Summary: This a call to the church to focus on disciple making by going to people, baptizing new converts, teaching about Jesus, and sending them back into the world again.
A few weeks ago I had the privilege of visiting with Ron Myers in his workshop. Ron has great space for working on wood. In his shop he has all the tools he needs to make cool crafts like this ornament. I know this, because he made this ornament in his shop and gave it to me. I would consider Ron a master wood worker. And I said, he has all the tools he needs, maybe not all the tools he wants, but all the tools he needs to make this ornament.
He showed me the wood he cut it out of, and then he showed me the pattern he used in order know where to make the cuts. Now Ron is a great wood worker, but before he begins a project, he knows basically what he is going to do. He does not turn on his tools, take a plain piece of wood, start wacking away at it, and hope something nice will come out. It does not work that way. All us wood workers need an idea of what we are building, and a plan.
But wood workers are not the only ones who need a plan, if you are cooking, you need a plan, it is called a recipe. What is a recipe? Right. It tells you what ingredients to use, how to mix them, and how long to cook them.
This last week, Ginny and I were visiting with some good friends, they served a great sourdough bread. I committed I would like to have that bread a home. He gave me the sourdough starter, and the recipe. I have the recipe right here. It calls for 2 teaspoons of yeast, but I really like yeast so I think, it will put in ½ a cup of yeast. And it calls for 5 cups of bread flour, but I really don’t like flour, so I think I will cut that down to 1 cup. And it says to bake it at 425 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes, but I am in a hurry, so I think I will bake it at 550 for 15 minutes. Do you think my bread will turn out like my friends? No, why? I did not follow the recipe.
You are right of course, If I want good sourdough bread I need to follow the recipe, the plan, because the plan has been tested, tried, and found to work.
Did you know the Jesus gave us a plan for the life of the church? We have been referring to this plan every week, it is call the great commission.
It is found here in Matthew 28:16-20. This passage tell us there are four things we need to do. Well in fact, he tells us there is only one activity we need to do, but there are three steps for us to follow to do the one activity. Like making bread, or cutting out a wood pattern. There are steps you need to take, in a certain order to make them turn out right.
Jesus said, I want to deal with this authority issue up front. My authority comes from God the father. I have been given not just some authority, or a little authority, but all authority. Jesus he has authority. Not just in heaven but also over all the earth. So when we are living up to the command Jesus is about to give us, he said, I give you my authority. We as the church do not do what we want to do, or what we like to do, we do that Jesus commands us to do, and then we work in his authority.