Here and There

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Acts 1:8 says, “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth.”

According to the Greek, the places listed in Acts 1:8 are not in order of priority, but are equal in priority.

Imagine being sent on an important errand to the store to get milk, bread, eggs and cheese — all necessary items for a wedding brunch. If you brought back only milk because it was first on the list, you didn’t fully understand the task or realize the vital role you played in completing it. But serving that wedding brunch is going to require more than just milk.

God is planning a wedding, and His bride comes not just from the Jerusalem where you live, but from Judea and Samaria — and even from the ends of the earth.

So if you wanted to start giving equal priority to His work here, there and to the ends of the earth, what would that actually look like? What changes would you need to make?

Don't Miss the Forest for the Trees

It is encouraging to see more and more believers awaken to the fact that the job of the church is to “make disciples” (Matthew 28:19). Being a theme of the entire New Testament, its importance cannot and should not be diminished.

At the same time, we don’t want to miss the equally important other half of the command: “of all nations.”

The idea of making disciples among every people group is present in three other Great Commission verses: Luke 24:46-47, Mark 16:16 and Acts 1:8. But it is also a theme of all Scripture, from Genesis to Revelation.

In Genesis 12:3, God promised Abram, “in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”

In Revelation 5:9, the fulfillment of this in Jesus is seen when “they sang a new song, saying: ‘You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open its seals; for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation.’”

The command to “make disciples of all nations” applies right here at home, and out there as well.

Your pastor or another church leader would probably be delighted to help you find ways to be involved in making disciples right where you are.

And talking with a missionary could shed light on helping make disciples elsewhere.