Summary: This message looks at the Mission Statement of Christianity.
It was almost as if it had never happened. Almost as if it had been a dream, a bad dream, but just a dream.
Everything was exactly the way it had been before. Jesus spoke about the kingdom, they walked everywhere they went and did lunch together. It was hard to believe that a month before they had watched as the Romans had nailed their teacher to a cross and left Him to die, only five weeks had passed since Jesus had been raised from the dead. You would have thought that the events of the Easter weekend would have made some kind of impact on his little band of happy followers but apparently not because it would seem that it was “Business as Usual”. It was almost as if it had never happened
But then after 40 days of miracles, and teaching Jesus has this to say to His followers: “And now I will send the Holy Spirit, just as my Father promised. But stay here in the city until the Holy Spirit comes and fills you with power from heaven. But when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, you will receive power and will tell people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. These signs will accompany those who believe: They will cast out demons in my name, and they will speak new languages. They will be able to handle snakes with safety, and if they drink anything poisonous, it won’t hurt them. They will be able to place their hands on the sick and heal them. With my authority, take this message of repentance to all the nations, beginning in Jerusalem: ‘There is forgiveness of sins for all who turn to me.’ You are witnesses of all these things.
Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone, everywhere. Anyone who believes and is baptized will be saved. But anyone who refuses to believe will be condemned. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
Now just a word of warning, don’t go looking for that particular conversation in your Scriptures cause you won’t find it. At least you won’t find it exactly like that because that is a compilation of the recollections of those who heard Jesus last statement. Just as each of you will walk away from the sermon this morning remembering certain things I said each of those at the ascension of Christ remembered what to them appeared to be the most important parts of Christ’s last class with them. Those fragments by the way are found in Matthew 28:19-20, Mark 16:15-19, Luke 24:47-49 and Acts 1:8-9.
It is out of this particular conversation that Matthew gleaned what we call the great commission and that is in reality the mission statement of the early church. You know what a mission statement is right, it is when you have boiled the purpose of your life or the life of your church down to a concise statement of purpose. At Cornerstone we can tell you that Cornerstone Wesleyan Church exist to reach pre-Christians through dynamic worship and relevant preaching, bringing them to a life expanding relationship with Jesus Christ and guiding them into a practical holiness as evidenced through the fruit of the Spirit. That is our mission statement. The mission statement of Christianity is this “Christianity exists to make disciples of all nations, baptizing them and teaching them to obey everything that Christ commanded.”