The Five Great Commissions Part Two

Today our reading is Mark 16:15

And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.

As we read this, there are a few background notes I would like for you to think about:

1.     It is probably day 8 and they find themselves in a room again with each other but now Thomas is with them.
2.     They are probably still in disobedience since they have not met Jesus in Galilee
3.     They are still in doubt

One of the things that amaze me about the appearing’s of Christ after His resurrection is the lack of belief the disciples have every time He shows up. You would think that with each appearing that the disciples would grow bolder, but yet we get the feeling like they doubt what Jesus has done and what He has asked them to do. I see in my own life that I do this too. Many times I see the work of Jesus in my own life to fail Him just hours, days and weeks later. I see how when I fail to keep my mind fixed on God that I easily forget what God has done and begin to reason through this world by my understanding and not in the understanding of God’s character. Doubt can easily overcome us when we do not pour God’s word into our minds. Sin easily clouds our thinking and God is the only one that can correct this.

In Mark 16:15, I find 5 more aspects of the Great Commission.

Aspect # 1”GO” – this word in the Greek writing means, “as you go to your death” or a better way to look at it is “as you go through life”. In Christ’s commissioning the disciples and then us, He has made it very clear that evangelism and discipleship is not a destination but a lifestyle. We are to share Christ as we go through life. The implication that can be found here is that every relationship God let’s you have is a potential Gospel relationship. Everyone we are connected to is someone that God has brought us to so that they can hear of the Great News of Jesus. Do we see our jobs, our neighborhoods, our hobbies and weekly activities as an opportunity to see God transform a sinner to a saint or see a struggling saint become free from sin? “As you go” gives us the sense that a Sovereign God puts us in our homes, jobs and events for the purpose of the Gospel. It is a different way to look at the Gospel. Many of us have bought into going on a mission trip or holding an event as the way we share Jesus, but this is not what Christ is saying. He is literally saying as you walk through this life, share Jesus. Everybody you meet is someone that needs the Gospel.

Aspect # 2”The World” – Christians are to take the Gospel to the World. I know, I just wrote about this not being a destination but a lifestyle. I am not backing down on that thought. Christians should have the world on our minds. We should be looking for opportunities to connect with those taking the Gospel to the world. We should see if God is inviting us to join Him on a mission trip or a permanent place of sharing the Gospel. If He is not inviting us to join Him on a journey, we should see how we would partner with those who are joining Him on His journey. We should have the world on our hearts and mind. There are over 1.5 billion people that have no access to the Gospel and another 3 billion who are not followers of Jesus. Over 5/6th of the world is going to perish if something doesn’t change soon. This should be something we think through as we set our budgets, our calendars and our relationships.

Aspect # 3 “preach” – many Christians struggle with this aspect. We think that it is the job of a hired or called minister to do the preaching. Actually this word means to herald or call to attention. God is telling all of His disciples to herald the Gospel. This is not a position in church but a thing that we all are to do out of the overflow of our relationship with Christ. Think about it for a second, we herald our favorite sports teams, which humans we love and hate, events happening n our communities, etc. …. Why wouldn’t we herald Jesus? He saved us, transferred us, rescued us, forgave us, redeemed us which brings us to Him in love. Every Christian is to herald!

Aspect #4 “The Gospel” – this is a simple message that I think we complicate a little too much. This is who Christ is and what He has done for those far from Him and what happens to those who draw near to Him. Preach Jesus and what He has done. We don’t have to be cute with this; we just need to share what Christ has done and what that means for those who are not His and those who are His. The Gospel is the good news of Jesus coming for sinners and transforming those who have accepted His free gift forever. Preach what Jesus has done for you through His word, but don’t forget to share with people why they need Jesus. The 10 commandments make it very clear that we have broken God’s law and are in need of someone to pay our penalty. Herald Jesus!

Aspect #5 ‘To all creation” – The Gospel is for those who have accepted His gift and for those who have not. It saves the sinner and grows the saint. We cannot believe that once someone turns to Jesus that we fill he/she with a bunch of theological terms and they will grow? No, we must teach people how to apply what Christ has secured for us to their every day life. This is the essence of the Gospel for a believer, that we would take the promises of Christ, His accomplishments and see how we live them out in our lives. The Gospel is for both those who are with Him and against Him.

Next time, we will take apart Matthew 28:16-20. I hope that we are both growing in what God has commissioned us to do!


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