Friday, March 10, 2006

What Are You Doing about the Lost?

I’m in Quito, Ecuador as I write this. For the geographically challenged, that’s somewhere in South America.

My purpose in being here is to dialog with a dozen other missionaries, all with a fiery passion to win their peoples to Christ Jesus. We are mobilizers. That means we work to mobilize South Americans to go into all the world.

I was singularly impressed by one thing: there are millions of lost in South America. There are peoples of hundreds of tribes who have never heard the wonderful message of eternal and abundant life Jesus Christ offers them. One man shared with us today about Colombia. I could only shake my head as I saw the graphics that revealed the numbers of tribes who have never even been contacted. As far as anyone knows, not one believer exists among those tribes.

Someone once asked me about that kind of tribe. What will God do with those who never heard the gospel? Will he send them to hell? No one I know likes the answer to that question. But here it is in clear words: the lost go to hell, period. Does God delight in that? I seriously doubt it. God is infinitely greater than you or I. If we don’t delight in that thought, how much more does it grieve our Father in heaven? But man must respond to the revelation God has given him. Man, by his nature, too often rejects that revelation. But when man does respond, God moves towards him. Someone once said that he believed God would go as far as to wreck a plane to get a man to an unreached tribe if someone in that tribe had responded to the revelation God had given him. I agree.

But let me ask an even more pointed question. If you know there are tribes that have never heard, and you have a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus, what are you going to do about it? Your very smallest responsibility is to obey the words of Jesus, found both in Luke 10 and Matthew 9, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; pray to the Harvest Master, therefore; ask him to send out workers into his harvest.” (My paraphrase) Your very minimal responsibility before God is to ask him to send laborers.

Your next response could be sacrificial. God may be answering our prayers by telling you to go to one of the thousands of tribes around the world that have not heard about Jesus. He called me to the gospel ministry twenty-eight years ago this week. That is, I heard his call that long ago. I recall something about being called before the foundations of the earth. After all, God’s plans are eternal; this is an eternal truth we are speaking about here.

You are also expected to be financially involved. If you can’t go, you can give. You may be able to give far more than Americans give (as a rule). I know people who spend thousands on their dogs and cats. That’s a yearly expense. Do you know what God can do with a few thousand dollars? Imagine, if he can multiply 5 biscuits and 2 fish, he can certainly use your giving to win hundreds to Christ.

Let me ask it again, what are you going to do about the lostness in the world? When you stand before Jesus, what answer will you give to that question?

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