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Summary: This message takes the Great Commission and illustrates the Mandate of the Messiah to reach our World for Christ and reveals the Messiah’s methodology in the process.

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Missions: The Messiah’s Mandate

Matthew 12:21; 28:18-20

©Larry L. Thompson (2003)

Matthew 12:21

“In His name the nations will put their hope.”

“Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. [19] Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, [20] and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Introduction: Begin by reading Matthew 12:21 and Matthew 28:18-20

The greatest sin that most Christians make is the sin of omission. Today, we should examine both personally and corporately as a church family if we have committed the sin of omission in regards to the GREAT COMMISSION. It has been referred to as the GREAT COMMISSION through the centuries because of the implicit and emphatic directive that escaped the lips of our Savior. It is obvious that our God has given us our marching orders. We have the MESSIAH’S MANDATE. Today as we begin this month of missions we are celebrating the theme: “JESUS, HOPE OF ALL NATIONS!” Today, we will examine how best to live in obedience to this scripture while carrying out the Messiah’s Mission Mandate that we call the GREAT COMMISSION.

Illustration:

It is easy to determine when something is aflame. It ignites other material in which it comes into contact. Any fire that does not spread will eventually go out. A church without a heart for missions and a mission’s strategy that uses the Great Commission as the mandate is a contradiction in terms; it is nothing more than simply a fire that never burns; and that is a contradiction.

Let’s examine the biblical principles that must be applied in the power of the Holy Spirit if we are to be a true NEW TESTAMENT church in our response to THE MESSIAH’S MISSION MANDATE!

I. THE MESSIAH’S CLAIM (Matt. 12:21; Matt. 28:18)

“In His name the nations will put their hope.”

“Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.”

The key word in verse 18 is “authority” the Greek is exousia, (ex-oo-see’-ah) meaning, “the privilege, force, capacity, competency, freedom, delegated influence of complete authority, power, right, strength.”

In order to understand the implication of the Messiah’s Mission Mandate you must understand this claim of Christ!

1. IT IS AN AUTHORITY THAT HAS BEEN GIVEN BY GOD THE FATHER!

“And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death--even death on a cross! [9] Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name.” (Phil. 2:8-9)

2. JESUS’ POWER IS ABOVE AND OVER ALL THAT IS IN HEAVEN AND IN EARTH. HIS AUTHORITY IS OVER THE ENTIRE UNIVERSE.

3. JESUS’ POWER ASSURES THE BELIEVER OF DELIVERANCE. Notice when Jesus told the disciples of His power: immediately following when some were doubting and immediately before charging His disciples to go into a hostile world. He proclaimed His AUTHORITY in order to erase doubt and to strengthen His disciples in going forth with the MESSIAH’S MANDATE. His authority was the disciples’ assurance of victory.

What we must see today in order to capture the essence of this scripture is God the Father gave Jesus Christ ALL AUTHORITY, SUPREME AUTHORITY, and the claim to authority that allows Him to do whatever He pleases.

II. THE MESSIAH’S COMMAND

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, [20] and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you…”

Listen carefully to the command of Christ! It was impossible for that generation to reach the whole world in its lifetime. Therefore, the commission given to the first generation of believers extends beyond to all generations of believers until the mission is accomplished. The very charge given to them is given to us. Our Lord charges us with the very same words, “Go and make disciples of all nations....”

It is amazing that Jesus not only gave us this Missions Mandate but he also provided us with the methodology that we should incorporate to so the scripture can and will become a reality!

“In His name the nations will put their hope.”

Examine with me the methodology of His Missions Mandate:

• GO, MAKE DISCIPLES; Teaching and baptizing are not enough in our missions efforts if we are to reach the world for Christ. Both are important, and Christ commissions both; but He says something else must precede both: “Go and make (matheteuo, math-ayt-yoo’-o) all nations” Means to make them a pupil, a disciple, “making them aware of Jesus!” and the way He commanded us to do that is to GO! What does our Lord mean by “make disciples”? It means we are to do what He did: make disciples and do things with them as He did. Is He not telling us to simply follow His example? What did He do? Christ “came to seek and save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10). He sought the lost, those who were willing to commit their lives to Him. When Christ found a person who was willing to commit his life, Christ attached Himself to that person. Christ began to mold and make that person into His image. The word attach is the key word. It is probably the word that best describes discipleship. Christ made disciples of men by attaching Himself to them; and through that personal attachment, they were able to observe His life and conversation; and in seeing and hearing, they began to absorb and assimilate His very character and behavior. They began to follow Him and to serve Him more closely. In simple terms this is what our Lord did. This is the way He made disciples. He made them aware of HIS LIFE! This was His mission and His method, His obsession: to attach Himself to willing believers. It doesn’t happen until we hear the command to “GO!”

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