The Great Commission
Probably the most important thing for a high school or middle school student as they move through school is knowing they have a group of friends and they fit in (of course, adults still need this, too!). Because of that, anything that requires them to get out of their friend zone is very scary. It’s tough to jeopardize your friendships, especially when you feel they are all you have. What this does for students in high school is put up a barrier between themselves and reaching out to others. There are a hundred excuses as to why it might be a bad idea to reach out to someone with the Gospel, but as the high schoolers learned, the Great Commission doesn’t ask us to feel good about it before we do it.
When the resurrected Jesus meets with his disciples in Matthew 28 on the mount in Galilee, amazingly, some of them doubted (Matthew 28:17)! What was it that could shake them in this moment, face to face with the confirmation of Jesus as God’s Son? Maybe they recognized the reality of the situation before them meant they were going to have to give up friendships, or they might even have to sacrifice of themselves. Jesus addresses their shifting emotions, however, in verse 18 when He declares that “all authority” had been given to him. What He says after this isn’t a suggestion, it isn’t to be followed when we are comfortable with the command. Jesus is giving a command to us as the only one who has the authority to tell us as Christians what we are to do.
And what does He tell us to do? We are to go to the lost. We are to seek them out. We are not to wait on them to come to us. Jesus commands us to make disciples, seeking them out wherever we can. Our doubts and fears no longer matter, the only thing that matters is that we step out of those fears and follow Jesus’ words. His promise at the end is to be with us, to be our community and comfort, “until the end of the age” (28:20).