I think it happened because Jesus inspired and empowered his followers to accomplish this global mission. His mission statement was pretty clear:
And Jesus came and said to them [disciples], “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 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, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you” (Matthew 28:18-20).
The Lord’s desire is for His people to go and make disciples. But how do we do this?
1. We Go
We have to get outside the church walls if we want to accomplish Jesus’s mission. Jesus said He would make us “fishers of men” (Matt. 4:19), and if we want to be good fishermen we need to get off the shore and get on the boat.
For some of us this may mean going to the other side of the world, but for others, it may mean going to the other side of the street.
Start asking God where He wants you to go and who He wants you to go to.
2. We Share
Wherever God calls us, He wants us to bring the good news of the gospel with us. Listen to what Paul says in Romans 10:14-15:
14 How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? 15 And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”
The reality is, what we have to give is information. It is news. It is the greatest news the world has ever heard
— that the Son of God came and took on human flesh, lived a perfect life in our place, died on the cross for our sins, and on the third day rose again, defeating death. I’ve heard the saying, “preach the gospel at all times, and if necessary, use words.” That couldn’t be more wrong. It is vitally important that we use words, because this is the means through which God brings salvation to people.
It is our duty as followers of Christ to share His story. It is His job to change lives.
3. We Teach
Teaching is necessary in order to make disciples. We must keep in mind, however, that we are teaching for application, not just head knowledge.
The famous nineteenth-century preacher, J.C. Ryle, says :
Let us beware of an unsanctified knowledge of Christianity. It is a dangerous possession, but a fearfully common one in these latter days. We may know the Bible intellectually, and have no doubt about the truth of its contents. We may have our memories well stored with its leading texts, and be able to talk glibly about its leading doctrines. And all the time the Bible may have no influence over our hearts, and wills, and consciences. We may, in reality, be nothing better than the devils.
We make disciples by teaching people to love God and their neighbor, not just intellectually, but deep within their heart and soul.
The primary purpose of gaining biblical knowledge must be a renovation of the heart.
Our mission statement is simple, make disciples. So go, share, and teach. But remember that Jesus is with you every step of the way!
JC Ryle, Expository Thoughts on the Gospel.