by Robert J. Young
I remember my first "missions Sunday." $30,000+! An elder proudly proclaiming on Sunday evening, "I didn't think we could do it." Now 20+ years later, the newness and excitement has not waned. Thousands and thousands of dollars contributed to take the gospel into all the world. Why? Let me suggest four motivations.
I. I give to missions because of the call from above.
"There's a call comes ringing...send the light." God's divine mandate is to take the gospel to the world. Where I cannot go, I can send. When I cannot go, others can go. Where no one can go, radio and TV signals can go.
My commitment to be a follower of Jesus will reach into my pocket and I will preach the gospel. Because God has called me and I have answered his call.
II. I give to missions because of the call from within.
My spirit bears witness that I am a child of God. I recognize myself as a disciple. I can do no less than God commands. I can employ no less resources than God has put at my disposal. A strong call within me cries, "Worthy!" That call from within, a recognition of Jesus' identity and saving power, calls me to do all that is within my power to share the gospel with the whole world.
III. I give to missions because of the call from without.
Everywhere around me people are hurting, crying, dying. But most important, all around me people are lost without Jesus. The harm and hurt and hell of our society cannot be healed by human hands. The only healing balm is in Jesus Christ. The voices of those around us cry out so that sensitive ears can hear and sensitive hearts are touched. Can you not hear the plaintiff cry echoing from every nation and neighborhood of our world? If you can, that call from without challenges us to commit to missions.
IV. I give to missions because of the call from below.
Yes, we do persuade men because we know the terror of the Lord. The eternal consequences of eternity separated from the God of heaven is sobering to thoughtful Christians. I trust this is not our only motivation, and that we are not herein selfish. But God has called us to save ourselves and others from eternal condemnation. Jesus did not come to condemn but to save.
©, 2002, Robert J. Young
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