Accountable to God: Day 58

 

March 29, 2012
Today’s Text: Matthew 28:18-20, 2 Timothy 2:1-4
Today’s Key Thought: This great command by Jesus isn’t just about salvation and baptism.  It’s about obedience!

 

 

Jesus continues to describe what making disciples looks like to the disciples when he said, “teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.”  Aren’t you glad that Jesus had exemplified or “fleshed out” what it meant to do just that?  He had given the commands and the teaching, and then He had taught them how to do what He had commanded.
If we are going to be good stewards of the gospel we have to be dedicated to teaching people how to follow Christ and to be dedicated to following Christ ourselves.

 

Paul communicated this idea to Timothy when He said in 2 Timothy 2:1-2, “Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.  And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.”

 

Application:

 

Are you following Jesus as a disciple?  Are you being discipled by someone in your life?  Who are you “teaching to observe” what Jesus had commanded?

Accountable to God: Day 57

 

March 28, 2012
Today’s Text: Matthew 28:18-20
Today’s Key Thought:  Baptism is a beautiful and necessary part of making disciples.

 

Jesus describes what it looks like to make disciples beyond just being “born again”.  Part of the imperative He gave to the disciples was the ordinance of baptism.

 

Notice what the apostle Paul said in Romans 6:3-5 about baptism:

 

“Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?  Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.  For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection…”

 

When some get saved they have passed from spiritual death to spiritual life.  Paul says that baptism is an outward expression of an inward reality.  When someone is put under the water it is a picture of Christ’s death on the cross for sin, and His burial.  When someone is pulled back out of the water it is a picture of Christ’s resurrection.

 

Application:

 

We will be held accountable for our own obedience in being baptized since it is a first step of obedience after someone has decided to follow Christ.  Has this happened in your life?  Take a few moments to reflect on what Christ has done for you!



Accountable to God: Day 56

March 27, 2012
Today’s Text: Matthew 28:18-20
Today’s Key Thought: What’s the main thing? Making disciples!

The imperative or command verb in Matthew 28:19 is the verb translated “teach” which comes from the Greek word transliterated “mathatusate” which literally means “make disciples”.  Let me say it more simply:  The command here is to make disciples while the words “baptizing” and “teaching” after that are the results of what “making disciples” looks like.

Let’s think very carefully about what it means to make a disciple.  The word disciple means “learner” or “follower”.  Remember who Jesus is talking to in this verse.  Say it with me class:  “The disciples!”  What had Jesus just spent 3 years doing with them?  He taught them what to do verbally.  He showed them what to do visibly.  He sent them to do what He had taught and watched them do it.  He had empowered the whole process with His finished work on the cross to pay for the sin of the whole world.  He had promised that He would send the Holy Spirit to be a part of this process.

So Jesus had very clearly illustrated and taught what he meant when he said make disciples.  We help people that are not following Jesus to follow Him.  To do this they must first turn from their sin to Jesus for forgiveness.  This is the most important decision anyone can ever make.  Jesus called this being “born again.”  This is the critical and beginning part of making disciples.

Application:

According to the Bible, what happens to someone if they do not ask for forgiveness for their sin?  Forgiveness is available.  People just need to know that it is offered.  We must be the ones to share this news with the world!


Accountable to God: Day 55

 

March 26, 2012
Today’s Text: Matthew 28:18-20
Today’s Key Thought:
 We are accountable to go!

 

It had been a grueling week.  The disciples had seen their Messiah die and felt the anguish as the thought that evil had triumphed.  It may have even entered their mind that they had been unwise to leave their lives to follow Jesus who eventually just died.  And yet, then they felt the joy of seeing the most incredible thing to happen in all of history.  This Jesus, who they had given their lives to follow, came back to life.  They had seen him raise others back to life, and now they saw that He had defeated even His own death.  Can you imagine being the disciples?  Talk about going from hopelessness to complete joy!  It must have been incredible.

 

Jesus then spends some time with them.  He gets to their last conversation.  All the teaching had come to this.  He said, “All power is given to me in heaven and in earth…”  That word “power” also has the idea of authority.  I’m sure the disciples believed Him when He made that statement.  Surely they though, “Yes you do have all authority!  You are God and have defeated sin and death!”  Based on this authority (“therefore”), He gives them a command.  He tells them to “teach” or make disciples of “all nations.”  We’ll look at the “teach” or make disciples part tomorrow.  Today, I want us to think about this idea of going to all nations.

 

Jesus commanded the disciples and us to make disciples in all nations or people group.  Now let me ask you a question:  How many nations, or with how many cultures can you go to in at once?  Of course the answer is that you can only be one nation at a time.  Jesus wasn’t asking these disciples to individually go to every nation, but he was asking them to collectively go to every nation.  That happens by each one “making disciples” wherever they go.  No people group is exempt, and no follower of Jesus is exempt from this command.  Anything Christ commanded us to do we will be held accountable for!

 

Application:

 

This may be the most important stewardship that we have because this is the mission for which Jesus came, and this is the mission that He sent us on.  Jesus came to seek and to save that which was lost.  Let me ask you this question- Is there a time in your schedule, or behavior in your life where you can honestly say that you are part of the disciple making process?  When was the last time you shared the gospel with someone?