The Divine Mandate

Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 1:8-14

Intro: SBC President Bobby Welch has challenged us to win and baptize one million people in the next year.

There are many who think the goal is unrealistic.




Others just scoff, and others just ignore the challenge.




You know there is a difference in a person who sees a cup Ĺ empty and one who sees it Ĺ full.




In the same way, our attitudes will determine what we will do.




Andrew Murray said....

"There are two kinds of Christians...

Soul-winners and backsliders."




If weíre going to see people won to the Lord Jesus Christ....

There are four basic attitudes that we must have in our church.




  1. We must take the Great Commission seriously (Matthew 28:19-20)



    1. God takes the souls of men seriously.




    1. He sent his Son to a lost world that didnít care.



    3. He died a brutal death on the cross and he was the innocent substitute.



    5. He has commissioned us, too, because he cares about the souls of men.



    7. God is serious about the Great Commission.



    9. There is no one who talks more about hell in the Bible than Jesus did.




    1. Satan is serious about the Great Commission.




    1. He is doing everything he can to keep men out of the kingdom.



    3. We are in a constant battle with the enemy in hopes that he can keep us from telling the good news.




    1. The problem is we do not take the Great Commission seriously.




When it takes 42 Baptists to win one person to Jesus Ė I saw weíre not serious about evangelism.




We had 10,000 churches that reported 0 Baptisms last year.




We had 25,000 churches that baptized 10 or less.




If 40,000 of our churches were to baptize 25 people next year we would have one million baptisms.




Thatís only baptizing one every other week, with two weeks to spare.




The problem, friends, is not baptism.




Thatís only the result of the problem.




The problem is our attitude toward the word of God.




When it takes 42 Southern Baptists one whole year to reach one person for Jesus.


I say weíre not taking the Bible seriously.




You say, "Well Bro. Joe, I heard you say we baptized 32 last year".




Yeah, it only took 22 of us a whole year to win one person to Christ.




But you say, "Now, Bro. Joe, you know there are only about 225 of us here on Sunday."



Well figure it that way.



It only took seven of us a whole year to win one person to Christ.




Friends, weíre not taking our job seriously.




The Bible says in Proverbs 13:13: He who scorns instruction will pay for it, but he who respects a command is rewarded.




Proverbs 11:30 says: he who wins souls is wise.




The Bible is not a book you open to read a Sunday school lesson....



The Bible is...

Godís word...

Godís love letter to his children...

Godís revelation to the world...

The standard for living...

The message for life...



Does it matter what you believe about the Bible?




What you believe will always determine how you act.




Are you the kind of man who is always asking how much will it cost?




The Bible says: donít eat the food of a stingy man, heíll say eat and drink, but his heart will not be with you.




  1. We must take it personally (Acts 1:8)




    1. Itís not either/or; itís both Ė Power Ė Holy Spirit.



    3. We must have people rise up to leadership and take it personally.



    5. Do you remember how the first church operated? People rose to the occasion, so the preachers could spend more time witnessing.


    7. Evangelism is a lifestyle. What can you do?



    9. It will require hard work.





  1. We must take it enthusiastically.




    1. Evangelism is simply sharing the good news and we should do it enthusiastically.



      In Matthew 28 we have the promise of his presence...




      In Mark 16 we have the promise of his protection...




      In Luke 24 we have the promise of his program...




      In John 20 we have the promise of his peace...




      In Acts 1:8 we have the promise of his power...





    3. Our enthusiasm should be felt in three ways.




    1. Vision


    1. Where there is no vision the people perish.


    3. Most people aim at nothing at hit it every time.



    1. Love


    1. We should love one another.


    3. If people donít buy us, they wonít buy what you say.



    1. Faith.


    1. If youíre not stretching higher than you can reach, you donít have faith.




  1. We must take it prayerfully (Acts 1:12-14)



    1. It was prayer that turned fear into boldness.



    1. It was prayer that made them of one mind.



    3. The only power that reaches the heart of men is the power of God.



    5. We would do well if we spent more time in prayer to God about people than time spent talking to people about God.


    7. The only way I know we can get power is through prayer.




There is a direct relationship between prayer and the number of decisions made each Sunday.


The best way I know to win our world and our mission field to Christ...

Is to just do it...

But on order to do it...

Weíre going to have to take it....