AND YOU SHALL BE MY DISCIPLES – Lesson #45
- Baptize My Disciples
“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
WHAT DOES IT MEAN?
The Word of God, Jesus’ Teachings, should be read and understood on THREE levels:
- By the natural or physical (soma),
- By the soul or the mind, will and emotions (psuche), and
- By the spirit (pneuma)
1*. The natural of physical reading is at ‘face value’ and simply says “Go, make disciples of all the nations, baptize them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit and this is what happens almost all the time in most all the church buildings by most all the pastors.
2*. Peering through our Soul and reading these verses using all the senses of our mind, will and emotions, we see a bigger pictures.
Our mind begins to see and grasp the enormity of the task. Planning begins, thinking, strategizing, pondering.
We feel the emotional weight of trying to identify with people on their culture and building relationships with a foreign people in a language. We feel the estrangement from our families, loved ones and all things familiar.
We sense the commitment and the act of our will required to go into all the nations of the world as a missionary.
3*. The Spirit of God communes with our spirit and we know:
The word “GO” means to pursue the journey on which one has entered, and to continue on one’s journey so as to depart from your former life, to follow THE ONE, JESUS, that is to become his adherent and to reorder one’s life for Him.
(a) The word “GO” is in the aorist tense which means to “keep on going” with no regard to past, present or future circumstances. Once we obey and GO, this is a lifetime and a generation work.
(b) “Baptizing” them is not to be confused with simply dipping them in water,(bapto). The clearest example that shows the meaning of BAPTIZING (baptizo) is a text from the Greek poet and physician Nicander, who lived about 200 B.C. It is a recipe for making pickles and is helpful because it uses both words. Nicander says that in order to make a pickle, the vegetable should first be ‘dipped’ (bapto) into boiling water and then ‘baptised’ (baptizo) in the vinegar solution. Both verbs concern the immersing of vegetables in a solution. But the first is temporary. The second, the act of baptising the vegetable, produces a permanent change.
When used in the New Testament, this word more often refers to our union and identification with Christ than to our water baptism. e.g. #Mr 16:16. ‘He that believes and is baptized shall be saved’. Christ is saying that mere intellectual assent is not enough. There must be a union with him, a real change, like the vegetable to the pickle!
(c) “In the Name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit” the name is used for everything which the name covers, everything the thought or feeling of which is aroused in the mind by mentioning, hearing, remembering, the name, i.e. for one’s rank, authority, interests, pleasure, command, excellences, deeds etc. the cause or reason named: on this account, because he suffers as a Christian, for this reason
This comes from a root meaning, “ginosko”, to have a deep, personal and intimate knowledge, penetrating the heart, soul and spirit.
The gravity of His Words and the great commandment and commission is inescapable.
IF YOU ARE HIS DISCIPLE, A CHRISTIAN, YOU MUST GO, MAKE DISCIPLES, BAPTIZE AND TEACH or you must question whether you are His at all.
It is also worth repeating:
“And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.
“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
Now, it is your turn:
HOW MUST YOU DO IT?
HOW MUST YOU TEACH IT?
Your Brother and Friend,