Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Hearing & Doing - Making Disciples

Matthew 28:16-20 - "Then the 11 disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus told them to go. When they saw Him, they worshipped Him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, 'All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.'"

A response I have to this scripture is to climb a mountain this weekend and worship Jesus as the 11 disciples did when they first saw Him after the resurrection. He is my Lord, my Teacher, my Savior, and He is worthy of my praise. My life and work will flow out of my love for Him.

I will also respond to Jesus' teachings in these verses by daily studying the Gospels to find exactly what He meant by, "everything that I have commanded you." I want to know the commands of Jesus. I might even make a list! I also was given a good book by a friend: What Jesus Demands of the World by John Piper. I'm looking forward to digging into it!

Specific commands that Jesus gives to the 11 disciples/Apostles in this passage:

- "Go and make disciples of all nations."
- "Baptize them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."
- "Teach them to obey everything I have commanded you."

I've been struggling lately with making the link between Jesus' clear commands to his 11 closest original disciples (the other one Jesus chose betrayed His very life), and those also being the direct commands to us today. If you have any thoughts or input about making this link, please post your comments here or send me a message on Skype/Twitter/FB/MySpace/my Yahoo email address, my Gmail email address, my other Gmail email address, my really old Hotmail email address, or just send some old fashioned snail mail to:

Brett Emerson
B.P. 802
Kara, Togo, West Africa

That should cover it. Grace & Peace!

Monday, October 05, 2009

Hearing & Doing - Shema Living

Our team is currently engaged in a season of seeking God's direction for our work. Much of what we are studying together stresses obedience to God and His commands, many of which were given through Jesus. What is obedience, exactly? From reading The Shema in Deuteronomy 6, my friend Matt came up with a great definition: Obedience is hearing and doing. I plan to blog some bits and pieces of our studies together, focusing on specific scriptures (hearing) as well as my response to that scripture in my daily life (doing). Today I'll start with Deuteronomy 6:3-9.

"Hear, O Israel, and be careful to obey so that it may go well with you and that you may increase greatly in a land flowing with milk and honey, just as the LORD, the God of your fathers, promised you.
Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates."

In response to this scripture, I will lead my family daily in reading God's Word. I will also search the accounts of Jesus' life to better understand how I can obey my Lord.

May we all not just hear God's Word but obey it as well!