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May 24, 2022 12:01 am
The Lord Jesus Christ reigns as King over heaven and earth. Will we be faithful in serving Him and making disciples in His name? Today, Burk Parsons explains that Christ's sovereign authority motivates us in obeying the Great Commission.
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Today on Renewing Your Mind what our mothers raised a slave taught us that if we don't have anything good to say but what don't say anything at all. Well when we evangelize when we do mission when we go and preach the gospel. We have to preach the hard things and it's hard because we don't hurt people's feelings, would you explain the good news of the gospel with my friends, coworkers and family members sure the bad news is that the Y goes are sinners and in need of a Savior. That's a hard thing to say, especially in a world where tolerance and inclusion are high priorities today.
And all this week on Renewing Your Mind October Parsons is taking this phrase by phrase, through the great commission and today he explains how the sovereignty of our triune God is one of our greatest motivations for missions and our greatest assurance of success. Let's continue our study of the great commission with regular teaching fellow. Dr. Burke Parsons what are our motives for missions.
What are motives for fulfilling the great commission. The last time together. We talked about how love of God and love of neighbor is one of our motivations for mission. I think if most Christians were being completely honest, they would say well I do love the Lord. I know I don't love them with all my heart, soul, strength in mind, but I do love the Lord and I strive to love him with all my heart, soul, strength in mind but that if we ask ourselves honestly and ask one another and were to be honest we would say I don't love my neighbor to the degree that I should and I certainly don't love my neighbor as myself. Now we could talk about those who are closest neighbors, families, spouse or children and perhaps then we would say yes. I love my spouse. I love my bride as myself.
I love my bride more than myself.
I love my children more than myself.
But when it comes to neighbors.
We don't often feel the goodwill and love towards her neighbors that we ought to. We often feel ill will, we often don't care about their salvation as we ought to wear more concerned about our own embarrassment and telling our neighbors about sin and hell in the gospel of Jesus Christ and that Christ is the only way to the father without him knowing can have access to the father but the truth is there are numerous motivations for missions and numerous motivations for fulfilling the great commission. One is love. Love of God and love of neighbor, but another one of those motives Jesus gives to us here in verse 18 in the great commission and gives us words of comfort, assurance gives us words wherein he describes his own authority in his own sovereignty over the nations. Let's look at it together. In verse 18 of Matthew 28, Matthew records and Jesus came and said to them all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me now those first few words are significant.
We don't want to just jump right into Jesus saying all authority in heaven and earth has been given to me this first words are significant member I mentioned last session how it seemed that the disciples were a little bit far off, but here is where we get that where Jesus is now coming to them. It seems that he walked over to them.
He came to them and what do you forget these disciples were hesitant even fearful doubting.
Perhaps we can face and Jesus comes over to them. Perhaps perhaps he put his hand on their shoulder. Perhaps he put his hand under her chin and said get up and look at me.
Perhaps he came to them many bent down any put his hand on their back and said it's okay we don't know what Jesus did or said, but all we know is that he came to them and he spoke to the way in which this is phrased here.
The way in which these words come together in the original languages really beautiful because it reveals how Jesus is giving them words of reassurance. This whole scene is the disciples there hesitant doubting lacking faith, perhaps fearful, perhaps nervous about what he's going to say is he going to talk with them about how they let him down is Jesus going to rehearse for them their sins doubting him, denying him scattering from him. Is he going to chastise and rebuke them. Jesus doesn't do any of those things he doesn't bring up their past sins doesn't shove them in their faces, he doesn't wave his finger at them and say you disciples who are faithless, he called them faithless previously but here he comes with words of assurance they were reluctant.
Perhaps fearful, perhaps timid, perhaps some of them even crying and shaking what was going on there in the presence of God in Jesus comes over to them speaks to this language in the way which Jesus approaches his disciples here on this mountain in Galilee is significant because it significant not only for the disciple significant not only for the early church.
But even significant for us because most of us don't feel that we are equipped we don't feel that we are worthy. And we don't feel simply that were good enough to take part in the fulfillment of the great commission. Most of us don't feel like were much good at all. We don't feel most of the time. Like conquerors we feel often like failures don't way. We don't have the assurance that we really want to have the full assurance that God gives to us in Christ and by the power of the spirit we often doubt ourselves, were often timid were often worried about what people think of us. That's one of the reasons that evangelism and missions is so hard because it's hard to go and tell people, hard truths when our mothers raised as they taught us that if we don't have anything good to say than what the don't say anything at all. Well when we evangelize when we do missions when we go and preach the gospel. We have to preach the hard things and it's hard because we don't hurt people's feelings and so in going we need assurance, we need a certain measure of confidence but start confidence because of our own personalities confidence and exudes from within us. It has to be a confidence in his strength and a boldness and boldness doesn't mean brazenness. It means caring more about what God says and what about man thinks of us. It's a boldness that only comes by the power of the spirit. It's a strength and a confidence that only comes by the Lord, giving us that strength and not confidence overcoming our timidity's in our fears and so Jesus comes in. He speaks to them and what did he say he said to them in very plain and clear words. All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Now you can see that word all as it appears three or four times depending on your translations.
In verse 18, all authority in verse 19 all nations. In verse 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded and so weak. We see this language throughout, and even at the very end. I'm with you always were all the days there's a universalistic aspect here. There is a all encompassing aspect Christ authority over all going to all nations, going everywhere, teaching them to observe all that Christ commanded the scope of the great commission is great because in part of this word all because it is saying that we are to go everywhere to do all that Christ is said to do in Christ will be with us all the time all the days always.
Jesus doesn't say some authority has been given to me. Now we can go back in the gospel of Matthew and we can recall a time when Jesus was offered some authority. Where was that you remember in Matthew chapter 4 turn there with me and we'll see how it is that in Matthew chapter 4 Jesus in this time of temptation, the devil led him up to a high mountain and says now we don't know what mountain it was or where it was. Could it have been the same mountain. Jesus was now there with his disciples in Galilee.
Well, we simply do not know, nor Scripture closes its mouth where the Lord is not reveal we must close our mouths and be silent but here the devil takes away on a very high mountain. Matthew chapter 4 in verses eight and following. We read again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to them, all these I will give you if you will fall down and worship me. Then Jesus said to him, begone, Satan, for it is written, you shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve in the devil left him, behold, angels came and were ministering to him. So the devil brings them up on this high mountain shows him in some spiritual and mysterious way. All the kingdoms of the world and all their splendor in all their glory, and the devil said in all these I will give you what was Satan offering Jesus he was offering him some authority.
He was offering him the kingdoms of the world and ultimately they were the devils to give but Satan tempts Jesus with this to worship him if he would only bow his knee and worship the devil. If you would only serve the devil. Then Satan promised to give him all the kingdoms of the earth and the Lord rightly rebukes him and says, begone, Satan you shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve. Jesus quotes the Old Testament is he does throughout his ministry.
He says God alone.
You shall serve. I will not commit the sin of idolatry. Even for all the kingdoms of the world and then in Matthew 28 turned back there with me. In Matthew 28 Jesus says I've not just been given some authority. I've been given all authority, all authority in heaven and on earth. Now that language is language that we see throughout Scripture the language that is used, there is is a rhetorical device called America's and America's and is a rhetorical device, wherein to contrasting words are used to express an entirety or completeness of something and so when we talk about searching for something or for someone will say sometimes.
I searched high and low. What is that mean we searched everywhere for it everywhere within a particular context right in the very first words of Scripture. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth at Samara's. What is it mean it means that he created everything sensibly pointing out that he created the heavens and the earth. He created those but he created everything and so here in Matthew 28 we see this same rhetorical device being used by Jesus all authority in heaven and on earth. All authority everywhere.
This is significant because what we see Jesus saying here is that the basis the foundation of the great commission that Jesus is giving the disciples is established on Jesus's authority over all. Jesus's power and Jesus is right. Overall, Jesus told the disciples I have overcome the world.
So do not fear Jesus is here saying all authority has been given to me what is that inferring refers that this is been given him, not by the devil is been given to him by the father. This is one of the reasons for which Jesus came to have this authority given to him in his incarnation in his perfect life fulfilling all the righteous demands of God's law that in going to the cross.
His death might be a substitutionary, sacrificial atonement for the sins of his people, and in doing so, and being raised from the dead by the power of the spirit all authority from the father was given to the sun to Jesus is here saying to the disciples I have all authority. All right, all power, all dominion and what is a one word definition summary for all those words that Christ has sovereignty over the nations. Christ is giving to his disciples. This charge with the very foundation of the sovereignty of God over all things, and over all peoples, and over all nations see dearly beloved. This is one of the great motivations permission for the great motivations for fulfilling the great commission is that God is sovereign, that God is all-powerful, the God has all authority will often times when we hear about the sovereignty of God. We hear about God's sovereignty and election and reprobation when we hear about God's sovereignty over our own lives and over the lives of those we dearly love are families, wives, husbands or children when we hear about the sovereignty of God. Typically, we think that the sovereignty of God and evangelism or the sovereignty of God in prayer are conflicting and contradictory that they're not the go hand in hand.
Because without the sovereignty of God, we wouldn't know Christ. We wouldn't evangelize or fulfill the mission of God, we wouldn't pray we wouldn't worship we wouldn't know God. We would remain dead in our sins and trespasses.
Now I know that's a hard concept in a hard doctrine for many people today as it was for me was for me for a long time and I struggled through it and fought against it and kicked against it and fought with all the free will.
I could muster against this doctrine because I didn't like it.
I didn't think it was biblical I thought it didn't represent God rightly biblically, but when we see the sovereignty of God in Scripture carefully as it's laid out for us on every page from beginning to end, we see that the sovereignty of God is the impetus and the reason in the foundation that any of us knows God that any of us has life that any of us is regenerated born again by the power of the spirit that any of us prays that any of us knows the Lord of any of us evangelize us and fulfills the great commission. It's all founded on the sovereignty of God see the sovereignty of God in understanding God's sovereignty and salvation. Understanding that God has chosen before the foundation of the earth.
Those who are his kiss chosen some to be his own. The great motives for evangelist's with a great motives for mission. It was a great motives for going to the ends of the earth because we know that God has a people for himself in every tribe and tongue and nation. It motivates us to go love of God and love of neighbor, one motivation but not the only motivation. The second motivation is God's sovereignty and salvation God's sovereignty and election that we know that he has told us he is authority.
Overall sovereignty over all, and that he has a people for himself in every tribe and every tongue and every nation so we go.
The difficulty is for us is that we don't know whom God has chosen doing. We don't know who is among the elect of God thought is that we can go up to people and sort of look at them and we we received a mark on their faces, or perhaps a a mark on their shoulders. It identify them as the elect of God.
We can't determine who are the elect of God. We don't know who are the chosen God and so we go to everyone we go to every tribe, every tongue, every nation because it doesn't matter peoples ancestor your background or color or socioeconomic class. The Lord loves the world he loves the nations, and he is people from among the nations who belong to him. They chose before the foundations of the earth and our call is to be faithful as secondary agents to go and fulfill the mission of God, to proclaim the gospel and as we proclaim it with the external called the gospel going forth with a free offer of the gospel to every man woman and child.
So God in his sovereignty by his spirit is that great regenerating work of that internal call grabbing a hold of someone's dead stony rebellious heart and saying your mind and he rips out those parts of stone and give us pliable hearts of flesh that he mowed and gives us his Spirit to meet conquers and he invades and he says your mind and you been mind since the foundation of the earth were called to go and proclaim and to Harold were called to go and announce the good news of what God is done through Christ by the power of the spirit trusting our sovereign Lord, who has people everywhere to do his mighty work of regeneration.
Justification adoption sanctification and glorification.
So this motivation for evangelism this motivation for missions is at the very foundation for why we go because the Bible says that whosoever believes on the name of Jesus Christ will be saved. How we know this from John 316 is not only in John 316 we see it in Joel chapter 232 we see it, even in Romans chapter 10 where Paul pulling from Joel says the gospel is for all people. This news of salvation and how sinners can obtain the righteousness of God is for all people to all who call on the name of the Lord. The prophet Joel says to everyone who calls on the name of the Lord. And so we go to everyone hoping and praying and striving for never giving up, especially on those that we most dearly love never giving up and saying they must not be among the elect know we keep Frank and we keep striving to can we keep proclaiming the gospel until there is no more hope because we must die before we die for. There's no chance thereafter. As one theologian, a set so we keep praying and we keep going and we keep proclaiming, and we keep preaching. We keep pointing people to Christ by our own lives and by the gospel of Jesus Christ. Pronounce from our lips when the most significant things about verse 18.
What Jesus says is that he says all authority in heaven and earth has been given to me and that's not something we should just pass over quickly, because what Jesus is doing and saying that is actually fulfilling prophecy key as he does throughout his ministry. Throughout the gospel accounts. He quotes the Old Testament in order to show these Jewish disciples to show Israel how it is. He is the fulfillment of the Scriptures how he is in fact the long-awaited one, how he is in fact the Messiah, she how he is the one about whom the Scriptures foretold and so where does he take us, including almost verbatim a portion of a passage from Daniel chapter 7. Look with me. Daniel chapter 7 Jesus throughout the gospel of Matthew refers to himself as the Son of Man, that language comes from Daniel's prophecy hundreds of years before Jesus was born before the incarnation of the son of God. Daniel prophesied in Daniel chapter 7 verses 13 and 14 we read Daniel's vision I saw in the night visions, and behold with the clouds of heaven, there came one like the Son of Man, and he came to the ancient of days and was presented before him and him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom that all peoples, nations and languages should serve him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away in his kingdom, one that shall not be destroyed is not glorious is an absolutely beautiful Jesus and stating that all authority has been given to him in heaven and on earth saying this is what I was destined for. This is what I came for that all authority would be given him notice that in all Jesus life and ministry.
What we see Jesus doing we see Jesus serving don't we see Jesus washing feet even said I came not to be served. I came to serve and to give my life a ransom for many saw Jesus doing the things that a servant would do even to a point where there said no, don't do this. I'm not worthy of this don't wash my feet Jesus came as a servant, Jesus came as a servant. Then Jesus lived and died as a servant. He now says that he will be served but he has authority and sovereignty.
He has full rights over the earth and now he will be served as the Lord God Almighty will we be faithful in serving our Savior's authority serves two purposes when it comes to the great commission. First, the world is his and he has the authority to command repentance. Second, he's our Lord and we are compelled to obey his command.
Are we obeying willingly or grudgingly. I know that that would comes to personal evangelism fear often gets the better of us were thankful for Dr. Burk Parsons reminder today that Jesus authority motivates us permissions. The great commission is our focus this week here and Renewing Your Mind and would like to send you a DVD of this five-part series, simply contact us today with a donation of any amount. The leader ministries you can do that one of two ways you can do that by phone at 800-435-4343 or you can make a request online and Renewing Your Mind.org. I know that many of you probably have close friends or family members that you love that you care for and that you hope will come to faith in Christ. In a recent letter to Ligon your donors our president Chris Larson wrote about that. He said the painful tragedy of the dark in mind is evident as those we dearly love self-destruct and simple labyrinths of their own making. We grieve when righteousness is cast aside because of the harm it can mean for our families and our neighbors through tearful, please. We warned that their feet will slip in due time of today's message by Dr. Parsons is a great reminder resented to pray for those we love. That is why studying the great commission is so important again will be happy to send you this five-part series for your donation of any amount you can reach us firstname.lastname@example.org or you can call us at 800-435-4340 30 will continue our study of the great commission tomorrow and will look at what it means to go and make disciples. That's Wednesday here on Renewing Your Mind