Summary: This sermon, the third in the series, is meant to encourage the person to live up to the Commission that Jesus gave us in "teaching them to obey all things"
Go Therefore, and Teach Them
Church of God Seventh Day Meridian, ID
November 11, 2000
Over the last two Sabbaths, we have been talking about the last words Jesus spoke in the book of Matthew. Today, we pick this up again, looking at these words.
“(18) And Jesus came to them and spake unto them, saying, All authority hath been given unto me in heaven and on earth. (19) Go ye therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit: (20) teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.” (KJV)
In looking at this, we broke this command down to three distinct, yet connected commands:
1. Teach all nation/Make Disciples
We are commanded by our Lord and Savior to go and make disciples
In order to help you to that end, we provided some handouts (still available).
2. Baptize them
Focus is on the person being baptized, not the “baptist”
They are identifying with death/burial/resurrection
3. Teach them to obey all things I have commanded you
This is where we will pick up today
But, before we pick this up, I want to once again remind you of what else Jesus said in these verses. We will pick this up again in the series conclusion next week, He said “I will be with you always, even to the end of the world”
As we fill this commandment, this set of instruction, Jesus will be with us, guiding us, leading us, and encouraging us. This is such a large command, with Satan, the advesary working against us in the world, we could not do it on our own.
So, as we set out to live up to the responsibility of this command, let us remember that we are going down this road with our Lord.
As we get into this third area of instruction, I want to once again address the topic of teaching
I have said this before, but for those of you who have not been here, I want to address it again: You are always teaching. By your actions, by your words. If you are driving down the road, and someone cuts you off and you become angry, you represent Jesus, who lives inside of you, as angry. And you just taught the people who are witness to that something about Jesus. Even if its not the truth about him
We are always teaching, we can not escape it
To go further, it is our responsibility to teach.
Not talking about teaching a Sabbath school, or some class, or even teaching a Bible study in your home
The teaching that goes along with these verses is set in a different context.
It is not saying “preach the Gospel, baptize, and send them away to a formal school to learn” (For the record, that did not help Pharisees or Saducees) We are not talking about teaching Systematic Theology to a group of seminary students
Discipling an individual, as Jesus tells us to “make disciples” is a much more intimate process. Its something one person does with other persons.
Let me give you an example of the teaching we do here
Last week, we used the example of marriage
Preaching, making disciples: Meeting and becoming engaged
Get to know person (get to know Christ)
Fall “in love” and commit yourself to the person
Baptism: wedding ceremony
Symbolic act publicly, in front of God and your witness, exclaiming your devotion and commitment to someone.
Said last week: you can baptize (I see this as part of that intimate process bridging the gap between bringing someone to Jesus, and what we are talking about today, teaching them)
What does the marriage represent? Process of learning.
The third aspect is to “teach them to obey”
Before we can teach others to obey, we must first be obedient.
Can not effectively preach the gospel of salvation, if we are not saved. Can not effectively relate the purpose and need of baptism, if we ourselves are not baptized.
Looking at marriage, how many of you, right after the ceremony , knew everything there was about marriage. Always knew how to behave. Were never wrong.
Point is, we learn
LEARNING BEFORE TEACHING
Before we can teach an issue, we need to learn it ourselves.
That does not mean we wait until we learn everything before we teach anything.
If you have been saved, you understand salvation, teach it to people, bring them to Jesus
If you have been baptized and understand its meaning, administer it.
If you do not understand salvation, if you do not understand baptism, then I invite you to speak with me or one of the elders. We would be happy to sit down with you.