The greatest duty for all Christians – Part 1
Many believers, today, are engaged in numerous activities, some very well meaning and well intentioned, which they pursue with frenetic zeal and passion. In the event, they overlook or neglect the greatest challenge and commission for believers today: to evangelise the world. And this is a direct charge from the Almighty God.
The Godhead or the Trinity or the triune God is the Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Their being three-in-one shows the plurality and unity of the Godhead. Although the Father is God, the Son is God and the Holy Ghost is God, yet, a distinction exists among them. Each has the same power, authority and passion for the salvation of the world. They are involved in our salvation and “being sent forth” to evangelise the world. God created the world and is “not willing that any should perish.” He desires and demands that all should hear the gospel and have the opportunity to be saved.
God the Father commands the preaching of the gospel for which obedience is rewarded and disobedience is punishable. God the Son, Jesus Christ, died for the redemption of the whole world. Having paid the great price of redemption for all on earth, He commands us to “preach the gospel to every creature.” Faithfulness to His command is rewardable and unfaithfulness is punishable. But it is God the Holy Spirit that empowers the Church to take the Word of God to the world. He confirms the call and directs the great work of evangelising the world for which commitment is rewardable and indifference is punishable.
The concern of God the Father is that all men on earth “should be saved.” Thus, He sends forth believers to reach out to people living in sin, so they can be saved. “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” If God were to handle the work of soul-winning by Himself, supposing the will of man and the faithfulness of the Church are not involved, He would want everyone on earth to be saved.
The same can be said of the children of Israel’s emergence from the land of Egypt and entrance into the land of Canaan. If not for the choice man has to make between “life and death,” God the Father would have wanted us all to be in heaven because He is the God of love, mercy and compassion. He drew the plan of salvation and sent His only begotten Son Jesus Christ to sacrifice Himself in order to save all His human creatures from their sins. “And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world.”
As the Lord sends us forth, He wants us to make eternal life available for everyone. He calls and commands us to seek the lost, rescue the perishing, warn all sinners, preach repentance, prevail on our neighbours with love, have compassion on the ignorant and persuade men to turn from sin, darkness and hell towards the Saviour, light and heaven. The benchmark of God’s extraordinary, sacrificial and passionate love for the world is that He gave the best He had in heaven for our salvation, namely, Jesus Christ, His Son.
Therefore, there is no discrimination to anyone who wants to come out of sin to the Saviour, escape from darkness to light and flee from evil to the grace of God. Our Lord’s heart, love, mercy, compassion and heaven are large enough to accommodate everyone, in all ages, of all races, and from all continents. Although the world is evil, sinful and condemnable, God did not send His Son to condemn the world, but to save it. It is for this reason that those who claim to be children of God must have and manifest His nature, love and preeminent compassion for souls lost in sinful practices and indulgent lifestyle. We must love our neighbours as ourselves and tell them the good news of salvation. Like the Apostle Paul, we must commit ourselves totally to the work of soul-winning, recognising that it is the will of God. And, “We ought to obey God rather than men.”
Further Reading (King James Version): 1 John 5:7; John 3:16,17; 1 John 4:14; John 17:18; 20:21; Acts 13:4; 2 Peter 3:9; 1 John 4:14; John 3:16,17; Acts 3:26; 15:7,13-18; Galatians 1:15,16; 1 Corinthians 9:16-22; Romans 1:1,16; 1 Thessalonians 2:4; Acts 5:29; Matthew 28:18-20; 24:12-14; Mark 16:15,16; Luke 24:45-48; Acts 5:27-32; 18:9; Acts 13:2-4; Mark 13:10,11; Luke 12:11,12; Acts 4:8-13,31; 13:6-12.