After Jesus, our Savior was crucified as a sacrifice and substitute for us to pay for our sins, on Sunday morning some of His disciples went to the cemetery and found His tomb empty. That evening, “when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst and saith unto them, ‘Peace be unto you.’ And when He had so said, He showed unto them His hands and His side. Then were the disciples glad when they saw the Lord” (John 20:19-20). The words Jesus spoke to them then echo through history to us today: “Then said Jesus unto them again, ‘Peace be unto you; as My Father hath sent Me, even so send I you’” (John 20:21). Jesus would soon return to the Father. Now He was sending out His disciples as missionaries to the world, just as the Father had sent Him as a missionary to the world that He loves (John 3:16).
What He said to the first disciples He says to us, “‘as My Father hath sent Me, even so send I you.’” Jesus has sent us to tell the Good News of salvation in Jesus so that when people hear and receive Him, He will forgive their sins and give them salvation and eternal life.
Why do we need to tell people the Good News about Jesus? Why do they need to hear? Why do they need forgiveness and salvation? What’s the problem? Paul dealt with these questions in Romans 1:18-32 in describing the condition of humanity apart from God. Romans 1:18a declares, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness….” People are under God’s wrath because of ungodliness and unrighteousness.
The Bible affirms, “‘There is none righteous, no, not one… There is none that doeth good, no, not one’” (Romans 3:10, 12). The opposing philosophy of the world is that people have a great deal of good in them. Many depend on their “goodness” to qualify them for God’s welcome and acceptance. Some people behave better than others do and some take actions to improve society and help humanity, but nothing is innately good unless it glorifies God. No one can know or glorify God apart from a relationship with Jesus Christ.
In the first part of chapter 3 of his letter to the Roman church, Paul shows that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” Here, he follows the pattern of the rest of the Bible, showing that before people will come to the holy God for salvation, they must first see and admit they have sinned against Him and need His forgiveness. We need to be His witnesses to that truth and to the Good News that through the substitutionary death of Jesus Christ, God has provided the way for sinners to escape His wrath. In Christ, God provides forgiveness, will save them from hell and give them the gift of eternal life.
Why do we need missionaries? Because all people need to hear the truth of this good news from God and missionaries proclaim it to people around the world!
H. Milton Wilder
Missionary Pastoral Care