Summary: A message about the call to missions.
We¡¦ve a Story to Tell to the Nations
A Call to Missions
February 8, 2004
A few months ago, Rev. Keith Nash, the senior pastor at the Mitchell Wesleyan Church issued a challenge for every Wesleyan church in the Dakota district to designate one Sunday in February as Missions Sunday, when we discuss the call to missions.
We originally chose February 29, but then when we decided to do the 40 Days of Purpose campaign, we needed to move the date.
The plan was to feature our three missionaries from our congregation, and I wanted to give them the opportunity now.
Later, during the 40 Days we will revisit this theme, but I didn¡¦t want to make them wait any longer, so we chose today.
My thought in preparing this message was that I could be brief in my remarks, but it¡¦s not gonna work that way, so you can forget any thoughts of beating the Baptists to Steak and Buffet, okay?
Missions is a key part of who I am. I thought I was called to missions earlier in life, but while God had other plans for where I would serve Him, He has not let me forget about my heart for missions.
And my hope is that after today, some of you will be touched with a desire to be involved in missions, in one form or another, and maybe God will actually move in such a way that He calls someone here today to be a full-time missionary somewhere.
The text for our message is found in Acts 1:8, which is printed at the top of your note-taking guide.
Please read this aloud with me, okay? Here we go.
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth."
From this passage, and from a couple others, I want us to look at the call to missions, by looking at 3 types of missions, 2 ways to be involved, and 1 main reason for missions.
My prayer is that not only will you be blessed with this information, but that you will open yourself up to the heart of God for those who haven¡¦t heard the name of Christ.
Let¡¦s get started by looking first at¡K
3 Types of Missions
„Y Jerusalem ¡V local.
There are lots of people in the Brown Co. and Aberdeen areas that need to hear the message of Jesus.
Many have heard it before, others haven¡¦t.
We cannot assume that just because they are in the area that they know their need for the Savior.
Many churches teach a false doctrine of salvation, trusting in their religious activities and rituals to save them rather than Christ.
They need to hear the message.
Others are disadvantaged because of economic, social, or other reasons, and may be being ignored because of their status, or may actually avoid the efforts of those who would reach them with the good news of Christ.
Our church is part of the Christian Outreach to the Heartland, an association of evangelical churches in the area who work together to expose as many people as possible to Christ.
If you wish to be a part of some sort of local missions efforts, come talk to me. If there is no one doing that particular ministry yet, it could be that God would have you do that through AWC.
„Y Judea and Samaria ¡V national.
Did you know that while at one time the U.S. was one of the nations sending out the most missionaries, it has now become a mission field itself?
One statistic I saw a few years ago lists the U.S. as the fifth largest mission field in the world.
Isn¡¦t it amazing that some countries are actually sending missionaries here?
Believe it or not, there are pockets of the U.S. filled with people who have not yet heard of Christ.
Immigration, both legal and illegal, continues to skyrocket, and many of these are from nations where the contact with the gospel is limited or not allowed.
Also, there are mission agencies geared to specific target populations such as the homeless, or ethnic groups such as Native Americans.
We have groups such as Campus Crusade for Christ, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, and the Navigators, through whom I came to Christ at SDSU, on college campuses, in communities, and even on military bases throughout the country to help spread the gospel throughout our land.
I mentioned before that just people are in our area, we cannot assume they¡¦ve heard the gospel.
Years ago, a Muslim friend and I were talking, and it became apparent that he was of the opinion that if you were an American, you were a Christian.