Evangelism

Same Mission, New Method

This devotional is written by Matt Coombs.

Matthew 28:16-20

The Great Commission

16 Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."

Reflection

The Mission has not changed but the Method must…

Over the last 2000 years, Christians have continually needed to respond to Jesus' Great Commission in new and innovative ways. The church has used the technologies of the day to communicate about the new life they have found in Jesus.

From the Apostles who travelled from town to town establishing churches and seeking to impact the surrounding regions. They travelled to these places often via Roman road. Such journey’s were difficult before the Roman Empire established its road system. We still do the same thing, we go to start new worshipping communities in areas that need them.

Through the ages, art has been used to impact the viewer. From the Sistine Chapel to stained glass windows, they have been vital for communicating the stories of Jesus, even to this day.

Over 500 years ago the invention of the Gutenberg printing press allowed for mass printing of the Bible in the language of the people. A number of years ago, I met a man giving out copies of the New Testament on Oxford Street and I asked why he was doing it. He replied: “Someone, 31 years ago handed me a New Testament on the street and I opened up the gospels and met Jesus. I’ve been sharing in the same way ever since.”

During the second world war, C.S. Lewis utilised the technology of radio to talk about Christianity to the nation. Air Chief Marshal Sir Donald Hardman wrote: "The war, the whole of life, everything tended to seem pointless. We needed, many of us, a key to the meaning of the universe. Lewis provided just that.” 

The church has a responsibility to redeem technology to reach the lost and make disciples.

We can’t wait for the world to return to 'normal' to fulfil our calling in the ways we have done them before. Let us continue to go and make disciples. Let's use everything that has worked in the past, communicating the wonder of Jesus through art, aesthetics, and audible proclamation. But let us also utilise every technology available to us and reach the lost in new ways too.

Let us pray to hear stories of people saying: “31 years ago, someone invited me on a Zoom call and I met Jesus.”

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