Summary: We are all called to be evangelists in the kingdom of God.
His Commission, My Mission
(The Great Comission is Local in scope with a vision for the world. Personal in duty with a dependency on the church)
Introduction: (Requires a can of Coca-cola) Coca-cola is one product that has far outgrown its humble beginnings. In 1886, Dr. John Pemberton first introduced Coca-Cola in Atlanta, Georgia. The pharmacist concocted a caramel-colored syrup in a three-legged brass kettle in his backyard. He first "distributed" Coca-Cola by carrying it in a jug down the street to Jacobs? Pharmacy.
After little more than 100 years, surveys show that 97% of the world has heard of coca-cola. 72% of the world has seen a can of coca-cola. 51% of the world has tasted a can of coca-cola. All due to the fact that the company made a commitment years ago that every one on the planet would have a taste of their soft drink.
We should stand up and take note here! 97% of the world has heard of this sugar and water concoction while 1.7 billion people world-wide have no access to the good news of Jesus Christ! It is estimated that 17 million people die every year without having heard the name of Jesus!
When I hear those facts, I should not hang my head in despair and shame. Instead, I should be challenged, motivated, and inspired to a new level of commitment in sharing the message of forgiveness of sins in Jesus Christ. Therefore, I must allow His commission to become my mission.
I. THE PREREQUISITE OF PRAISE (v. 17 They worshipped him; but some doubted.)
a. Our motivation for telling others about Christ grows out of our worship
b. The deeper your love for Jesus grows, the more committed you are to obey
II. THE PRINCIPLE OF PRIVILEGE (v. 18 Jesus came and spoke to them...)
a. In spite of their failures, short-comings, insecurities and selfishness, Jesus had prepared these men to be witnesses of all they had seen and heard
b. We have been given the greatest privilege of all time! "It is our privilege to have world evangelism as a passion, not our responsibility to have as a burden." - Mary Nordstrom
III. THE PROVISION OF POWER (v. 18 All authority has been given...)
a. Illus. From Coke Can & Bottle...authority to produce the product is given to the bottler.
b. When you tell someone about Jesus, you have all the authority and power of heaven behind you!
IV. THE PRIORITY OF PURPOSE (vv. 19-20 Go therefore...)
a. Long before corporations caught a vision for developing mission statements, Jesus gave the church His mission statement that hasn?t changed in 2000 years.
b. God called a people out to Himself that he would use to bring lost humanity to Himself. (1 Peter 2:9)
V. THE PROMISE OF PRESENCE (v. 20 Lo, I am with you always...)
Closing Illustration: In 1996, Andrew Meekens, an elder in the international evangelical church of Addis Ababa was onboard a hijacked Ethiopian airliner which was running out of fuel. It eventually made an emergency crash landing near the Comoros Islands. According to some of those who survived the crash landing, Meekens stood up and spoke to the passengers presenting the gospel to them. Before the crash, about twenty people on that flight received Jesus including a flight attendant who did not survive. Application: Planet earth has been hijacked by sin. It?s running out of fuel and about to crash. I want to know who is going to stand up in the isles and preach Jesus to these passengers who are about to perish eternally? WHO?