28 August, 2012


We've heard this verse over and over...
"And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature." (Mark 16:15)
We call this passage, "the Great Commission."
Sunday, I told my church that it would be better called "the Great Omission," because the Church is failing miserably on this one.
I think part of the reason we are failing in this regard is because 1) we don't understand what Jesus said, and 2) We make it harder than it is supposed to be, because of #1.

Let's look at this verse again in from the Contemporary English Translation of the Bible. "Go and preach the good news to everyone in the world."

That's a little bit more simple, but there is still a misunderstanding (I think) by most of the Christians in the world. The problem, as I see it, lies with that little word, "Go."  That word has become a stumbling block to many... and excuse for others. The problem is that we have interpreted "Go" to mean that we need to sell everything we own, go to some foreign shore and become a missionary. While I am thankful that there are those who do hear and answer that call, the fact is that this is simply not what Jesus said at all. We've made the final words that Jesus spoke to his disciples out to be the call to missions on foreign soil, when in reality Jesus said something that is far more important to each of those gathered on that day, and to those of us who read and understand those words today. The meaning of his words is life-changing, both to us and to those around us!

I'm not an expert in the Biblical languages by any stretch of the imagination, but with modern tools available to us, one can study the Word of God and have a much better grasp of what the Word is speaking to us. This is a key example.

That little word, "Go" is powerful. In the original language, what it literally means is this: 
"to pursue the journey on which one has entered, to continue on one's journey."
So, with that definition in mind, rethink what Jesus said to his followers. In all actuality Jesus said, "Continue to live your lives, and in your day to day activities and encounters, tell the good news to those you come in contact with."  He was saying to impact our world... the people we come in contact with daily. This was not as much a mandate to go to Africa as is was to reach the person working next to you, or sitting in class next to you, or playing on your ball team, or living next door to you. This was not a call to some foreign soil... it was a call to reach the mission field where you live! Look at those words, "to pursue the journey on which one has entered, to continue one's journey." Jesus said, as you go on about your life, tell those around you the "good news".  What is that "good news"? It's your story! Jesus did not say to preach a sermon or to learn a script to repeat to strangers on the street... he was implying that we should tell those whom we have a sphere of influence in their lives what God has done in our lives through Jesus Christ. That's the good news! When you tell them, and their lives are changed, then they will "go" too, and one by one, we are reaching massive numbers of people. This is how the early church operated, and why it exploded with growth. When someone's life was changed, when they were healed, delivered, set free... they went about their daily lives and they'd tell their neighbor, "I got healed of my backache!" "I was set free from depression!" "I'm no longer bound by sin!" And as they told the "good news" others wanted what they were seeing and hearing!

Want to see your church grow? Then it's time to "Go"!

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