Listen to Jesus before you receive and act on the Commission to Make Disciples.
Matthew 28:16 ~ “Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go.”
Accept that you may be a Disciple (Student/Learner/Follower) anywhere on the scale from Adoration to Doubt.
Matthew 28:17 ~ “When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted.”
Understand that it is because Jesus received all authority that He was empowered to commission the eleven and all subsequent generations of believers (including you) to Make Disciples. In fact, it was His first command after receiving that authority and His last before ascending.
Matthew 28:18 ~ Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.
That listening, accepting, and understanding opens the door to the “therefore.” That “Therefore Faith” starts with:
Going – An imperative (something you must do actively) It carries both the sense of “go” and “while you’re going.” It is never one over the other or apart from the other. It’s only becomes passive in the sense of “while you’re at it,” after you have already become active in it. It’s putting the commission into motion. Motion is a prerequisite to Mission. The Mission is Making Disciples. You can’t make anything without moving. “For in him we live and move and have our being.” Acts 17:28
Matthew 28:19a ~ “Therefore go”
Make Disciples! Jesus told the eleven and you by way of a transgenerational command to Make Disciples. It is an inescapable logical loop command whereby any true disciple of Jesus will make other disciples of Jesus because it is one of the commands which must be obeyed/observed.
Matthew 28:19b “and make disciples”
Of all ethnic groups. The word “nations,” can mean ethnic groups, nations, races of people, heathens, Gentiles, or anyone outside of God’s people. (Unsaved) Be careful about assuming that once every nation-state has heard the Gospel, that the end will come. See Colossians 1:23
Matthew 28:19c “of all nations”
Baptizing them. It is possible that water baptism is not what is being spoken of here, but highly unlikely. You may leave a comment below regarding this if you wish. Regardless, immersion into the the Name of the Father, the Name of the Son, and the Name of the Holy Spirit is crucial. Baptism in water or otherwise signifies coming into the “possession” of another (Arndt & Gingrich, Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, p. 575). Hence, at the point of baptism, one enters a special relationship with the divine Godhead. That is an immersed relationship, and is always trinitarian.
Matthew 28:19d ~ “Baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”
Teach them to observe/obey everything I have commanded you. Teaching here is not solely the passing on of information or knowledge. It is the constant demonstration, encouragement, and equipping of others by which you reproduce the Jesus in you in them. All that Jesus commanded can be easily deduced from scripture and will be brought to remembrance and effect by the Spirit. If you’re interested in seeing “all that Jesus commanded,” click here.
Matthew 28:20a ~ “and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.”
Hold on to the promise. Not only did Jesus have the authority to commission you to Make Disciples, He promised that He would be with you always as you faithfully execute the commission. You do not and can not make disciples on your own. But, what a blessing it is to know that while you’re making disciples, Jesus is right there with you. Always.
Matthew 28:20b ~ “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”