PREACH THE GOSPEL DOES NOT MEAN WHAT THE VAST MAJORITY OF CHRISTIANS BELIEVE IT MEANS.
MARK 16:15-18 -- "And He said to them, 'Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned."
TWO PROBLEMS THAT NEED TO BE ADDRESSED
The first part of the great commission is the command to "GO".
Notice that Jesus did not say go if you want to, or go if you feel like it, or go to a church meeting.
He said "go into all the world".
Now most people assume that Jesus was speaking only to those who are in an occupational ministry.
But think about when this command was given.
There were only 11 men present at that specific time.
How would it be possible for 11 men to go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation when their only mode of transportation was walking, or riding a donkey or a horse, or possibly taking short sailing trip?
It's obvious that the command was being given to the entire Church that Jesus said He would build. Matthew 16:18.
How did we ever come to the sad state the Church is in today with only a handful of people actually doing the work of the ministry and obeying the command of Jesus?
The second part of the great commission is the command to "PREACH THE GOSPEL" to all creation.
If the first part of the great commission is the command "to go" and it applied to the entire Church wouldn't the application of the second part of the great commission the command to "preach the gospel of the kingdom being at hand" also applied to the entire Church?
I believe that would be correct.
Now, if to preach the gospel is applied to the entire Church, is that the same action as what we see done on Sunday mornings when the pastor, or an evangelist, is giving a sermon?
I don't think so.
I do believe that to preach the Gospel on Sunday mornings is a good thing, but that is only a small part of the fulfillment of this great commission command.
It can also be a deterrent to the fulfillment of this command because it helps to reinforce the two group caste system that we see in the modern day church.
The two groups in the system are:
Another problem with the Sunday morning preaching of sermons is that in most cases the people in the congregation are already supposedly "born again" so don't really need to be preached to, they need to be discipled and equipped to do the work of the ministry.
So, is the Sunday morning preaching of sermons really obeying the command of the Great Commission?
I don't think so.
A SOLUTION TO THOSE TWO PROBLEMS
I believe the biggest problem God has with reaching the world with the truth of the good news gospel is the problem of trying to mobilize His Church.
The people who claim to be part of the Church have become very content with simply going to a church meeting or participating in a church program rather than obeying the specific commands of Jesus that we see recorded in the Scriptures or are spoken to us by the Holy Spirit through His inner promptings..
What would happen to church growth worldwide if starting next Sunday no preacher ever delivered another message again from the pulpit?
Is the true Church that Jesus is building really dependent on the preaching of Sunday morning sermons and other church programs to reach those who are still in the kingdom of darkness?
I really don't think so.
What would happen to church growth worldwide if starting next Sunday there were no professional preachers, but instead every person in the world that claims to be born again and in covenant with Jesus were to simply witness to one other person in their "oikos" and share their testimony concerning their encounter with Jesus Christ and how He is changing their life?
Can you imagine what would happen in the Church if this activity were to take place around the world every week?
I believe the second big problem that God has with reaching the world with the truth of the good news of the Gospel is a misunderstanding of the term "preaching".
If I preach does that mean that I have to give a sermon or to be very aggressive and shout and holler?
You see that is the picture that most people have of someone preaching.
Have you ever heard someone say when you are trying to communicate a certain point of view, "Hey, don't preach to me"?
What were you doing?
You were simply trying to communicate with another person.
You were simply sharing your thoughts, or proclaiming a position, or delivering a message; and those can be of the same techniques used for delivering the message of the gospel of the kingdom.
How do we obey part #1 and part #2 of the great commission command?
Simple, one person goes to a member of their "oikos" and communicates that Jesus Christ is Lord of their life and how they have responded to the truth that the kingdom of God is at hand.
This simple little procedure is how we go into all the world and preach the gospel to all of creation.
We do it to one person at a time.
You may ask, "What if I offend them and they reject me as their friend if I talk to them about Jesus?"
I would have to answer that if they are so easily offended at you for simply sharing this experience in your life, they must not be much of a friend.
To preach the gospel is not to "brow beat" someone with Scriptures, it is to communicate your experience in becoming a part of the family of the living God.
We don't need professional occupational "preachers".
We need pastors and teachers that will really demonstrate how to do the works of Jesus in the market place and train us to do the same, not just give speeches on Sundays.
We need pastors and teachers to equip the saints and to enable us to go and do the work of the ministry.
Let's go to the next section of this website and gain the understanding of how we are to be equipped and trained to do the work of the ministry that Jesus has commanded we be involved in as the expression of the life that is in us. Let's begin to learn about RELATIONAL CHRISTIANITY and how the Church is to meet.
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