With what we call the Great Commission, Jesus guarantees us victory in this spiritual battle. This victory is based on his own authority. In Matthew 28:18-19 Jesus said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations…” That’s a command, by the way. Jesus wasn’t saying that it might be a good idea to give this a try. He commanded all of his followers to Make Disciples.
More than that, he made it clear that everyone who is not obeying his commands is working against him. Matthew (12:30) and Luke (11:23) both record this statement by Jesus: “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.”
That brings up a question, doesn’t it? Are you gathering with Jesus, or are you scattering? There’s no neutral position. There’s no third option. You’re either working for Jesus and his Kingdom, or you’re working against him.
Michael Card wrote a song titled, No Rusty Swords, in which he talks about this.
Don’t you know the battle’s raging
And you’ve got to join the fight
There’s an army of the darkness
And an army of the Light
There’s a side that fights for Satan
And a side that’s for the Lord
And on this battle field there are no rusty swords
Christ has made the final move
So our side is sure to win
He became like us so we would have
A chance to be like Him
It seems strange so many fall back
When the victory has been won
You just need to ask yourself
Which side you’re on
There’s a fact you need to understand
Before you join our side
You need to know when Jesus calls
He bids you come and die
He’s invaded Satan’s kingdom
And He’s claiming all His own
When the battle’s over
He will lead us home
And on this battle field there are no rusty swords
So, are you involved in making disciples of all nations, including your own?
There are many ways for you to be involved, if you’re not already. They mainly fall into these categories:
Pray – If you are a follower of Jesus of Nazareth, you can pray. This is the very least that we all should be doing. Everyone can do this.
Jesus said, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.” So, you can pray that God would raise up his children to go out into the harvest of human souls and make disciples.
You can also pray for the souls of the lost. Pray that our Lord will prepare their hearts for the message of those who will go to them with the message of Christ. Pray that they would eagerly accept the message of the Truth and become disciple makers themselves.
Pray for those who are actively engaged in disciple making on a daily basis. Pray for the missionaries that your church supports. Pray for the many missions agencies who are training and sending out missionaries.
Pray for yourself. Should you move beyond just praying? Ask God to show you how you can be more involved in obeying Christ’s command to make disciples. It doesn’t necessarily mean becoming a missionary and heading out to a foreign country (but it might).
Give – If you own the computer that you’re using to read this, I feel confident that you can afford to support the work of those who are making disciples. Almost everyone can do this.
We are commanded to support the work of Making Disciples. And Paul says that our giving is “a sacrifice acceptable and pleasing to God.” The money is all His anyway, so why not use it in a way that is pleasing to him.
There are several ways you can give to support disciple making. You can (and should) give faithfully to your local church as your church supports missions and disciple making (or it should; if it doesn’t, ask your pastor for an explanation).
You can personally support a missionary or a missions agency on a monthly basis.
You can set aside a certain amount out of each paycheck to support people’s short-term missions trips or other disciple making projects as they come up.
Go – While we should all be sharing the Gospel as we go along in our normal lives, perhaps you are in a position, or can put yourself in the position, to do more or go farther. Perhaps you can even make the decision to become a full-time missionary. I believe there are more of us that can do this than those who are doing this.
Those who Go are those who have come to the understanding that God may want them to more actively be about the disciple-making task. It can be full-time and for the rest of your life. It can be a short-term missions trip somewhere where you can be about the business of sharing the Gospel or helping those who do, either alone or with a group. It can be simply going out to a city mission to the poor to help serve food and share Christ. It might even be getting involved in street evangelism.
I heard someone say once that there are three types of believers when it comes to making disciples: the Zealous Goers, the Zealous Senders, and the Disobedient. If you are a follower of Christ, I pray that you take Jesus’ commands seriously. For Christians, this life is not about being successful (by the world’s definition), nor is it about being sure our children get the best life they can get. For believers, this life is about telling the world that they are condemned by God for their crimes against him, and if they don’t repent, they’re doomed. For us, this life is about making disciples. You’re either doing that or working for the wrong side. That isn’t my assessment, that’s what Jesus said.
Jesus also said that if anyone would be his follower, he must follow him completely, for what profit is there in gaining the entire world if a man loses his soul? This life is an eyeblink compared to what’s coming. For those who are not believers, eternity is Hell. We have the message of salvation. How much do you have to hate someone to not give them that message!
So, are you actively involved in making disciples? You can start today.