Making Disciples who Make Disciples — Part 1

What’s the main point of the Great Commission?

If you’re anything like me, you’ve heard countless sermons on the Great Commission.

Matthew 28:18–20
And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 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, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

But as much as we hear this passage preached, so many people still don’t really have a grasp on what the main point of this passage is.

Is the point of this passage the “authority” that Jesus has? He tells us that he has ALL authority in heaven and on earth—that’s a lot of authority! But, as important as that authority is, that’s not the main point of the passage.

So, maybe the main point is the “going.” Jesus tells us in verse 19 to “go” and make disciples. I know at least half of the sermons I’ve heard on this passage have made “going” the major thrust of this passage, but as important as “going” is, it isn’t the major thrust of the passage.

The word that’s translated, “go,” in the English is actually a participle in the original Greek language. Participles usually serve as adjectives and nouns, rarely (if ever) as main verbs, so we know this isn’t the major thrust of the passage.

There are two other participles in this passage. They are the words that are translated “baptizing” and “teaching.” Once again, “baptizing” and “teaching” are very important, but these things are not the main point of the passage.

In fact, in the Great Commission there’s only one command given. There’s only one thing which Jesus tells his followers, “DO THIS.” And that one thing is found in verse 19. Jesus tells us to “make disciples.”

Really, it’s that simple, friends. Immediately before Jesus ascended into heaven, his final command given to his disciples was to make more disciples.

Over the course of the next few blog posts, I’ll be unpacking what it means to make disciples who make more disciples.