Jesus’ Great Commission
The book of Acts is an exciting book to read if you’re a genuine follower of Jesus Christ. Filled with the Holy Spirit, the early Church was bold & intentional to obey Jesus’ Great Commission to “make disciples”; and, the results were inspiring! On the Day of Pentecost, as Peter and others preached the Gospel in the Power of the indwelling Holy Spirit, it says “…that day there were added about three thousand souls” (ch. 2:41). Wow! The 1st church started with 3,000 people! And then we read that “…the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved” (ch. 2:47). A couple of chapters later we read, “Many who heard the message believed…and the number of the men came to be about five thousand” (ch. 4:4). The next chapter uses the term “multitudes” to describe those added to the church, “…all the more believers…multitudes of men and women were added to their number” (ch. 5:14). From that point, the text says the number of disciples was “multiplied”; and, “…the word of the Lord was being spread through the whole region” (ch. 13:49).
That’s the math of disciple-making— God first “added” to the church; then, “multitudes” were added; and, finally, the number of disciples “multiplied.” Once the Spirit begins to “multiply” the number of disciples, you have an incredible movement of God! What’s in your heart as you reflect on those events? Is it simply “historical” to you— another great BIBLE STORY that doesn’t hold much meaning for today? Or, do you believe that God still works like that when His people are genuinely broken enough to repent of their disobedience to His Commission; and, begin to intentionally love people & disciple them into the kingdom? Do you believe it can happen again?
The Fields Are White
It was like a couple of years ago that I had the opportunity to be part of a Gospel Coalition meeting in Omaha; and, I found it incredibly refreshing talking with several “20-somethings” who were passionately taking the Gospel to the city of Omaha. The number of new believers, coming to Jesus, is happening so quickly that they hardly have enough workers to disciple them all! By faith, they simply believe what Jesus said: “The fields are white, ready to harvest…pray the Lord of the Harvest, that He will send forth laborers!” Oh, how the church, here in the West, needs to faithfully & passionately pray that same prayer!
Yes! It Can Happen Again
Steve Smith, who wrote “A Discipleship Re-Revolution”, said this: “A discipleship revolution ignited a firestorm of loving evangelistic zeal and fervent obedience that took the kingdom into the remotest corners of the known world in a period of years & decades, not centuries…This process of winning new believers and training them to witness to others who believed & witnessed to others cascaded out in ripples that touched the farthest reaches of the empire.” Hey Church— let us repent! Let us come back to “ground zero” on this matter! For too long we’ve simply waited for unbelievers to just show up at our Worship services! For too long we have held onto unbiblical strategies for growing the Church! Jesus said, “I will build My Church” Matthew 16:18. The Church belongs to Jesus! And, He already gave us the strategy for building it! We are called to “make disciples”! That’s the way we change America and the world!