Before I try to answer this question I need to make sure that we are on the same page as to what the Great Commission really is. Was it something that only applied to the original disciples or does it apply to us in our individual lives?
First, let’s take a look at what is written in the book of Matthew:
Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 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.”
-Matthew 28:16-20 (NLT)
So, at first blush we see that Jesus is talking to the disciples and He is telling them to go out into the world and make disciples of all the nations. He then tells them, “Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you”. This, I believe, makes it easy to see that the Great Commission was not meant to stop with the original disciples. In fact, the Great Commission is to be practiced until the return of Christ.
Did you know that if you are a Christian you are a disciple of Christ? Did you know that you made the decision to follow Christ because someone in your life taught you about Christ? This person, whether friend or family, discipled to you. They gave you the message of the Good News so that you would have the opportunity to decide if you wanted to accept Christ’s gift of salvation. I pray that you did.
If you read the scripture that talks about the time of Christ and just after His crucifixion, you will see that there is a great urgency to spread the word of God to all corners of the earth. You see, back in that day they believed that Christ’s return would most likely take place in their lifetime. They had to hurry because there was so much territory to cover.
Well, here we are, over 2000 years later and the sense of urgency has appeared to vanished. My only thought is that we now think we have the luxury of time because it has been over 2000 years since Christ last walked the earth. Surely we have enough of time.
Another thing to consider is that when we are honest, we tend to believe that those “missionaries” are taking care of all the people who need to hear about Christ. “Don’t worry, they’ve got it covered”. Well, nothing could be farther from the truth.
You, my friend, have been given the same task as the original disciples. YOU are charged with the Great Commission. YOU are to go to all the nations and teach them about our Lord Jesus Christ.
Now, before you get upset, please know that I’m not saying that you have to quit your job and move far away (unless you are called to do so). The fact is, you can be a powerful disciple for Christ in your everyday life. You have the ability to reach the unsaved and change lives right here in your own neighborhood.
Christ said, “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.” Matthew 5:14-16
So, will you be a light of the world? Will you shine like the city on the hilltop that cannot be hidden?