Wednesday, April 9, 2014

G is for Great Commission

This is the April Tabletalk's theme.  In this issue, the authors break apart the verses of Matthew 28:19-20 and talk about each part.  I will talk about this.  I think I will do this by saying something about each article, and then illustrating it with a random song.

The Great Commission in the Old Testament by L. Michael Morales
Yes, the Great Commission is in the whole Bible, not just in those two verses in Matthew.  In Genesis, after God created Adam to be the ruler of the earth and before Adam failed, God told him to multiply and fill the earth and subdue it.  He must also rule over the creatures.  (Genesis 1:27).  Adam failed his mission by betraying God in eating of the forbidden tree, but the commandment to multiply and fill the earth remains.  It has been completed by Jesus, the rightful ruler of the world, and we are privileged to partake of this mission with him.

The King is Here, by Kim Walker-Smith of Jesus Culture.  How true.  Adam failed the plan, but our rightful king, Jesus is here.  Now God's plan to fill the whole earth with his praise will continue until Christ's return and beyond.

All Authority in Heaven and on Earth by Roland Barnes
"It is noteworthy that before Jesus commissioned his disciples in Matthew 28:18, 20, He asserted His authority to do so."  Who first gave the command?  God the Father.  Who carries it out?  God the Son.  He proved his authority by his death and resurrection.  He was the only worthy human that lived, and he conquered sin and death for his weak people.  Therefore, he has every right to tell his people the Great Commission and to send his Holy Spirit to guide them through the process.

"Unashamed of You" by Chris August.  Here is an appropriate response to Christ's authority.  He paid our price for us, and now how dare we not obey his amazing command to tell all the world about him?  We need the fill the earth with people who praise his name, and he has given us so many ways to praise his name.

How then shall we "go"? by Karl Dahlfred
"But who exactly is supposed to go?"  Some have said it was just the apostles alive at the time, but Jesus promised to be with them "to the end of the age."  This implies something that extends beyond the lifetimes of the Apostles.  This belongs to all the Church.  To all the people who Christ mercifully saved from an eternal punishment in hell.  These people must go and tell all the world what Christ has done for them and pray that it is true for those that they tell.

"Holy Spirit" live with Jesus Culture and Martin Smith of Deliriou5?.
And as always, we can't even wake up in the morning without the Holy Spirit.  We can't spread his mission to the world without him either.  We must constantly pray that he will keep us thinking of him and discerning what to do with our lives.

Make Disciples by Dave Eby
"The Greek word we translate as disciple means learner."  First, he asks, what is a disciple?  A disciple is a learner.  2. How are disciples made?  They are made through the ministry of the Word entrusted to the church. 3. What kinds of disciple-making are there?  There is initial discipleship the one that brings people to know Jesus as their savior.  Normal discipleship is teaching already-believers God's word and commands.  It is exactly what we are to do with our families and small groups.  We must continue to meditate on the word and see how it applies to our lives and how it applies to our children.  Restorative discipleship is for when people have gone away from the faith but have come back.  Hooray for Celebrate Recovery!  Discipleship is for all stages of the Christian walk on earth and is always a team activity.  It is disciples that lead the discipling.

I listen to "Grace for All" by Holly Starr for the first time.  How appropriate.  Discipleship is for all people, and God's grace is for all disciples, both leading and receiving.

"All nations" and Church Planting by Ed Stetzer
"The sheer scope of the assignment is embodied in two little words: all nations."  Our work will not ever be done.  We must keep preaching the Word and then look for another unreached place in the world where it is not preached.  God created the nations at Babel when he divided their languages.  Now he wants all those languages to come together and praise and serve Christ.  "The Great Commission cannot be fulfilled without church planting."  You need the church to disciple, baptize, and teach.  So, although the task is large, God never expects us to do it alone.  We must work as a church team and reunite the people into the same language of Jesus.

"Back to you" by Mandisa.  This is a better response to the article about who is supposed to "go."  All God's saved children are to go and tell the world.  Not only is it a privilege, it is a command.  As God dispersed all the nations at Babel, he plans to bring them all back together, all back to him.

Baptizing them by JV Fesko
"God uses water in connection with the broader context of redemptive history.  The Spirit hovers over the waters right before he creates the world.  A dove flies from the ark to the land over water just as Noah and his family are about to leave and start life again.  The Spirit descended on Jesus like a dove as he was baptized with water to show how he would begin his new covenant.  Baptism symbolizes God coming alongside people as new life begins.  This new life is for all believers and their children.

It's the chorus of "Give me Jesus" sung by Matt Stinton and Bethel Music.  It's very ethereal and shows a picture of water.

Teaching them to Observe by Victor Cruz
"Being an evangelist is more than just telling people about Jesus; it requires that we become teachers of the gospel."  The Authority to Teach: The Great Commission is where Matthew first uses the word for "teach" or didaskoThe Need to Teach: The Church, then should be the guardian of the gospel.  It needs to monitor with discernment whenever a teaching goes against the Bible, no matter how subtly.  What to Teach: Teach them to become mature adults, not infants and children.  Start them on the basics, but move on to real teaching.  Your disciples should know who Elijah, Simon Magus, and Jephthah are.  They should be exposed to Romans 9.  They need to wrestle with their beliefs until they know why they believe them.  They don't just believe them because that's what they've heard their whole lives.

"Song of Solomon" by Jesus Culture and Martin Smith.  Yes, people even know the correct way to love people and how it should mirror the relationship between God and us.  Marriage between a man and a woman perfectly signify how Christ loves the church.  In our lives, it should be faithful to each other, with sight for no one else.

I am with you always by Gerrit Scott Dawson
"Jesus and His brothers could not be parted by the distance between the world and the heavenly realms.  How can this be?"  The Holy Spirit, praise God

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