16 Then the eleven disciples left for Galilee, going to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him—but some of them doubted! 18 Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. 19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
As we continue in our series, “Living in the Reality of the Resurrection” we come to the great commission, that moment when Christ called and commissioned His disciples to go into all the world and share the good News of Jesus Christ. It’s here that we not only see God’s plan but also His power and provision to carry it out. This is a tough passage because most of us have already heard it and yet only a few of us are heeding it. Which means many of us have already dismissed it.
- Went to the Mountain
“Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go.”What is significant to note is that this is not the first time that Jesus had disclosed His plan to meet on the mountain with His disciples. He had actually told them about this mountaintop meeting before He was crucified in Matthew 26:32: “But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.”Then, after He was raised from the dead, an angel gave the women this message to give to the disciples: “He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him”(Matthew 28:7). As the women were going to give the message to the disciples to go to Galilee Jesus met them and gave them the same directions: “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me” (Matthew 28:10). Jesus made His plan to meet on the mountain perfectly clear. His plan involved leaving Jerusalem, getting away from the noise of the capital city, and wait for Him on a mountain. Notice that the disciples didn’t just hear Jesus they heeded Him. They went to the mountain, not because it was what they wanted but because it was His Will. Their movement was based on the Messiah not on the mountain. So often we make our decisions based on our wants not God’s Will. We let our circumstances dictate our decisions instead of Christ. Today Christ’s call to leave the city and go to the mountains sounds appealing. But in order for the disciples to obey and go from Jerusalem to Galilee they had to travel about 70 miles, several days on foot. In order to obey Christ they had to leave the comfort and convenience of the city, step out of their comfort zone. You can’t play it safety and serve the Savior. Jesus was calling them to leave the distractions behind, so they could get alone with God. Today we say we want the mountaintop time but in reality, we don’t have time for God. We are so tethered to technology that we don’t have time to get alone with God. We are so busy clinging to our worldly comfort that we don’t come and obey Christ. The truth is that we are more connected to our smart phones than we are to the Savior. We spend more time in technology than we do in truth. What is dictating and driving your life, is it the voice of the Christ and His conviction or the voice of the city and its comfort and convenience? Are you going to listen the voice of the Master or the voice of the masses? The mountain represented more than just a majestic place, they were the site of so many miracles and ministry, it would have brought back memories of the time when Jesus preached the Sermon on the Mount and when Peter, James and John went up on a mountain and saw Jesus transfigured before their eyes. It would have been a reminder of the many times when Jesus withdrew to the mountains to spend time with His Father in prayer (John 6:15). If we want to hear God’s Will we have to come and spent time in His presence. If we want further revelation, then we have to respond to His already revealed Will. Are you being obedient to what God has already revealed? Many of us say we want to know more of God’s Will yet we are unwilling to be obedient to what He has already revealed. This call to come to the mountain was a step of faith. Jesus told them to step out in faith and travel out of their comfort zone to an inconvenient place where He would meet them on the mountain. They chose to obey what was revealed to them and they were rewarded with time with the Redeemer. Many of us are missing the Messiah, we are missing what is most important because we are not being obedient to the bible. Are you obeying God’s already revealed revelation? Getting alone with God requires giving up other things. What is it that you need to leave in order to spend time with the Lord? What is it that is crowding out Christ in your life? It’s not easy to get alone with God, it requires both faith in His Word and forsaking the world. But we desperately need to come away to the mountain and meet with the Messiah. To get away from hustle and bustle and busyness of life so that we can hear God’s business. We need that moment on the mountain with the Master where we trade our busyness for His business.