"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,Matthew 28:19(NASB)
Just before His Ascension, the Lord gave the Church their great commission to go and make disciples of all the nations, baptising them in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. But discipleship is not synonymous with becoming a Christian. True discipleship can only happen after salvation – for a disciple is one that learns of Christ and keeps on learning of Him.
The commission Christ gave was to make disciples of all nations. A disciple of Christ is a learner of Christ, and we are all called to be disciples of Christ - to learn of Him and to mature in our faith. The commission Christ gave His own disciples at His Ascension was not simply a call to evangelise the lost (who certainly need to learn about God's free gift of salvation through Christ so that they can trust Him as Saviour) but it is equally a call for all believers to learn of Christ and to keep on learning of Him throughout their whole life, and even to become teachers of Christ as they grow in their Christian life.
Too often, Christ's commission is only seen as an evangelistic call to lost sinners – but it has far wider implications for it is equally a call to teach those that are saved, for all believers need to learn of Christ and to be grounded in the Word of God, for God wants all people to be saved and also to come to a knowledge of the truth. It is a fact that all disciples of Christ are believers in Him, but not all believers in Christ become His disciples.
Only a believer who is learning of Christ and growing in grace can truly be called a disciple of Christ – only a believer who is being washed in the water of the Word, pressing on for their upward call in Christ Jesus, and maturing in their faith can truly be called a disciple of Jesus.
Let us all become true disciples of Christ as we learn more and more of Him. And as we walk in Him, may the natural overflow be a desire to tell those we meet of the wonderful love of Christ Jesus and the salvation found in believing in Him.
Heavenly Father, it is my desire to know You more, to learn more of You, and to become a true disciple of Jesus Christ. Give me a teachable spirit, I pray, so that I may grow in grace. And I pray that You would enable me to go and disciple others in Your strength so that together we come to a knowledge of the truth in Christ Jesus, in Whose name I pray, AMEN.