In the March issue of Credo Magazine, Brian Vickers has written an article titled, “The Great Commission Story.” Usually when we think about The Great Commission we go to Matthew 28. However, Vickers demonstrates that if we are to truly understand what Jesus is saying we need to begin in the Old Testament and work our way forward. Furthermore, Vickers argues that missions is not just a command and an activity but is itself part of the great story of the Bible. Here is the introduction to Vickers’ article:
As Christians we tend to think of “missions” as one of the things we do, or at least one of the things some Christians—specifically those who take the gospel overseas—are called to do. Of course missions is an activity, it is something we “do,” but if we only think of it as one of many Christian activities then we haven’t understood fully what the Bible has to say about it. We might also think of missions as a command we have from Jesus, and it certainly is that. But like thinking of missions as simply one Christian activity, thinking of it only as a command doesn’t do justice to the witness of Scripture. The Bible has a much larger view of missions and what it means for us.
It may sound trendy to put it this way, but missions is part of the great story of the Bible. The reason I say this is because the Bible is God’s revelation of himself and his “mission.” It is the story of the God who created the world, and created human beings who rebelled against him attempting to become the one thing they could never be, that is, creators rather than creatures. It is the story of God carrying out his eternal plan to redeem fallen men and women through his son Jesus Christ. It is the story of how, in Christ, God creates a people who will worship him and make his good news of life in Christ known to a world in rebellion. Finally, it is the story of how God will establish his eternal Kingdom made up of every nation, tongue, and tribe in a new heaven and new earth, with Christ the King reigning forever.
I’m not saying that missions is the only theme in the Bible or that it’s the whole story, but it does run through the length and breadth of the entire Bible. If we want to understand missions the key is to get a sense of how it fits in the whole Bible. The important thing to grasp is that we are not meant to view the Bible story of missions from a distance—we are meant to see God’s story of missions as our story, a story in which God calls us to take part, to live-out, and to share with others so that they can take part in that great story.
Finish reading the rest of this article in the March issue of Credo Magazine!
“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 that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:19-20) These words, spoken by Jesus after his resurrection, are famously known as The Great Commission. As disciples of Christ, it is our great joy to go and tell the nations about the good news of salvation for sinners through Christ Jesus our Lord and Savior. The March issue of Credo Magazine will seek to ignite a passion for missions. And what better timing as this year marks the 200th anniversary of Adoniram and Ann Judson setting sail aboard the Caravan with to take the gospel to Burma. Contributors include: Ted Kluck, Jason Duesing, Nathan Finn, the Housley Family (missionaries in Papua New Guinea), Kenneth Stewart, Brian Vickers, David VanDrunen, Matt Williams, and many others.