We are currently in a series called “Be Great.” So many have joined us since COVID-19 and I want to make clear who we are as a church and where we are going. Jesus builds His church on the Great Commandment and the Great Commission. Last week we looked at the Great Commandment; love God and love one another. This week, we’ll look at the Great Commission: “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’” (Mt. 28:18-20). Jesus builds His church and the mission comes directly from Him.
You don’t make Jesus the Lord of your life. He is Lord! Verse 19 says all authority has been given to Him. In a world that is out of control it is good to know that God is in control. Jesus is on the Throne of Heaven. Jesus has authority over nature. He can calm the storm. Jesus has authority over sickness and disease. He made the blind to see, deaf to hear, and lame to walk. Jesus has authority over the devil and demons. He rebuked the demons and they had to flee. Jesus has authority over sin and death. He rose from the grave! Jesus has authority over His church and over the lives of His children. Submit every area of your life, all your dreams and plans to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. As a church, we submit to His authority as well.
Making disciples, baptizing them, and teaching them is what the church is called to do locally and globally. We as Christians, and we as Liberty, exist to reach our neighbors and the nations. Baptizing means to immerse. It is a picture of death, burial, and resurrection. It is identification with Jesus, in the name of the Trinity, and it is immediate. To neglect baptism is to dishonor and disobey the Lord. Teaching is discipleship. This is showing others what it means to be a Christian. It’s instructing them on how to know God, find community, serve people, and leave a legacy. Teaching is more than an hour on Sunday. It is a way of life. Start your day and fill your daily conversations with scripture.
Jesus says, “I am with you always.” We have His power, His plan, and His presence. The mission does not depend on who we are or what we can do but on who Jesus is and what is can do! The Gospel of Matthew ends the way it begins. Matthew 1:23 says, “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel (which means ‘God with us’).” God is with us and He is for us. That is why we pray, give, and go.
Why we don’t talk to people about Jesus? If you are afraid they are going to ask something you don’t know the answer to, say, “I don’t know but here is what I do know….” God did not give us the gospel and good news to keep to ourselves. We talk about everything else! Sports, big fish, grandkids. If it is in you, it is going to come out of you! Jesus loved the world, not just some people. His death on the cross is sufficient for all people, but only efficient for those who believe. You are never alone. When God prompts you about speaking to others, He is with you! The Holy Spirit will give you the words to say and bring the conviction. Share your story. Ask God to help you find someone who is hurting and in need. Use your phone and social media for the gospel. Go on a mission trip when opportunities open up again. Just like Liberty makes the great commandment and great commission our pursuit, I pray you will make both your pursuit as well.