At the end of Matthew’s Gospel Jesus speaks what has come to be known as the Great Commission to his disciples:
The Jesus came up and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And remember I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
So how does this get accomplished? How is it that the disciples will be made to be disciples of Jesus, baptized in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit? A couple of things to keep as distinctives in answering that question:
- It will be accomplished by the one who has all authority showing up. Who is the one to whom all authority has been given? Let me quote Daniel:
“I was watching in the night visions,
And with the clouds of the sky
one like a son of man was approaching.
He went up to the Ancient of Days
and was escorted before him.
To him was given ruling authority, honor, and sovereignty
All peoples, nations and language groups were serving him
His authority is eternal and will not pass away
His kingdom will not be destroyed”
This is the one on whose behalf we speak! His authority is at work in and through us!
- It will be accomplished through Jesus presence. His power is eternal and his presence is continual. There’s something to rest in!
Okay, so again, how do we make disciples of the nations that they would be baptized into the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit? Tell me if this is overly simplistic, but I think the answer is in the question: We make disciples of the nations by immersing them in trinitarian community. Together our life and words throughout the city serve as a canvas displaying God’s character, community and invitation to reconciliation to the nations.
What do you guys think?