Are you a Christian? If so, then you are called to be a part of the mission! What mission you ask?
Matthew 28:18-20 states, “And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all the things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’”
This section of Scripture is referred to as the Great Commission. The Great Commission is the final command given by Jesus to His disciples before He ascended into heaven. Jesus commanded His followers to go and make disciples of all the nations. If we want to be faithful followers of Jesus, then we cannot ignore the mission our Lord and Savior has given us. So then, what does it mean to go and make disciples? For one, it means that we as followers of Christ are called to evangelize. Evangelism is the act of announcing, proclaiming, and/or preaching the gospel. Therefore, we are commissioned to go and tell the world the good news that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, died on the cross for our sins and rose from the dead thus making salvation and eternal life available to the world. Likewise, as we share the message of Christ with others we are called to invite them to follow Him as a disciple by turning from their sins, accepting Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior, and being baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Every Christian is called to be a missionary for the gospel. Whether God calls you to another continent or tells you to stay exactly where you are, our mission is to faithfully proclaim Christ in any and every context. Though the mission may be difficult, and we may find ourselves discouraged at times, Jesus promises us that He would be with us wherever we go – even to the end of the age (Matthew 28:20). We are not alone. Christ and His Church are co-laboring with us as we continue to make disciples for the kingdom. Christians can be confident in the mission knowing that our God and our Savior is with us wherever we go and together we will change the world! On the other hand, Christ is not simply concerned with evangelism, but also discipleship. Evangelism is the first step down the path of discipleship. Since we are commanded to make disciples, one must not stop after sharing the gospel. Discipleship is not solely content transfer, rather it is life transfer. Discipleship is primarily relational. Christians must be willing to invest their time and life into those they disciple. 1 Corinthians 9:22 states, “To the weak I became as weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.” The apostle Paul loved people so much that he was willing to adapt and become all things to all people in the hopes that he might save some. Likewise, we must surrender our personal preferences and make ourselves available to all people from all walks of life to save and disciple the lost. The Lord did not intend for us to go and convert the masses and leave them unequipped. Christ told His disciples to teach them to observe all the things that I have commanded you (Matthew 28:20). The expectation of the Great Commission is that disciples would mentor and lead other disciples to spiritual maturity. Thus, discipleship is vital in linking justification (salvation) to sanctification (holiness). Of course, there are specific instances where relational development is not always feasible, but it should always be encouraged! Jesus epitomized relational discipleship. He loved His followers. He ministered to their needs. Jesus poured His life into His disciples and now He calls us to do the same.
Go therefore, and make disciples!