What is the big mission command?

027 wkg bs mission command

The gospel is the good news of salvation through God's grace because of faith in Jesus Christ. It is the message that Christ died for our sins, that he was buried, that according to the Scriptures the third day was raised and then appeared to his disciples. The gospel is the good news that through the salvific work of Jesus Christ we can enter into the kingdom of God (1, Kor 15,1-5, Act 5,31, Luke 24,46-48, John 3,16, Mt 28,19-20, Mk 1,14-15, Act 8,12 28,30-31).

The words of Jesus to his followers after his resurrection

The phrase "the great missionary command" usually refers to Jesus' words in Matthew 28,18-20: "And Jesus came and said unto them, To me is given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, and teaching them to keep all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you every day unto the end of the world. "

All power is given to me in heaven and on earth

Jesus is "Lord over all" (Act 10,36) and he is the first in everything (Kol 1,18 f.). If churches and believers participate in mission or evangelism, or whatever the common term is, and do it without Jesus, then it will be fruitless.

The mission of other religions does not recognize its supremacy and therefore they do not do God's work. Any branch of Christianity that does not put Christ first in its practices and teachings is not the work of God. Before his ascent to Heavenly Father, Jesus prophesied, "... you will receive the power of the Holy Ghost, who will come upon you, and be my witnesses" (Acts 1,8). The work of the Holy Spirit in mission is to guide believers to bear witness to Jesus Christ.

God sending

In Christian circles, "mission" has acquired a variety of meanings. Sometimes it referred to a building, sometimes to a spiritual mission in a foreign land, sometimes to the founding of new churches, etc. In church history, "mission" was a theological term God sent His Son, and like the Father and the son sent the Holy Spirit.
The English word "mission" has a Latin root. It comes from "missio", which means "I send". Therefore, mission refers to the work to which someone or a group is sent.
The concept of "sending" is essential to a biblical theology of God's nature. God is the God who sends out.

"Who should I send? Who wants to be our messenger? "Asks the voice of the Lord. God sent Moses to Pharaoh, Elijah and the other prophets to Israel, John the Baptist to bear witness to the light of Christ (Jn 1,6-7) who himself was sent by the "living Father" for the salvation of the world (Joh 4,34; 6,57).

God sends His angels to fulfill His will (1Mo 24,7, Mt 13,41, and many other passages), and He sends His Holy Spirit in the name of the Son (Joh 14,26; 15,26; Lk 24,49). The Father will "send Jesus Christ" at the time when everything is restored "(Acts 3,20-21).

Jesus also sent out his disciples (Mt 10,5), and he explained that, as the Father sent him into the world, he sends Jesus, the believers, into the world (Joh 17,18). All believers are sent by Christ. We are on a mission for God, and as such we are His missionaries. The New Testament Church understood this clearly and performed the work of the Father as his messengers. Acts is the testimony of missionary work as the gospel spread through the then-known world. Believers are sent out as "messengers for Christ" (2Kor 5,20) to represent him in front of all peoples.

The New Testament church was the church on mission. One of the problems in today's church is that churchgoers consider "mission as one of its many functions rather than its defining center" (Murray, 2004: 135). They often distance themselves from mission by transferring this task to "specialized organs rather than equipping all members as missionaries" (ebnda). Instead of Isaiah's answer "Here I am, send me" (Jes 6,9) is the often unspoken answer: "Here I am! Send someone else. "

An Old Testament model

The work of God in the Old Testament is associated with the idea of ​​attraction. Other peoples would be so alarmed by the magnetic event of God's intervention that they aspired to "taste and see how kind the Lord is" (Ps 34,8).

The model includes the call "Come," as portrayed in the story of Solomon and the Queen of Sheba. "And when the queen of Sheba heard the news of Solomon, she came ... to Jerusalem ... And Solomon gave her answer to everything, and there was nothing hidden from the king that he could not have told her ... and said to the king, It is true that in my land I have heard of your deeds and your wisdom "(1 K10,1-7). In this report, the essential concept is to draw people to a central point so that the truth and answers can be explained. Some churches today practice such a model. It is partly valid, but it is not a complete model.

Usually, Israel is not sent outside its own borders to witness God's glory. "It was not commissioned to go to the nations and proclaim the revealed truth entrusted to God's people" (Peter 1972: 21). When God wants to send Jonah with a message of repentance to the non-Israelite inhabitants of Nineveh, Jonah is horrified. Such an approach is unique (read the story of this mission in the Book of Jonah, which remains instructive to us today).

New Testament models

"This is the beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God" - so established Mark, the first author of the Gospel, the context of the New Testament Church (Mk 1,1). It's all about the gospel, the good news, and Christians should have "communion with the gospel" (Phil 1,5), meaning they live and share the good news of salvation in Christ. The term "gospel" is rooted in it - the idea of ​​spreading the good news, proclaiming salvation to the unbelievers.

Just as some were occasionally drawn to Israel for their short-lived fame, many, by contrast, were attracted to Jesus Christ because of his popular fame and charisma. "And the news of him immediately rang everywhere in the whole Galilean country (Mk 1,28). Jesus said, "Come to Me" (Mt 11,28), and "Follow Me!" (Mt 9,9). The salvation model of coming and following is still in force. It is Jesus who has words of life (Joh 6,68).

Why mission?

Mark explains that Jesus "came to Galilee and preached the gospel of the kingdom of God" (Mk 1,14). The kingdom of God is not exclusive. Jesus told his disciples that "the kingdom of God is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his garden; and it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the sky dwelt in its branches "(Lk 13,18-19). The idea is that the tree is big enough for all birds, not just one species.

The church is not exclusive, as was the assembly in Israel. It is inclusive, and the gospel message is not just for us. We should be "his witnesses" to the end of the earth "(Acts 1,8). "God sent His Son" for us to be adopted by salvation as His children (Gal 4,4). The redeeming mercy of God through Christ is not only for us alone, "but for the whole world" (1Joh 2,2). We who are God's children are sent into the world as witnesses of His grace. Mission means that God says "yes" to humanity, "Yes, I am here and yes, I want to save you."

This mission into the world is not just a task to be completed. It is a relationship with Jesus who sends us to share with others "the goodness of God who leads to repentance" (Rom 2,4). It is Christ's compassionate agape love in us that motivates us to share the gospel of love with others. "The love of Christ urges us" (2Kor 5,14). Mission starts at home. All we do is connected to the deed of God who "sent the Spirit into our hearts" (Gal 4,6). We are sent from God to our spouses, our families, our parents, friends, neighbors, work colleagues, and those we meet in the street, to all everywhere.

The early church saw its purpose in participation in the Great Commission. Paul considered those who are "without the Word of the Cross" as people who are lost unless they are preached the gospel (1Kor 1,18). Regardless of whether or not people respond to the gospel, believers should be the "fragrance of Christ" wherever they go (2Kor 2,15). Paul is so worried about people hearing the gospel that he sees its spread as a responsibility. He says, "Because I preach the gospel, I can not boast of that; because I have to do it. And woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! "(1Kor 9,16). He implies that he is "debtor to the Greeks and the non-Greeks, the wise and the non-wise ... to preach the gospel" (Rom 1,14-15).

Paul has the desire to do the work of Christ out of the attitude of a hope filled gratitude, "because the love of God has poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit" (Rom 5,5). For him, it is a privilege of grace to be an apostle, that is, one who is "sent out," as we all are, to do the work of Christ. "Christianity is by its nature missionary or it denies its raison d'etre", ie its whole purpose (Bosch 1991, 2000: 9).


Like many of today's societies, the world was hostile to the gospel at the time of Acts. "But we preach the crucified Christ, the Jew a nuisance, the Gentiles a folly" (1Kor 1,23).

The Christian message was not welcome. The faithful, like Paul, were "hard-pressed on all sides, but without fear ... they were afraid, but they did not despair ... they were persecuted, but not deserted" (2Kor 4,8-9). Sometimes whole groups of believers have turned their back on the gospel (2T in 1,15).

It was not easy to be sent into the world. Usually Christians and churches exist somewhere "between danger and opportunity" (Bosch 1991, 2000: 1).
By recognizing and seizing opportunities, the Church began to grow in numbers and spiritual maturity. She was not afraid to be provocative.

The Holy Spirit led believers into opportunities for the gospel. Beginning with the sermon of Peter in Acts 2, the Spirit seized opportunities for Christ. These are compared to Doors for the Faith (Act 14,27, 1Kor 16,9, Kol 4,3).

Men and women began to spread the gospel with boldness. People like Philip in Acts 8 and Paul, Silas, Timothy, Aquila and Priszilla in Acts 18 when they founded the church in Corinth. Whatever the believers did, they did it as "collaborators of the gospel" (Phil 4,3).

Just as Jesus was sent to become one of us so that people could be saved, believers were sent for the Gospel to "become all things" to share the good news with the whole world (1Kor 9,22) ,

The Acts ends with Paul fulfilling the great missionary commandment of Matthew 28: "He preached the kingdom of God and taught freely of the Lord Jesus Christ with all sincerity" (Acts 28,31). It is an example of the Church of the future - a church on mission.


The great mission command is to continue the proclamation of the gospel of Christ. We are all sent into the world by Him, just as Christ was sent by the Father. This indicates a church full of active believers who are doing the business of the Father.

by James Henderson