“This gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” – Matthew 24:14 (ESV)
We can rightly consider this a most inspiring missionary promise from Jesus. Not: should be preached. Not: might be preached. But: will be preached. This is not a great commission, it’s a great certainty. How can we be sure the church won’t fail in its missionary task? The grace of missionary service is as irresistible as the grace of regeneration. Christ promised universal proclamation because he is sovereign. He knows the future success of missions because he makes the future and sees it happen. A “nation” as used here is not a modern “country” in the way we use the word. When the Old Testament spoke of nations, we recall groups like Jebusites, Hivites, Amorites, Moabites, Canaanites, and Philistines. “Nations” identified ethnic and tribal groups with their own peculiar language and culture. We call them people groups, these days. As the sovereign Son of God and Lord of the church, Jesus simply applied His divine purpose and stated as an absolute certainty. World missions to proclaim the Gospel is assured of success. It cannot fail. Let us, then pray with great faith, invest with great confidence, go forward with a sense of sure triumph?
John Piper shared these words in a recent devotional: