PODCAST EPISODE #34Jonathan:
So, back to what you were saying. You were saying, "As you are going," and I love that, honestly, because, very often, we teach, "Go!" It's kinda like, "Stop what you are doing, and go and make disciples."David:
Right. Interrupt what you are doing.Greg:
Well think about it. In the original Hudson Taylor and William Carey all those original missionaries put the emphasis on the word "go." And they used it for foreign missions. But literally in the Greek, it's not "go," it's "as you are going." So, in other words, start in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and then to the ends of the Earth. I think what we do in the typical church is, oftentimes in churches, we say, "Well here's how we do the Great Commission, and here's our mission board, and here's our missionaries we support," which can translate to, "We're paying these guys off so we don't have to reach our own neighbors." We buy them off. And I believe in supporting missionaries, but you know what? We're all missionaries. We're all called to evangelize. We're all called. If I tell my son, Jeremy, who's 8 years old, "You know, I'm gonna go to the store, when I come back, you better have made your bed." And I come back and I say, "Did you make your bed?" "Well no daddy, but I painted you a nice picture." "OK, but did you make your bed?" "Well no, but daddy, I cleaned up my toys." "But did you make your bed?" He's gonna be in trouble if he didn't make his bed. Well Jesus, before He ascends into Heaven says, "Go and make disciples, alright? I'm coming back. Go and make disciples. As you are going, make disciples." And we can come back and say, "Well look. We've built houses in Mexico. We did all this. We took care of the environment." "OK, that's great; that's good. Did you make disciples?" "Oh, I did these meetings. I have these youth group meetings." "OK, that's great, did you?" "Oh, but I made converts!" "That's awesome, did you make disciples?" So, Jesus' call is to make disciples. And He's coming back and we're gonna have to give an account.Jonathan:
But I don't know. I mean, how important do you think this really was? I mean, these were just Jesus' last words on Earth as He was ascending into Heaven. Do you think it was important as He was leaving? I don't know.Greg:
Yeah, a little bit.Jonathan:
OK. Alright, I was just curious. Just didn't know.David:
And then the fact that he talked a lot about it in His ministry before He ascended.Jonathan:
Oh! OK, that too. Alright.David:
And then Paul talks about it an awful lot.Jonathan:
And the whole Book of Acts is living that out in a very visceral way. Isn't it interesting that when the Holy Spirit comes in Acts 2, they're in the upper room, it's ten days after the ascension, the Holy Spirit doesn't float in like a dove; He comes in like tongues of fire. Now, of all the visuals you could have, a tongue, a floating tongue of fire. "La la la la la." You know, comes in sets on every one of the disciples and I think often times we read that and we take sides. "Well are tongues for today? Are they not?" And we miss the point that the Holy Spirit appeared as a tongue set on fire! Which is crazy until you realize their tongues were set on fire for the Gospel in Acts 2 and they never stopped all the way through. And the first sign of the Holy Spirit's indwelling is our tongues are set ablaze with the Gospel of Christ. And in a typical church, what do we do with a new believer who wants to share their faith? "Oh, isn't that cute? That's great. You know, we'll put you in a 12 week course and we'll exegete all that excitement out of you and then you can become a Stepford Christian like the rest of us and not make us feel uncomfortable because of your zeal."Jonathan:
Stepford Christians. That's good.David: "We'll exegete all the excitement out of you."
Tell us how you really feel, Greg.