Blog from the Denver Church of Christ

Our Obligation to a Lost World

1329-1.png

Paul's book of Romans is not merely the best exposition in the Bible on Grace versus the Law, but it is at its heart very much a missionary support letter before he leaves for Spain.

Read in this light, Paul pleas that we all must GIVE TO or GO TO those who have not yet heard the gospel, however, whenever, and wherever God leads. I use the word must in light of Romans 1:14, where Paul speaks of his eagerness to preach the gospel:

I am under obligation both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish.

Did you hear that? Paul said he is obligated to preach the gospel to all peoples. Literally, he owes the gospel to all peoples — to Greeks, to barbarians, and to the people of Rome. What a remarkable statement. Apparently, Paul’s ownership of the gospel creates an obligation with the gospel. Because he knows this good news of what God has done in Christ, he must spread this good news of what God has done in Christ. 

This is what I’m praying might become a reality in our hearts: that you and I might realize that we must do everything we can to get the gospel to people who’ve never heard it. That we would realize that our ownership of the gospel creates an obligation with the gospel. That we would see that saved people this side of heaven owe the gospel to lost people (and peoples) this side of hell. 

Saved people this side of heaven owe the gospel to lost people (and peoples) this side of hell.

So why does the Book of Romans tell us we must go to the unreached? Here, briefly stated, are four reasons:

1. Because their knowledge of God is only enough to damn them to hell forever.

For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. (Romans 1:21)

2. Because the gospel of God is powerful enough to save them for heaven.

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. (Romans 1:16)

3. Because the plan of God warrants the sacrifices of his people.

For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? (Romans 10:13–14)

4. Because the Son of God deserves the praises of all peoples.

. . . to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name among all the nations . . . (Romans 1:5)

We can’t keep this gospel to ourselves. It is the greatest news in all the world: People can be made right with God, forever, through faith in Jesus Christ. Everybody has got to hear this. They must hear this! After all, that’s why Paul is writing the book of Romans in the first place. In Romans 15:20 he says,

And thus I make it my ambition to preach the gospel, not where Christ has already been named, lest I build on someone else’s foundation.

Paul wanted the church at Rome to help him get to Spain (givers) so he (as a go-er) could preach the gospel to the unreached there (Romans 15:24). He’s saying (really shouting) in the Book of Romans, “I owe, we owe, Christ to the nations, so let’s give and go and make him known!”

We must do this. This is not an option.

This is an obligation.

Application:  This missions season, how much can you give?  What more can you do?  What can you do differently than in previous years?  How can you be more creative to be more sacrificial? How can you make this year your best year yet for giving to missions? What can you sell, sacrifice for lost souls?

GIVE now by texting MISSIONS to 80077!

For additional study, listen to this lesson:  Paul's Missionary Appeal in Romans: Give or Go!

 

Posted on Apr 3, 2017 2:43:01 PM by Rob Ferry in Special Missions, in unreached

Rob Ferry

Written by Rob Ferry

Rob Ferry and his wife Dawn currently serve as Evangelist and Women’s Ministry Leader for the Southeast Region of the Denver Church of Christ. Rob relocated his family to Denver from Philadelphia in August of 2006. He was converted in the campus ministry at the University of Pennsylvania in 1994, just as he was completing his Ph.D. in Neuropharmacology at the University of Pennsylvania Medical School. Together he and his wife have planted churches, served on the mission field in New Zealand, and have had the privilege of leading campus, singles, and marrieds ministries. Rob passionately loves Jesus, his wife of 18 years, his three incredible children and all things Colorado!