This is the only command in the Bible repeated seven times with exactly the same words. (Rev. 2:7, 11, 17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22). Sadly, this is also the most overlooked command Jesus gave to His Church. A careful study of Revelation 1 – 3 and a review of the writings of second generation Christian leaders like Ignatius of Antioch will reveal that the early Church clearly understood this was a command to be faithfully obeyed. Our failure to do this and correct the problems revealed by this constant analysis has been one of the most significant reasons why the Christian Church – both Protestant and Catholic – is in decline throughout the Western World.
1. Equipping His Church
“He gave some apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers. His purpose was to equip God’s people for the work of serving and building up the body of Christ. (Ephesians 4:11, 12 CEB)
This means we must help equip His Church to obey His Loving Commands by fulfilling the Great Commission.
2. Obey His Loving Commands
Christ gave 3 different commands that intertwine with the Great Commission:
- His First Command: “Then he called his disciples and the crowds to come over and listen. ‘If any of you wants to be my follower,” he told them, “you must put aside your selfish ambition, shoulder your cross, and follow me’” (Mark 8:34 NLT).
- The Great Command: “‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?’ Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.’” (Matthew 22:36-38 NIV).
- The Last Command: “Anyone who has an ear should listen to what the Spirit says to the churches” (Revelation 3:22 Holman). We know from Revelation chapters 1 – 3 that Jesus gave this command so that His servants would follow His example and continuously hear and analyze what the Holy Spirit is revealing about every local church. This is the only command in the Bible repeated seven times with exactly the same words (Rev. 2:7, 11, 17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22). Sadly, this is also the most overlooked command Jesus gave to His Church. A careful study of Revelation 1 – 3 and a review of the writings of second generation Christian leaders like Ignatius of Antioch will reveal that the early Church clearly understood this was a command to be faithfully obeyed. Our failure to do this and correct the problems revealed by this constant analysis has been one of the most significant reasons why the Christian Church – both Protestant and Catholic – is in decline throughout the Western World.
How our Mission is completed though our Vision
In order for our mission to fully succeed, we have a vision that we should follow the strategy given by the Lord Jesus prior to His ascension:
“…but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.” (Acts 1:8 NASB)
This means that our first priority is to help our local community and then move out to nearby communities. Our vision, then, is to continue this expansion throughout our state and then to neighboring states. Once the United States is covered, we plan to move to neighboring countries and repeat the plan. Eventually, we plan to expand to the entire world. Most importantly, we will continue to maintain a communication network between all of these local communities that will eventually extend to the entire world.
How can we do any less than this if we are to obey the directions given to us by the Lord Jesus Himself in Acts 1:8?
1. Our local community (Jerusalem). Our first priority is to reach the community where we are located. We start by forming a trusted relationship with the Faith-Based Community (FBC). These are the churches, non-profit Christian organizations, religious organizations, and individual believers in our local area. Then, we form trusted relationships with the key persons and organizations in the Secular Community (SC). This is the initial task of our Communications Division. A local community may be a city, a county, or a group of counties, depending on local circumstances.
2. Our neighboring communities in our state (Judea). Secondly, we endeavor to replicate what we are doing in our initial community with adjacent communities. When we are successful with this expansion, we will connect these local areas to one another within the state.
3. Our state connects to other states within our region (Samaria). Thirdly, we replicate this Acts 1:8 strategy in adjacent states and connect the states together within a region of the nation.
4. Our regions connect the entire nation (Our World-Level 1). Fourthly, we replicate this Acts 1:8 strategy in other regions of the US and then connect the regions together into a national network of churches, non-profit Christian organizations and committed Christians.
5. Our nation connects to other nations within our continent. (Our World-Level 2). Fifthly, we replicate this Acts 1:8 strategy in other nations and then connect the USA with other nations within our continent.
6. Our continent connects to other continents within our Global North Hemisphere. (Our World-Level 3). Sixthly, we plan to connect the continents of the Global North together into a worldwide network of churches, non-profit Christian organizations, and committed Christians.
7. Our Global North Hemisphere connects to the Global South Hemisphere. (Our World-Level 4). Seventh and lastly, we plan to connect the Global North and the Global South into a worldwide network of churches, non-profit Christian organizations and committed Christians.
Remember in the Great Commission, Jesus did say “All authority has been given unto me, Go and make disciples…” And, the book of Hebrews tells us “Without Faith it is impossible to please God…” (Hebrews 11:6).
We want to please God! And we believe you want to please Him too! Will you join us in fulfilling this mission of “Equipping His Church to obey His commands though the Great Commission”? Will you further join with us as we accomplish our vision of extending this mission to the ends of the earth? Please let us hear from you if you want to share in this vision and ministry.