What comes to mind when we assess our personal involvement in Christian mission work?
Perhaps we think of our participation in the Mission Festival each year–when guest preachers speak to us on the topic of missions, we join in a congregational prayer for missions, and we contribute an extra measure of money for mission work. We might also think of our on-going support of missions through our individual prayers and our monetary contributions.
What about our personal witnessing to the unchurched or to those overtaken by error? One of our youths made a remark a short while ago that gave cause for further reflection on this important area of Christian living.
This young Christian made the observation that some of his acquaintances who belong to Reformed churches spoke quite openly and frequently to others about the LORD and their religious beliefs, whereas he did not find this to be so much the case with young people in our fellowship.
Could this be said of adults in our midst as well?
While this is just one person’s observation and while we are not given to comparing our level of sanctification with others, still this kind of remark can have the salutary effect of causing each of us to take a closer look at our use of the name of God for the benefit of others.
How much do we speak to one another in our daily conversations in our homes about Jesus, His works, and His ways?
When discussing different topics, issues, and concerns, how often do we find ourselves speaking of the LORD and His important truths out in the world?
In Martin Luther’s explanation to the Second Commandment in which God reveals His will for us concerning our use of His name, the positive side of the commandment is expressed in these words: “but we should call upon His name in every trouble, pray, PRAISE, and give thanks.”
Speaking the praises of the Lord not only involves worshipful prayers and songs, but also speaking of Him to others.
It has often been rightly said that mission work–personal witnessing and testifying of the LORD–is not simply to be reserved for trained clergy. This is also the calling of every Christian, both young and old alike.
When He gave the Great Commission, Jesus was speaking to all His followers in every generation, saying: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Mt. 28:19-20).
The apostle Peter reminds us of our high calling as children of God when he writes: “But YOU are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that YOU may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light” (1 Pet. 1:9). (our emphasis)
In this world filled with darkness we who have been mercifully delivered from the darkened condition of unbelief that leads to eternal death are to shed the light of God’s saving grace in Christ Jesus.
When considering how wickedness abounds more and more in this world with every passing day, we wonder how long before Judgment Day will come. And we might also find ourselves at times asking why the Lord is delaying in His final coming.
Why? It is because there are still more precious souls that God would gather into His kingdom.
There are still lost souls in our area and beyond that the LORD would have us reach out to with the gospel message of salvation.
Speak to one another of Him who died to save us all!
–Pastor Mark Gullerud