The Mission, the Mandate and the Mountain
To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to make all see what is the fellowship (stewardship) of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ, to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places, according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him. Ephesians 3:8-12
"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, "teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Matthew 28:19-20
The mission is clear and concise, go and make disciples all over the planet, and teach them to observe the commands of Christ. We are not commanded to start churches or ministry organizations, we are commanded to go! Jesus said, "I will build My church" and He told us to go and get the material to build with.
The making of a true disciple is hard work and is very time consuming considering that Jesus spent three years 24/7 with His and yet one was a devil. Today we just invite them to church and hope they pray the prayer and join up leaving the job of discipleship to the Sunday school teacher, but that is not our mission, our mission is to produce an exact replica of the Lord Jesus Christ.
"Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel land and sea to win one proselyte, and when he is won, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves." Matthew 23:15
A true disciple has no other label than Christian, follower of Christ, blood bought believer and born again new creation. There is no longer any distinction whether Jew or Greek, Baptist or Pentecostal there is only one true church and that is the church of Jesus Christ. We are all one body of believers saved by faith in Him alone.
The apostle Paul said that there are to be no divisions among us and yet today we are divided into many different categories such as race, creed, political preference and financial status, not to mention the many labels of religion that we have adopted and even protected. Take a poll some day by walking down the street and ask people if they are a Christian, in most cases they will be quick to tell you they belong to a denomination before they tell you they belong to Christ.
There is only one way to eternal life and that is through the blood of Jesus Christ our only Savior and Lord. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life and there is salvation in no other.
And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Mark 16:20
"Behold I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you." Luke 10:19
The mission is laid out before us and the authority to act has been given and yet few obey the call. Jesus said the harvest is white but the laborers are few and so it is, people flock to church buildings to hear nice messages and are made to feel good about themselves but when it comes down to telling their neighbors about Jesus they refuse. The world is slipping into hell and we go about like there is no tomorrow.
Jesus left us a model to observe as He took His disciples on a mission of mercy by healing all oppressed by the devil. He healed the sick, cast out demons and preached to the poor to repent and surrender their lives to God. The deaf heard, the blind saw and the dead were raised and yet even in His day only a few obeyed the call of discipleship. It is no different today, many are called, but very few are chosen.
We as believers have been given authority like no other has been given in the history of the world and that is the power and authority over sickness, death and the entire realm of the powers of darkness. If we would receive this divine mandate and truly believe that it is for us today we would shake this earth like no earthquake ever has!
Jesus said that we would do greater works than He did because we would be given the power of the Holy Spirit to assist us in our God given endeavor to win the world to Christ. Sadly we have ignored the mandate and have refused to go only to continue to build great memorials to the futile dead works of religion. By our own device we have rendered ourselves powerless and hopelessly divided, satisfied with a few crumbs of stale manna given weekly by those we have hired to do our work.
"The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord." Luke 4:18,19
"If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. "For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it. "For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?" Luke 9:23-25
Truthfully the mountain that stands in the way of fulfilling the mission and obeying the mandate is man. Man has always been the main obstacle when it comes to obeying the commands of Christ. Man is selfish and greedy by nature and usually takes the path of least resistance when it comes to obeying the call to go.
There are three main obstacles that stand in the way of the harvest and our call to go: disunity, identity and unbelief. These three have stopped the forward momentum of the church of the living God and have hindered greatly the work of grace that is to be spread to all mankind. Without the removal of this mountain the church will remain in its vegetated state of complacency and cease to function as Jesus intended her to.
When the day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.
Then there appeared to them tongues of fire and one sat upon each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. Acts 2:1-4
If the followers of Christ had been in disagreement and divided over their beliefs the Spirit would never have been given. They were all in one accord, meaning they were in harmony with one another as a symphony playing a beautiful song, everyone has to be in key or it will make a noticeable and very unpleasant sound.
Today we are split and divided by every thing imaginable and in most cases the Bible provides the main topic for our dis-unity. We will never have unity and fellowship trying to agree on scripture and because of "proof texting," a method of proving what a certain verse means we will remain divided. The first century church unified under the banner of the cross and the fact of Jesus being their Savior and Lord. They had no New Testament and in many cases were illiterate.
The times we live in are evil and the day of the Lord is approaching and we are in need of the strength that unity provides to be able to stand in these last days. The harvest is before us and the time is now and the treasure is awaiting anyone brave enough to launch out into the deep for a catch.
Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel. Philippians 1:27
But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood. a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy. I Peter 2:9,10
Knowing who we are and to whom we belong is the first thing we should settle in our heart and mind when we come to the Lord. If we don't know who we are in Christ we will forever be defeated by the enemy and will never be able to have victory in our lives. The truth of the matter is this: we are sons of God and joint heirs with the Lord Jesus Christ, purchased with blood and grafted into the family of God.
Jesus was baptized by John and the heavens opened and a dove descended upon Him and His heavenly Father said to Him, "This is My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased." Jesus had no doubt who He was and yet when He was in the wilderness being tempted by the devil the first attack upon Him was concerning His identity. The devil had the audacity to say to Him," If you are the Son of God." Jesus, even in His weakened physical state from fasting forty days had no doubts about who He was and He was quick to quote the Word of God back to the devil in response to his attack.
Today, identity theft is rampant with cyber thieves stealing people's personal information and bilking millions of unsuspecting souls of billions of dollars. So it is with the church, the devil has stolen their identity by convincing them that they are just sinners saved by grace but with no real power or authority to act and so they just end up in a state of perpetual bench warming, never able to get into the game.
That you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might according to His glorious power, for all patience and long suffering with joy; giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. Colossians 1:10-12
Jesus appeared to the eleven as they sat at the table; and He rebuked them for their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they did not believe those who had seen Him after He had risen. Mark 16:14
So it is today, we sit in unbelief and hardness of heart and the world goes to hell before our very eyes. An army of so- called believers who don't believe nor obey the commands of Christ to go! Always learning but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth that as sons of God we are to complete His works on the earth until He returns.
The more we sit, the more we become hardened and apathetic to the cries of the poor and the lost. Comfortable in our air conditioned cathedrals of complacency we just stare at the pulpit day dreaming about our own woes concerned for our own welfare and unconcerned for everyone else.
There was once a church next to the tracks where the trains would carry the Jews to the death camps and the sounds of their cries would disturb the members so they were told when the train comes to sing louder and drown out their cries for mercy. Just sing louder and we won't hear the sound of the prostitute, the homosexual with AIDS or the family down the street about to lose their home to foreclosure and so we just ignore them and maybe they will go away.
The body of Jesus Christ is the only expression of Him in the earth and the world has only seen a distorted glimpse of what the grace and power of God can accomplish for them. The need is great and the laborers few but the will of God will be done on earth as it is in Heaven! This is the day of salvation for millions who have not heard, a time to go and not stay, a time to give all for the Lord Jesus Christ who has given all for us. May the Lord stir your spirit and give you a passion for the souls of men!
For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again. II Corinthians 5:14,15