July 18, 2018 | by: 0 Comments|
Brothers & Sisters,
I’ve been thinking about the subject of missions lately. A couple of months back I read Andy Johnson’s new little book, Missions: How the Local Church Goes Global. It is an excellent and clear book. When it comes to thinking about missions one of the things that first jumps out at us is where do we look to think through all the questions related to missions (who, what, where, how, etc.). Andy clearly and concisely tells us to first look at our Bibles for answers to these questions. He writes:
The Bible tells us what the mission is: the church’s mission is to display the glory of God by declaring the gospel to all peoples, by gathering churches in every place, and by filling them with disciples who obey God and will praise him forever for his grace (Isaiah 56; Matt. 28:18-20; Rom. 15:7-13:17; Eph. 3:8-11; Rev. 7:9-10).
The Bible tells us how the mission will go forward: through prayerful dependence, gospel proclamation, biblical discipling, and church planting (Ex. 6:5-8; Rom. 10:17; Colo. 4:2-4; 1 Thess. 5:11).
The Bible tells us what kind of missionaries we should support: biblically faithful, methodologically patient, gospel-proclaiming, church-loving missionaries (Acts 16:1-3; Rom. 10:14-15; 2 Corinthians 8:23; 2 Tim. 4:1-5; 3 John 1-8).
The Bible tells us what the end goal of missions should be: transformed individuals in biblical churches who will ultimately join a heavenly multitude praising the Lamb of God forever (Rom. 8:1-11; Heb. 10:19-25; Rev. 7:9-10).
That’s just a tiny sampling of what Scripture has to tell us about missions. We are not left alone to lean on our own puny resources to figure out the mission of the church for the nations. God is much too kind and serious to have done that. So let’s move forward with these four biblical principles firmly in mind:
- The mission of missions is primarily spiritual.
- The mission belongs to God, for his glory, on his terms.
- God gave the mission to the local church.
- And the Bible tells us all we must know to faithfully fulfill God’s mission.
[Andy Johnson, Missions: How the Local Church Goes Global, 9marks: Building Healthy Churches (Wheaton: Crossway, 2017), 28-29.]
The impulse to look to the Bible for our marching orders on missions is a good reminder that we can look to the Bible for all things for our lives as believers. One of the things that I hope Andy’s words encourage us all to do is to pray for our church’s supported workers and ministries. Let’s pray for our brothers and sisters, especially that they would be biblically faithful, methodologically patient, gospel-proclaiming, and church-loving missionaries. Why not pray for them right now?
Warmly in Christ,
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