When I first came to be a follower of Christ, I received a teaching that completely revolutionized my life. It was because of this teaching, titled The Plan, that I felt inclined to check out BCOM and eventually become a student here in Minnesota.
The Plan was a teaching that revolutionized my entire perspective behind the Bible, which in turn, redirected all of my aspirations. It started off with the very familiar story of David and Goliath:
Meanwhile, the Philistine, with his shield bearer in front of him, kept coming closer to David. He looked David over and saw that he was only a boy, ruddy and handsome, and he despised him. He said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come at me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. “Come here,” he said, “and I’ll give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!”
David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the LORD Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the LORD will hand you over to me, and I’ll strike you down and cut off your head. Today I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give all of you into our hands.” (1 Sam 17:41-47 NIV)
Notice what I put in red: and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. take a look at it in your own Bible.
The reason that the teaching was titled The Plan was because it meant to reveal an overarching battle plan found throughout the Bible. The plan found throughout the Bible has to do with global evangelization, that is, missions. Far too often we look at the stories of the Bible as illustrations of what God can do for us. An example would be David and Goliath. We were told through Sunday school that the moral behind this story is that God will protect us, take care of us, watch out for us, etc. It seems though, that throughout the Bible we see the agenda of God’s fame moving forward. Take a look at these other passages and see if you can detect the common thread:
Deuteronomy 4:5-8, 28:9-10
Joshua 2:10, 4:23-24
1 Kings 8:41-43, 60
1 Chronicles 16:8, 17:23-24
2 Chronicles 32:22-23
Psalm 22:27, 145:12
Isaiah 12:4-5, 37:20, 49:26
The idea of global evangelization (missions) didn’t begin in Matthew 28:18-20. I would submit to you that it began far earlier. God’s heart, ever since Genesis, has been that all people may know the Truth. That’s why we go on missions, because what’s on God’s agenda is the fulfillment of the Great Commission and the restoration of all things. We don’t jump borders so that we can wear a grass skirt and eat bugs. We go so that they might know. We go to make God known.