“Oh, that the world might taste and see, the riches of His grace! The arms of love that compass me, would all mankind embrace.” (Charles Wesley)
The charge of Christ to His Church was to witness, evangelise and make disciples throughout the world. It was accompanied by a promise that when this commission is completed He will return.
Two thousand years later, the Great Commission is far from being fulfilled. Multitudes among the 7 billion people alive today have never heard a viable presentation of the gospel. The call to missions has never been more compelling.
And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. (Matthew 24:14)
Missions is about the Gospel – this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed
Ask the question, ‘What is mission?’ and one is likely to get as many answers as people asked. It is perceived as various things to different people. Yet at the core of the Great Commission is the proclamation of the gospel. Jesus said, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to the whole creation.” (Mark 16:15) Paul said, “I make it my ambition to preach the gospel, not where Christ has already been named.” (Romans 15:20) Whatever else the work of missions involves, it is first and foremost about the gospel.
Missions is about Going – will be proclaimed throughout the whole world
The Christian message is exclusive in that it proclaims as the only way of salvation. Yet it is inclusive as it is for all people everywhere. If the gospel is to be proclaimed to the whole world, believers have to leave the comfort of their familiar locality and go to another culture in different geography in order to make Christ known. “How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent?” (Romans 10:14-15) Whatever else the work of missions involves, it is about being sent and going.
Missions is about the Globe – throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations
Talk of engaging in mission across the world is sometimes met with the claim that, “we need missionaries here, at home.” That is undoubtedly true. However, there is no escaping the global scope of the Great Commission. “The world is my parish.” (John Wesley) The whole world is the mission field and all peoples need to hear the gospel. “A great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages.” (Revelation 7:9) Whatever else the work of missions involves, it’s scope embraces the globe.
“There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry, Mine!” (Abraham Kuyper) The Great Commission is about going with the gospel to the whole globe.