More Of Us Than Ever
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I was just doing the math. At one point in time, we had one grandchild. I couldn't believe my wife was old enough to be a grandmother! You know? But then, within a matter of years, that one has become nine grandchildren!
But that's nothin'. In that same period of time, a billion more people have joined us on this planet. And recently, our "global village" just changed the population sign from six billion to seven billion!
Not just seven billion people - seven billion souls. Mark 8:36 tells us that according to Jesus, each one of them is worth more than "the whole world". And according to the Bible, each one of them will ultimately spend forever in heaven or hell. And 150,000 of them will slip into eternity every single day. I don't know about you, but I find all that more than a little breathtaking.
And the orders of Jesus remain unchanged. Here's our word for today from the Word of God in Mark 16:15, "Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone." Yeah everyone! Each of those seven billion humans deserves a chance to know that "God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son" (John 3:16) to take their hell; to give them heaven.
So, with the seven billionth soul born recently, the stakes just got higher. The Final Orders (AKA, the Great Commission) just got more urgent. The Great Commission got greater than ever.
But as the number of lost souls grows exponentially, something strange is happening. Many Western churches are cutting back their missionary budgets, sometimes to spend more on themselves. The percentage of believers' income given to God's work is declining, and the percentage of that which goes to reaching a lost world is shamefully small.
Missionaries who are ready to take that Good News to some needy place in the world can't go yet. It's taking them like three years to find the support to go. And when some Christian young people tell their Christian parents they're sensing God's call to world missions, their parents are telling them to "do something more secure and just give to missionaries." You know, we want our kids to do something important, right? Don't tell God that. His Son was a missionary.
With nearly a billion people more to reach with each decade, how can we possibly be content to do it in the ways we've always done it? At this time of an unprecedented people explosion, we also have within our reach an unprecedented communications explosion. Through technologies like the Internet, social networks like Facebook, mobile systems like iPads and smart phones, and in some parts of the world, the still powerful "old school" technologies of radio and television. Does this population explosion leave us any choice but to, as Paul said, use "all possible means" (1 Corinthians 9:22) to give every soul a chance? To capture the most powerful delivery systems in history to deliver the most powerful Message in the world!
Look, if Jesus wept over a city that was lost (Luke 19:41), how must He weep over a world that is lost, with more lost souls than ever before? As world evangelist, D.L. Moody, said: "The Master's heart is pierced with unutterable grief...not over the world's iniquity, but the Church's indifference." Forget about the Church's indifference; what about yours and mine?
Exponential growth of souls on this planet is not just some fleeting headline; it is a mandate for the people of God. All of us, each of us, to pray differently, give differently, even plan our future differently.
We certainly cannot explain to God "business as usual" because God so loved the world.
© (c) Ronald P. Hutchcraft
Distributed by Ron Hutchcraft Ministries, Inc.