Harmony of the Gospels

  HARMONY OF THE GOSPELS

(11) The Great Commission

Luke 24:44-49 [Matthew 28:16-20, Mark 16:15-18]


Tom Lowe

11/18/2008

 

Receiving the Word (Luke 24:44—45). Their hearts were troubled, frightened, and doubtful; yet the Lord lovingly reassured them with His word. We today cannot see or feel His body, but we have the Holy Spirit to make Him real to us from the Scriptures. When your heart is troubled or frightened, see Jesus in the Word (John 14:1–6). When your faith is weak, see Jesus in the Word (Rom. 10:17). The first step toward peace is receiving the Word.

Sharing the Word (46—49). God opens our eyes and opens our understanding (v. 45) so that when He opens the Scriptures to us, we may open our mouths and tell others about Him (v. 48). Jesus gives us the commission, the power, and the message. There is no reason to be silent! When we experience joyful worship, we will have little problem giving the world a joyful witness.


Date: During forty days until assention.
Location: Mountain in Galilee 


Scripture: Luke 24:44-49

44And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.

45Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures,

46And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:

47And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

48And ye are witnesses of these things.

49And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.


Commentary

Background: Leading up to the gathering where Jesus gives the Great Commission to His disciples. When the women went and told them that they had seen the Lord, and that he had promised to meet them in Galilee, Matthew wrote, “Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them” (Matthew 28:16). Judas was dead, leaving eleven of the original number of the apostles.
Jesus spoke of this rendezvous in Matthew 26:32: “But after I am risen again, I will go before you into Galilee.” On what particular mountain this was is not known. It is probable that Jesus, when he made the appointment, specified the place and time, which has been omitted by the evangelists. Today, there are two opinions held concerning the mountain where Jesus met with them—the Mount of the Beatitudes or Mount Tabor—the former is much more probable, due to its nearness to the Sea of Galilee where He met and dined with seven of them (John 21:1[1]).

The eleven did go into Galilee—but certainly not before the second week after the resurrection, and probably somewhat later, because we learn from John 20:26[2] that they remained in Judea for over a week after the resurrection. Of the appearances in Galilee we have three accounts: the brief one here, which describes the official meeting of the Lord with the entire body of disciples: the one by the sea, described in John 21, and the reference by Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:6[3]. The eleven went into Galilee because the Lord had commanded them to do so.

Matthew 27:17 describes what happened when Jesus arrived; “And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.” There were different opinions among the five hundred; most believed that Jesus was the Messiah, but there were some who did not yet believe—the believers worshipped Him as the Messiah. The eleven had not expected His resurrection; they were therefore slow to believe; but certainly by this time none of "the Eleven" doubted after what took place at previous meetings in Jerusalem. But if the five hundred were now present, we may well believe that some of them were doubters.

Luke 24:44: And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.

He told the eleven that these recent events are simply what He told them would come to pass, according to the Scriptures, but they did not understand.  He was not talking about anything new to them; it was all in the Scriptures.  He explained that His resurrection was the fulfillment of His own words to them. Had He not told them that all the Old Testament prophecies concerning Him had to be fulfilled? What was the point of the  Old Testament prophecies concerning Christ? They were:
1. That He must suffer (Psalm 22:1–21; Isa. 53:1–9).
2. That He must rise again from the dead the third day (Ps. 16:10; Jonah 1:17; Hos. 6:2).
3. That repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

The law—the prophets—the psalms—this was the Jewish division of the whole Old Testament that Jesus refers to.
I. The LAW, Jewish ‏torah, including Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.
II. The PROPHETS, nabiaim, or teachers, including Joshua, Judges, the two books of Samuel, and the two books of Kings: these were termed the former prophets. Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi: these were termed the latter prophets.
III. The HAGIOGRAPHA, (holy writings),  kethuvim, which included the Psalms, Proverbs, Job, Canticles, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther, Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah, and the two books of Chronicles. The anciently Jews made  only twenty-two books out of the whole, to bring them to the number of the letters in the Hebrew alphabet; and they did this by joining Ruth to Judges, making the two books of Samuel only one; and likewise for Kings and Chronicles; joining the Lamentations to Jeremiah, and making the twelve minor prophets only one book.

Jesus gave them the understanding to comprehend all the Scriptures that were written about Him.  The insight He gave them into the Word of God, brought faith in the resurrection of Christ, and understanding of His Word. We should strive to better understand what Christ does, and what He has said. Then He refers them to the Word they had read in the Old Testament, to which the Word they had heard from him directed them: All things must be fulfilled which were written. Christ had given them this general hint—that whatever they found written concerning the Messiah, in the Old Testament, must be fulfilled in Him, what was written concerning his sufferings as well as what was written concerning His kingdom; these God had joined together in the prediction, and they must all happen just as He said. All things must be fulfilled, even the hardest, even the heaviest, even the vinegar; he could not die till he had that, because he could not die until He said, “It is finished.”  The several parts of the Old Testament are mentioned here, since each of them contain things concerning Christ:
“While I was yet with you” is a reference to the time before his death, when He was their teacher and guide. It is a striking expression, implying that He was now, as the dead and risen Savior, virtually separated from this scene of mortality, and from all ordinary communication with His mortal disciples.

Luke 24:45: Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures,

He fully opened their understanding, and enabled them to grasp the meaning of the prophecies which foretold his death and resurrection. They had a measure of light before, so that they understood the Scriptures to be the true word of God, and to speak of the Messiah; but they did not have enough light to enable them to apply these Scriptures to their Lord and Master; but now, by the influence of Christ, they see, not only, the prophecies which pointed out the Messiah, but also the Messiah who was pointed out by these prophecies. They had seen him die, they now saw him risen. Their doubts and suspicions were now, by his instructions, and by the facts which they could no longer call into question, removed and they no longer doubted that he was the Messiah, and that all the facts in the case which had confounded them before could be easily accounted for. Thus we may learn—
1. That fact, or the farther discovery of truth, will remove the mysteries that we now see in religion.
2. That our prejudices and our preconceived opinions are one cause of our seeing so many mysteries in the Bible. If a man is willing to accept the plain declarations of the Bible, he will no longer be baffled with its mysteries.
3. That only God can open the mind to fully comprehend the Scriptures. He only can overcome our prejudices, open our hearts, and make us ready to receive the engrafted word with meekness, and with the simplicity of a child. See Acts 16:14[4], James 1:21[5], Mark 10:15[6].
4. That the propose of God opening the understanding is so we may be acquainted with the Scriptures. It is not that we may be made wise above what is written, but that we may submit ourselves wholly to the Word of God.  They did not understand the scriptures, because they simply had not believed His word.  In order to understand the Bible you have to have the Spirit of God open your mind and heart.  That is what Jesus did, and then they believed His word and understood its message. Only the Spirit can make you able to comprehend Bible study.
The book of God may be received in general as a Divine revelation, but the proper meaning, reference, and application of the Scriptures can only be perceived by the light of Christ. Even the very plain word of God is a dead letter to those who are not enlightened by the grace of Christ; and why? Because this word speaks of spiritual and heavenly things; and the carnal mind of man cannot understand them. Those who never receive this inward teaching, which is the role of the Holy Spirit, continue in the dark and are dead in their sins, while they live.

“Then opened he their understanding,” is a statement of unspeakable significance; expressing, on the one hand, Christ's immediate access to the human spirit and absolute power over it, to alter its perceptions, and permanently adapt it for spiritual discernment; and, on the other hand, making it certain that the manner of interpreting the Old Testament which the apostles later used in their ministry (see the Acts and Epistles), has the direct sanction of Christ Himself.

Luke 24:46: And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:

It behooved Christ to suffer: It became proper or necessary for the Messiah to suffer. It was predicted that He would, and all things have happened as it was foretold. The divine will must be carried out, and care must be taken that no word of God fall to the ground. "Go, and tell the world,’’ First, "That Christ suffered, as it was written of him. Go, preach Christ crucified; do not be ashamed of his cross, and do not ashamed of a suffering Jesus. Tell them what he suffered, and why he suffered, and how all the scriptures of the Old Testament were fulfilled by his sufferings. Tell them that it behooved him to suffer, that it was necessary to take away the sin of the world, and to deliver mankind from death, and that it behooved him to be perfected through sufferings,’’ Heb. 2:10. Secondly, That he rose from the dead on the third day, which not only rolled away all the offence of the cross, but also declared Him to be the Son of God with power, and in this also the scriptures were fulfilled (see 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4 Psalm 16:10, Isaiah 53:10, and the book of Jonah.). Go; tell the world how often you saw him after he rose from the dead, and how intimately you conversed with him. Go, and tell them, then, that he that was dead is alive, and lives for evermore, and has the keys of death and the grave.

Luke 24:47: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

Repentance. Sorrow for sin and forsaking of it.
It was appropriate to preach to all nations that repentance is a necessity, for all were sinners. “God tolerated man’s past ignorance about these things, but now he commands everyone to put away idols and worship only him” (Acts 17:30; Living Bible). Having exposed the folly of idolatry, Paul goes on to state that for many centuries God overlooked the ignorance of the Gentiles. But now that the revelation of the gospel has come, He commands all men everywhere to repent, that is, to do an about-face. Repentance for sin must be preached in Christ’s name, and by his authority.

Remission of sins. Pardon or forgiveness of sins. It should be proclaimed that all men should repent, and that those who are penitent may be pardoned.

The great gospel privilege of the remission of sins must be made known to everyone, and guaranteed to all that repent, and believe the gospel.

In his name. On his authority, and by virtue of the atonement made by him: for on what other ground could the inhabitants of the earth expect remission of sins?

Pardon is offered by the authority of Christ to ALL humanity, and this is an ample motivation to offer the gospel to every man.

Among all nations. Because God wills the salvation of ALL; and Jesus Christ by his grace has tasted death for EVERY man.

“But we do see Jesus—who for a while was a little lower than the angels—crowned now by God with glory and honor because he suffered death for us. Yes, because of God’s great kindness, Jesus tasted death for everyone in all the world” (Hebrews 2:9; Living Bible). When the Son of Man returns to reign over the earth, man’s dominion will be restored. Jesus, as Man,            

Beginning at Jerusalem. This was where His murderers lived, and it shows His readiness to forgive the vilest sinners. It was the holy place of the temple, the habitation of God, and it was appropriate that pardon should be proclaimed there first, because if the sinners of Jerusalem would repent, believe, and be saved, none, on this side hell, need to lose hope. This was precisely what happened; the gospel was preached there first. [See Acts 2:1 and following.] Paul also, preached the gospel to the Jews first, offering them pardon through their own Messiah; and, when they rejected it, he turned to the Gentiles. “Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles” (Acts 13:46). Paul and Barnabas were not easily intimidated. They explained that they were under an obligation to declare the message first of all to the Jewish people. However, since they had rejected the message, and had therefore condemned themselves as unworthy of everlasting life, the preachers announced they were turning to the Gentiles with the gospel. If any authorization were needed for such a break with Jewish tradition, then the words of Isaiah 49:6 would do. Actually, in this verse God is speaking to the Messiah when He says, “I have set you as a light to the Gentiles, that you should be for salvation to the ends of the earth.” But the Spirit of God permits the servants of the Messiah to apply these words to themselves, since they were His instruments in bringing light and salvation to the Gentile nations.

These verses point to a coming change in dispensations, for whereas Christ had before strictly limited the apostles in their preaching to the Jews only (Mt 10:5–6[7] ), He now enlarges the Commission by extending it to all mankind.

Luke 24:48And ye are witnesses of these things.

He gave them a far-reaching commission to proclaim these glad tidings of peace and salvation to a lost world. The disciples were witnesses not only that Christ had suffered and rose again from the dead; but also that he opens the understanding by the inspiration of his Spirit, that he gives repentance, that he pardons sin, and purifies from all unrighteousness, and that he is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come unto the knowledge of the truth and be saved. And these are the things of which their successors in the Gospel ministry must bear witness. When a man steadily and lovingly proclaims these doctrines, God will bless his labor with the salvation of those who hear him. But no man can bear witness of that grace that saves the soul, if his own soul is not saved by that grace.

Luke 24:49: And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.

The promise of my Father. The promise which the Father had made to them through the Savior. (See Matthew 10:19, 20[8] , John 14:16[9] .) The promise was that they would be aided by the power of the Holy Ghost. He also, no doubt, referred to the promise of God, made in the days of Joel, regarding the outpouring of the Holy Ghost. See Joel 2:28, 29[10] , compared with Acts 2:16-21[11] .

The disciples were witnesses of the resurrection. They must go forth as proclaimers of the glorious message. But first they must wait for the Promise of the Father, i.e., for the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. Then they would be endued with divine power to bear witness to the risen Christ. The Holy Spirit was promised by the Father in such Old Testament passages as Isaiah 44:3[12] ; Ezekiel 36:27[13] .

Endued with power from on high. Endued means to be invested with, or clothed with; implying that the apostles would be so penetrated and acted upon by conscious supernatural power that would stamp them with divine authority for the whole period of their apostolic office, including, of course, their pen as well as their mouth.

The energy of the Holy Ghost was to be given to them for three particular purposes.
1. So that he might be in them, a sanctifying comforter, fortifying their souls and bringing to their remembrance whatever Jesus had spoken to them before.
2. So that their preaching might be accompanied by his power to influence the hearts of their hearers, so that they might believe and be saved.
3. So that they might be able to work miracles to validate their contention that they have a Divine mission, and to establish the truth of the doctrines they preached.

The power which would be given them by the coming of the Holy Ghost—the power of speaking with tongues, of working miracles, and of preaching the gospel with the additional blessing and aid of the Holy Ghost, was accomplished in the gift of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. See Acts 2:1 and following.

There was no way that the little group of apostles, who were still afraid, and who were for all practical purposes powerless, poor and uneducated could take the gospel to the world; therefore, they were to remain in Jerusalem until the promised power was received.

THE ELEVEN ARE READY TO BEGIN THE MISSION THAT JESUS TRAINED THEM FOR; THE LORD WOULD BUILD HIS CHURCH THROUGH THEM. HE HAS TOLD THEM THAT THEY WILL HAVE HELP WITH THEIR ASSIGNMENT, BECAUSE HE WILL SEND THE HOLY SPIRIT TO BE THEIR HELPER. THEY MUST WAIT IN JERUSALEM FOR THE HELPER TO COME TO THEM; THEY MUST NOT BEGIN THEIR MINISTRY WITHOUT HIM. SO, WHAT IS THEIR ASSIGNMENT? MATTHEW GIVES US THOSE VERY FAMILIAR VERSES THAT WE CALL THE GREAT COMMISSION; THEY ARE TO PREACH THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST TO A LOST AND DYING WORLD.

Matthew 28:18And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

He spoke to the whole assembly of five hundred brethren: “After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep” (1 Corinthians 15:6). A commission had been given long before this, to the twelve apostles (see Matthew 10:1-15), and also to the seventy, but it differed widely from the one given here; it confined the preaching to the Jews. Now the preachers of Christ are sent, by the authority of the King, to make disciples of all nations. The old dispensation had ended with the cross. The new one had begun with the resurrection.

Jesus announced to the crowd of 500 plus; “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.” —Or, All authority (the right to use power) in heaven and upon earth is given unto me. One fruit of the sufferings and resurrection of Christ is said to be, His having authority or right in heaven to send down the Holy Spirit—to raise up His followers and build His church—and to crown them in the kingdom with an endless glory: in earth, to convert sinners; to sanctify, protect, and perfect His Church; to subdue all nations to himself; and, finally, to judge all mankind. If Jesus Christ were not equal with the Father, could he have claimed this equality of power, without being guilty of impiety and blasphemy? Surely not; and does He not, in the fullest manner, assert his Godhead, and His equality with the Father, by claiming and possessing all the authority in heaven and earth?  Since Jesus Christ today has all authority, we may obey Him without fear.  No matter where He leads us, no matter what circumstances we face, He is in control.  By His death and resurrection, Jesus defeated all enemies and won for Himself all authority.

Hereafter, he was the King and Judge of the nations. The words “is given” denotes the source from where he obtained his power, and implies that it was not inherent in the Son. Phil 2:9[14] indicates that it was given to him afterwards and as the end result of, his voluntary humiliation; and 1 Corinthians 15:27[15], shows that “all power” was the property of the Father. It was because the authority to rule the world had been placed in His hands that He issued his commands that it should be conquered.  This verse is proof of his deity.  The time of His humiliation is at an end, and God has exalted him above all.

Matthew 28:19: Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

Go ye therefore. “Go”, implies an aggressive warfare. The Gospel army must move upon the nations of the world. The Lord is preparing a universal empire, and, to that end, He sends forth His armies to conquer the world. Every church and every disciple must understand that they have marching orders.

And teach all nations. Not only is every saint commanded to go, or to take steps to make the gospel venture forth, but the object of their going is stated. They are to make disciples, or pupils and scholars of Christ; not great philosophers, but “babes in Christ Jesus,” who have entered the school of Christ and are to be taught what the Lord says to us in the Scriptures. And this does not apply to the Jews only, but to all nations. Christ came to be the Savior of the world. His is a universal religion. In the Great Commission He looks beyond Judea, and commands that the Gospel shall be offered to all nations. This gracious commission was the foundation of the authority to go to the Gentiles. The Jews had expected that the offers of life, under the Messiah, would be confined to their own nation. Jesus broke down the partition wall, and commissioned his disciples to go everywhere, and bring the world to the knowledge of Himself. The test of twenty centuries shows that Christianity is not local or national, but is adapted to the needs of all mankind.

Baptizing them. The activity of applying water to them, as a symbol of the purifying influences of the Christian religion through the Holy Spirit, and solemnly devoting them to God.

The ritual by which those who believe in Him are formally enlisted and enrolled in the family of God is baptism. It is not a baptism of the Spirit that He means, because it is one that those whom he addresses are commanded to administer. He alone baptized with the Spirit; His apostles and disciples were baptized in water, and it is to this ritual that he refers. That’s why, when we study the preaching of the apostles under this commission, we find that all converts were baptized at once (Acts 2:38-41[16]).

The end or result of baptism is also given in this verse. Converts were to be baptized into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. It is a positive assertion of the Old Testament that where the name of the Lord is recorded there he will meet his disciples, or there you will find His presence (Exodus 20:24)[17]. The Lord declares that the three names, that of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, are recorded in baptism. In this rite, then, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit meet the believer; the Father to receive him as a child, the Son to welcome him as a brother, and to cover him with the mantle of his own purity; the Holy Spirit to endow him with that Spirit by which he can say, “Abba, Father.”

“In the name of” is equivalent to “in the presence of,” or “into the Father, and into the Son, and into the Holy Spirit.”

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Jesus commands them to baptize “in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost;” but among the Jews, they baptized only in the name of Jesus. [See Acts 2:38[18]; 8:16[19]; 19:5[20].] This may have been done with the intention that those doing the baptizing might assert, and those being baptized might confess, Jesus to be the true Messiah; which was very controversial among the Jews.

What place then does the Holy Ghost and the Father have in this baptism? They are not excluded, however They are not named. The Jews found it easier to accept the Spirit of the Messiah, than the person of the Messiah. More than all others, they denied and renounced Jesus of Nazareth. It was fitting then for the apostles to stress that Jesus was the long awaited Messiah.

The Jews baptized proselytes in the name of the Father, but the apostles baptized the Jews in the name of Jesus the Son, and the Gentiles, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.

The phrase “in the name of,” as it is used here, does not mean by the authority of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. To be baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost is the same as to be baptized unto the Father; just as to believe on the name of Christ is the same as to believe on Christ. [See John 1:12[21], 2:23[22], 3:18[23]). Believing in His name is the same as believing in Him. In the Bible, the name stands for the person. If you trust His name, you trust Him. To be baptized unto anyone is publicly to receive and adopt him as a religious teacher or lawgiver; to receive his system of religion. Hence, the Jews were baptized "unto Moses" (1 Corinthians 10:2[24]). That is, they received the system that he taught; they acknowledged him as their lawgiver and teacher. So Paul asks the question, (1 Corinthians 1:13) "Were ye baptized in the name of Paul?"—i.e., were you devoted to Paul by this rite? Did you bind yourselves to him, and give yourselves away to him, or to God? So to be baptized in the name of the Father, etc., means that you publicly acknowledge, by the significant ceremony of baptism, to receive the biblical system of religion, to obligate yourself to obey his laws; to be devoted to him; to receive, as the guide and comforter of your life, his system of religion; to obey his laws, and trust to his promises. To be baptized unto the Son means to receive him as the Messiah-our Prophet, Priest, and King; to submit to his laws, and to receive him as the Savior of the soul. To be baptized unto the Holy Ghost is to receive him publicly as the Sanctifier, Comforter, and Guide of the soul. The meaning, then, may be expressed like so: Baptizing them unto the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, by a solemn profession of the only true religion, and by a solemn devotion to the service of the sacred Trinity.

Matthew 28:20: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Teaching them[25] to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you. Men are ignorant of spiritual things, and must be taught. Only those who are thoroughly instructed in the Word of God can be considered as proper teachers of the ignorant. Persons who are entrusted with the public ministry of the Word should be careful that they do not teach human creeds and confessions of faith, in place of biblical scripture.

The second part of the commission is to teach the converted and baptized disciples. The first part commands the making of disciples, and tells how they must be made. The second part provides for the instruction of the disciples. This is to be done by “teaching them,” ‘To observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.” What must be taught by the faithful Christian teacher is prescribed. It will be immediately obvious that this does not include much of what is often taught today. We are not to teach science that contradicts the Bible, inflexible speculations as truth, isms or human creeds. Christ has never commanded these. On the other hand, we are to teach all things he has commanded. Some of these things we have recorded in the Gospels; others we have in the Acts and in the Epistles. They embrace the various duties of Christian life.

And, lo, I am with you always. Literally means, Behold, I am with you every day. That is, by my Spirit, my providence, my counsel and guidance. I will strengthen, assist, and guide you. This also proves that Christ is Divine. If he was a mere man, how could he promise to be with his disciples always-or at all? They would be scattered far and wide. If he was with them always, he was God; for no finite creature could be present with many men who were scattered in different parts of the world.

A minister or servant of Christ should consider that while he simply and uniformly follows Jesus, he will be made a constant instrument of bringing many sons and daughters to glory. The dark, it is true, must be enlightened, the ignorant instructed, the degenerate reclaimed, the guilty justified, and the unholy sanctified; and who is sufficient for this work? He with whom the Son of God is with them EVERY DAY, and none other.

It was a difficult and demanding work he had commanded his disciples to undertake; a few poor and uneducated laboring men to undertake the moral and religious conquest of a world that had just crucified their Master. There was, however, an assurance that they should be equal to the task, for, (1) All power, or authority, in heaven and earth was in the hands of their crucified Lord. (2) He now declares, I am with you always. He who has all power will be present with them, a help in time of need. He is a mighty, present and helping Savior. Even unto the end of the world. Until the close of the Christian dispensation, coming of the Lord, and the Day of Judgment.

Unto the end of the world. If you belong to Him, he will always be with you. That means that He will be with you all of your days; until the world ends. And this is an indispensable necessity, because the presence and influence of Jesus Christ are necessary in every age of the world, to enlighten, instruct, and save the lost. The promise takes in not only the ancient apostles, but also all their successors in the Christian ministry and all who bear the title of Christian; as long as the earth shall endure.

 


 ___________Scripture Reference_______________


 
 [1]After these things Jesus shewed himself again to the disciples at the sea of Tiberias; and on this wise shewed he himself.
  [2]And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.
  [3]After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.

  [4]And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul.
  [5]Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.
  [6]“Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.”  The Lord was greatly displeased and explained that the kingdom of God belongs to little children, and to those who have childlike faith and humility. Adults have to become like small children in order to enter the kingdom.
These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

  [8]“But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.” They need not rehearse what they would say when on trial. When the time came, the Spirit of God would give them divine wisdom to answer in such a way as to glorify Christ and utterly confuse and frustrate their accusers. All believers can claim God’s promise to give them wisdom to speak with divine intuition. They become mouthpieces for the Spirit of their Father.
  [9]“And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever” The Lord would pray the Father to send another Helper. The word Helper (Paraclete) means one called to the side of another to help. It is also translated Advocate (1 Jn. 2:1). The Lord Jesus is our Advocate or Helper, and the Holy Spirit is another Helper—not another of a different kind, but another of similar nature. The Holy Spirit would abide with believers forever. In the OT, the Holy Spirit came upon men at various times, but often left them. Now He would come to remain forever.
  [10]And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit.
  [11]“But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel; And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy: And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke: The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come: And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
  [12]“For I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground: I will pour my spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing upon thine offspring”
  [13]“And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.”

  [14]“Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name.”
  [15]“For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him.” God has decreed that all things shall be put under the feet of the Lord Jesus. Of course, in putting all things under Him, God necessarily excepted Himself. Verse 27 is rather hard to follow because it is not clear to whom each pronoun is referring. We might paraphrase it as follows: “For God has put all things under Christ’s feet. But when God says, all things are put under Christ, it is obvious that God is excluded, who put all things under Christ.”
  [16]Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation. Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.
  [17]An altar of earth thou shalt make unto me, and shalt sacrifice thereon thy burnt offerings, and thy peace offerings, thy sheep, and thine oxen: in all places where I record my name I will come unto thee, and I will bless thee.
  [18]Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
  [19](For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.)
  [20]When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.
  [21] But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe o n his name:
  [22] Now when he was in Jerusalem at the passover, in the feast day, many believed in his name, when they saw the miracles which he did.
  [23]He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
  [24]“And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea.” Not only that, but all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea.” To be baptized into Moses means to be identified with him and to acknowledge his leadership. As Moses led the children of Israel out of Egypt toward the Promised Land, all the nation of Israel pledged allegiance to Moses at first and recognized him as the divinely appointed savior.
  [25] This is teaching in the more usual sense of the term; or instructing the converted and baptized disciples.

 

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Women lie about it and men pretend it doesn’t matter, but age is seen much differently in Nepal. When ABC’s 20/20 cohost, Hugh Downs visited Nepal, he discovered it is “polite” to ask a person’s age and to call someone old is a compliment in Nepal. Someone in their mid fifties typically seems embarrassed about their immature age, but they are usually comforted if the inquirer encouragingly says, “Don’t feel bad, you’re getting there.” In Nepal they take heed to Proverbs 16:31, “Gray hair is a crown of splendor.”

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