To begin Part 2 let’s review a frogs behavior with a slight twist. Frogs being incrementally cooked isn’t healthy for a frog. Likewise, incrementalism is often detrimental for mankind. Understand how the incremental deterioration of a moral society begins with the sins of selfishness and also of mankind not wanting to be told what to do.
Believing Christians have watched the moral decline worsen with time. Until recently some had not seen the entirety of those ramifications. Others have taken a defeatist approach and just watched mankind’s being hell bent on destruction, with disdain. Is there any way to do a course correction?
Mankind’s course of self-destruction has Satan, the father of lies, as its biggest cheerleader. Jesus foretold this situation to us early in his earthly ministry. John 8: 42-46 (NASB) says, “Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and have come from God, for I have not even come on My own initiative, but He sent Me. 43 Why do you not understand what I am saying? It is because you cannot hear My word. 44 You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 But because I speak the truth, you do not believe Me. 46 Which one of you convicts Me of sin? If I speak truth, why do you not believe Me?” Many still don’t believe.
However, that isn’t the end of the story. Ever since the resurrection and ascension of our Savior, Jesus Christ, the story line has changed. God is in the business of adoption. He is in the business of turning lost souls into the children of God. The crucifixion, burial, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus gives mankind the proof necessary to proclaim the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Evil will ultimately be destroyed. The victory is in God’s love for his creation, where mankind has a choice between right and wrong where right choices have eternal ramifications along this new path of life in Christ.
During the earthly ministry of Jesus Christ, He told us what we were to do on this new path after he left. He explained and summarized the Old Testament Law and Ten Commandments in Matthew 22:36-40, “’36 Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?’ 37 And He said to him, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the great and foremost commandment. 39 The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.” However, there is another command Jesus made in Matthew 28: 19, He tells us to, “Go therefore and make disciplesof all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”
Examples from the book of Acts provide us with numerous accounts of how to go out and make disciples. Later, in the book of II Corinthians, the apostle Paul provides us with a useful template. In II Corinthians 5:18-21 he proclaims this mission statement, “18 Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, 19namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their wrongdoings against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation. 20Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. 21He made Him who knew no sin to be sin in our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”
Therefore, our focus should be in reaching out to the unsaved among us, including those throughout the world. In order to make disciples one needs to understand what a disciple is. First, a biblical description of a disciple is one who is a follower of Jesus Christ. In the biblical sense this follower is dedicated to do as Jesus, his teacher, said. The hymn “Trust and Obey” comes to mind here.
Love is an important aspect of this discipleship. Teach others to Love God and to love their neighbor. Basically, as you leave home each morning; know that you’re entering the mission field. But that doesn’t mean you, as a disciple, can neglect the worldwide mission field. Know that you, as a disciple, should be imitators of Christ Himself. Dedicate yourself to being steadfast in your relationships and in the training up of new believers.
Finally, we should strive to attain this quality of loving; remember Christ first loved us, (I John 4: 19). Put others needs ahead of our own, and then impart these same qualities to those we have the honor to disciple. In this way we might stem the tide of the radicalized, rampant, pervasive evil present today. Time is running short.