Today during “coffee with the Lord” I reflected on my responsibilities as a “disciple” – a devoted, obedient follower of the Lord. I thought about my responsibilities to share my faith in Christ with others… my responsibilities for evangelism… my responsibility to “make disciples.”
I thought about how sometimes I think we perhaps consider that an optional activity… How we are kind of “laid back” in our approach to it… perhaps just doing it “as opportunity arises” or leaving it to “super saints” or “professionals.” No urgency! No sense of responsibility! What a mistake! What a terrible sin of omission or act of disobedience!
Suppose we went to work one day and our employer said, “Now here’s your responsibility… I want you to do this or that for me.” Would he be satisfied if we considered his directive “optional?” Would he be pleased if we did whatever we wanted in the coming days, and only did what he directed us to do “as opportunity arises” or when “we were especially motivated” or “when we got around to it?” I have a feeling our “boss” (you might use the word “lord” there I guess) would not be satisfied or pleased, and we probably would not be employed for very long.
Our “mandate” (yes, we use that word) is to “make disciples!” Jesus said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations.” (Matthew 28:18-19) Mark records Jesus said, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.” (Mark 16:15) John says Jesus told His disciples, “As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you!” And then He breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit!” (John 20:21-22) Is it any wonder then that Apostle Paul said, “I am under obligation bot to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish… So I am eager to preach the gospel to you also who are in Rome.” (Romans 1:14)
I have a feeling we take our “mandate” much too lightly – to casually – as followers of Jesus. One day He will return and there will be an accounting. I want to be motivated to obey, not from guilt, but from intense love and appreciation for what He has done for me… and for the whole world! Paul put it this way, “Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade others… The love of Christ controls (or motivates) us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all,… He died for all that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for Him who for their sake died and was raised!” (2 Corinthians 5:11-15) Oh, when He returns and I stand before Him, I want to hear those words, “Well done, good and faithful servant!” (Matthew 25:23)