We who claim to follow Jesus have been commissioned; over time it has become known as “The Great Commission” (Matthew 28: 16-20). Webster’s New World Dictionary defines commission, “ An authorization to perform certain duties or tasks, or to take on certain powers; authority to act in behalf of another”. Our commission from Jesus is an appointing, authorizing, and empowering to “teach all that I have commanded you” and baptize!
To this end Jesus left us with two commandments: “The Great Commandment”, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and first commandment” (Matthew 22:37-39). The second commandment is the “New Commandment”, “Love one another as I have loved you” (John 15:10-12). Father Richard Rohr writes, “Love is what you were made for and love is who you are.” (Center for Action and Contemplation “A Flash of Love”, Wednesday, August 9, 2017).
We have been “commissioned”, and where did Jesus “appoint” us? The world. To whom did Jesus “authorize” us to speak? All people. Given “authority” to do what? Teach what Jesus has commanded: Love God and love others as we have been loved. “Love is what you were made for and love is who you are.”
In the wake of Charlottesville, VA. The West Ohio Conference Bishop, Bishop Palmer, quoting Luke 19:41-42 writes, “these two verses, for reasons that I cannot concretely say, have come to me again and again. I suspect it has everything to do with my confidence in a God and a Savior who is not far off but as near as our breath. It is likely also because the God made known in Jesus Christ our Lord both weeps for us, and with us, especially when we have gone astray from God’s dream for us. Finally, I suspect the text above is naming our apparent congenital blindness about the ways of peace. May God help us.” (A message from Bishop Palmer, Tuesday, August 15, 2017. For the full text visit the West Ohio Conference website: www.westohioumc.org)
We are commissioned – authorized – empowered – anointed with authority – and appointed to go into the world and teach the way of love! When we love as we have been loved, Dr. Seuss is right: “Oh the places you will go”! See you in Church.
Love in Christ,