The 4 instances of the Great Commission in the Gospels

Discussion in 'Evangelism, Missions and the Persecuted Church' started by Pergamum, Mar 16, 2010.

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  1. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    Most speak of 4 instances of the Great Commission found in the Gospels.


    Each is quite different.

    Is it proper to speak of "Four instances of the Great Commission" as found in the Gospels.

    Also, why do they differ?

    What missionary implications does each carry?

    And for what reason is each written, as opposed to the other ones?
     
  2. Contra_Mundum

    Contra_Mundum Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger Staff Member

    References please.

    Mt.28 is probably his appearance in Galilee, prior to the Ascension.

    So, I suggest there is at least two chronological moments where Jesus leaves his disciples with direction.
     
  3. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    Many say that the Great Commission is given by the 4 Gospel writers (Matt 28:18-20; Mark
    16:15-16; Luke 24:46-49; John 20:21-22) and then the book of Acts (Acts 1:8).
     
  4. Contra_Mundum

    Contra_Mundum Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger Staff Member

    John 20:21f takes place on Resurrection Day, with ten of the eleven disciples.

    Mt. 28:18ff I believe takes place in Galilee, between the Resurrection and Ascension, the Eleven are the only ones explicitly mentioned (but possibly the meeting of above 500 at one time).

    Luke condenses things abruptly, taking us from Resurrection Day to Ascension without temporal commentary between v43 and v50--until Acts 1:3, where he tells us that it was 40 days. I would take those vv44-49 to be a sum of his 40-day teaching appearances.

    Mark's presentation should also be understood in a similar way, in my opinion.

    All told, I would first try to understand each of the presentations in a temporal context if I can, and then in the 40-day context.

    As for variations, they vary according to the differing witness' purposes in recounting. You might look for a common-theme surrounding the post-resurrection ministry of Jesus.

    But it seems to me that trying to extract special content from these 4-5 records may be profitable, but might not be.
     
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