16 So the eleven talmidim (disciples/students) went to the hill in the Galil where Yeshua had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they prostrated themselves before him; but some hesitated. 18 Yeshua came and talked with them. He said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore, go and make people from all nations into talmidim, immersing them into the reality of the Father, the Son and the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit), 20 and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember! I will be with you always, yes, even until the end of the age.”
Today we finish out the book of Matthew... This went much longer than I expected. I think I started this back in March or April. We are now in December. A few days I couldn't do it. It divided into smaller portions than I thought at times. I have to go back and count to see how many entries I actually did. I may try to turn this into a devotional that can be put on Amazon. I will keep you posted as I find the time to complete that and get it done.
Eleven disciples went to the Galilee. Jesus told them to go there.
Some prostrated themselves when they saw him. Some hesitated... Those words make me stop. Again, I don't remember hearing this before. Some were probably uncertain and wondering what had just taken place.
And yet, even with their hesitation, Jesus continued to speak to all of them and gave them authority. Jesus did not allow some hesitation to stop Him from blessing those with His heart. God knows the heart. Through the Father, Jesus had authority. He was passing that authority to his disciples and commanding them to, "GO."
Go and do what? Make disciples. People of ALL nations.
Immerse them. Help them understand the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit. Bring them LIFE through the power of God.
Ruach HaKodesh. Ruach is "wind." Ha is "the" and Kodesh is "holy." The wind... the Spirit. The Spirit can be felt through the blowing of the wind.
Teach them to obey EVERYTHING that I have commanded you. This is where it gets tricky. Jesus was Jewish. The disciples were as well. We acknowledge this in our heads, but how does that translate into every day life? How did Jesus live? What did He celebrate and teach? He taught Shabbat. He taught the Festivals. He taught Torah and the prophets. Those teachings SHOULD NOT have changed. And yet... they have.
The thoughts and ideas in the books of Torah have been "done away with" and said to be "the law." No, they were "the teachings." They are what God gave His people. When we were "grafted in" (Romans 11) we should have kept celebrating them, but "religious leaders" years ago stripped them away from the people and threatened to imprison those who continued to celebrate them. This is why I choose to celebrate Shabbat, Passover, Shavuot, Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Feast of Tabernacles, Chanukah, Purim... Jesus can be seen in all of these Festivals.
This time of year is always challenging because of the holidays. The questions arise of how to celebrate, what to celebrate, what is pagan, what isn't. God continues to show Himself to ALL of us and we need to ask ourselves ALL the time for HIS direction and understanding. It might mean giving up things we have held near and dear.
The final words from Matthew are a fitting way to end the book... Words from Jesus Himself saying, "And REMEMBER! I will be with you ALWAYS, yes, even until the end of the age."
Friends, this portion has come to an end. Please remember that HE is with you ALWAYS. He will lead and guide you. Seek HIM and follow Him. His teachings might not look like the ones you were taught growing up, but HE is Truth. He is the WORD within.