Blog Post for Sunday, April 22, 2018
To whom are the “nations” that Jesus is sending the church?
When you hear the word “nation” or “Gentiles”, what comes first to your mind? Most of the time, when we hear the word “nation” we immediately think about nation-states such as the United States of America, Russia, or China. When we hear the word “Gentile” we most often think of anyone who is not ethnically Jewish. However, when the Bible speaks of “nations” and “Gentiles” it usually refers to the distinct (non-Jewish) ethnicities or people-groups which populate our world. More so, the biblical plan for salvation is for there to be people represented from every “tribe, tongue and nation” worshipping Jesus at the end of history! (Rev. 7:19-20).
The Great Commission then which Jesus gives to the church in Matt. 28:16-20 is not a vision for the discipling of name-less individual souls but rather whole people-groups coming to worship the one true God through Christ. In other words, it is a specific task, with a specific goal and one that God intends to see finished one day. This understanding of the church’s task is very different than the popular view amongst most evangelical group, wherein the main goal of missions seems to be to save as many souls as possible before the imminent return of Christ! However, because we are a church that takes the New Testament seriously, we want to be sure that we not only clearly understand Jesus’s commission to His church but also commit ourselves to carrying it out in the way He calls us to.
This Sunday, we will continue our series on the Great Commission and learn more about God’s heart to establish a “residency” for His name amongst all the nations (people-groups!) of the world and how we can be part of that exciting journey.
I look forward to sharing more with you this coming Sunday!
Be blessed this week!
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