Last month we saw God’s heart for the nations being displayed throughout the Old Testament. Now, we will look at the New Testament to see what Jesus said about the Mission, and how His teachings were followed and taught by His disciples.
The Gospel of Matthew gives us the Great Commission which is the outline for The Mission. Matthew clearly states and explains what the Mission is. We looked at it in the beginning of our study. However, even though this passage is the essential Biblical basis for the Mission, it is not the ONLY New Testament text on the subject.
The Commission is not directly restated outside of the Gospels but the ideas behind the commission were lived, taught and replicated. Jesus established mission-minded disciples who built mission-minded churches, who in turn taught more mission-minded disciples that went out and began more mission-minded churches. Throughout the book of Acts and the Epistles this cycle is repeated.
The Mission is Jesus’ Mission. He taught us how to live out the Mission by giving us an example to follow. Mark 16:20 shows the disciples following the example that Christ gave them. Theologian George Peters writes this about the obedience of the disciples. He said, “The rapid and far-flung spread of Christianity within a few decades is our best commentary on the zeal and labors of the apostles."
Romans 10:12-18 teaches the church that all who believe will come to know Jesus, but that they can’t believe if no one tells them, showing us the great need to follow the Mission.
Paul commends the churches in Rome and Thessalonica for pursuing the Mission through evangelizing in Romans 1:8 and 1 Thessalonians 1:8.
Why did the apostles take up the Mission? They knew that Christ came to the entire world and they were compelled to walk in obedience to their Savior. Obedience was not optional, but pivotal in their lives. It consumed their every waking moment. The New Testament ends with the Mission on full display in Revelation.
“After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could count, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palm branches were in their hands; and they cry out with a loud voice, saying, “Salvation to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”” God’s heart is to be known and worshipped among all nations, tribes, and tongues.
"The book of Acts details the birth and spread of the church. But there is something deeply significant in the way it is laid out and described. Acts shows the Gospel going to Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, and then to the ends of the earth. This growth, from the center out, is what was supposed to happen back in the Garden of Eden. Acts, then, shows us that God's purposes for humanity, that he began at creation, are finally being brought to completion through Jesus, the Gospel, and his Church."
We believe everything we say and do should be backed by the Word of God. The Mission is evident throughout the entire Bible, but especially present in the New Testament. We encourage you to read these passages and seek to discover more passages related to the Mission.
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