The Great Commission: Christ’s Mandate for Discipleship
The last words of a person are usually the most important. Before returning to be reunited with the Father in heaven, Jesus gave His final charge to His disciples, as stated in Matthew 28:19: “Make disciples of all nations.”
Discipleship is the essence of the Great Commission. If rescuing us and getting us into heaven were all there was to our life in Christ, Jesus would not have given such a commission to His disciples back then and to us, modern believers.
According to 2 Peter 3:9, the Lord is not willing for anybody to perish. This is supported by Jesus’ statement in Luke 19:10 that He came to seek and save the lost. This is precisely why He issued the Great Commission. It is now our responsibility to tell the world about Jesus’ finished work on the cross.
His work on the cross was so complete that whenever we share the Gospel with someone, and they believe, they get the free gift of salvation (Romans 10:10-11).
All that Jesus taught and exhibited to His disciples during His three years of ministry, including God’s Word, Jesus desired His disciples to share with others as well. The gift of salvation is available to all, and every believer is given the Holy Spirit to carry out our Lord’s final charge—disciple the nations.
The Biblical Qualities of a True Disciple
We are not really fulfilling the commandment if we are not creating disciples, no matter how zealous we are in ministry or in our Christian walk. The objective is not simply to get to heaven but to be “imitators of Christ” (Ephesians 5:1-2) and to be “light and salt” (Matthew 5:13-16) for others so that they may know Christ as well.
Various characteristics of good discipleship are taught throughout the Gospels. Let us have a look at some of them:
1. Obedience to Christ
Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” – John 8:31-32
True discipleship is obedience, and that, in a nutshell, is God’s love language (John 14:15). The obedience that distinguishes a disciple, then, arises not from a sense of responsibility, but from a loving, trusting relationship and fellowship with Jesus.
2. Love for God and One Another
“By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” – John 13:35
God is not merely a giver of love; He is love. The life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ made this love so real for us. He demonstrated His love for us by entirely surrendering His desires to the will of the Father so that “all men could be saved” through Him. (Matthew 13:17)
Love is an action, and it is this action that drove Jesus to the cross. Our love for God has a corresponding and appropriate action as well. It is not following a set of “feel-good” rules and regulations but rather the love expressed in our compassion for others—a love that does not seek to be earned and transcends all barriers of race, social class, and economic standing.
3. Bear Much Fruit
“By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.” – John 15:8
A life lived in Christ is destined to bear fruit. In John 10:10, He states that He came to give us life that is abundant in every way. True discipleship yields fruit that lasts (John 15:8). He instructs us in Matthew 6:19–21 to lay up our treasures in heaven. Our life can be an investment towards the rewards we could reap in eternity.
You cannot take your earthly possessions to heaven. So, what can you construct that qualifies as a heavenly investment? Building lives has eternal significance. That is how you are carrying out your part of the Great Commission to make disciples of all nations!
Changing the World Through the Global Approach
Contact us at Global Disciples to learn more about the Global Disciples Approach. We hope to partner with you in God’s mission soon.
Global Disciples Canada is a Christian mission organization that trains local leaders living near least-reached communities to multiply disciples for Christ. One-third of our world hasn’t heard the Good News of Jesus. Yet.
Global Disciples refers to these as “least-reached” people, and fewer than 10 percent of all missionaries work among these groups. We live in a time when many of these people are within reach of a local church.
Through our simple and effective training and coaching strategy, believers share the Gospel in their own nations and cultures. Jesus said, “Go and make disciples of all nations,” and we’re committed to doing just that. If you are looking for a Christian mission organization to partner with to become a better disciple and help make disciples, connect with us today!
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