For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Hebrews 4:12
When the chairman of Finishing the Tasktalked about how technologies have closed the communications gap he said, “We can now communicate with Berlin and Botswana at the same time.” How true that we can reach anywhere and almost everywhere in the world through an internet connection and a laptop. The technology can take us almost anywhere in the world instantly.
If you want to use technology to reach Berlin and Botswana at the same time, there are only two real limitations. You must know someone in Berlin and Botswana, and they have to like you. In other words, the limitations come primarily by relationships.
Technology as is an accelerator. We have excellent missions accelerators in Zoom, WhatsApp and TEAMS, but we benefit from them when we work in Paul’s pattern of Acts 13-21: Abiding, Entry, Evangelism, Discipleship, Church Planting, Leadership development and Exit.
The Apostle Paul worked across Asia for two years remotely from Rome (Acts 28:30). He could continue effective ministry under house arrest because he had a network of leaders. Even in New Testament times the technology with Roman Roads and writing was in place for outside catalyst ministry if the leaders were in place.
We need to raise up leaders to fulfill Matthew 28:18 to go and make disciples of all nations. As we go and make disciples we can benefit greatly by the modern technology available to communicate with our leaders and with the nations.
And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. Matthew 24:14
We do the great commission, preach the gospel, until the end. For all of us things could end in one of two ways. Our own personal end by death, or when the Lord comes. Either way until our end comes we preach the gospel until the wheels fall off, till the roof collapses. Until the end comes for us personally or for the whole earth before the second coming of Christ and the judgement we keep preaching the good news.
Preaching the gospel was the Lord’s pattern and the Lord’s command. Matthew 4:23, Matthew 9:35 and Matthew 10:7 we see Jesus preaching. Our Lord spent his ministry preaching the good news and commissioned us to go and make disciples.
We practice the pattern of Paul and the apostles. In Acts 17:6 they were accused of turning the world upside down through preaching the gospel. That was their testimony to all nations they disturbed the whole world with the gospel.
Entry – He had a strategy to enter a new place. Evangelism -The gospel was preached when he entered a new place. Discipleship – New believers grew in their faith and knowledge of the Word. Church Planting – Churches were established. Leadership Development – Leaders were raised up. Exit– He moved on to enter the next place even if there was no persecution.
We see how Paul did all he could to preach the gospel to the whole world. His first step of his first journey was to preach the gospel in what we now recognize as the country of Cyprus (Acts 13:4-12) and to do this in a couple of months and move on to other more far reaching parts of the world.
Jesus said, “the gospel must first be preached to all nations.” Mark 13:10
When thinking of the biblical concept of nations don’t think about the 200 or so political nations. The biblical concept of nations is better called people groups. This is ethnolinguistic distinct groups.
If you look at peoplegroups.org they put the number of people groups around 12,000 people groups. They list 7,000 of these as unreached meaning that there is no community of believing Christians able to engage this people group with church planting from within. Someone from the outside will need to preach for this people groups to hear the gospel. Of these 7,000 unreached about half do not currently have a strategy in place from outside.
In Matthew 24:14 There was an immediate context of the destruction of Jerusalem and a secondary context of the second coming of Christ. That is a common dual context of Bible prophecy in the Old Testament concerning the coming of Christ.
Here is the Greek for each word linked to the strong index number.
End 5056 (Telos) – end, event, principal aim Nations 1484 (ethnesin) a tribe, foreign A testimony 3142 (martyrion) something evident World 3625 (oikoumene) all people living on the inhabited earth
Paul set up a ministry center outside of Ephesus called the Hall of Tyrannus (Acts 19:9). He said, “In the same way, the gospel is bearing fruit and growing throughout the whole world—just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and truly understood God’s grace.” Colossians 1:6
Locally Paul set up a ministry center for the gospel to grow into areas of Colossae, Hierapolis and Laodicea (Col 4:13). This local pattern is reproduced to cover the whole world with the good news in Christ.
The last Words Jesus spoke before his ascension was that the Gospel be preached in the whole world. “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8
And one more thing. The context of Matthew 24:14 tells us that as the gospel is preached until the end the global conditions will be very bad. Prepare yourself, you know it’s a must.
Matthew 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.
There is a power in the way the gospel flows within Oikos. The gospel moves faster through friends and family networks.
So much of what happened in the new Testament happened through Oikos and through the context of homes. Here are some scriptures highlighting ministry in homes.
Jesus in Homes
Matthew 8:14 Jesus came to Peter’s home Matthew 9:10 Jesus visits Matthew the tax collector’s home Matthew 9:28 Jesus entered the house blind men came to him Matthew 10:12 Enter the home give your greeting, Jesus said. Matthew 13:36 When the crowds left Jesus went into home. Matthew 17:25 Capernaum home Jesus spoke about paying tax
Mark 1:29 with James and John to the home of Simon and Andrew Mark 5:38 Jesus visits Jairus home the synagogue ruler Mark 6:10 Jesus said, “enter a house, stay until you leave town. Mark 7:24 Jesus enters home in Tyre
Luke 5:18 Jesus in home paralysed man dropped through roof Luke 10:38 Jesus visits home of Martha and Mary Luke 11:37 Jesus eats at the home of the Pharisee Luke 14:1 At the home of prominent Pharisee Luke 19:5-9 Jesus in Zacchaeus home Luke 22:10-12 Jesus at the last supper Luke 24:29 Stayed with them at Emmaus
John 1:39 Disciples go to stay where Jesus was staying John 20:19 Jesus appears after resurrection
Disciples in Homes
Acts 1:13, 2:2 Pentecost, upper room Acts 4:31 Disciples prayed and place shaken Acts 5:42 believers meeting house to house Acts 10:24 Peter in Cornelius home Acts 12:12 The house of Mary the mother of John Mark Acts 16:11-15 Paul in Lydia’s home Acts 21:8-9 Paul in Phillip the evangelist home Acts 21:15 Jerusalem Paul t the home of Mnason
Churches in Homes
Romans 16:3-5 Church meets in Aquilla and Pricilla’s home 1 Cor 16:9 church met in their home Colossians 4:15 The Laodicea church that meets in Nympha’s home Philemon 2 Colossian church met in home
This year families have been together in their homes more because of the virus. We can encourage our disciples to follow the New Testament pattern to make homes an important place of ministry during this time.