Designed for the Great Commission

Series: (Intro) Finding Your Place in the Great Commission


Every church like every believer is

uniquely designed for a significant place of ministry in the Great Commission. Discovering our individuality enables us

to find where we best fit into the God’s great plan.

Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.
(Proverbs 22:6)

A key to understanding this verse is the words, the way he should go. It is not about the way we think or would like the child to go. It is the way the child has been designed by God to go. Guiding our children should begin with teaching them the principles of Biblical truth. Every believer has been designed by God for fulfilling a part in the Great Commission. Discovering where you fit into the global mission is an essential part of being a disciple.

And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in2 the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matt. 28:18-20

The commission is about God’s MISSION for the believer and the church. Understanding the Great Commission is the foundation to being part of God’s mission. In the next few issues of the Equipper we will look at how to discover your individuality and how to find where you fit in God’s local and global plan.

This issue we will look at the Commission. Hopefully it will help you to look beyond the surface meaning and begin to see the whole task.

1. Intentionality is at the heart of the commission. The first word “GO” is a command that requires intentional actions. The idea is “as you go” and wherever you go is part of the

meaning. It does not mean to drift through life waiting for the opportunity to be a “witness.” The implication is that wherever you are, you need to be intentional about the mission.

Intentional in Rick Warren’s words is to be “purpose driven.” Living a purpose driven life requires us to be part of the mission. Unfortunately most believers and churches have lost the sense of being intentional about the mission. Reasons for the lack of intentionality include:

  • A lack of teaching and understanding on the full meaning of the Great Commission.

  • Self centered philosophies that are more concerned about the church meeting my needs than being missional.

  • Leadership that is not challenging and equipping the church for the mission.

  • People are too busy with their own lives to consider their place in the mission.

    The Great Commission is first a command to be intentional about the mission both personally and corporately by the church.

    2. Proclamation of the Gospel is the foundational step in the commission to make disciples. The Great Commission is not about simply increasing the number of believers. It is about making disciples.

    Unfortunately many churches and believers have reduced the gospel to the least common denominator. It is a message that calls people to believe in a loving God who will make their life better. The omission is that there is no call to repentance. Biblical proclamation must include a calling to repentance.

    Proclamation must also clearly reveal who Jesus is and what He has done. A few of the key passages that illustrate our message are Acts 2 and 1 Corinthians 15. The proclamation of the gospel must include a full declaration of the person and work of Jesus Christ.

    The commission is not just about proclamation. When a person hears and accepts the gospel, the discipleship

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process begins. Accepting the gospel is not the end but rather the beginning of the commission to make disciples.

3. Identification with Christ and His Church is declared through baptism. Baptism is the Bible’s identifying mark of conversion. Additionally in the New Testament it is an identifying mark of commitment to the church.

When the gospel is reduced to the least common denominator one of the first things that is neglected baptism. When baptism becomes a ritual rather than expression of conversion and commitment the purpose and meaning are lost. The result is that baptism and the church have become “optional” to discipleship in our culture.

Even mission agencies and student ministries often ignore the importance of biblical baptism and the church in what they call discipleship. Biblical discipleship commands us to make disciples who identify with Christ through baptism and His church.

4. Instruction is the food of discipleship. The church is called to build the instructional foundation of discipleship. In the book of Acts the church was clearly the center for instruction and discipleship. The Great Commission is a call to the church to be the instructional institution for discipleship.

Unfortunately, the church for many years has failed to provide a biblical discipleship ministry. Bible Colleges and Seminaries have a great potential for teaching theological truth. However, the danger is that the church has turned its responsibility over to the schools. The Great Commission calls for the church to be the center of instruction. I would challenge churches to accept their responsibility to form deeper partnerships for instruction and discipleship with institutions of higher education.

5. Application is the part of the Great Commission that applies knowledge to life. The call is teaching to observe. We are not called to transfer knowledge without teaching application. Colleges are much more effective at transferring knowledge than teaching. The church provides the laboratory for applying knowledge to life and ministry. God designed us to grow through community and the church is His community for His disciples.

Finding your place in God’s Mission begins with understanding the Great Commission and connecting with His church. The Commission is not simply about making believers but about building His Church. Thus, finding your place requires active involvement in a local church with a global mission.

Ten Indictments against the Modern Church by Paul Washer

Do you use a Kindle or have the Kindle app on your computer? If so, I found a recent resource worth the price, free. The book “Ten Indictments . . . “is a free resource worth reading. Paul Washer addresses ten of the weaknesses commonly seen in churches today. While reading, you can assess your church or even your personal ministry for evaluation. This resource is worth reading, even worth purchasing..

The Kindle search offers numerous books worth reading by authors like the classics from D.L. Moody, S.D. Gordon, and others. Many are free.

BBM Workshops in the Fall of 2014

Gary will be leading two area wide Design Your Impact Workshops. Registration is open to churches and individuals. Contact Gary Becker for more info.

Friday Evening/Saturday AM - October 17-18, 2014

Petersburg Baptist Church

Petersburg, NY

Saturday November 8, 2014 8:30 AM – 1:00 PM Abundant Life Baptist Church Washington PA