Missions: Going in Christ’s Name
They shall be holy to their God and not profane the name of their God. For they offer the Lord's food offerings, the bread of their God; therefore they shall be holy. Leviticus 21:6
And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 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. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20
God revealed His name to mankind. He directed the Israelites to worship Him and warned the priests not to profane His name. Jesus revealed the Father and sent His disciples to go and make more disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Obviously, the name of God is to be hallowed and reverenced. People must not take the name of God lightly or in vain. Jesus’ disciples function on His authority, not their own. They go with a purpose which includes making disciples and baptizing them in the name of the Triune God.
This Great Commission is serious business. Missionaries go. Churches send them and support them with money and prayer. Christians in every nation reach out with the gospel and seek to make disciples. All of this is because of the name of God who has revealed Himself beginning with the first man and woman to whom He promised a seed that would crush the head of the deceiving Serpent (Genesis 3:15).
Think about it
The priests of ancient Israel took great care not to profane the sacred name of God. We, as disciples of Jesus Christ, go commissioned in His name to all the world, making disciples and calling them to be baptized in the holy name of God who is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In the words of the great hymn by Edith G. Cherry (1895):
We rest on Thee, our Shield and our Defender!
We go not forth alone against the foe;
Strong in Thy strength, safe in Thy keeping tender,
We rest on Thee, and in Thy Name we go.
Let us hallow God’s name, take this commission seriously, and go in His name.
© 2017 John A Carroll Used by permission