December 16 I Friday
“Jesus came to them and said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations...’” —Matthew 28:18-20
Some of us, when we read the opening verse of this devotion, may think that Jesus was speaking to a specific group of people gifted in evangelism and disciple making. The reality is that Jesus gave that command to every single believer. Jesus saves us and He sends us. We are all to live on mission for Jesus.
We see this truth in the story of the demon-possessed man recorded in Matthew 8:28-34, Mark 5:1-20 and Luke 8:26-39. After Jesus finished teaching, He and His disciples travelled by boat across the Sea of Galilee to Decapolis, a predominantly Gentile region. When Jesus got there, Mark tells us, “A man with an impure spirit came from the tombs to meet Him. This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain. For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he tore the chains apart and broke the irons on his feet. No one was strong enough to subdue him. Night and day among the tombs and in the hills he would cry out and cut himself with stones” (Mark 5:2-5). When this man encountered Jesus, Jesus healed him by casting the demons in him into the pigs that were feeding in the area; the pigs ran off the cliff and into the Sea of Galilee.
After Jesus healed the demon-possessed man, Mark continues, “As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon-possessed begged to go with Him. Jesus did not let him, but said, ‘Go home to your own people and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how He has had mercy on you.’ So the man went away and began to tell in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him. And all the people were amazed” (Mark 5:18-20).
This story is an example of how Jesus healed a man and sent him to go and tell all that God had done in his life to his people. We do not know the scope of what “all the people” means, as there were ten major cities in Decapolis. The man could have gone to one city or all the cities, but regardless, he went and told the people all that God had done. This biblical pattern that we see of Jesus saving and sending is for our lives as well. He saves us to send us.
May we, like the man, tell all the people about Jesus’s work in our lives so that others may know Him as Saviour and Lord.
Prayer: Dear Jesus, thank You for saving and sending us to live a life of missions for You. Help me to be excited to share what You have done in my life and brave to tell others about You. Amen!