I just sat down with a couple of preaching students who'd been interning for the church this weekend, and we discussed an often not talked about ministry truth: Every one of us is replaceable. That is why it is imperative that we make disciples, not only who follow the example of Jesus Christ (which we should set), but who themselves pour their heart, mind, soul and strength in to loving God, and loving others, making disciples as Jesus did. Today, I have a proud reminder of that. A student of mine from the youth group I just left is here at church, and about to preach a sermon. He's a preaching student, and this week he brought another student (who was also one of my youth kids), to come see our church and to serve at it. I feel a father's pride for both boys, and have an assurance that in them, my own kids, and in those I am investing in, God will continue His work that He began in me. God is so good. It isn't just the job of the preacher, it is everyone's work to do this. We are to be disciples who make disciples, teaching others to follow Jesus' example (1 Corinthians has a great example of this), as to what humanity should be, so that we may be glorified in Him when we meet face to face. I want to be like Christ, but I am replaceable. Jesus left disciples (and I am a legacy to these!), who then made disciples, and so I am here, and so are you. Let us be the community of humans, as we SHOULD be, in Christ's life and example, filled with the Holy Spirit, loving the Father and all others, and thus fulfilling the Royal Law. Matthew 28 English Standard Version (ESV)
28 Now after the Sabbath, toward the dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. 2 And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3 His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. 4 And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. 5 But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. 6 He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he[a] lay. 7 Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.” 8 So they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9 And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”
The Report of the Guard
11 While they were going, behold, some of the guard went into the city and told the chief priests all that had taken place. 12 And when they had assembled with the elders and taken counsel, they gave a sufficient sum of money to the soldiers 13 and said, “Tell people, ‘His disciples came by night and stole him away while we were asleep.’ 14 And if this comes to the governor's ears, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.” 15 So they took the money and did as they were directed. And this story has been spread among the Jews to this day.
The Great Commission
16 Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. 17 And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. 18 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[b] 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.”
a. Matthew 28:6 Some manuscripts the Lord
b. Matthew 28:19 Or into