Having established the fact that He Himself now has all authority, all power, both in this realm and in the realm of the Heavens, Jesus sent forth His disciples to spread the good news that He is sharing His spectacular victory over sin and death with mankind.
“Go,” He told them, “make disciples of all the nations. Baptize them in the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.”
“Disciple” is a word we don’t use very often any more. To us, it means almost exclusively twelve individuals in first century Palestine, and our familiarity with the term comes from its use in the King James Version of scripture, a four hundred year old translation. But the thought it conveys is that of apprenticeship, or perhaps today we would say “mentoring.”
Jesus lived a very “hands-on” life with His disciples. He ate with them, traveled with them, lodged with them, and shared with them for three years. In each situation, He modeled the life of Heaven to them, by both His words and His deeds. “This is what the Kingdom of Heaven is like…” was a common opener He used while teaching. Jesus was the expert on the subject; His disciples stayed close to him and absorbed His skill through listening, observing, and practicing– with resulting success and failures.
Now, He was sending them forth to spread abroad to others what they had received from Him. As Jesus Himself had passed on to them the things He had seen and heard from God His Father; as He had promised them that He would send the Holy Spirit to be with them always, bringing alive His teachings, so now He told them to immerse the nations “in the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.”