The great comission Jesus gave is to make disciples of all nations. Now putting into consideration the time Jesus spoke this, we will gain understanding of just how challenging this commission was and still is today.
Lets go back to the time the great comission was first given. First of all, people had no idea just how many nations were in the world as they did not have the technological capabilities that we have today. Second, they did not have tracts, various books and other evangelical equipment that could be used as a tool for sharing faith. Third, they did not have fast travelling capabilities. They had boats and possibly horses, but that’s nothing compared to the jets, trains and cars of the modern age.
What did they have? They had faith, and a lot of it! They had focus and a fresh message to share to the ears of unbelievers. The first disciples had the privilege of walking with Jesus in the flesh and then being empowered by the spirit. They also had persecution, which drives faith deeper and strengthens the message about Christ. They were also willing to give up all they had and to share with those in need, they had selflessness.
So why is it so difficcult to share about Jesus now? First, some people consider this old news now. ‘Why should I believe something that happened so many years ago?’ they would say. Second, we have over 2000 years of the biblical message, however we also have over 2000 years of people polluting or diluting the gospel message. ‘Come to Jesus he will solve all your problems’, ‘God loves you, be how you want to be’, ‘God wont really judge the world and send people to hell, that would be mean and God is loving’. These are twisted truths that give a false impression of the true gospel. Can Jesus solve all yoir problems? Of course, but most of the time he wont simply because in this life you will have many problems. He is more concerned of solving the spiritual problem of seperation from God. God loves us yes, but he loves us too much just to leave you as you are. He wants to form the image of Christ in us so of course he will work in us to accomplish this. Sorry to say, hell is real and it is sadly a destination people choose for themself because they dont want God. People ask God how can you send me to hell? Yet Gods hand has been outstretched since Jesus died on the cross, its just people choose not to take his hand. Third, we are in the age of distraction. Our minds are plagued on a daily basis from billboards to televesions, from the internet to mulitple news stories. It’s hard to remain focused on the gospel and Jesus when so many other things are being thrown at us. If Jesus is not more attractive to us than whatever else is being shown then we are in danger of slipping away. If the message about Christ is not being shared with the authority we have through Christ and the Holy Spirits power, then people most likely wont listen or accept the message.
We have an abundance of resources for sharing our faith. Especially in the west where we have developed libraries of books about christianity. We have churches all over the place, sadly many of them have empty seats waiting to be filled by Joe bloggs waiting to hear the message.
So how do we evangelise in the modern day age? The same way Jesus did when he was on earth. Jesus met people where they were and shared the message in that environment. Now days we are always trying to get people into the the church to hear the message, but we forget we are the church and we are the message. Evangelism is not about force feeding the gospel to people, that will make them choke. Evangelism is about our lifestyle and the daily choices we make as a follower of Jesus, it should always point to Christ as a way of salvation and should always be done out of love for God and his love for us. Remember when the church began? They shared everything and God added to their number daily those who were being saved. Acts 2:47 Praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved. It is this love and family acceptance that brings others into the Kingdom. We can’t be a one person band all though you can still make an impact as one person through the Holy Spirit; but if you want to reach the world, we need to do this together and be willing to go through whatever it takes to accomplish the great comission.
So lets break it down inti 7 points so it’s easy to remember.
- love – it always begins with Gods love for us then our love for him and each other.
- Willingness – we need to be willing to share the message of Christ and to do it with him (comission means to be a partner with Jesus in this) God will not force us.
- Acceptance – to be successful in bringing people into the Kingdom we need to be able to accept who they are. Once we accept them and they accept God then God will be the one to form the image of Christ in them.
- Perseverance – if we give up at the first hurdle because the message is rejected then we will not finish the race. When they reject the message it is Christ they reject. Be strong and move on.
- Prayer/worship– this should be in everything we do. Its not at the top of this list because it should be in every part of the list. Pray more of Gods love, pray for a willing spirit, pray to be accepting, pray never to give up and pray for salvation for the lost. Worship in truth and Spirit and enable new believers to worship Christ.
- Fellowship – once soemone comes to Jesus they need to know that they have a/some christian friend/s who can help them and teach them. If they come from the world like I did, the world will still have a firm grip on them. Show them a better way and life and they will stay.
- Selflessness/humility – it is hard to share if we are selfish or proud. Being selfless and humble will enable us to see the needs of others and act on those needs. The church will grow at a much quicker pace if we just forget about our self for a while and help someone else.
So, these are just 7 points to develop the character to evangelise and follow Jesus. Please, if you have more points in regards to this, feel free to share in the comments below.
John 13:35 Through the love that we have for each other we will be known as disciples of Jesus.