“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.” (Mt. 28:19-20 ESV)
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:8 ESV)
These two renditions of the Great Commission provide us the core of our marching orders. We are called to go and make disciples. Discipling is not an option – it is the basic work of the Christian and the Church. We believe this is more than simply instruction; it involves developing close, personal relationships, in which a believer grows in his walk with the Lord from the example of another.
While Acts 1:8 provides a bit of a structure for the book of Acts, we believe that it also gives us a framework within which we can minister. From this Scripture, we need to consider looking locally (Jerusalem), regionally (Judea/Samaria), and globally (the end of the earth) when considering our calling. Our strategy to go seeks to fulfill these commissions from Jesus by having elements that are centered in Poolesville (Jerusalem), the surrounding areas (Judea/Samaria), and around the world (the end of the earth).
And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Mt. 22:37-39)
Our mission or commission from God is not a task-oriented or numbers-driven assignment – it is driven by a deep and abiding love for God and a compassionate and unconditional love for others. Jesus demonstrated this two-fold obedience by living sacrificially – even giving up his life on our behalf (Philippians 2:5-11). He was sent by God to bring Him glory on earth, but also to reach those who were far from God – “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” (Luke 19:10 ESV).
The result of actively fulfilling the Great Commission and obeying the Great Commandment should be:
We do this primarily by loving our neighbors – living the great commission at home, in our neighborhoods. We are also working toward doing this by forming Discipleship Groups in each neighborhood of Poolesville. Finally, we go locally through supporting the Montgomery Baptist Association, WUMCO, Rockville Women’s Center, Frederick Rescue Mission and through a variety of local ministry opportunities. Check out the Local Outreach page for more information.
As we work to fulfill the Great Commission regionally, we realize that partnerships are essential. Our hope is the establish Discipleship Groups beyond Poolesville, eventually partnering with other churches and ministries to plant churches regionally. We also participate with the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware, and the North American Mission Board through the Southern Baptist Cooperative program in order to parter with others to plant churches and engage in various regional and national ministries. Each summer our youth also travel regionally in order to participate in M-Fuge – a mission oriented camp.
Our work at fulfilling the Great Commission globally involves intentional supporting, going and sending.
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