The greatest statement on Missions found in the New Testament is undoubtedly the great Commission in Mathew (28:18-20). In that passage Jesus said in part: “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations,…teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.”
This saying of Jesus, spoken soon after his resurrection, was meant to impress upon the hearts and minds of his disciples, the importance of Missions. Jesus came to the world to save and seek the lost and this makes evangelism one of the greatest priorities in God’s agenda.
This is confirmed by the event of Pentecost. You will recall that the very purpose of Pentecost, according to Jesus, was the evangelism of the world. In acts (1:8) we read: “But ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”
Here at abundant Life Tabernacle we believe that every church has the duty of world evangelism. Our missions ministry should:
1. Reach the Local Community (Miami Valley of southwest Ohio)
2. Minister to the Region (throughout the Midwest)
3. Reach the World (every region of the globe through both support and going)
The importance of Missions can never be minimized. Church leaders are quick to tell us that when a church fails to be fully involved in Missions that church automatically loses its purpose for existing. In fact, one of the marks of a healthy evangelical church is a deep desire to be involved in Missions.
The task of Missions is given to all of us as individual as well as a collective body. Every Christian must share this responsibility and do his or her best to ensure that this goal is accomplished.
According to the providence of God, we were all created with a diversity of gifts and placed in situations where we can use these gifts to help evangelize the world. Some people will give their very lives to missionary work. Others will be able to help in the church on a part-time basis. Some of us will be able to financially support missions (national and international) in a very special and helpful way.
In all these different ways, we will always find a particular area of ministry, which will fit our lives and callings best. The important thing for us all to remember is that Missions is our personal responsibility and that we must get involved in it as much as we possibly can. We all have been given gifts and opportunities in life, which enable us to play a part in fulfilling the great commission.
Moreover, I would hasten to add that it is only when we come to realize the great privilege that we have in sharing the gospel that we will make a lasting impact on the world.
The work of evangelism, however, requires a serious commitment on the part of every Christian. In addition, it is by working together and uniting our efforts and resources that we will be able to make an impact on the world in our own generation.