Missions, the Bible and You
What comes to mind when you hear the word “missions”? Those of us who enjoy movies may immediately think of the classic “Mission Impossible” theme song and Tom Cruise doing dangerous stunts. Or maybe you think of a corporate “mission statement,” like, “To serve our customers and be the best.” Or in a Christian context, you’re reminded of your church’s orang asli ministry, or organisations like Overseas Missionary Fellowship (OMF).
In college, I went on a mission trip to an orang asli village in Cameron Highlands. Incidentally, my future wife was in the same team. We spent a few great days sharing God’s Word, worshipping together, teaching English, teaching about community health, and playing games with the orang asli kids. We even experienced a little setback when our hike down was blocked by mud, rocks and uprooted trees. What a God-filled adventure it was!
Jesus and The Great Commission
The word “mission” doesn’t actually appear in the pages of Scripture, though. The English word comes from the Latin word missio meaning to “send”, and the widest definition of this would be activities which God sends us, as His people, out into the world to do.
More specifically, Jesus’s Great Commission in Matthew 28:18-20 comes to mind, that is to “Go and make disciples of all nations.” In the Old Testament, we see God’s heartbeat, too, for all people-groups and ethnicities. Think about:
- Abraham’s call, where He promised that “all peoples on earth will be blessed” through Abraham (Genesis 12:3).
- King Solomon’s dedication of the temple, where he prayed that “all the peoples of the earth may know that the Lord is God and that there is no other” (1 Kings 8:60).
- Isaiah’s prophecy of Jesus, “I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.
All these Old and New Testament threads culminate in Revelation 7:9-10, where a countless multitude “from every nation, tribe, people and language” will stand before the throne, worshipping the Lamb, when Jesus comes again.
Starting with Missions at Home
In multicultural Malaysia, we don’t have to travel thousands of kilometres away to participate in missions. Friends and acquaintances of different cultures are all around us – sitting in the coffeeshop, waiting for the next train, working in our office, or living with us as domestic helpers. Will you catch hold of God’s heartbeat for them?
There are many ways that one can get involved in missions. For me, I like to pray for the people that I see and meet. When I go jogging around my taman, I sometimes take note of indications of my neighbour’s faiths – such as can be seen on their doors or cars – and shoot up a prayer that they will be blessed, have hearts that are open to the Gospel, and friendships and experiences that will lead them to the true and living God.
Other ways include:
- Searching online for information about unreached people-groups, and praying in a more specific and informed way for them to hear the Gospel
- Giving financially to your church mission fund or to mission organisations in order to support, train up, and send out more workers into the harvest fie
- Joining your church’s mission trips, or any form of partnership they might have
- Taking part in a short-term mission trip if you have the resources and time
Everyone can pray, everyone can give, and everyone can go. God is sending you. So will you be part of His mission to redeem the world?
About the Author
Kiew Sieh Jin is a member of Taman Ujong Methodist Church, where he serves as a lay preacher, worship leader, and Captain of the Boys’ Brigade. He is happily married to Chen May and has two often endearing, sometimes naughty, but always beloved children.
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