans 9:2 KJV  Are we concerned enough to pray? We can all do that. Do we care enough to give? We can be faithful stewards and give to the ongoing work of the gospel. And what about witnessing? We can speak about our faith to a friend. We can write a letter, give out a tract, or perhaps send a book to some non-Christian acquaintance. If we care, we’ll do something. If you’re not a child of God, now is the time to think about being one. It’s not hard to do, just have faith and trust in the Lord. Open your heart to Him today, because He is the One that died on the cross and shed His blood and paid the penalty for your sins so you could have that free gift of eternal life. Amen

By: Jeff Ellinger


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2 Responses to WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT “THE GREAT COMMISSION” – IS IT IMPORTANT TO CHRISTIANS ?

  1. m. wayne karnes says:

    as a preacher i am very interested in witnessing to this dark and cold hearted world.i believe in giving out gospel tracks. i havent been much of a witness in the past.but i want to finish out right before i die off the scene. i am glad the is merciful and will let us change our minds to do the right thing and be a good witness for him.brother m. wayne karnes

  2. Lillian says:

    It’s going to be finish of mine day, but before ending I am reading this great post to improve my know-how.
    Lillian

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