How Are We Doing?
This sermon is part of the Gospel Shaped Church Curriculum created by the Gospel Coalition. Information about it can be found at http://gsc.thegospelcoalition.org or www.gospelshapedchurch.org
We’ve been commissioned by our Lord to do one thing!
16 The eleven disciples traveled to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had directed them. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped, but some doubted. 18 Jesus came near and said to them, “All authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Christian — 3 times - derogatory term
Disciple — 265 times
We are to “Go…and make disciples… baptizing THEM… teaching THEM”
as a church and as individuals “of all nations…to the end of the age”
Making disciples starts with sharing the gospel
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, first to the Jew, and also to the Greek.
Salvation comes through hearing the gospel message.
13 For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. 14 How, then, can they call on him they have not believed in? And how can they believe without hearing about him? And how can they hear without a preacher? 15 And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news. 16 But not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, Lord, who has believed our message? 17 So faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes through the message about Christ.
We are saved by faith!! Our salvation is based upon our faith. And faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes through the message about Christ. Everyone’s salvation is based upon hearing the gospel message, a message of reconciliation where God is reconciling the world to Himself through us.
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, and see, the new has come! 18 Everything is from God, who has reconciled us to himself through Christ and has given us the ministry of reconciliation. 19 That is, in Christ, God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and he has committed the message of reconciliation to us. 20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, since God is making his appeal through us. We plead on Christ’s behalf: “Be reconciled to God.” 21 He made the one who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 1 Working together with him, we also appeal to you, “Don’t receive the grace of God in vain.” 2 For he says: At an acceptable time I listened to you, and in the day of salvation I helped you. See, now is the acceptable time; now is the day of salvation!
As the local church, we have had the wrong strategy and mindset for decades.
“We are called to make christians, aka someone who believes the right things about Jesus and who gets baptized. So our strategy is we should invite lost people to church, make sure we have a preacher that preaches a convincing evangelistic message and gives a great invitation and hopefully they will walk down the isle, give their life to Christ, get baptized, and that’s a win! Now to the next one. How am I going to convince them to go to church with me? — Baptism has been the finish line in a lot of people’s minds for a long time”
We are not called to make Christians. We are called to make disciples, we are to 1) baptise them and 2) teach them to obey everything he has commanded them.
Can you be saved and not obey? — Which is more important baptism(profession of faith) or obedience? Mt28.20 says observe, it doesn’t say obey — why is that? Have you ever told anyone, if you want to be saved, obey Jesus’ commands. Have you ever said if you don’t obey Jesus then you don’t love him. Have you ever said, “if you obey Jesus then you really love him and if you really love him then the Father will love you but if you don’t obey him then you don’t really love him. Have you ever told anyone that their relationship with God has anything to do with their obedience to him? Let me say this as clearly as possible — You are not saved by your obedience in any way, but if you are not obedient then you are not saved. Salvation doesn’t come through your obedience, it comes through Christ’s obedience, but obedience does come through your salvation. Genuine salvation results in genuine obedience. Here’s my point. If we are not preaching the same message to people that Jesus preached then what we have done to his message is not improvement, it’s betrayal.
to keep (obey)— 71 times in New Testament
17 “Why do you ask me about what is good?” he said to him. “There is only one who is good. If you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.”
51 Truly I tell you, if anyone keeps my word, he will never see death.”
15 “If you love me, you will keep my commands.
21 The one who has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. And the one who loves me will be loved by my Father. I also will love him and will reveal myself to him.”
23 Jesus answered, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.
24 The one who doesn’t love me will not keep my words. The word that you hear is not mine but is from the Father who sent me.
10 If you keep my commands you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love.
3 This is how we know that we know him: if we keep his commands.
4 The one who says, “I have come to know him,” and yet doesn’t keep his commands, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
5 But whoever keeps his word, truly in him the love of God is made complete. This is how we know we are in him:
24 The one who keeps his commands remains in him, and he in him. And the way we know that he remains in us is from the Spirit he has given us.
3 For this is what love for God is: to keep his commands. And his commands are not a burden,
3 Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear the words of this prophecy and keep what is written in it, because the time is near.
12 This calls for endurance from the saints, who keep God’s commands and their faith in Jesus.”
7 “Look, I am coming soon! Blessed is the one who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book.” 8 I, John, am the one who heard and saw these things. When I heard and saw them, I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who had shown them to me. 9 But he said to me, “Don’t do that! I am a fellow servant with you, your brothers the prophets, and those who keep the words of this book. Worship God!”
only two times is tereo translated as observe instead of keep, tell me why that is.
3 Therefore do whatever they tell you, and observe it. But don’t do what they do, because they don’t practice what they teach.
20 teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
We are commanded to make disciples and baptise them and teach them to keep his commands, which includes the command for them to do the same. They are saved by faith through the reconciling gospel message which is the power of God to save them. We must be faithful in sharing that message, and not changing it to one that we think will be easier for them to accept. A false gospel that says all you have to do is believe the right knowledge to be saved and if you live a life of obedience to God that’s great but if not then you can still be sure that your saved you just won’t receive as many rewards in heaven. That’s not the gospel that Jesus preached and therefore it can not be the gospel that we preach.
14 What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but does not have works? Can such faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is without clothes and lacks daily food 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, stay warm, and be well fed,” but you don’t give them what the body needs, what good is it? 17 In the same way faith, if it doesn’t have works, is dead by itself. 18 But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without works, and I will show you faith by my works. 19 You believe that God is one. Good! Even the demons believe—and they shudder. 20 Senseless person! Are you willing to learn that faith without works is useless?
3 This is how we know that we know him: if we keep his commands. 4 The one who says, “I have come to know him,” and yet doesn’t keep his commands, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5 But whoever keeps his word, truly in him the love of God is made complete. This is how we know we are in him: 6 The one who says he remains in him should walk just as he walked.
What are the consequences of preaching a false message?
13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who go through it. 14 How narrow is the gate and difficult the road that leads to life, and few find it. 15 “Be on your guard against false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravaging wolves. 16 You’ll recognize them by their fruit. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 In the same way, every good tree produces good fruit, but a bad tree produces bad fruit. 18 A good tree can’t produce bad fruit; neither can a bad tree produce good fruit. 19 Every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 So you’ll recognize them by their fruit. 21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name, drive out demons in your name, and do many miracles in your name?’ 23 Then I will announce to them, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you lawbreakers!’ 24 “Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain fell, the rivers rose, and the winds blew and pounded that house. Yet it didn’t collapse, because its foundation was on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and doesn’t act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. 27 The rain fell, the rivers rose, the winds blew and pounded that house, and it collapsed. It collapsed with a great crash.”
But what are the consequences of preaching a true gospel?
17 So faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes through the message about Christ.