God's Holy Fire: 'The Commission, the Promise'

Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Then Jesus came to [the eleven disciples] and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."
— Matthew 28:18-20 NIV

Key Thought

"All authority"! No one can legitimately contradict, challenge, or cast doubt on the Lord's claim. Jesus has "all authority"! He speaks with the authority that only God can — ALL authority! What he gives in today's Scripture are our marching orders as his followers. They also contain his promise to be with us as we follow those marching orders. We call this passage the Great Commission. As we contemplate the work and role of the Holy Spirit, we also hear a clear reminder in the Great Commission that baptism is important to God. It is important because of what God — as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit — does in our baptism. Matthew begins and ends his account of the earthly ministry of Jesus with an emphasis on baptism and the involvement of Father, Son, and Spirit (Matthew 3:13-17; Matthew 28:18-20). The emphasis on our spiritual lives being rooted in God — as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit — is also picked up and emphasized by Paul's prayer in Ephesians 3:14-19, from which today's prayer is adapted.

Today's Prayer

I kneel before you, Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of your glorious riches you may strengthen us with power through your Spirit in our inner being, so that Christ may dwell in our hearts through faith. And I pray that we, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all your holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge — that we may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. In the name of Jesus. Amen.

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Illustration

Illustration of Matthew 28:18-20 NIV — "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me."

About This Devotional

God's Holy Fire is a daily devotional about the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives.

The Thoughts and Prayer for God's Holy Fire are written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations marked (NIV) are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
Scripture quotations marked MESSAGE are taken from THE MESSAGE, copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson. Used by permission of NavPress. All rights reserved. Represented by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.