It is interesting to note that Jesus’ commands for evangelism and missions come at the end of His ministry. Also of note is that the end result of the church’s continuance in doctrine, fellowship, breaking of bread, prayer, hospitality, sharing possessions, praise of God, unity, etc. was that people were saved on a daily basis. Added to this is the fact that commands to evangelize are very scarce in the New Testament. What are we to make of this? The answer is found in the model of discipleship that Jesus sets forth in Matthew 4.
To believe in Jesus is to follow Him
The invitation of Christ is not to go to heaven when you die. The invitation is to follow Him. He is the narrow way that leads to life. If you follow Him, He will lead you to heaven. Those who are truly born again follow Jesus. The Christian life is following Him in everything.
If we follow Jesus He will transform us
As we saw last week, apart from Jesus we can do nothing. However, if by His grace we follow Him, He will transform us and make us into something that we could never be on our own. This is something that He does; it is something that we cannot do without Him.
Also, it should be noted that if Jesus does not transform us than we can in no meaningful way declare that we are believers in Christ. The only other option is that Jesus is a failure or a liar, which He is neither. The one who is not transformed by Jesus is lost.
Jesus will make us fishers of men
The end goal of the Christian life is making disciples for the glory of God. If we follow Jesus He will transform us into souls winners and disciple makers. The person who follows Christ will become evangelistic and missions-minded. It cannot be otherwise.
Evangelism is the end result of maturity in Christ
Evangelism is the natural result of maturity in Christ. It is not something that is forced or contrived. It is natural. It is only natural for babies to grow to maturity, get married, and have children. So it is in the Christian life. It is only natural for a disciple to grow to maturity and produce disciples. As we are conformed to His image we will go into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature.
When was the last time you shared the Gospel? When was the last time you led someone to Christ? Based upon your evangelism could you really call yourself a mature believer in Christ? Based upon your growth or lack of growth in evangelism can you call yourself a follower of Christ? Are you born again?