Tuesday, January 16, 2007

MISSIONS AND THE SUFFICIENCY OF GOD'S WORD

I made this assertion in the post entitled"Why Would a Calvinist Go To The Mission Field?": "The Calvinist knows that the Word of God is sufficient and powerful enough in itself to effectively bring men to Christ. This I say by experience: He may be the only preacher on the field who has complete confidence in the power and sufficiency of the Bible he preaches to accomplish God's holy work."

I can say this by experience because I have been there and have personally witnessed the bag of tricks that many men use on the mission field in order to get results. Pragmatism is alive and well in modern missionary enterprise. Our supporters demand results. Quick results. And we had better produce them, or we will be in danger of loosing our financial backing. Men like Carey and Judson who labored long before seeing their first convert would not fit in well with modern missionary expectations.

I certainly don't intend to try to present myself as a model missionary. While on the field, I fell far short of my own expectations, not to mention God's standard. However, I can only speak of my own experiences and my own understanding of how missionary activity should be carried out according to the Scriptures. In this post, I want to give you a brief look at a few of the principles that guided my efforts on the mission field.

#1. Jesus said ..."I will build my Church..." Therefore, I will labor according to the principles of His Word knowing that He is faithful who promised.

#2.All through history, God's men have succeeded in ministry using the means of prayer and the preaching of the Word. Therefore I will use those means only, knowing that whatever is accomplished will be His work and not mine.

#3.Paul said in Rom 1:16 " For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek." The Gospel of Christ is sufficient to bring men to saving faith. I will trust it's power and resist the temptation to try to "help it" by any artificial means.

#4.The results are His business, not mine. He has commanded me to go and preach, so I will go. If, through my preaching, people are saved, I will praise Him. However, if I obediently go and faithfully preach, and no one is saved, I will still praise Him because the results are His business. My responsibility is only to obey, not produce results. I can't save anyone anyway.

Please don't assume that it is easy to be faithful to these standards. they were severely and often tested. Tomorrow, the Lord willing, I will relate some of the ways in which these convictions were tested.

4 comments:

Even So... said...

I like this and eagerly await the next post.

Steve Weaver said...

Ditto!

Thad said...

Sounds good to me!

Kim said...

My responsibility is only to obey, not produce results. I can't save anyone anyway.

Excellent.

Looking forward to the next installment.