“Then Jesus came to them and said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.’” (Matthew 28:18-20).
“Go and make disciples!” It is such a short statement, and yet, coming from the mouth of our Savior, it has a great impact on us. These words, “go and make disciples,” are the mission statement of Christ’s church. It is the work Jesus gives to believers so that His church grows.
Think of all the blessings you have as a member of Christ’s kingdom: a clear conscience because of Christ’s forgiveness, anticipation of the great joy that awaits you in heaven, assurance that God works all things for your good, comfort in the face of death (yours or a loved one’s). All these things are yours because someone obeyed Christ’s command to “go and make disciples.” Actually, not just one “someone”, but many generations of “someones” wanted to serve their Savior and obeyed His command.
Now Christ has made you a part of His church, and He gives you the same command. It is our work to tell others about eternal life through Christ so that Christ’s church continues to grow and so future generations have the same blessings of forgiveness and eternal life that we do.
We already do this. Through our Lutheran Elementary School we make disciples for future generations. Through our Synod Mission Offerings we train pastors and teachers and send them into mission settings. We also reach out into our community here in Sleepy Eye with the Gospel.
In the near future we will have an opportunity to learn more about how we can “go and make disciples”. Missionary Tim Flunker will be here for several days at the end of September to show us ways we can effectively reach out to the Hispanic members of our community. Please plan on attending some of the meetings with Missionary Flunker (details will come soon), and also come and enjoy the Mission Festival celebration on September 28th.
As we follow Christ’s command to “go and make disciples” Jesus promises that He already has all authority – He has the power to bless our efforts. He also promises to be with us so we have nothing to fear.