The Great Commission

September 2nd, 2011

What is the Great Commission? 

Matthew 28:19-20  "Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.  Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you.  And be sure of this:  I am with you always, even to the end of the age."

Mark 16:15 says this, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.  He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned."

The love and compassion of Jesus for a lost world was revealed when Jesus commanded, "Go into all the world!"…NOT at the cross.  The cross was the means to bring us power and dominion, the command was to keep the gospel going or it would've died at Calvary.  "Go" means "as you are going".  This command is for all believers.  As you are going about the normal functions of life, you are to preach the gospel to every creature.  Evangelism needs to be a lifestyle.

Into all the world
  • In 2 Corinthians 10:16 Paul exhorts the Corinthian church to preach the gospel in the regions beyond them
To every creature
  • Begin where you are and let it continue to the ends of the earth.  Acts 1:8 tells us to be witnesses in Jerusalem [your town], and in all Judea [your city] and Samaria [your state], and to the end of the earth.
To every nation, kindred, tribe, tongue, people
  • We cannot discriminate to only include America.
Preach GOOD news
  • It must be done in the anointing of the Holy Spirit and accompanied with signs and wonders.  God planned for there to be both a proclamation and a demonstration.  Luke 4:18 tells us that the Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed.
Make disciples
  • Not  only go and teach, reproduce yourself so that multiplication can take place.  In 2 Timothy 2:2 Paul tells Timothy that the things you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.

The ministry of reconciliation is every Christian's privilege, calling, purpose and ministry.  There is no greater honor.  Rheinhard Bonnke said in his book "Evangelism by Fire" that 'the gospel is eternal, but we don't have eternity to preach it!  We have only as long as we live to reach those who live as long as we live…the command to evangelize is all that matters, snatching men from the flames of an eternal hell'.  If 10,000 people live around a church, according to statistics, four of them die every week.


OUR RESPONSIBILITY

Proverbs 24:11-12 "Deliver those who are drawn toward death, and hold back those stumbling to the slaughter.  If you say, "surely we did not know this," Does not He who weighs the hearts consider it?  He who keeps your soul, does He not know it?  And will He not render to each man according to his deeds?"  If we do not warn those around us who are headed for hell, God will hold us accountable.

Ezekiel 3:17-19 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; therefore hear a word from My mouth, and give them warning from Me:  When I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life, that same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at your hand. Yet, if you warn the wicked, and he does not turn from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered your soul"

Paul, in his transparency, brings to light a very important truth: you don't have to be eloquent, well-dressed, educated or someone of stature.  In 1 Corinthians 2:1-5 he says, "And I, brethren, when I came to you, did not come with excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God.  For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified.  I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling.  And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power,  that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God."

It's not in your strength, but HIS!  In Mark 16:20 the disciples were out preaching everywhere and the Lord was WORKING WITH THEM and CONFIRMING THE WORD through signs. 

Look at Acts 1:8  "But you shall receive power [power for performing miracles, power consisting in or resting upon armies, forces, hosts] when the Holy Spirit has come upon you [and because of that you will be enabled to be a witness – if you have the Spirit, you have the ability].

Rheinhard Bonnke also said, "The command and the power are one package deal.  Separate the commission from the enabling and you then have either power without purpose or purpose without power.  Power tools come with the job". 

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