Biblical Basis for Missions

The Bible does not contain missional sections; the Bible itself is a missional book. The...
January 16, 2023

The Bible does not contain missional sections; the Bible itself is a missional book. The overarching narrative of Scripture depicts a God going to a lost world with the hope of the gospel.

The Missionary God (Gen. 1-11)

  • God created Mankind in His image (Gen. 1:27), and He commanded them to spread that image throughout all the world (Gen. 1:28).
  • After their sin, God comes looking for Adam and Eve (Gen. 3:8), declares war on the enemy (Gen. 3:15), and covers their shame (Gen. 3:21).
  • When the people refused to spread, God forced their hand at Babel (Gen. 11:8).

The Commissioned Nation (Gen. 12-Mal.4)

  • After God scatters the nations, He initiates a plan for Abram to leave his home (Gen. 12:1) so that all the peoples on earth will be blessed by his work (Gen. 12:3).
  • God sends this tiny family into the most powerful nation in the world (Ex. 1:1) to serve as a kingdom of priests to draw their attention to the one true God (Ex. 19:3-6).
  • Israel was to serve as a distinguished, enticing nation (Zech. 8:23) that reached beyond its borders as a light to all nations (Isa. 49:6).
  • Jonah’s example of missionary defiance (Jon. 4:2) epitomizes the nation’s reluctance to see their blessing as a means rather than an end (Isa. 42:18-20).

The Restorative Messiah (Matt. 1-John 21)

  • Jesus’ mission focused on those who knew they needed restoration (Mark 2:17) – not those who were comfortably numb in their self-righteousness.
  • Jesus tabernacled among the people of this world so that we would know His grace and truth (John 1:14).
  • God sent His Son, the greatest missionary, to save the world from their sins (John 3:17).

The Sending Church (Acts 1-Jude 1)

  • The Holy Spirit empowered and directed the early Church to be witnesses both near and far (Acts 1:8).
  • The missionary movement was built on the willingness to surrender all for the sake of those who needed the gospel (Acts 20:24).
  • In the going and sending of missionaries, all Christians were to have some part in the task of reaching the nations (Rom. 10:13-15).

The Completed Task (Rev. 1-22)

  • Jesus will return, causing some to rejoice and others to mourn because they have rejected the gospel (Rev. 1:7).
  • Eternity’s picture includes people from all over the world saved by the person and work of the Lamb of God (Rev. 7:9).
  • The redemptive reunion is characterized by a city coming down to us, rather than a city going up to God (Rev. 21:2).
  • Scripture describes the new heaven and new earth as having a light by which the nations will walk (Rev. 21:24).