No Holding Back

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What has God given you, and what will you do with it? In this message, we learn that discipleship is all about giving what we’ve received.

Alright. Hey everybody. Welcome to Valley Creek. Come on, whatever campus you’re at, let’s just welcome each other together. Come on. I am so glad that you are here with us today. And next weekend is baptisms.

And so if you’re a follower of Jesus and you haven’t been baptized yet, that is your next step. Let us help you take that next step as we celebrate with you. And we’re going to be pulling the series that we’ve been in together for the past few months altogether in responding to God. And we’re also going to be sharing with you our summer initiative which I’m really excited for. We’ve been praying and preparing for the summer. What does God want to do in your life and in your church? And so next week, we’re going to roll this out to you, 60 days of rest, joy and relationship.

Hang on a second. Could anybody use 60 days of rest, joy and relationship? Like if you feel weary and exhausted, if you feel beat down and depressed, if you feel like you’re that word that the world is using now, languishing, you’ve heard that one?

Or you feel like your relationships are stretched out and maybe aren’t where you want them to be. We’re going to spend 60 days seeking rest, joy and relationship, the kingdom of God. We’re going to roll that out next week. We’ve got a special resource for you that is available next weekend. I don’t want you to miss it because we don’t want to press pause when we go into this summer. God has been moving, there’s momentum building in your life, and we want to keep moving forward with what God has in store for us. So we’re going to roll this out next week. This is where we’re going for the summer. But today, we’re going to kind of do the last message in this series that we’ve been in called Becoming: Life as a Disciple. And for the past few weeks, we’ve been going through this series and it’s really been a big series for our church. It’s been a really significant series because we’re just asking this question like who am I becoming? Am I growing? Am I changing? Am I maturing? Am I becoming healthier?

Am I becoming freer? And am I living life as a disciple? A disciple, a learner, a follower, a student, one who becomes like the one that they’re following. And really, what we’ve been doing in this series is we’re just kind of saying, hey, let’s be done with American Christianity. Let’s move past consumerism. Let’s leave religion in the past. Let’s move beyond cheap grace. Let’s stop taking the path of least resistance and personal happiness and start taking the path, honestly, of greatest resistance but that’s full of kingdom hope. That we want to be people who walk the narrow road and go through the small gate that leads to ever widening life, not people who walk on the wide road and go through the broad gate that leads to destruction. We want to be disciples, followers of Jesus, which means we start to learn, to live like him.

In fact, Jesus says, “I tell you the truth, anyone,” that includes you, “who has faith in me will do what I have been doing.” He says it flat out. He says, if you really believe in me and you really start following me, eventually you’re going to start to think like me, talk like me, act like me, live like me, you’ll start doing what I have been doing. And I know a lot of us hear that and we think, man, you don’t know my life. There’s no way I can do what Jesus has done. But here’s the great news. He empowers you to live like this. His divine power has given us, say it with me, everything we need for life and godliness through HIS grace, and His Spirit and His word and His church, He’s given you everything you need to actually live like Him. And so if we’re called to live like Jesus, then the question we kind of have to ask ourselves is what did Jesus really do?

Like did you ever stop and ask yourself that question? If we’re supposed to do the things that Jesus has been doing, like what did he actually do? What did Jesus spend most of his time focused on? Like if we just read through the gospels and you ask that question, what did he spend his time doing? Was it healing sick people? Well, Jesus healed all kinds of sick people but that wasn’t the thing he was focused on doing. How about feeding the poor or the hungry? He fed lots of poor and hungry people, but that wasn’t what he was focused on doing. How about prayer and worship? Oh, Jesus prayed and worshipped all the time, but that wasn’t the focus. How about preaching? Jesus preached the greatest messages that have ever been preached, but that wasn’t the focus. How about going to church? Ah, Jesus went to the synagogue and the temple all the time, but that wasn’t his focus. For three years, Jesus was focused on making disciples.

If you read the gospels and you ask yourself the question, what did he really do? For three years, he made disciples. That was his whole focus. He took 12 men, and he shaped them, and molded, and formed them into his image and to likeness. He taught them about the kingdom, he showed them who the father was, he taught them how to walk in the way, the truth and the life. For three years, Jesus made disciples. And if we’re supposed to do the things that he did, then to be a disciple is to make disciples. You’re like, I’m not going to like this message. If Jesus spent three years making disciples and he tells us, we’re going to do the things that he did. Then to be a disciple is to make disciples. In fact, when Jesus first calls us to come and follow him, he says, “Come follow me and I will make you fishers of men.”

Have you ever thought about this for a second? This is the very first time Jesus invites the disciples or us, to come follow him. And when he says, follow me, I will make you fishers of men, right out of the gate, he’s telling you, hey, straight up, if you’re going to walk with me you’re going to live a life of mission. You’re going to get involved in the kingdom, you’re going to get your hands dirty, we’re going to go serve people, you’re going to become a contributor, we’re going to reproduce the life of God in you into the world around you. Straight up, I’m not tricking you, I’m not pulling any punches, if you follow me I’m going to teach you how to live a kingdom, missional life. It doesn’t say, come follow me and you’ll have a blessed life, come follow me and you’ll have an abundant life. Come follow me and you’ll have a life of righteousness, peace and joy. While all those things are true and they come through the journey with Jesus, he says right up front, come follow me and you’re going to live a life of purpose, man, helping me make disciples on this earth.

And he’s talking to fishermen. That’s why he says, fishers of men. If he was talking to builders, he would have said, come follow me and I’ll teach you how to build men. If he was talking to teachers, he’d say, come follow me and I’ll make you teachers or trainers of men. Like he’s putting it in context for them so they understand what he is saying to them. And this is restoring the great commission to us that goes all the way back to creation. So I want to give you a lot of verses here. You can just jot down the reference because I want you to actually see this from the Bible that this is our created design. In Genesis 1, the very first thing God says to Adam and Eve, it says, “God blessed them and said to them, ‘Be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth and subdue it using all its vast resources in the service of God and men.’” God blessed us with a purpose.

God blessed you by giving you a purpose, inviting you into His purpose, and you’re blessed not only when you have a purpose, but when you know what that purpose is. God gave us a purpose and He told us exactly what it was to be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth, make disciples, make people, raise them up so that they might know me and walk with me and fill the earth. And the problem is when you lose sight of your purpose, you lose sight of God. And because they lost sight of their purpose, they lost sight of God. And they sinned, broke the world, everything changed. And years later, God sent the flood to wash the earth. And when Noah and his family get out of the boat, “So God blessed Noah and his sons saying to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth.” There it is again, they’re blessed with a purpose and they’re blessed because they know their purpose. And what is it? To make disciples. Be fruitful, multiply, raise up a generation that knows me and walks with me. But they lost sight of their purpose.

So they lost sight of God, and years later God comes around and says it again to Abraham when He makes a covenant with him. “I will make you, Abraham, into a great nation. And I will bless you.” I will bless you with a purpose and you’ll be blessed because you know your purpose. And I will make your name and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you and whoever curses you I will curse. And all the peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” Abraham, be fruitful and multiply. I bless you to be a blessing. I want you to be father Abraham, the father of Israel, of the Jewish people, of an entire nation that would grow up and know me and walk with me, and demonstrate my kingdom to this earth. Make disciples. But they lost sight of their purpose, so they lost sight of God. And years later when the Israelites are going in to take the Promised Land. The Lord your God will drive out those nations before you little by little. The Lord your God will deliver them over to you, throwing them into great confusion until they are destroyed.

Here it is again, the great commission. You’re going into the Promised Land and I want you, little by little, day by day, step by step, person by person, to create a generation that destroys the works of darkness and rises up to walk with me, to demonstrate and to declare to the world the kingdom of God, who I am and how I engage with you. But they lost sight of their purpose, so they lost sight of God. And then eventually Jesus came. And for three years, Jesus did what humanity was commissioned to do, to make disciples, be fruitful and multiply. And after he died, rose again from the grave, he shows up to his disciples and one of the last things he says to them is, “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 the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.”

The resurrected Jesus looks at the disciples. He says, “Guys, it’s time. Go make disciples.” In other words, everything I’ve been doing for you, I want you to now go and do for other people, baptize them, declare their identity, the new reality that they have in me through the gospel and then teach them to obey everything I have commanded you. in other words, guys, you have a responsibility to give that which you have received. For three years, I gave you everything I had. You now have a responsibility to give that which you have received. And this great commission wasn’t just for them, it’s for us. Go and make disciples, baptize them, help people discover who they are in Jesus, and then you have a responsibility to give that which you have received.

Teach them everything he has commanded you. Not everything there is in the kingdom, everything that you are currently aware of. You have a responsibility to give that which you have received. And I read you all those verses because what I want you to understand is that every major juncture through humanity when God engages us, He redeclares the original design and the original purpose. Be fruitful and multiply. Be fruitful and multiply. Make disciples. You’re blessed to be a blessing. You’re on mission with me. Advanced my kingdom. This is your purpose, you’re blessed, you’ve got one. You’re blessed because you know what it is, now engage with me at every major juncture. But when we lose sight of our purpose, we lose sight of God. And I would just submit to you that the church of Jesus is in another crossroads.
And if we lose sight of our purpose, we’ll lose sight of God. This is not about consumerism. It’s not about American Christianity. It’s not about religion. This is not about cheap grace. This is not a bless me club. This is about walking with God and actually being a disciple that has a responsibility to give that which they have received. And you say, but I don’t know how or it’s uncomfortable or I’m not really secure in that. I hear you. But since when does inconvenience, uncomfortable realities or insecurities absolve us from God’s commands? This is the whole point. The whole point is I should feel a little bit desperate. I should feel like I don’t really know how to do it. And God is like, great, now I got you right where I want you. Now, let’s go because you’ll actually rely and depend on me. And a lot of us, we look at this verse and we’re like, wow, that’s just one verse in Matthew 28, it’s really not that big of a deal.

I can just ignore it. God just really wants me to be a good person. Okay, well, let me give you some more verses. Because this is — and this is fast. So catch that, every verse I just gave you is the major junctures through the Bible where God reinstates the great commission, the plan, to be fruitful, multiply, make disciples. Now, we think this is only in Matthew. But do you realize that this basically said at the end of every single one of the gospels? Mark, Jesus, “Go into the world and preach the good news to all creation.” The resurrected Jesus, real clear, go into all the world, preach the good news, make disciples. How about Luke? In Luke, Jesus says, repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations. You are witnesses of these things and I’m going to send you what my Father has promised, the Holy Spirit. But stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high. He says, go and preach repentance, forgiveness of sins in my name because of what you have seen and experienced in me. And I’m going to give you the Holy Spirit to empower you to go make disciples of all nations.

John says it like this. Again, Jesus said, peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, I am sending you. How did the Father send Jesus? To make disciples. So if he was sent to make disciples, and now we’re sent the same way, then we’re sent to make disciples. Jesus makes it real clear, and not only is it in all four gospels, it’s actually in the very beginning of Acts, the last things that Jesus says to humanity, there’s a bonus, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you and you’ll be my witnesses in Jerusalem and all Judea, and Samaria and to the ends of the earth.” The authority comes with the commission, the power comes with the presence. And you’ve been empowered and you’ve been commissioned to go and make disciples.

Disciples make disciples. There is no way you can read the Bible and not come to that conclusion. Is that fair? I mean I’m trying to give you as many verse as I can as the shorter period of time to help you just get it. There’s no way you can read the Bible and come to the conclusion that if you’re a disciple you don’t have to be involved in the mission of God. So really you’re left with a choice. If you’re not involved in the mission of God, it really leaves you with one of two things. One is you have yet to put your faith in Jesus or, two, is you just flat out said I’m just not going to do it. There’s not a third option. Go make disciples of all nations. It’s not really subjective. It’s not really like on days you have extra time or when you feel like it’s convenient. Disciples make disciples. In fact, in Luke 19:10, it says, “For the son of man came to seek and save that which was lost.”

Jesus came to seek, to save, to pursue with passion, to save, to heal, to make whole us. And if Jesus came to seek and save the lost, and I’m supposed to do the things that Jesus was doing, then my life should be built around seeking and saving the lost. So the paradox is this, the paradox is when we say we follow Jesus but we never get involved in making disciples. It’s a paradox. I can’t say I’m following Jesus but not be involved in his mission in any way. Why? Because if I’m actually following Jesus, and he’s seeking and saving the lost, then I’m going to follow him right into the lives of lost people. If that’s what he’s doing, seeking and saving the lost, that’s what he tells us he came to do, and I say I’m following Jesus, then if I’m actually following him, I’m going to end up in the lives of lost people. And he’s going to look at me and he’s going to point to them, and he’s going to say, now, what are you going to do?

So if I’m actually following him, there’s going to be constant invitations for inconvenience, uncomfortability, insecurity. But taking ownership of this sense that I have a responsibility to give that which I have received in Jesus’ name. Are you with me on this? Disciples make disciples. And it’s not just us, this is how Jesus led the disciples. In fact, I love this, in Luke 9, they start following him in Luke 5, okay? So this is like based on how you like to read this. This is either four or five chapters later. Here’s what it says, “When Jesus had called the twelve disciples together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases. And he sent them out to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.” Jesus takes these guys who have only been with him for a few chapters and he says, you have power.

You have authority. Now, go. Go preach the kingdom, go heal the sick, go make disciples. Get involved in my mission. Get your hands dirty in the brokenness of humanity. Go. And so they go. And if you read Luke 9, it is the most dismal chapter maybe in all of the gospels. They’re out and they’re trying to do their thing and they run into this little baby demon, and they can’t even cast out a little baby demon. They’ve been empowered with authority to drive out all demons. They can’t even drive out the little baby demon and this whole chaos thing erupts. And then later you keep reading, they start arguing which of them is going to be the greatest because they’ve got so much pride and arrogance in their hearts. And then they’ve got another guy that they don’t even know. And he’s actually casting demons out in the name of Jesus. He’s doing what they’re supposed to be doing, and they’re offended that he’s doing it and they can’t do it. So they tried to stop them and Jesus has to rebuke them because they were elite and exclusive.

And then the Samaritans don’t want Jesus to come into their town. So they say to Jesus, Jesus, shall we call down fire from heaven and roast those suckers? It is not a good chapter for the disciples. Now, if I’m Jesus at the end of Luke 9, I’m done. Like I want to redraft, I want to cancel their contracts, give me your jersey back, go back home. That’s how I’m — I’m just doing it myself. You guys don’t have a clue. But that’s not what happens. In Luke 10, the very next chapter, “After this, the Lord appointed 72 others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go.” Not only does he not cancel their contract, he doubles down and gives them an extension and adds 60 additional people to the equation.

I’m like, if Peter and John can’t do it, ain’t nobody can do it. No, Jesus is like, let’s double down on this thing because this is the way of the kingdom. And he told them, “The harvest is plentiful.” In other words, there are so many lost, broken, lonely people. “But the workers are few.” Only a few people who are actually willing to get involved in the mission of God and follow me. “So ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send workers into his harvest field. Go, I am sending you.” He doubles down, he tells them the mission is urgent, the mission is important, and he says, go. It’s not subjective, it’s not optional. Peter doesn’t get to sit down and be like, Jesus, I’m just really tired in this season so I just thought I’d just stay here with you. They don’t get to say, business is booming right now so I don’t have time for it. They don’t get to say, school is really busy so I can’t get involved in that.

They don’t get to say, there’s just a lot going on in my family. Or we’re taking some vacation time, so we’re not going to be around a while, so I can’t make any commitments or get involved. No, no. Go, I am sending you. It is not optional. It’s not a discussion. And again, I’m trying to tell you. I’ve been telling this whole series, this isn’t me saying. This is Jesus, man. This is you. So they go. And Luke 10 is a much better chapter than Luke 9 because they returned and in verse 17, “The 72 returned with joy and said, Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.” Catch it. They returned with joy having experienced power and they know exactly what their purpose is. And so if you never get involved in making disciples, if you never get involved in the mission of God, if you never get involved in advancing the kingdom or getting your hands dirty in humanity, there is a joy you will never know, a power you will never experience, and a purpose you will never discover.

There’s a joy you’ll never know, a power you will never experience and a purpose you will never discover. Could it be that so many of us are joyless in this season because we’ve completely checked out of the mission of God to try to save ourselves? Could it be after a really long, hard run we’re all just kind of done with everyone and everything else? So could that be why there’s not a lot of joy in here? Because joy comes when we’re involved in what God is doing, not asking Him to get involved in what we’re doing. Disciples make disciples. And you have a responsibility to give that which you have received.

In fact, Jesus says it, “Freely you have received, freely give.” Freely. You say, what have I received? You’ve received grace. You’ve received mercy. You’ve received compassion and kindness and love. You’ve received identity, relationship, purpose. You’ve received wisdom, and revelation, and insight, and knowledge and understanding. You’ve received a great church with a great church with a great worship environment and the word of God declared over your life, and Jesus-focused, Spirit-filled, life-giving people around you. You’ve received so much and you have a responsibility to give that which you have received. Come on, 2 Timothy 2:2, “And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others.” He says, hey, everything you’ve heard, everything you’ve experienced, everything that’s been done for you that you’ve been a part of, you have a responsibility to give it to others who will also be responsible to give that away to others.

This is the way of the kingdom. Come on, like when you’re engaged with us on a day like today, you don’t just get to hear all this and then just like leave and be like, where are we going for lunch? That’s what we think. That’s American Christianity. That’s from the kingdom of darkness, man. That’s consumerism. It’s cheap grace. That’s religion. That’s not disciple. That’s not kingdom. That’s not becoming, why? Because I have a responsibility to figure out how to share what I learned. And you say, who am I going to share with? Just even talk about it with the people in your own car or in your own house. Or if you came by yourself, set up coffee with a friend during the week and just start sharing what God is teaching you. Come on, one more of these. “’Consider carefully what you hear,’ he continued, ‘with the measure you use it will be measured to you and even more. Whoever has will be given more and whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.’”

See, if you can catch this. We steward revelation by giving it away. In the kingdom of God, you will lose whatever you try to keep, but you will always be given back more of whatever you give away. We steward revelation, that which we are learning and discovering about God by giving it away. And in the kingdom, you will lose whatever you try to keep and hold to yourself, but you will be given back more of whatever you give away. Like think about this, in God’s wisdom, He decided that you would grow as a disciple by helping someone else grow as a disciple. That as you take that which God has shared with you and share it with them, it actually gives you even more revelation, even more wisdom, even more insight into that area as you’re helping someone else grasp it in their own life.

Like if you want to go from thirty to sixty to a hundredfold revelation on any topic, get involved in teaching and training and sharing it, making disciples with someone else. That’s how you get more revelation is what it’s telling us. But if you hold on to it yourself, you’ll go from 30 to 15 to 7 to 1. And then you’ll walk into church or pick up your Bible or engage with somebody and be like, yeah, yeah, yeah, I’ve heard that story before. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, I know that passage. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’ve heard like beloved sons like a thousand times. Like it’s irrelevant or it’s boring, or I already know it. Tell me something I don’t know. Can I just tell you? No revelation is boring when you’re watching someone else experience it for the first time. And every time I teach it to someone else for the first time, it reignites the fire within me of how significant that concept of that truth is.

Like have you ever shared the three circles with somebody? And watch their eyes open up to this discovery of the fullness of the gospel. In that moment, it’s rekindling that fire in you and opening up your vision so you go from 30 to 60. Have you ever shared the concepts of following the cloud and life of next steps and hearing God’s voice with someone else? Because when you watch them get it and their eyes open up, oh my goodness, it refreshes your soul in such a way and gives you new revelation on it. Have you ever told someone they are a beloved son or daughter in whom the Father is well pleased? And watch it as what was covered or hidden to them becomes revealed and exposed. It rekindles how important and deep that truth is in your life. Have you ever told someone else they are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus? All these things, and we think, yeah, yeah, I heard it before. I know that story, I know that thing. Yeah. But when you disciple someone else and you put it in their life, you’re reminded how significant it is. This is why we’re supposed to tell our testimony because as you share your story with other people, it gives you new insight into the depths and the measures of God’s grace.

Come on, have you ever had a revelation God shared something with you? And in a day, a week, a month, a year you lost it? You couldn’t even remember it? Like that day you walked out of church and you were so excited about what God spoke to you and you wrote it down, but because you never did anything with it, six months later you don’t even remember that it happened? Why? Because you lose whatever you hold on to, but you get back even more whatever you give away. This is why so many people get so excited about God and then within a year or two, they’re gone. You’re like, what happened to them? They never got involved in mission. And if you don’t engage in the mission of God, eventually you will stop moving forward with God because we’ve lost sight of our purpose so we lose sight of God.

Come on, are you with me on that? This is why if you’ve been around here for years, you hear me like every once in a while reference thing, like when I say like, what are you doing with it? What are you doing with this whole series? Don’t just take notes and be like, yeah, I should really become someone better than I am. That misses the whole point. The whole point is what has God been teaching you now? Who are you going to share that with? And you say, well, how do I do that? I don’t know, have conversation with the people in your life. Don’t make it about the how. Make it about the what and the why. Come on, think of the disciples. Remember when they feed 5,000 people? There’s 5,000 hungry crowd people and the disciples want them to go away. And Jesus says, you give them something to eat. And they say, well, Jesus, we can’t feed 5,000 people. We don’t have that. And he goes, what do you have? Because God’s never asking you what you don’t have, He’s only ever asking you what do you have and what are you willing to do with it? And they say, we got five loaves and two fish. Not even enough for all of us.

And Jesus says, great, are you willing to give it to me? They say, yeah. So he blesses it and he gives it back to them. They were blessed with a purpose and they’re blessed because they know their purpose, and now they go out and they start feeding 5,000 people. And as they do it multiplies in their hand. And 5,000 people are fed and 12 basketfuls are left of it. Now, the question you have to ask yourself is who is really blessed in that experience? The crowd or the disciples? The crowd got a meal, the disciples experienced the miracle. The crowd had a moment, the disciples became a part of a movement. And because they were willing to give the little they had, God took it and He gave them back even more. Five loaves, two fish, not even enough for a snack for all of them. They ended up with 12 basketfuls after and 5,000 people were blessed in the name of Jesus. This is how it works in the kingdom of God. Come on, you know who gets the most out of this today? Me!

You’re like, well, that’s selfish. No. I spent all week studying this stuff to give it to you. And as I’m giving it to you, I’m getting more back in my own life and getting a deeper revelation on it.

Come on. You know who gets the most out of worship? The worship team. Because they spent all week seeking the presence of God getting in presence to lead us into His presence. So you enjoy it, but guess what, they get more out of it. You know who gets the most of raising up the next generation? Not the kids and the students, the adults who get involved in the lives of the kids and the students. You know who gets the most out of a circle? The circle leader. You’re like, yeah, most circles are kind of lame. I’m glad he’s getting something out of it. Yeah. Start your own circle, you get something out of it every time. Why? Because you’ve got something that you’re responsible to give away and so you get more back in the process.

This is why so many followers of Jesus in America are atrophied all the time because we won’t follow his kingdom principle. We hold that which we have so we lose it, 30, 15, 7, 1. And you can find it in yourself. When you start saying, I’ve heard that before, teach me something new, really, this series? Do I have to do this one again? That’s boring. I already know it. Where is the meat? All that junk, just so you understand, that’s from darkness and he’s trying to deceive you and take that which you already have and prevent you from getting what God wants to give you. And so what does that require? Straight up, lordship. To make disciples means Jesus has to be Lord over my time, my talent and my treasures. This is where it breaks down. He has to be Lord of your time because guess what, to make disciples is really inconvenient.

It’s time consuming. You have to make commitments and get involved in other people’s life of messiness and brokenness. And so we say, I don’t have time. Can I just tell you? If your excuse to following Jesus is always you don’t have time, then Jesus is not your Lord, time is. And I’m convinced the whole lot of us worship time more than we worship Jesus because our answer is always I don’t have time. Jesus says, I’ve given you all the time you have, you need to prioritize me with that time, not everything else. Talent, do you use your talent, your musical abilities, your business influence, your leadership gift, your insight and your wisdom to help other people discover and follow Jesus? And then treasure, do you use your possessions, your resources and your finances to get involved in the mission of God? It’s lordship. And Jesus is Lord of all or he’s lord of none.

Come on, disciples make disciples. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it. Whatever you hold on to, even out of ignorance, you will lose in the kingdom. But whoever loses his life, gives for me and for the sake of the gospel, will save it, will get back even more. Can I ask you a question? Are you losing anything for the gospel? Straight up, are you losing anything for the gospel? The gospel is free, but to spread it is not. Are you losing anything? Any time, any talent, any treasure? Being invested is what Jesus was really saying, given away to others so he can give you back even more. See, every one of us needs to be able to say, follow me as I follow Christ. This is a disciple. I’m following Jesus with everything that I’ve got and everything he gives me I will turn around and share with you because this is how the kingdom of God works.

I’m always following him and I’m always inviting you to come on the journey with me. And I will be inconvenienced with/for you so that you can come to discover who he is. Disciples make disciples. Last verse. “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 the Son, and 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 whole lot of use are going to say, that’s great. But how do I do it? I’ve intentionally not answered the question how for you today. Because I think you need to ask Him. The real thing is, can you wrestle with this verse and say, what does that mean in my life?

This moving past consumerism. If Jesus says, go and make disciples and I have a responsibility to give that which I have received, how do I do it? I don’t know. But he’s with you. So what if you just ask him? What if you start asking him and say, God, I want to be a part of what you’re doing, not ask you to be a part of what I’m doing. How does this work? And I will just give the little cliff notes. Like this is all Jesus says to the disciples. He didn’t give them a five-page manual on how to go and make disciples. He just says, go do it. And everything I did for you, you just go do for them. So the cliff note for you is this. Everything that God has done for you through others, you’re now responsible to do that for other people. What I mean by that is if you got saved or blessed or you had a mentor in your life when you were a student, you’re now supposed to get involved in the lives of other students to mentor them.

If you got invited to church, this church, any church and that’s how you met Jesus, you now have a responsibility to invite other people to church. If you have been touched by the worship and the presence of God, then you have a responsibility to move a row forward and engage a little bit more in worship to create a culture and an environment for other people to experience that kind of presence and power. If you get anything out of what we preach or teach around here, you have a responsibility to give it away. You say, to who? I don’t know. Facebook, social media, use the resource, your family, your friends, your neighbors, start a circle, get involved. Like you catch what I’m saying? If somebody has prayed for you, you have a responsibility to now pray for somebody else. You say, but my life is a mess. I know. And if you keep focusing on yourself, your life is going to keep getting worse. You got to focus on Jesus and what he is doing, and it gets our eyes off our own brokenness. This is the measure of a disciple. Disciples make disciples. We got to stop calling ourselves disciples if we don’t make disciples. Fair?

Come on, at every juncture the people of God lose sight of this. And all kinds of craziness happens and ensues when you just read the narrative of Scripture and you just watch it and then God comes back around He redeclares it. I think after 2020, God is redeclaring this to us and saying, guys, don’t lose sight of your purpose because if you stop engaging with my mission, you will stop following me. And this why people drop off the radar all the time because it becomes about themselves. Come follow me, I will make you fishers of men, not follow me you’ll have a perfect life. Come follow me and you will be blessed with a purpose and you’ll be blessed because you know your purpose.

In Matthew 4, they’re not even disciples. But Matthew 28, they’re making disciples. This is the process of becoming. This is the life of a disciple. So close your eyes with me. Come on, what does the Holy Spirit want to say? What’s He whispering in your heart or in your mind? Therefore, go and make disciples. Get involved in my mission, in my purpose, and I’m with you. So when you feel like you’re insecure or when you feel like it’s inconvenient, when you feel like it’s uncomfortable, Jesus says, I know.

So be desperate and look to me and I will be there with grace and Spirit and power. Today is an invitation from God to repent on the way we think about what being a disciple is all about. It’s not about behavior modification, it’s not religion, it’s not outward conformity, it’s not about being a good person, it’s not good morals. No, no, it’s moving forward on mission with Jesus, laying down our life for the sake of the gospel, for a world that is in desperate need of it. Every person has been entrusted with so much by Jesus. You have more than you’re even aware of.

And now it’s time to step into that responsibility of starting to give some of those things away, so he can entrust you with even more. So Jesus, would you stir up within us the passion for your mission? Would you stir up within us the heart of being disciples who make disciples? May we be a church that goes and gives away that which we have received. Thank you Lord for the commission, for the authority, for the power and for the presence. Thank you that we’re blessed to have a purpose and know that purpose. In Your name we pray, amen.

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