I’m a terrible Hockey player. I don’t ice skate very well and when I think about swinging a stick with full force while balancing on those two butcher knives it makes my hands sweat. But every time I watched the movie Mighty Ducks when I was younger I would instantly have the urge to suit up and pretend I was Steve Yzerman. It is amazing how certain sites, sounds, smells, or even words elicit the same responses time after time.
GO is one of those words. Everyone knows what to do when they hear or see the word GO. Start moving, act, run, do something! As a soccer coach I say the word go and an entire team of athletes will sprint full speed to the other end of the field and back with out a seconds hesitation. Eight year olds annoyingly remind their mothers from the back seat, “Mommy, the light is green now…” They understand from a very early age that the almost universal symbol for GO is a green light. The reason for all this is very simple…there is great power in the word GO.
Would it surprise you that most people ignore the word GO when it is most imperative that we obey?
Jesus understood the power of the word GO. In fact, it was the last command he gave his disciples before he left earth. At the end of Matthew 28 we find Jesus giving his disciples final instructions. He tells them what they are supposed to do when he is gone. And he uses the word GO. That word alone would be enough for the disciples to do something…move, act, engage. But Jesus is very specific with his command
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”
Go. This is the most important use of this word in all of history. The reason you and I have a relationship with Jesus Christ, the reason we know of the death, burial and resurrection of the Son of God is because Jesus said GO…and his disciples listened.
But we ignore it.
We understand the power of the word GO in every other circumstance but we ignore it when it is most important. We are commanded to go but we sit and watch. We are commanded to go but we are content to wait for someone else to go. We are commanded to go and we do nothing. We don’t understand what is at stake. In other areas of life we can see the consequences of not obeying the word GO. If we disobey on the practice field we don’t get to play. If we disobey when we are driving we get honked at or rear-ended. If we disobey in the military and we might be shot by the enemy. The consequences of disobeying Jesus’ command to Go aren’t as visible…not yet at least…but they are far more severe.
When we don’t GO…people GO to hell.
When we don’t take Jesus’ words seriously people are separated from God forever and spend eternity in everlasting torment and anguish.
We’ve all heard this before. And if we are “good” Christians we are quick to pull out our check books and write another check to support someone else who has obeyed God’s calling. We are quick to pray for God to call others to go while we sit comfortably in our cushioned chair.
I have news for you…GOD HAS ALREADY CALLED PEOPLE TO GO!!! He called us all to GO as soon as we became his disciples…we just ignore what he has said. Stop looking for someone else to GO. Get out of your seat and GO. GO make disciples or all nations…not just the ones that have enough money to pay you. Not just the nations where the people have the same color skin as you. Go make disciples of all nations.
I thank God that the disciples did not ignore this command like we do every day. But what hope is left for this world if the people who claim to know God don’t do what he says?
Luke 6:46 says, “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I tell you?”
If you call yourself a follower of Jesus Christ there are no more excuses.