“IN THE SAME WAY, I SEND YOU”                       Pastor YAU

Romans 10:11-17; John 20:21                                      March 20, 2005

 

INTRODUCTION:  Sending people to spread the Good News or the Gospel was part of the ministries of Jesus. He sent the twelve at one time. (Mark 6:7-13) Then He sent out the seventy. (Luke 10:1-7) After the resurrection when He was with the disciples, He sent them again. (John 20:21) Before His ascension, He sent them out to be His witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the outer most parts of the world. (Acts 1:8)  In the Great Commission, Jesus gave the most comprehensive call to all His followers to make disciples of all nations. (Matthew 28:19-20)

       Ever since the beginning of Christian history, sending believers to tell others about Jesus and His salvation has been the center piece of Christian Movements. It is because of the commitment of those who sent and those who were sent, the Gospel of salvation is now spread to all corners of the earth. Yet, as long as there still are people who have not heard the Good News, the Command of Sending is still unfinished. Those who were sent with a mission were later called missionaries. Let us see what the Bible says about missionary sending.

 

THE COMPONENTS OF THE GOSPEL: (Rom. 10:11-13) There are several components of the Gospel business from the very beginning. Knowing the formula will help us understand who, how and for whom the sending is about.

1)    God is the sole sender: In His sending of Abraham to the Promised Land to begin a nation of Covenant through which all nations or peoples were to be blessed. Sending Jesus into the world to be the promised Savior was another step of the sending. He sent again the Holy Spirit to the early church. In the sending of Barnabas and Paul as the pioneers of the modern missionary movement was a grand display of His sending plan. All Christians through the 2,000 year and their missionary sending organizations have done so because of the call of God to do so. Even Jesus credited to His Father in sending His disciples after His resurrection as He said, “As the Father has sent me, in the same way I send you.” (John 20:21)

2)    The message is ONE true God: (Romans 10:12) The Bible has always pointed to one true God, the Creator of all things. Therefore the gospel message from this one God is the ONLY true message for the salvation of all men. Cultural or religious differences ancient or modern, people near or far, civilized or primitive don’t make any difference. Even though we see different people has their gods or even many gods in one people. These gods are all man made idols and none of them is anything but human imagination. There is ONLY one true God.

3)    The Gospel is for ALL people:  (Rom. 10:11-13) Three times, the Bible points to ALL people who may call on the name of the Lord and be saved from the bondage of their sins. (Matt.1:21)  The concept of this “ALL” people carries double implications: the gospel is to be preached to all people of the world, the universal aspect of the salvation message on one hand and  the church of this true God is also for all people, be it in denomination or congregation. There is never to be discrimination against anyone who may be different from others because of ethnic origin, skin color, education, socio-economic status or anything else. If this one true God is the God of all people, salvation and His church is also for all the people.

4)    All who put their faith in Him shall be SAVED:  (Rom. 10:11,13) All those who put their faith in any of the idols man had created as gods will certainly be put in shame because they will find there is NO salvation from those idols. No idol can do anything to save anyone, not even the idol itself. People who claim to believe in any idol will be in shame and loss. They are people God had created and are objects of His salvation. All who believe in this one true God will never be in shame because He is the creator and salvation.

5)    People, all people, are saved by TRUSTING God:  The theme of saved by faith is found everywhere in the Bible, both in the Old Testament and the New. No one has ever been saved by works or deeds. Even Abraham, the most righteous man, was saved by faith. (Hebrews 11:8, 17)  “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith---and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God---not by works, so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9) Many manmade religions place heavy burdens on people on their works hoping to be saved. Their followers will find terminal shame at the end of their lives.

 

THE PROCESS OF THE SENDING: (Rom. 10:14-17) Paul, the writer of Romans, listed five steps on the process of spreading the gospel. These steps provide us the mandates on which we send out missionaries:

1)    No one may call on God if he has not believed in Him. The word “call” in the Old Testament sense is the act of worship and prayer of those who believed in the Almighty God. People who have not yet believed in this God certainly cannot call or worship Him. The pre-requisite of calling God or worshiping God is to believe Him. There is little or no spiritual meaning for unbelievers to be in a worship service unless he/she has the intention of believing.

2)    No one may believe in God if he has never heard of Him. How can anyone believe in God when he/she has never heard of this God? There can be no idea of this God when no message of Him was heard? No one can believe in anything they have never heard or known. Therefore, it is of imperative that people who have not believed in our God have the opportunity to hear about Him. Too many people reject God before they have the chance to hear about Him. “Faith comes from hearing the message.” (10:17) How can anyone decide not to believe in this God before he hears who God is and what can this God do for his life?

3)    No one will hear Him unless someone is willing to TELL the message: How may anyone hear when no one is doing the talking---present the message? It is mandatory to have someone willing to tell the story of Jesus, the salvation and redemption story then others may hear. When Jesus commanded us to be His witnesses, He was calling us to TELL the story, our personal experience and His work in our lives. Go and tell is the key.

4)    No one will go and tell the message unless someone is willing to be SENT: God has been waiting for someone willing to be sent to tell His message to the people. Ever since the day of Isaiah, God looks for people who will answer the call as did the prophet. “Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?’ And I said, ‘Here I am. Send me.’” (Isaiah 6:8) Many thousands or millions have answered the call and had been sent to tell the story of the Good News. Hundred of thousands or millions have been saved because of the obedience of those who had answered the call and are will to go and tell.

5)    Salvation comes from hearing the message of Jesus Christ:  (10:17) You don’t need to be a rocket scientist or a Nobel prize winner to tell the message of Jesus Christ. It is all in the Bible. In the recent case of courtroom shooting, Brian Nichol, the suspect, was convinced by his hostage, Ashley Smith, a middle age widow in her apartment to surrender peacefully. Ashley used her Christian life experience and the Purpose Driven life, to convince Brian that God still has a purpose in his life even after what he had done. He confessed that she was the angel God sent to him at the moment of crisis. God may not send you across the ocean to be a missionary. But He certainly can send you to someone who is in deep spiritual needs. Are you willing to answer that call?

 

CONCLUSION:  The message of last week was GOOD INTENTION. Among all the possible good intentions is the intention to save some souls, starting from your own. No other intention is better than planning your own salvation if you have not already had Jesus in your life. Call on His name. Trust your life and the future into His hand. Ask Him to forgive your sins and give you eternal life.

       How about your loved ones: family, people whom you care? Have them been saved by the message of Jesus Christ? God wants to send you to tell them about Jesus. Share with them your Christian life experience. He or she may see you as an angel from God in time of their spiritual needs. Answer that call. Go and tell.

       There are millions of precious souls Jesus died for. Souls of Chinese, souls of many other ethnic groups who have not heard the message of salvation in Jesus Christ. If the Lord is calling you today to give up your personal dreams and plans of pursuit, asking you to dedicate your whole life to bring the Good News to these souls, will you respond as Isaiah did and say, “Here I am, Lord, send me.”