Day 100: The Last 100 Days – Matthew 28:16-20, by Commissioner Floyd Tidd

CLICK HERE TO READ MATTHEW 28:16-20


Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote, “To encounter God is to change.”

Throughout the pages of Scripture we see God breaking into the reality of people’s lives and they are changed forever. Over these past 100 Days of Shared Scripture, together we have encountered God once again – and so I pray our lives and the life of The Salvation Army are being changed. Let me express a word of appreciation for your involvement in these 100 Days of Shared Scripture. It is my prayer that you have encountered God afresh as we, as a community of followers of Jesus, have shared this journey.

After three years of sharing in the life of the living Word, Jesus stood with His disciples and entrusted them with His mission – the giving of what has become known as the Great Commission. This small group of individuals, who had so intimately encountered God in Christ, experienced transformation in all dimensions of their lives. To fishermen, called to become fishers of men, Jesus left them with ‘His business’ – people. Jesus was about His Father’s business. He told His mother this when she found Him in the temple at age 12. His business is people. As they encountered God, these men had their lives changed to live for His purpose, His mission.

Christopher Wright in his book, The Mission of God’s People, challenges common thinking today as he writes, “We want to be driven by a purpose that has been tailored just right for our own individual lives… when we should be seeing the purpose of all life, including our own, wrapped up in the great mission of God for the whole of creation.” This great mission of God is that which He has invited His followers to partner with Him in seeing fulfilled.

As we read the passage for today and hear again the call to go and make disciples, note the promise of Christ for His followers – “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Could it be that we, too, often accept this as a promise of accompaniment for the journey as an encouraging and comforting note, when Christ may have provided it as a response to the overwhelming sense of responsibility and acceptance of risk that would accompany the acceptance of this great commission?  This group of disciples had begun to grasp the immensity of the work begun by Christ and knew the cost it had meant for Him. The promise of His presence was an indication of Christ’s understanding that for them to truly embrace this commission would require the ongoing experience of His presence.

Completing 100 Days of Shared Scripture on this last day of the year, we step into a new year a changed people, a changing Army. Let us step forward embracing afresh this great commission, as an Army sent by the One who was sent and sends us into the world of the hurting, broken, lonely, dispossessed and lost, reaching them in love by all means, with the transforming message of Jesus, bringing freedom, hope and life. The call comes again to His followers to risk it all for the sake of the mission of the God who risked it all. Let us go out into all the world, both globally and locally, to make followers of Jesus, knowing that He who sends us goes with us.


PRAYER:

We thank You, God, for the gift of change that encountering You brings to our lives. We confess that we don’t always welcome change, yet our souls long for an encounter with You. We praise You for Your faithfulness and commitment to Your mission in the world. We hear again the call of Your Son, whom You sent into the world, sending us into the world to make disciples. Give us courage to step boldly into all that You have planned for us to experience as Your people – loving You and loving people. We are Your people, Your Army available to Your mission.


Commissioner Floyd Tidd was both born and raised in Sudbury, Ontario, where he began his journey in Christian faith and with The Salvation Army as a member of Sunday School. After high school and his pursuit of a career in medicine, resulting in a Bachelor of Science degree and a sense of God’s calling to officership, he entered the Toronto College for Officer Training in 1984 with his wife, Tracey. Commissioners Floyd and Tracey Tidd came to Australia as Territorial Leaders of the Australia Southern Territory in June 2013 and commenced their appointment as foundational National Leaders of Australia on 1 June 2016.


Today is the final instalment of 100 Days of Shared Scripture. With 100 Days coming to an end, we want to hear from you and what God has been saying.
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3 Comments
  • David Woodbury
    Posted at 16:47h, 01 January Reply

    All too often the emphasis of this passage of Scripture is on the great commission: “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations”, and perhaps the crucial promise right at the end becomes a secondary matter: “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” We cannot assume that Jesus just added these words as just some sort of afterthought; they are crucial words and the very essence of our spiritual life. Note that the disciples were involved in worship of Jesus: When they saw Him, they worshiped Him. The worship in which they were engaged was to be an ongoing custom for he promised that they would always and forever, have his presence, even to the end of the age.

    Matthew concludes his gospel on the pinnacle of spiritual reality. He concludes with the promise of the never-failing and eternal presence of Christ. None of the other three gospels quite reach this apex of promise as does Matthew in the final promise of Jesus. This promise of Jesus to be with us always, even to the end of the age, is more than just some historic fact. Those who meditate on him, and pray in his name, and strive to do his bidding, find at last that he is the Companion of the daily road

  • Kevin HOlland (Major)
    Posted at 00:36h, 02 January Reply

    One Hundred Days of Shared Scripture

    DAY 100: The Last 100 Days — Matthew 28:16-30

    Jesus came forward and addressed His beloved disciples.

    The disciples don’t know what to think or how to act. Nothing like this has ever happened before.

    Jesus: “I am here speaking with all the authority of God, who has commanded Me to give you this commission: Go out and make disciples in all the nations. Ceremonially wash them through baptism in the name of the triune God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Then disciple them. Form them in the practices and postures that I have taught you, and show them how to follow the commands I have laid down for you. And I will be with you, day after day, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20 The Voice

    Father, this is such an enormous task. Your team has been working on this project since the Church was born and still there are millions not yet reached.

    How do you want us to move forward?

    Man of God, you have every necessary resource for the task.

    You have the power of the blood of my Anointed Only Begotten. This blood is effective to take away the sin of the world. Cleansed people are free to grow in the freedom of their purity.

    You have the power of my word. This word is effective in helping you become better informed about truth, so that my truth can be formed in you. Grow in truth and the transformation will follow.

    You have the power of my Holy Spirit.
    He reveals truth to you.
    He puts my seal of approval on you when you believe.
    He leads you.
    He instructs you.
    He equips you.
    He empowers you for action.

    People of God, you may have come to the end of One Hundred Days of Prayer for The Salvation Army and to the end of another One Hundred Days of Shared Scripture, but this is not the end of the journey.

    Come with me on the journey of amazing discovery.

  • Jennifer Smith, Temora Corps NSW
    Posted at 08:26h, 09 January Reply

    There are a few things I notice about this passage that speak to how we need to operate as a Salvation Army. The first is in the introduction – “but some of them doubted”. These were Christ’s disciples, who had walked with him through his earthly ministry, seen him crucified, and Christ in resurrected glory was before them. But the response to doubt was not disqualification for the task – it was simple assurance (“all authority has been given to me”) and ongoing call to keep going. Can we acknowledge and empower doubters? Can we maintain a mission led by Christ but enacted through wobbly, broken people?
    The second is that the baptism and the teaching happened at the same time. You didn’t have to fulfil some level of achievement in order to qualify – from the start you were immersed in the trinity (not just Jesus, but Father and Spirit as well) so that you could respond to teaching. How do we, in an Army where the ritual of baptism per Se is not central, ensure that people can be immersed in and defined by the triune God wherever they are at on their journey?

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