As You Are Going...
What is the difference between someone telling you to “go” versus someone telling you “as you are going?” Well, the first requires a relocation. In other words, “do this when you arrive.” The second has no such requirement, because it is not based on a particular location.
You like Greek, right? No, not a gyro. I mean the language. Check out the word πορευθέντες. It’s the word used at the beginning of the “Great Commission” found in Matthew 28:19-20. Most Bibles will translate it as “Go, therefore and..”, but the actual translation is “Having gone...” or “As you are going…”.
Isn’t that interesting?
This is not my own scholarly work. It was brought to my attention by Stephen after a meeting he had with a friend of his. What a profound difference it makes within the context of what most Christians see as our greatest mission! If this is true, it is not a question of whether you are going or not, it’s a question of what you’re doing as you go…
So what are you doing as YOU go?
As we at Multiply Church continue to discover more and more who God is calling us to be, we have some vision statements about how we carry out our mission. One of them is that we are “Equipping the believer to live life on mission.” We didn’t corner the market on this, but we definitely see this as a central theme of the New Testament and are attempting to reconcile this with most people’s experience of the church. The new testament writer, Paul, wrote on several occasions that the believers in various cities should be living lives “worthy” of the calling God put on them. Check this out:
See!! I wasn’t lying. This guy Paul, who would be known to us today as one of the most effective church-planters in history, was not messing around with these folks. It wasn’t just good enough for the people of these cities to receive Jesus as savior. He wanted them to live out lives that reflected the work of the Gospel they had received.
So I guess we have to eventually tease out what it means to live a life worthy of Jesus’ Gospel. Not that our behavior somehow precedes God’s grace, but that God’s grace should precede our behaviour. It seems that a worthy life is a life on mission. So let’s do it!!!
If the mission is to make disciples, how did Jesus tell us to carry that out? Well, take a look at the great commission. There are two parts in HOW it is to be carried out: 1) Baptize people, and 2) Teach people to obey everything Jesus has commanded.
Stay with me…
Worthy Life = Life on Mission = Obedience to the Ways of Jesus
A few thoughts on how we might be able to practically walk that out:
1) Read your Bible → Know The Ways
Pick that bad boy up sometime. You’d be surprised how helpful it is!
2) Disciple/Be Discipled → Grow in The Ways
Who is discipling you? Who are you discipling? Left to ourselves, we are likely to choose comfort over change so will challenge you and hold you accountable?
3) Bias toward action → Go in The Ways
Don’t wait for God to confirm your obedience, just start moving in it and wait for Him to tell you to stop, as you are going.
Yes, it rhymes. And yes, it’s the mission or vision of thousands of local churches, but it’s CATCHY, ain’t it?? Know. Grow. Go.
But seriously, this is something we would love to see the people of God continue to step into as disciples of Jesus. Not just receiving Jesus as Savior. And not even just worshipping Jesus as King. We want to see people obeying Jesus as Lord.
This is when the rubber hits the road… Are you en route yet?