June 28, 2007

Make Disciples

Matthew 28:16-20

"Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them ... and teaching them ..." Matthew 28:19-20


Scripture describes the church of Jesus Christ in some awesome ways. The church is Christ's body and Christ's bride. But the church is far from perfect. It is made up of ordinary disciples like you and me--sinful, broken, disheartened, unloved, and unloving people.

Jesus came not for the righteous but for sinners. He didn't give up his life for people who were spiritually healthy. He came to help the helpless and to bring hope to the hopeless.

What makes followers of Christ unique is that they have a relationship with God. Jesus made it possible for sinners to stand in the presence of God Almighty without fear of judgment or punishment. What a wonderful message to hear. What a beautiful story to tell!

As Jesus prepared to leave this earth, he commanded his followers to become disciple-makers. He told them they should introduce others to God and mark them as God's children through baptism. They should teach others to live lives of grace and love: "As I have loved you, so you must love one another" (John 13:34).

Central to the lives of Christ-followers is love--the unconditional love of God for his followers, and their unconditional love for others. Followers of Christ are saved by grace and called to be channels of God's grace to others--"grace that is greater than all our sins."

Jesus, we praise you for being our Savior and our God. We thank you for calling us to be your disciples. Fill us with the will and ability to show your grace to others. Amen.

About the author — Jerry Dykstra

Pastor Jerry Dykstra was recently appointed as the executive director of the Christian Reformed Church in North America. After a 15-year career in business, he trained for pastoral ministry and served as the pastor of Cascade Fellowship CRC, Cascade, Michigan, and Faith Christian Fellowship CRC, Walnut Creek, California. He and his wife, Linda, live in Byron Center, Michigan, and have three children and seven grandchildren.

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