In the midst of the tumultuous events of 2023, amidst a moral quagmire, let’s draw our focus to a higher purpose—the divine mandate articulated in Matthew 28:18. The Great Commission, a living example set by Jesus during his earthly ministry. This encompasses three transformative components:
- Making Disciples: Jesus emphasises an active and intentional engagement with diverse backgrounds, moving beyond mere evangelism. Making disciples involves a relational investment, guiding individuals on a transformative journey of faith and discipleship.
- Baptising Them: Baptism becomes a symbolic expression of spiritual rebirth and commitment to Godly principles. It signifies a public declaration of faith, aligning with the one true God and entering a shared identity with the broader Christian family.
- Teaching Them to Observe: The ongoing process of teaching new disciples involves observing and obeying all that Jesus commanded. This comprehensive discipleship journey requires guidance in understanding and applying ethical and moral principles found throughout the Gospels, emphasising education, training and mentorship.
The Great Commission, as articulated by Jesus, is a holistic and transformative mandate. It challenges believers to actively engage with others, symbolically express their commitment through baptism, and invest in the ongoing process of teaching, training and learning. It extends beyond geographical boundaries, emphasising a universal call to spread the profound and life-changing message of Christ to all corners of the earth.
This approach is reinforced through key aspects:
The Pedagogy of Parables:
Jesus, a masterful teacher, effectively used parables to convey deep spiritual truths in an inclusive and culturally relevant manner. Metaphorical storytelling is a powerful tool in connecting individuals with spiritual truths.
Tailored Personal Attention:
Research shows that 3.83 million individuals in the U.K. grapple with chronic loneliness. Jesus’ emphasis on cultivating intimate relationships underscores the importance of nurturing personalised connections among his disciples.
Jesus’ call to actively participate in ministry, grounding faith in real-world contexts, remains crucial. His discipleship methodology highlights the role of hands-on involvement in personal growth.
In navigating the complex challenges and societal shifts of today, following Jesus’ example in discipling others becomes paramount, embodying principles of compassion, humility, and love.
By Anne-Marie Francis