NOTHING CHANGES UNTIL WE DO MATTHEW 28:19-20
19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
What we do and say now in America has very little resemblance to the world in which Jesus first spoke these words.
The meaning and the commandments of the words are unchanged.
What needed to be done then is exactly what needs to be done now.
We are really good at “doing church.” What we need to be really good at, is making disciples.
1. THE COMMISSION IS NOT GIVEN TO THE CHURCH BUT TO THE BELIEVER.
This scripture is given to the believer not the church.
Making disciples is the business of the disciple. The individual.
The church should be educating, encouraging, helping the individual but the commission is to each of us.
They were directed to preach, teach and heal. In other words share Jesus directly.
The people were never invited to temple or church. They were however always invited to believe.
If you are even remotely interested in people coming to know Jesus, then introduce them to Jesus.
Jesus gave authority to the follower not the organization.
He gave all of us equal responsibility and equal opportunity to do his work. T
Because it is an individual commission we are all equally responsible.
The vast majority of the messages Jesus gave were given outside the temple.
The gospel was preached and taught in the every day of every day life. In the places, time and settings of regular people.
Jesus did not organize mass programming, set orders of worship or hold board meetings. He did touch, heal and change lives.
Nothing changes until we do. Our denomination is recognizing this.
2. THE APOSTLES HAD TO CHANGE BEFORE ANYTHING WOULD CHANGE.
These men gave up everything to follow Christ to share his truth with the world. Being an apostle didn’t pay or have any benefits.
What changed? Their hearts! Their minds! Their way of looking at life! Their values! They went from being self-oriented to being Christ-focused.
The focus of their life was making disciples.
Are we playing church pretending this matters? Nothing changes until we do.
Many have observed the stagnation of the church.
We are stagnant not because of what is being done in the building but because of what we are not doing outside the building.
3. BIBLE DAYS BELIEVERS BROUGHT PEOPLE TO JESUS
45 Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” 46 “Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?” Nathanael asked. “Come and see,” said Philip.
39 Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” 40 So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. 41 And because of his words many more became believers.
John 11:33-36, 43-44
33 When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. 34 “Where have you laid him?” he asked. “Come and see, Lord,” they replied. 35 Jesus wept. 36 Then the Jews said, “See how he loved him!” 43 When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”
Bible times people got Jesus to people and people to Jesus.
Inviting people to church seldom works. Getting them to Jesus does.
The worship service as a place to find Christ is not biblical. It is a European-American historical reality but not biblically mandated.
Nothing will change until we are spiritually broken about the spiritual state of others.
4. CHRIST DID NOT INVITE PEOPLE TO THE TEMPLE. HE INVITED THEM TO CHANGE.
We are the ones who are concerned with numbers and programs. God is concerned about souls.
It is not 1975 and 1975 practices will not work. Biblical practices will. They always have.
The social life of the believers was not organized around the church. They took Jesus everywhere they went.
Christ invited people to change. He respected the temple. He simply offered them something greater.
Their programming was for those outside the church not for those inside the church.
Acts 6:1-4, 7.
1 In those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Hellenistic Jews among them complained against the Hebraic Jews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food. 2 So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables. 3 Brothers and sisters, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them 4 and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word.” 7 So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.
The gospel spread via their work with widows. To the point that even temple leading priests came to believe in Christ.
Today’s church suffers from spiritual and practical myopia. We think because we have a building and a program people will come to Jesus.
We have everything we need to be a growing thriving force for God in this community except the burden to share Christ with others.
We are a good strong church. For ourselves.
Share church? Sometimes. Share burdens? Often. Share Jesus? Not so much.
The only thing that is stopping this church from being what we are supposed to be is us. Nothing changes until we do.