Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always even to the end of the age. - Matthew 28:19-20
The Great Commission
This verse has often been called The Great Commission, and many believers try to follow it with all their hearts. Many times we have interpreted this passage as commanding us to make disciples of individuals. While we need to do that, the gist of these scriptures is to make disciples of nations (Greek: ethne) - literally make disciples of people groups in their entirety.
We are also to make disciples of what we know as modern day nations such as Argentina, the United States, Norway and others. We are called to disciple nations, baptize them and teach them to observe all things commanded in scripture. One day, as I pondered this, I thought, “I don’t know of one nation that has been totally discipled in every aspect of its society.”
This poses the question, “Are we really following the biblical mandate to see whole nations discipled and taught of the Lord?” In order for this to happen, we are going to have to see societal reformation. Each part of our societies - such as education, law, justice, government, the medical profession, marketplace and others - needs committed individuals who will take the job of reformation seriously. These are the building blocks of nations.
What do I mean by reformation? I would define reformation as an amendment or repair of what is corrupt, a re-building of the institutions in our governments and society according to their God-ordained order and organization. It means to institutionalize God’s will in how we do our daily business, deal with the poor, administer justice, make our laws, teach our children, and generally live our lives. It is to give people a license to do good and not a license to sin. It means turning our communities into places where God’s blessings flow from person to person just as God sees them flow in heaven.
Reformation leads to transformation.
In order to see nations reformed, there needs to be a strategic plan. Most people make tactical plans, and individuals work hard to change one person at a time. Of course, we are grateful for anyone valiant enough to stand up for what is right; however, I long to see the day when, for example, Christian educators across the board, both in the public and private sectors, come together to get a plan from God. This extends to each area of society.
Reformation is a process, not an event. It is not something that we can simply pray one day and expect the whole nation to be changed. We must be committed to educate our children and encourage them to give their lives to change their nations. It is important to send them to the best schools as well as start new schools for government, education and law.
The Bible is very clear as to how we should establish each sector of society. It is sad to say many believers have no idea what the Bible has to say about establishing in justice in nations, nor have they ever studied justice in scripture. Business leaders need to get a biblical model and understanding as the foundation of their mission statements.
One day I heard my friend Landa Cope teach and share how God called the children of Israel out of Egypt and that they were a people who were not a people. Then she proceeded to say that God gave them principles of law, government, justice, etc. in the book of Deuteronomy. That message I heard her preach in South Africa changed my life and was a springboard for my understanding of reformation.
God is looking for those who will give their lives to see their nations changed. As of this writing, the Body of Christ has not functioned as a Holy Nation (Exodus 19:6). We are still a people who are not a people. God wants us to work together to see nations discipled and reformations launched.
I am longing for the day when we will see not only reformation but the release of wealth to such a degree that we are building hospitals, opening banks and becoming major philanthropists. We need to become the head and not the tail in our society. There are some wonderful marketplace leaders who are beginning reformation. One day we will see whole nations discipled and taught of the Lord.