In my previous two posts, I wrote about the importance of going into all the world to share the good news of Jesus Christ. But in our zeal to carry out the Great Commission through preaching, we sometimes forget that the Great Commission also contains another command from the Lord Jesus Christ: the command to baptize.
Matthew 28:18-20: “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”
Matthew 28:18-20: And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Sometimes, we are so focused on what God is going to do in the future that we miss what God is already doing right here and now. We often think, “Someday, God will call me to be a missionary,” or “after I retire, then God will use me for the Great Commission.” But the truth is, God has already called us. Jesus has already commanded us to go and make disciples of all nations. So what are we waiting for?
Psalm 119:105: Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
Recently I have been driving down some country roads at night. It always amazes me when I come across people riding a bike along a busy road in the middle of the night, without any lights or reflectors to make themselves visible. One guy was skateboarding at night in a t-shirt and shorts despite below-freezing temperatures, and wearing all black. Fortunately my car headlights always enabled me to see (and avoid) these travelling daredevils.
Call me a loser, but I didn’t catch much of the “most viewed Olympics ever”, this summer. Partly because I’m jealous of the fact that I can’t do a cartwheel and my only effective swim-style is the doggy-paddle. Mostly because I was seriously struggling with whether or not Christians should even be supporting people striving for “fool’s gold”. I mean don’t get me wrong, it’s been great to hear Olympians give God the glory for their “medaled” accomplishments. But there’s got to be a side of Christians that are dying to see athletes like Gabby Douglas quote, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord will be with you wherever you go!” as she marches into her school with the mission of saving souls, rather than before doing some flips across a springy floor. Maybe I’m being overly critical, or maybe I want to see her succeed for the Lord’s glory in areas where I failed at her age.
I have a lot of friends on Facebook and a number of people I follow on Twitter. I enjoy seeing pictures of babies or beautiful scenes from your vacation. I appreciate getting a 140 character or less word of encouragement or even conviction. I follow a wide spectrum of people – from close friends to favorite athletes.
In recent years, social media has become an amazing source and resource. News from revolutions or protests spreads through twitter long before the news camera’s show up. Pictures of weather confirm the weather man wrong. On site information is available instantly. Personally, friends and family even have been able to follow the news of my wife giving birth with pictures of our growing family beautifully filtered on Instagram (not that my kids need any help being cute!).
The fabric of our lives is what makes us who we are, that fabric should be interwoven with God! It is God who has made us. He desires to be the Fabric of our lives. I was recently at the beach there was an announcement over the loud speakers that there were lost children looking for their parents. One of the children was a 5 years old, the other was 3 years old, and there was a 1 year old. After the last child’s parents were located the life guard station politely announced “could parents please stop drinking and keep an eye on your children”. We know that alcohol was a factor, because the police had been there checking and confiscating alcoholic beverages right before we arrived. A women sitting across from us was commenting on how could any parent lose track of their children. If you look at the marriage status in this country today you will see that statistically 1 out of ever 3 marriages fails. I feel as though from talking with people that the number is more like 9 out of every 10 fails. It seems everywhere I turn people are either getting a divorce or there marriage is on shaky ground. I think that there is something seriously wrong with the fabric many people are choosing to weave their lives out of today, NO GOD only themselves!!!
I have been on a 36 year quest to find the right the path which would give me a greater spiritual awareness and closeness to my Creator. I have found it to be a rocky road at times. On this journey I have finally come to know God in a greater way than I ever thought possible. I have also found that the hard things in life can be good for us, because they help us, by Faith, turn to our Creator and seek his help and guidance. GOD LIKES THAT, yes he likes when we depend on him. It was always that way we just didn’t know it. After all he did create us, wouldn’t you think he has all the answers. WHY NOT ASK? Please read the following Article, in it you may find something that can help you, as it did for me.
Martin Luther (a.d. 1483-1546) was an extremist. He believed all deeds were inherently corrupt and that only by an act of God’s sovereign grace could one be saved. Thus, ultimate salvation has nothing at all to do with works, it was entirely granted on the basis of faith alone in the words of God alone. Furthermore, the faith one has is itself a gift from God bequeathed to those he has predestined for salvation. Although Luther has now been dead for 465 years, he continues to cast a long shadow. All one has to do is listen to Christian radio, watch TV preachers, or peruse the local Christian bookstore to find virtual unanimous agreement on this issue (unless one happens to tune in to a Catholic program). It seems that non-Catholics universally condemn “works righteousness” and “salvation by works” as if the worst action would be to actually do something other than merely believe. Somehow, faith is good and works are bad. Those who strive to be holy are misguided while those who humbly confess they are incapable of doing good are virtuous. For some reason, I never see the bumper sticker “striving to obey God”, but frequently see the one that says “not perfect, only forgiven.”
I thought of this song this morning, as I read these words in Scripture:
“And he [Jesus] said to them, “Rightly did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, “This people honors Me with their lips, But their heart is far away from Me. But in vain do they worship Me. Teaching as doctrines the precepts of men.” Neglecting the commandment of God, you hold to the tradition of men.”
The views expressed by posters and commentators are not necessarily endorsed by Living Hope International Ministries. Feel free to disagree with us as we all work together to discover the truth of Scripture.