by Steven Chan
20 January 2008
Many have read the marching order of our Lord in Matt 28:18-20 which is as follows: “And Jesus came 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 of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.” We understand that the command is to “go and make disciples of all nations”
Whilst most of us may know the afore-stated command of our Lord, one wonders why there are yet not many workers in the kingdom of the Lord. It is always the “few” that need to step up and take up the slack that others fail to hold up. We have so many brethren and yet it appears that we have “few” workers (probably many more “talkers” but few “doers”). Is it because brethren do not want to obey the instruction of the Lord? In many instances that would not be true. Most brethren believe that we need to “go and make disciples of all the nations” or we need to do more for God.
Could it be that one reason why not many are “going and making disciples” or do the things that God requires of us is because one thinks that one can defer one’s obedience of His commandments until a more suitable time? Is it alright for us to delay until a more opportune time before we “go and make disciples”? Perhaps until we have earned enough to be financially independent? One would do well to consider the attitude of the Psalmist who expressed thus: “I made haste, and did not delay to keep Your commandments.”( Ps 119:60). In Hag 1:2-5, the prophet of God said: “Thus speaks the LORD of hosts, saying: ‘This people says, “The time has not come, the time that the LORD’s house should be built.” ‘ ” Then the word of the LORD came by Haggai the prophet, saying, “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, and this temple to lie in ruins?” Now therefore, thus says the LORD of hosts: “Consider your ways!.” Indeed we need to consider our ways.
The Bible encourages us to act immediately and obey the Lord now – and not delay our obedience to a more opportune time. For instance, in Prov 3:28, the Bible declares: “Do not say to your neighbor, “Go, and come back, and tomorrow I will give it,” when you have it with you.” The idea is to DO IT NOW! And not wait until tomorrow. Besides, one does not know what tomorrow holds: “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth.”( Prov 27:1). The account recorded in Luke 9:59-62 is instructive for us as regards how Jesus views those who delay in “following Him”: “Then He said to another, “Follow Me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and preach the kingdom of God.” And another also said, “Lord, I will follow You, but let me first go and bid them farewell who are at my house.” But Jesus said to him, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.” One should note that they did not say that they were not going to follow Him. They merely asked for a brief deferment as they had some other more urgent matters to attend to. Isn’t it the same with many of us? I will do God’s work….later.
Let it not be so with us in Klang. Let our elders, deacons, evangelist and brethren resolve to ACT NOW and DO IT NOW rather than wait for a more convenient time. This is the beginning of the New Year and we have much to do and there’s work for each and everyone of us to do for God and His kingdom TODAY. So as each one of us seek to TAKE OWNERSHIP of the various activities and work of the church, let us also determine to ACT TODAY and DO IT NOW – and not wait until tomorrow – whether it is the visit that we need to make to a brother or sister who is in need of support, or who needs to hear the gospel, or a word of encouragement that we know would be most helpful to someone today or a kind deed that is most needed now. In Heb 3:13 we are told to “exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.” We do not have any assurance that we will have tomorrow to do what we need to do TODAY – for what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.(James 4:14). Let us all resolve to act like the Psalmist when he said to God in Psa 119:60: “I made haste, and did not delay to keep Your commandments”