I recently spoke on “The Great Commission” found in Matthew 28. I believe I have written about this topic in the past, but as I read the account, I found myself excited to think about a detail that I never recognized before.
The commission came approximately a week after Jesus had died. The disciples were hanging out in Jerusalem when they found out Jesus had resurrected. Their whole life had been flipped upside down just a few days prior when they saw their rabbi, the one they declared as their Messiah, hung on the cross.
As they were sitting in confusion and sorrow, Jesus sent the message that He had returned and He wanted the disciples to meet Him in Galilee. They loaded up and started their four day journey to Galilee from Jerusalem.
When they arrived in Galilee, Jesus met them at a mountainside and gave them the commission to, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you…”
So, they are being told they are now in charge of continuing the ministry of Jesus on earth. They are responsible for sharing His message of hope and love. He charges them with the task of making disciples.
It is clear that in order to make disciples, you need to be a disciple yourself. They were following closely to Christ and knew His words and works, so they were able to guide others in His ways. What teachings did Jesus give them that would be beneficial in making disciples?
The answer lies in the location He took them to in Galilee.
In Matthew 5 we find Jesus near the sea of Galilee on a mountainside giving “The Sermon on the Mount”. He helped the disciples know what He expected out of them as disciples. They were to be peacemakers. They were to be poor in spirit. They were to hunger and thirst for righteousness. There were a lot of characteristics the disciples were to have.
Then He taught them to be salt and light in the world. He gave them guidance and gave them His truth of living for His glory.
Now, jump back to Matthew 28. Jesus had called His disciples back to the place it all started. He called them back to the mountainside to remind them of His teachings. He gave them His commission in the same region He gave them instruction.
It’s my thought that He did this to remind them of what He shared a year or two before His death. He was reminding them of His standards for discipleship. He was reminding them of what it will take to truly follow Him. He was reminding them so they could remember why they followed in the first place.
He wanted them to see that He called them in their brokenness. Which means, when they go out to spread His message, they need to remember Christ will move into the brokenness of humanity and serve anyone. The disciples could not set standards on who they would share the good news with because Christ set the standard from the beginning.
He had to bring them back to the mountain.
Perhaps there are many people who claim Christ who need to come back to the mountain? I wonder if there are many who have forgotten their need for a Savior, which has caused them to lose their passion to make disciples?
What if Christ is beckoning for His followers to come back to the mountainside and be reminded of their faith journey and what it means to truly be a follower of Christ? I believe we would see an upswing in disciple making and baptism if those who claimed Christ would return to the mountainside daily.
May we follow Christ to the mountain. May we remember our faith journey. May we remember each day our need for a Savior and allow that to influence how we love our neighbor and serve our fellow man in the name of Jesus.
Peace and blessings friends.
QUESTION: How often do you reflect on your need for a Savior?