Summary: Exposition of Matthew 28:18-20 about our church’s vision point to do missions and plant churches
Text: Matthew 28:18-20, Title: Famous Last Words, Date/Place: NRBC, 7/13/08, AM
A. Opening illustration: “Hey y’all, watch this…” “Go on, get out - last words are for fools who haven’t said enough.” To his housekeeper, who urged him to tell her his last words so she could write them down for posterity.-Karl Marx “They couldn’t hit an elephant at this dist. . . .Killed in battle during US Civil War.
~~ General John Sedgwick, Union Commander, d. 1864 “I am ready to die for my Lord that in my blood the Church may obtain liberty and peace.” -Thomas à Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury “We’ve never done it like this before.”
B. Background to passage: This is our final message on our vision statement that is printed in your bulletin. My hope is two fold at this point. First that our church would own this vision and when we read it on Sundays recall the meanings of these phrases, and view them as direction and not just something good and really spiritual to print on a bulletin. Secondly, I hope that some of you will feel led to help make these ministries happen, and you will feel led and called of God to minister in these areas at New River for the foreseeable future. The setting is about 25-35 days after the resurrection on a hillside in Galilee. And these are the final words of Jesus on earth said a couple of times in different locations. They are the mission of the church that will lead to the glorification of Jesus (which as we mentioned before is the reason for the existence of the church). As Southern Baptist is has historically been the heartbeat of our denomination. And yet, evangelism, baptisms, growth in general is declining. And there is talk now, after the Conservative Resurgence of the need for a Great Commission Resurgence; and it is being spread around as the ground of unity and purpose for our denomination for years to come.
C. Main thought: Hopefully we will see this come to pass on a national and international scale, BUT regardless of denominational and international church happenings, New River Baptist Church must set its face like flint with great diligence and determination to carry out the Great Commission in our church and in our lives. And taking the gospel to the nations and to the South Georgians will necessarily result in church planting. The Kingdom creates the church.
A. All Authority Has Been Given (v. 18)
1. Before Jesus gave instructions on exactly what to do, he gave them the under girding truth of the ages. Note he did use the word “therefore” to show the link between these two statements. The word exousia translated “authority” means the right to do and speak as one pleases, and the ability to command others and have dominion. Jesus was clear that every bit of authority that He possessed before eternity past, and all authority that God possesses now belongs to him. He has the absolute right to rule and reign and command in “all” things.