When we take the Great Commission as our marching orders, we often make the same mistakes about Jesus the first disciples made.

A journey through life in active relationship
First Sunday after Pentecost  |  Matthew 28:16-20

These are the last words in the gospel of Matthew. Words which are often referred to as “the Great Commission.” A name which has parallel and perpendicular resonance with another teaching of Jesus’s often called “the Great Commandment.” One says to go make disciples and the other says to love God and neighbor as yourself. Christians have long struggled to determine which one is the “real” mission.

When we read the end of Matthew, we often hear only Jesus’s words at the very end. Usually we ignore the most important elements of this story. We’re in such a hurry to get to the Great Commission, to hear what Jesus was telling us to do, we skip the rest. We go straight to the goods. That’s what we want to know. Like the answer on a standardized test. Like God won’t give us a diploma if we fill in the wrong bubble on the Scantron.

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