Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 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, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”Matthew 28:18-20 NIV
This passage has been called the Great Commission, the church’s marching orders. In it, Jesus called on his church to go out into all the world, making disciples of all men, teaching and baptizing them.
But I am afraid that we have often misunderstood this passage as just a call to evangelism. Indeed evangelism is a part of it. But making disciples is much more than just evangelism, getting people saved. That is only the beginning, a necessary beginning, but only the beginning of disciple-making.
Jesus also told us that if anyone wants to be his disciple, they must deny themselves, take up their cross, and follow him. Being a disciple is a way of life, a life of following after Jesus, living the life of the cross. It is not just an insurance policy with membership in a social club.
If the church today is going to fulfill this commission given to us by our Lord, we need to continue telling the good news to all men. But we also need to be making disciples of those who come to Christ.
The views expressed here are solely mine and do not necessarily reflect those of any other person, group, or organization. While I believe they reflect the teachings of the Bible, I am a fallible human and subject to misunderstanding. Please feel free to leave any comments or questions about this post in the comments section below. I am always interested in your feedback.
If you have found value in this post, please consider subscribing to A Clay Jar so that you don’t miss any other posts.