Saturday, April 13, 2013

The Missionary God and All the Families of the Earth.

This morning I was working a blog post and dug into my old Perspectives reader looking for some insights on a point I was hoping to make. In the process I came once again to an excellent article written by the recently promoted theologian John Stott entitled, "The Living God is a Missionary God."(pdf) Here is an excerpt (emphasis mine):
The nations are not gathered in automatically. If God has promised to bless "all the families of the earth," he has promised to do so "through Abraham's seed" (Gen 12:3; 22:18). Now we are Abraham's seed by faith and the earth's families will be blessed only if we go to them with the gospel. That is God's plain purpose.

I pray that these words, "all the families of the earth," may be written on our hearts. It is this expression more than any other which reveals the living God of the Bible to be a missionary God. It is this expression too which condemns all our petty parochialism and narrow nationalism, our racial pride (whether white or black), our condescending paternalism and arrogant imperialism. How dare we adopt a hostile or scornful or even indifferent attitude to any person of another color or culture if our God is the God of "all the families of the earth?" We need to become global Christians with a global vision, for we have a global God.

So may God help us never to forget his four-thousand year old promise to Abraham: "By you and your descendents all the nations of the earth shall be blessed."

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