Summary: In this sermon I address a major problem in the church...omitting the Great Commission. Why have we done this, and what can we do to fix this serious problem? The solution can be found in the game of football! Read and find out how.
The Great “Omission”
Jim Marshall played in Pro Bowls after the 1968 and 1969 NFL seasons. He recovered 29 fumbles, an NFL record. He was a member of the Vikings’ famous "Purple People Eaters", and was the final player from Minnesota’s initial expansion team of 1961 to retire.
Marshall was involved in an embarrassing professional moment on October 25, 1964. In a game against the San Francisco 49ers, Marshall recovered a fumble, but ran 66 yards with it the wrong way, into his own end zone. Thinking that he had scored a touchdown for the Vikings, Marshall then threw the ball away in celebration. The ball landed out of bounds, resulting in a safety for the 49ers. Fortunately for Marshall, his Vikings won the game 27-22, in part because of a key sack and fumble he forced after his miscue.
I. The Great Commission
A. The Command (Matthew 28:16-20)
1. Jesus had authority to give this command
a. (After Jesus’ Baptism) Matt. 3:17 And a voice from heaven said “This is my son, whom I love; with Him I am well pleased.”
b. John 1:14 14The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
2. Hebrews 6:17-18 tells us that God is unchanging and God does not lie!
B. Examples of Apostles following this command
1. Peter at Pentecost (Acts 2:14-36)
2. (Acts 2:38-41) 38Peter replied, "Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call." 40With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, "Save yourselves from this corrupt generation." 41Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.
C. Apostles teaching this command
1. (1 Timothy 2:3-6) 3This is good, and pleases God our Savior, 4who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 5For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time.
II. The Great Omission
A. Go into all the world (if you want to)
B. Why do we omit this portion of the Gospel?
1. There is a difference between “church” and “church building”
a. Too many people view the word “church” as a building, not a group of people. “Church of Christ” refers not to the building, but to the body of believers!
b. Early church met in houses and anywhere they could find. The word church directly refers to a group of people, not a building.
c. Our Christianity goes beyond the confines of this building
d. Dr. Ross Cochran likes to say "You don’t truly know something until it drips out of your life." Or until you just can’t contain it
C. Why should we care?
1. (2 Corinthians 5:11,14-15) 11Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience.
14For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. 15And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again
2. (Romans 5:7-8 )7Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. 8But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
3. How did you get here?
4. How did you come to know Christ?
5. I can tell you the most likely scenario: someone cared enough about you, someone loved you enough to share that message of salvation with you! Christ cared enough about you and about everyone else outside of these walls to die for them. That’s why we should care! It’s a matter of eternal life or death!
III. The Solution - Football
A. The “Huddle” - We need to stop viewing Christianity as something we do…it’s a life…you live Christianity! Christian-Christ-ian
1. Christianity isn’t an event that happens in this building twice on Sunday and once on Wednesday
2. Huddle Analogy – this is where we prepare for what we do out there!
B. The “Coaches”
1. The apostles give us instruction during “team meetings”
2. They provide examples of their ministries so we can learn, but just as importantly so we can carry on the work!