The Grand Commission

The Great Commission
Within the passages described by many devoted disciples of Jesus called the great commission located in: Matthew 28:16-20, Mark 16:14-20, Luke 24:45-49, John 20:19-23, and Acts 1:4-8. There are certain elements that compose this commission and those are:

  1. the specific act of teaching what Jesus had taught (commanded Matt. 28:20) (gospel Mark 16:15) (suffering of Christ, resurrection of Jesus on 3rd day, repentance and forgiveness of sins Luke 24:46-47) .
  2. The action of physical baptism of those who accept those teachings. (Matt 28:19) (belief and baptism Mark 16:16)
  3. A physical location (all nations Matt 28:19) (all the world, and whole creation Mark 16:15) (beginning from Jerusalem Luke 24:47), (Jerusalem Acts 1:4)
  4. Audience. (disciples Matt 28:16) (disciples “to them” Mark 16:15), (they, you are witnesses Luke 24:36,48), (disciples John 20:19), (them-disciples Acts 1:4)
  5. Supplemental Information (with you always Matt 28:20) (believes, saved or condemned, supernatural occurrences Mark 16:16), (sins forgiven or forgiveness withheld John 20:23).

When you look at the elements that make up the commission. It is clear that what is taught can be found within the New Testament writings. The gospel records overflow with not only the teachings of Christ regarding the condition of the heart and the hearts relationship with God and man, but also the forgiveness of sins and how this is possible. The documents show prophetic fulfillment by connecting those prophecies with the old testament. Jesus masterfully expounds on the law and he shows the fulfillment of the law by his life. This shows us that teaching what Jesus taught concerning law is equal to its practice.

Baptism is also an essential action that must be done. This is done to make a disciple and provide a person with the remission of sins. This is seen in the teaching of Jesus by way of commandment and its continued instruction as command and practice by the early church. The audience of this commission are his disciples. You can read of the early history of the church in Acts, and how these disciples dealt with issues that arose within the church in different areas. These were to carry forth his teachings starting in Jerusalem and then spreading those teachings throughout the world. This is done by making disciples.

We also learn that where the disciples go, Jesus goes. When the message is received and one is baptized then one is saved, and that rejection of baptism equals to the rejection of the message and one condemns oneself. We are also exposed to the some of the power that will accompany those disciples as they teach. This power will confirm exactly who they are and who sent them to teach. Only those who are given this power by God or by the laying on of hands by the Apostles have the abilities clearly seen by any objective observer.


Even though about 2,000 years have passed, this does not give his disciples an excuse to stop working. May the Lord return to find his disciples hard at work, enduring with faith, hope, and love.

Axioms of Hermeneutics

Principles of Interpretation – Clinton Lockhart
Axioms of Hermeneutics

  1. The true object of speech is the impartation of thought.
  2. The true object of interpretation is to apprehend the exact thought of the author.
  3. Language is a reliable medium of communication.
  4. Usage determines the meaning of words.
  5. Two writers do not independently express thought alike.
  6. Every writer is influenced by his environment.
  7. An authors’ purpose determines the character of his production
  8. Any writing is liable to modification in copying, translating, and the gradual change of a living tongue.
  9. By one expression one thought is conveyed, and only one.
  10. The function of a word depends on its association with other words.
  11. A correct definition of a word substituted for the word itself will not modify the meaning of the text.
  12. One of two contradictory statements must be false, unless corresponding terms have different meanings or applications.
  13. Truth must accord with truth; and statements of truth apparently discrepant can be harmonized if the facts are known.
  14. An assertion of truth necessarily excludes that to which it is essentially opposed and no more.

Article, Noun, Preposition, Adjectives, Adverbs

Article- the part of speech that has the ability to identify, make definite or conceptualize, among other things.

Anarthrous – lacking the article

Arthrous- having the article

Articular – Having the Article- adjectives, adverbs, infinitives, nouns, participles, prepositional phrases and even whole sentences can all be articular

Nominative- the case that normally functions to indicate the grammatical subject of a clause.

Accusative- the case that usually marks a noun, pronoun or other substantive as the object of the verbal action, i.e. functioning as the direct object.

Genitive- the case that normally limits the quality of substantives to their kind, class or category, often denoting possession, source or concepts conveyed in English by the preposition of. The genitive often answers the question – What kind?

Dative – The case that is regularly used for indirect objects, designating the person or thing to which something is given or for whom something exists or is done. It can also express the purpose or result of an action. Other uses include the dative of advantage, disadvantage, possession, manner, cause, reference, place, time, instrument, and association.

Adjective – A word that modifies or qualifies a substantive or describes a state or quality

Adverb – a word that modifies a verb, adjective or another adverb

DeMoss, Matthew S. Pocket Dictionary For The Study of New Testament Greek. 2001

Verb basics : Tense, Voice, Mood

Tense- indicates aspect and time of verbal action

Present – verb tense that normally expresses progressive action occurring in the present

Future- the tense that normally expresses verbal action occurring in the future in relation to the speaker/writer. (this tense is used in other contexts in which the verbal action is voluntative, gnomic or deliberative.

Aorist – tense that usually presents verbal action simply and in summary fashion. This is in contrast to the notion commonly conveyed by the imperfect: ongoing action. In the indicative mood, the aorist commonly denotes past time. The aorist is sometimes spoken of as indefinite.

Imperfect – verb tense that normally denotes progressive (ongoing) past action

Perfect- tense than normally denotes verbal action that has been completed in the past but which has present results.

Pluperfect- the tense that normally denotes an action that was completed in the past and whose results were also felt in the past (before the time of the writer/speaker). Also called the past perfect.

Voice- feature of verb that expresses its relationship to the subject, whether the action is directed toward the

Direct object (active voice)- voice that signifies that the subject is performing or causing the verbal action.

Subject (passive voice)- – the voice that conveys that the subject is being affected by or is the receiver of the verbal action.

Action directed by subject back toward subject (middle/reflexive voice)

Mood- denotes nature of verbal idea with regards to actuality or potentiality

Imperative mood- expresses command or declaration of volition- in realm of possible to become actual

Opative mood- used in prayers, wishes to denote action that is possible

Subjunctive mood-action as being possible or probable

Indicative mood-verbal idea as being actual or real as opposed to that which is only possible or intended

DeMoss, Matthew S. Pocket Dictionary For The Study of New Testament Greek. 2001

Whose Church?

16 Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. 18 And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. (Matt 16:16-18)

When someone asks if you are a Christian, what do you say? When they ask you what church do you belong to, what do you say? The current apostate culture (almost 2000 years after the crucifixion) has saturated the religious market with the idea that there is more than one church and that you can have Jesus without his church. These apostates equate church membership and Christian practice with the fast food business. You worship what, where, and how you like regardless of what the scriptures teach because it makes you feel good and that’s all that matters to the compassionate and merciful God.

Feeling good, financial prosperity and not being offended by the teachings of Christ, especially when those teachings put you at odds with family, friends at work, and current political philosophies and rights struggles are the current order of the day. To these apostates, gone are the draconian days of one church and discipline to maintain yourself within this one church. Gone are the days that a clear disregard of the teaching ‘s of Jesus and his Apostles meant you can’t claim to be a member of the one true church which was established by Christ. For the apostate, living in a free society has its perks.   

Some questions I encourage all to look into as you study the New Testament are:  

Does the church I claim to be apart of reflect the teachings and commands of Jesus and his Apostles?

Is there anything in the Scriptures that tell me how many Churches there are?

 Is there a difference between the church and the kingdom of God?

 Do multiple congregations mean more than one church?

 If you are not in Unity with the teachings of Christ and his Apostles, are you in unity with or a member of his church?

Do Jesus and his Apostles clearly distinguish between the One True Church and a denomination or cult?

Does the Lord clearly state that my actions and the teachings I abide by clearly demonstrate that I am within his church he established or outside of it?

 Does Jesus clearly instruct me on how to be added to this church almost 2000 years after his crucifixion?

Does living in a free society, which allows me the freedom to change the teachings of Jesus and his Church free me of the repercussions from Jesus?

Who is the Master?

 

“But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction.” 2 Peter 2:1 (ESV)

In 2 Peter 2:1, Peter tells the early church that false prophets and false teachers have come in and will teach people to deny the Master who bought them. What must we do in order to deny the Master who bought us? In order to understand what we must deny, we have to understand exactly who the Master is, the content of the Masters’ instruction, the reasoning behind the instruction, and the example of the Master proving all this.

Creation Account (Humankind)
In the creation account, God reveals two aspects concerning man. The first is that man is made in his image, and likeness (Gen. 1:26a). The second is that man is to have dominion over creatures and earth (Gen. 1:26b). The relationship between the two show that to be made in the image and likeness of God includes duties and responsibilities (Gen. 1:27-31). Understanding the identity of God gives us insight into our own life (Gen 2:15-17).

The creator establishes the order by which we exist. God states that it is not good for man to be alone, hence the purpose for the creation of creatures and earth, the pinnacle being the creation of woman out of man with the duty and responsibility of marriage, which reflects the image and likeness of God (Gen 2:18-22; Gen 2:22-24). This all stems from being created in the “image or likeness” of the LORD.

The creation and early instruction of humanity show us how men, women, children, creatures, earth, and the produce from earth are directly linked to us being in the image and likeness of the LORD. We also clearly see how our duty and responsibility for such directly affects all created things as well as our LORD. The LORD is our Creator and first Instructor. The One who directs our paths. He is the lawgiver and the One who enforces discipline.

Pharaoh
Pharaoh thought it an important inquiry when the Egyptian empire is confronted by God via Moses and Arron. While we discern from the evidence that this leader is both idolatrous and blasphemous; we can also see the wisdom in his inquiry, “Who is the LORD, that I should obey his voice and let Israel go?” (Ex. 5:2a). He also states, “I do not know the LORD, and moreover, I will not let Israel go” (Ex. 5:2b). The LORD just finished prophesying that Moses and Aaron would not be believed, and that it will take supernatural events in order to prove the statements of Moses and Aaron (Ex. 3:19-21; 4:1-9; 4:10-12; 6:1-13).

From this account we can learn that knowledge of the identity of the LORD is directly related to all aspects of life within Egypt, and in nations surrounding Egypt (Ex. 3:1-10). After this encounter, while Pharaoh is shown to choose to remain in defiance to God; he did in fact come to know exactly who this LORD is and the power of this LORD, so much so that he let Israel go (Ex. 7:14-12:29; Ex. 12:30-32).

Israel
Moses and the Levitical priests give instruction concerning how to live (Deut. 27:9). They tell Israel that they have become the people of the LORD their God. As we read further, Israel are exposed to curses for not upholding the standard established by the LORD their God (Deut. 27:15-26). The pronouncements begin with “Cursed be anyone who…dishonors, moves, misleads, perverts, lies, strikes down, takes, or does not confirm the law by doing them.” By doing so, they also pronounce a blessing on “anyone” who honors, does not steal, leads properly, maintains purity, fidelity, and law keeping.

Moses and the Levitical priesthood go on to instruct them on the consequence of their obedience (Deut. 28:1-14). They are set above all nations, overtaken with fortune, the womb shall bear fruit, the ground and creatures which they rule over shall produce great fruit as well. Their enemies (no matter the size, power, or support) shall be defeated before their very eyes. They shall prosper in all they undertake. The nations surrounding Israel are woefully disadvantaged.

Their material fortunes and the level of power in the world are unparalleled. Their obedience renders them unmolested by warring and poor economic situations amongst the nations outside Israel. They would never experience the conditions of drought, no children being born, no ruined crops, etc. Likewise, their disobedience would bring upon them the exact opposite (Deut. 28:15-68).

Who is the LORD then? The LORD is the One who can overpower and subdue nations, the One who can cause the ground to give produce even though the ground is cursed due to the sin of our first parents (Gen 3:1-19). The One who makes a covenant with those whom He created and enforces this covenant. We see the reversal of curses in a cursed world by the interceding authority and power of God who performs his will at his own good pleasure.

Jesus, the Master as LORD
In the opening chapter of John, the Apostle informs us of multiple truths concerning the identity of Jesus and the identity of God (John 1:1-4; 9-18). The identity of Jesus and God are given a special relationship (v.1). Jesus is shown to be with God prior to the beginning and taking part in the creation of all things (v.2-3). John tells us that life is within the composition of Jesus (v.4). John affirms that the world was made through him and those who receive him are given the right to become children of God (v.10-13). John affirms that Jesus, who is also the LORD was physically birthed and lived among them.

In another letter penned by John, he tells us that knowing him, and keeping his commandments are synonymous (1 John 2:3-6). Jesus is also the LORD. The LORD sent his son into this world. Jesus and the LORD are responsible for creation as well as the giving of the covenants. The purpose of Jesus is to save the world by being the sacrifice (John 3:13-21).

Another purpose of Jesus entering into this world is to establish the church/kingdom of God (Matt. 16:13-20). We also see the content of Jesus’ teaching concerning anger (v.21-26), lust (v.27-30) divorce (v.31-32), oaths (v.32-37), entrance into his church/kingdom which correctly defines what belief, repentance, baptism, and how to follow is (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38;1 Pet. 3:18-22). The subjects continue throughout the inspired writings.

Conclusion
While we can point to a greater number of passages, these chosen contribute to affirm who our Master is. The Master, who is also the LORD is creator, law giver, covenant giver, and the one who holds unrivaled power and authority. The Master, who is also the LORD is communicative to his creation. The Master, who is also the LORD disciplines the nations, and even though the adversary remains defiant, the adversary is always in subjection to the Master. He causes the nations to rise and fall according to his will.

The Master gives his creation choice, and even if the person chooses to defy the Master, his will is not thwarted or subdued. The Master reveals himself to humans in the form of Jesus the Son of the LORD, who went to the cross and died for our sins and was resurrected and ascended back to rule and sent the Comforter, who is also the LORD, in order to establish the church/kingdom of God. We learn exactly what the Master taught, and how He taught it.

When the Apostle Peter tells us about false prophets and teachers who come in and teach people to deny the Master, we can clearly see what this entails. The instruction of God teaches us that to deny the Master is to deny the Christ, the HS and the Father. If we deny the Master we condemn ourselves. It involves both acknowledgement and obeying/disobeying.