Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him, but some doubted. Jesus came near and spoke to them, “I’ve received 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 Spirit, teaching them to obey everything that I’ve commanded you. Look, I myself will be with you every day until the end of this present age.” [Matthew 28:16-20]
I love the authenticity of this passage. The followers of Jesus who have followed his teachings, who witnessed his death and eventually his resurrection are about to receive final instructions from Jesus. Jesus is returning to the Father, but first He gives them a job.
They have come willingly to see Jesus, but don’t make any assumptions about the mindset of this group of disciples. Some of them have doubts. We are not told what they doubt, but we know they are not all in perfect agreement. They are not all secure in what they believe. They are not all on the same page as they are given work to do for the sake of the Kingdom of God.
They are told that they are responsible for making disciples. Sometimes when you read this passage in Matthew it is easy to get overwhelmed. It says to go into all the world. It says to teach people and baptize people. That is intimidating work. Many people just dismiss this command all together—Jesus made it too hard, too demanding.
This week starting on Monday we are making disciples of Jesus Christ. We will host a Vacation Bible School that will disciple over 200 kids. We will disciple teenagers as they lead and help support VBS. We will disciple a lot of adults who will be doing so many different tasks, like working in the kitchen, leading games, teaching Bible stories, teaching crafts and science. Some of our volunteers will help move a lot of kids from one location to the next.
Everyone has the same common goal, discipling kids. We will hopefully expose these 200 kids to the truth, the hope, and the joy that comes to us when we have a relationship with Jesus. It turns out that it isn’t that hard to disciple others. We can show up and do our part and some of these kids' lives will be changed forever. We don’t have to all be teachers and we don’t need to have perfect faith. We just have to be willing to serve.