A few Sundays ago I went to see David, my friend, get baptized. He took the mike and shared , “I’m fifty-one and was raised hearing all the Jesus stuff. But I want to be baptized today because it wasn’t until just a few weeks ago that I made my commitment to Jesus my own.”
David and I had been meeting regularly early Tuesday mornings. He was in a tough time in his life, and I was trying to be one of the friends that helped him get through. What a gift to get to see him openly declare his faith in Jesus. Why did this happen? Because Matthew was telling the truth in the close of his Gospel when he records what Jesus said to His disciples on a mountain in Galilee after He rose from the dead.
“All authority in heaven and earth has been given to me. Therefore, go, make disciples of every nation, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit and then teaching them all the things I’ve commanded you.“ - Matthew 28:19
David’s baptism symbolized the beginning of His life with Jesus. Jesus does have the power to forgive our sins based on what He did on the cross (Matthew 9:6). We must realize, however, that this is only the beginning. Jesus didn’t call us to go into all the world to get individuals to give lip service to the fact that they think Jesus died and rose again. Those who genuinely believe, receive a new life that wants to follow Jesus. Matthew reminds us that we are to make “disciples.” We need to obey all that Jesus taught, not only in Matthew, but in all the Scripture.
Only the Spirit of Jesus living inside David’s heart and mine can give the power to do this, but this is what Jesus’ authority is all about right now in our daily lives. Jesus’ command to “go and make disciples of every nation” is also why in three weeks I will be flying to Kenya to train my fellow pastors. Pray Jesus will exercise His authority and give me His words to encourage and empower Samwell and Zackaria and other faithful ministers.
LORD, continue to give me the strength to keep going. Use me in Kenya because I rely upon Your authority. Move many to turn to You as the only One who ultimately has the right to rule and this begins with us submitting to Your rule in our hearts.
This closes our Devos on Matthew’s Passion and Resurrection narrative. Share this post and spread the word on Facebook/Twitter that on Monday we will return to our devos where we left off with Psalm 110, one of the Psalms most quoted in the New Testament.
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