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…’ (Mt. 28:18-19)
For many years Jesus’ command to go to all nations to share the good news of His life, death, and resurrection, daunted me. The whole world is one big place, and I sometimes have a hard time navigating my own little turf. Besides that, how can I inspire discipleship in others when I so often stumble in my own walk?
One day as I was praying with Jesus’ words, I realized I’d been misreading this passage. Instead of Jesus sending us out for Him, He was actually inviting us to join Him. This realization changed everything.
Moving from Jesus sending us out for Him to Him inviting us to join Him meant He wouldn’t be in the stands either cheering for or judging our efforts. Instead, Jesus would be out witnessing and working with us. Being sent out for Jesus can feel like a duty. Being invited to join Jesus sounds like an adventure.
Jesus invites us out onto the mission field for the sake of all involved.
First, Jesus wants us to join Him for those who don’t yet know His love and grace. Second, Jesus wants us to join Him because He wants our company. And, finally, He wants us to join Him for our own benefit.
Jesus knows that joining Him in this great work will give meaning to our
lives. God created us for a greater purpose than to simply take care of our daily needs and concerns. When we join Jesus in making disciples, we will know real and lasting fulfillment.
If our life is lacking purpose, maybe we’re thinking and living too small. I encourage us to hear Jesus’ commission to go out into the world as an adventure we do with Him. There’s no greater purpose and no greater joy than to be with Jesus as lives are changed, transformed, and saved by His grace.
- Does moving from being sent out for Jesus to being invited to join Jesus change how you see this passage? If so, how?
- What is the particular mission field Jesus is inviting you to share with Him? If you are joining Jesus, what are your challenges? If you aren’t, what’s keeping you from doing so?
- If you feel like you are missing something in some meaning, purpose, joy, or excitement in your life, could this passage be saying something to you? If so, what?