Quoting the Great Commission Won’t Fulfill It

Matthew recounted the last words he heard from Jesus when he composed his Gospel account. Any communication from Jesus should be taken seriously, but His final remarks serve as a singularly focusing set of marching orders.

Hearing the Great Commission left a mark on him and, hopefully, us. Gathered with a group of Jesus’ disciples who awaited the next set of instructions, Matthew remembered hearing the words Christians have at least verbally centralized.

We know Jesus called us to go and make disciples, but how thorough are we in such a task?

18 Jesus came near and said to them, “All authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go, therefore, and make disciplesof all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Matthew 28:18-20

The call to make disciples (28:19) is better understood through the phrase, “teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you” (28:20). Jesus did not instruct us to teach others to know everything He commanded.

Sharing biblical information is intended to lead to biblical transformation. Knowledge is not enough.

We can quote the Great Commission, sing about its call, clothe ourselves with its phrases, and share its verbiage on our social media platforms, but the point is to fulfill it – not talk about it. 

Not only must we observe it, but the task of making disciples is getting others to observe the teachings of Jesus. You can mentally agree with doctrines, but there’s a disconnect if they don’t change your lifestyle, there’s a disconnect.

Our teaching should call for a response. We must do more than acknowledge the truth – we must observe it.

Making disciples implies that learning is taking place, but not a mere mental ascent to doctrinal stances. This type of learning is so thorough that it alters our lifestyles.

Discipleship always seems like an out-of-reach goal for most Christians, but if you are a Christian, you are a disciple.

Instead of complicating the process, embrace the simplicity of it: you observe the teachings of Jesus and then share with someone else how to do it. It really is that simple.

If you are engaging with all the commands of Jesus and applying them to your life, share that with someone else. So many people live with religious guilt or spiritual motivation without anyone showing them what to do.

Who can you help today by showing them what you are learning?