3 – Discipleship carries Jesus’ authority

Despite the doubting faith of the disciples who had obediently travelled to Jesus in Galilee, Jesus met with them to give two primary pieces of information.

Text:     Matthew 28:18-19a
Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples…

The first reassuring truth Jesus gave these doubting disciples was that “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.” God the Father had given absolute and total sovereign authority to Jesus (Mat 11:27) over all realms. Jesus’ authority is over angels, over mankind, over Satan, and over demons. The day is coming when “at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Php 2:10-11).

The disciple’s faith could be strengthened because they worshiped the resurrected Saviour who is Lord of lords. Jesus’ ruling authority is above challenge and beyond negotiation.

Their faith could mature in submission to the Lordship of Jesus with supreme reassurance. If they were to continue following Jesus, it had to be in humble obedience under Jesus’ holy will and direction. There could be no questioning Jesus’ authority. Jesus’ plans for them were divine and final.

Submission was NOT optional. Jesus’ authority would guard and guide them through life and into eternity.

The second reassurance Jesus gave them was an instruction, the mission they would carry out on Jesus’ behalf. “Go therefore and make disciples…”

This instruction was not only because of Jesus’ heavenly authority but passed on to them that authority through Jesus purpose for their lives.

This was to be their primary function in life under which all other plans, goals, and achievements would come second.

This instruction required action, they had to “go.” This could not be achieved by sitting at home waiting. They could not delegate this responsibility to anyone else until they had first fulfilled it themselves.

It was simple and clear, “make disciples.” Just as Jesus had made disciples of them, so they must also make disciples of others who would follow Jesus as they had.

A “disciple” is one who follows as a student, learning and growing under the authoritative leadership of the teacher.

In John 8:31-32, Jesus explained this to a group of faith professing Jews. “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

Disciples submissively follow Jesus. They abide in Jesus Word, learning from the Bible. Jesus’ truth increasingly defines their character, changing their behaviour, and liberates them from the power of error and sin.

Believer’s in the Lord Jesus rejoice in the security of divine authority impressed upon their lives as they follow Jesus and call others to follow as they do, making disciples.

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