The Great Commission (Matthew 28:16–20) is an intercultural call to make disciples of all nations. As we engage in fulfilling this call, our commission to discipleship is sharing the good news of salvation with individuals from these nations in their own languages, traditions and cultures.
While in years past making disciples of all nations may have been understood as journeying to every corner of the world, today individuals from every nation are already living in our midst, so we can be faithful to our call right here at home. As we encounter new neighbors we can be transformed when we are willing to receive the good news in their own culture.
An increasing number of immigrants and their children living in our neighborhoods and worshiping in our congregations have been Christians for many generations. They have stories to tell and lessons that we need to learn. Their worship styles, languages, traditions and cultures may be different from ours, but we share with them “one Lord, one faith, one baptism” (cf. Ephesians 4:4-6). And these individuals from every nation are ready to accompany us in the journey to make disciples of us all, at home and abroad.
Intercultural Church Sunday is an opportunity to celebrate and embrace God’s gift of diversity. It is expressed in the many cultures and languages of the world that embody all of God’s people in a unique and special way.
May this be a time to come together to reach across dividing walls and allow ourselves to be made into Christ’s disciples. The good news of salvation that “God is with us to the end of the age” is as relevant and needed today as it was 2,000 years ago.
Lemuel Garcia-Arroyo, Associate Director of Racial Ethnic & Women’s Ministries, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
Let us pray:
We are grateful, God of love and grace, that you have called us to make disciples of all nations working side by side with all of your people from every nation and culture. Inspire us and empower us to be disciples that proclaim the good news of salvation to the world that you so love. Amen.