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From the Pastor-April 2021

Jesus’ resurrection made possible the evangelism of the lost. For it is by his resurrection, the conquering of sin and death that we may believe and have eternal life. But that is just the beginning! Jesus laid out what he’d have his followers to do, that is, to make more followers. The Great Commission includes this command from our Lord: “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.” There’s more to this than at first meets the eye. I draw your attention to the main command, which is to make disciples. This means at the least that our calling is not just to “get people saved” which is the work of the Holy Spirit. Nor are we to “get more people” in church, something that many churches assume this means. Rather, this commission wants us to so evangelize, to so pray and to so teach that the lost become Christians who are committed followers of the person, Jesus Christ. It is not enough that they “get into heaven,” as it were, but we’re to so labor that these who trust Christ pursue an intimate knowledge of him for the rest of their lives. That’s worthy worship. That’s happiness and joy! It was never intended that salvation would be like adding a feather to the cap of the person who has most everything, but just needs peace. No! In fact, Jesus warned people that if they really wanted to follow him, they would need to take up their cross to do so (Luke 14:27). This means that there is no turning back, no waffling. The old life is dead and gone, and all desires are set on living for Christ! Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a Lutheran pastor whom Hitler killed in April of 1945, wrote, “When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die.” That’s what making disciples looks like. There’s certainly more. But this is the start. Where is your faith?

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