Understanding the Great Commission

Only a sufficiently trained and prepared church can fulfill the commands of Jesus Christ that were outlined in the Book of Matthew. 

by Brince C. Benford Sr.

When the Body of Christ continues the work outlined for us in Matthew 28:16–20, better known as the Great Commission, we can then become the true light of this community. We have been instructed to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ throughout the world. However, we have to truly study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of Truth.

In today’s time, the church can only be strengthened by being obedient to the will of God. In Matthew 28:18, Jesus has been given power of attorney to commission the Body of Christ. Our Lord chose the path of obedience unto death. The charge to His church has a ubiquitous ring. The four-fold commission is housed in Verses 19–20: “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”

“The Word of God is our sword. Learn to use it properly.”

Brince C. Benford Sr.

Go, teach, baptize and teach. Remember, the Scripture has to be kept in context. Jesus gave the charge to disciples that He had trained for approximately three and a half years. The first “go” is actually the last part of the charge. Oftentimes, we go out in our communities for the task at hand. The church should never do more harm than good. Only those who know how to rightly divide the Word of Truth should go. You will notice the words “teach” and “teaching” in the verses have different meanings in Greek. The word “teach” in Verse 19 means to enroll as a pupil; the word “teaching” in Verse 20 means that the pupil has now become a teacher. The idea in the text is that the enrolled student has now become a teacher of the Word of God and knows how to rightly divide the Word of Truth. The order for us to carry out the Great Commission is teach, baptize, teaching and then go ye.

I am a firm believer that the church is more impactful in our community when we have been adequately trained in the Word of God. Can you imagine if everyone in the church knew how to teach the Word of God? At Present Glory Missionary Baptist Church, we mandate that all members in the Body of Christ learn. The Word of God is our sword. Learn to use it properly. Remember, Jesus loves us. His death, burial and resurrection prove His love. The blood of Christ has not lost its power. 

Rev. Dr. Brince C. Benford Sr. is the pastor of Present Glory Missionary Baptist Church in Covington. For more information, visit www.presentglory.org.

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