One of the most universally understood calls to Christians in Scripture is to “go therefore and make disciples of all nations.” Though universally understood, one may say that this is a call from Scripture that is ignored, underfunded and grossly neglected in practice by the church as a whole. Take moment and run through a mental checklist of this question:
What am I doing personally to make disciples of all nations?
Many of us can say with some measure of certainty, “I share the gospel when I come across people in need of the Gospel.” That is incredible if evangelism is part of your everyday life. We need to carry about the the good news of Christ where ever we go. However, the difficulty in being obedient to the Great Commission comes when we think about where we are carrying the gospel to. Many of us during the course of our week rarely leave our town, much less our state or our country. That results in that I’m only making disciples of MY nation and not ALL nations. While no one man can take the gospel to all nations, am I striving to take the gospel to any nation? Have I felt the weight of the global need of the gospel? Take in some of these statistics:
– 2.9 billion people have never heard the gospel and currently have no opportunity to hear it.
– 66,000 of those unreached people die everyday without having heard the gospel.
– Out of every dollar a church receives in offering and tithes, 1 cent is spent on global missions.
– Christian churches spend almost $8 billion on conferences and only $810 million for direct missionary support.
– 4.6 billion people live in what is called 10/40 Window, the area of the world most resistant to the gospel and where 95% of those who have never heard the gospel live.
– There are about 10,200 missionaries among the people of the 10/40 Window.
– That’s one missionary for every 450,000 people of the 10/40 Window.
Statistics are certainly things that can be bent and skewed, but the evidence is resounding. We are failing miserably to reach the world with the gospel. We cannot wait any longer to act on sharing God’s grace and love with the world. So what can I do? Here’s a few thoughts:
1) Talk to your pastor
Express your heart to carry out the Great Commission to the ends of the earth. Find ways as a local church to be able to raise up the global church. Send missionaries out from your church. Financially support missionaries directly with your church budget. Partner with ministries on the ground in other countries. The options are endless, so take one and run with it.
2) Support missionaries financially
Every week, missionaries have to come off of the mission field because they are underfunded. It shouldn’t be that way. In 2011, Americans spent $10.7 billion at Starbucks. Even if I only cut out 1 latte a week at $4 and gave that money to a missionary, that’s $208 a year. God may be asking you to go beyond that figure, but we have to take any possible step to make our missionaries financially viable.
This is a step we all can do. Christian missionaries are fighting a spiritual battle in the midst of spiritual darkness where Satan is blinding the eyes of so many to the gospel (2 Corinthians 4:4). Find ways to pray for specific missionaries & foreign ministries. Pray for them by name. Pray for their families by name. Pray. Pray hard.
Many times, our thought is to leave global missions up to someone else. We’re hesitant to leave everything we’ve known to take the gospel to the world. I am humbled to know a few friends who have taken their young families to the remotest parts of the world that they may proclaim the gospel. God may be calling you to take that same bold step into that will play into a eternal result that God has already laid out in Revelation:
9 After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10 and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” ~ Revelation 7:9-10
God will redeem those from every country, people, color and language. Why would I not want to be a part of a victory that is already promised?
So go! Be a part of taking the gospel to all the world. Not matter how small the part, we are called by God to take a role in His eternal will. Be an active part of making disciples of all nations.