World Mission of the Church - Lesson 2

The Missionary Heart of God in the OT (Part 1)

Mission is the reconciling work of God in the world. Missions is the obedient, Spirit-led strategy and implementation of plans to fulfill God's mission in the world. The basis of the Torah is not untethered from a global heart of God for the nations of the world.  Even in the Writings and the Prophets, the covenant is being celebrated in the context of the nations of the world, including ramifications of both blessing and cursing.

Timothy Tennent
World Mission of the Church
Lesson 2
Watching Now
The Missionary Heart of God in the OT (Part 1)

I. "Mission" vs. "missions"

II. Mission (missio dei)

A. Divine initiative in preparation, prior to someone receiving the Gospel.

B. Historical transmission

C. God's still at work after you are gone.

III. Key Scripture Passages About the Missionary Heart of God.

A. Covenant with Abraham: Genesis Chapter 12, 17, 22

1. Numerical blessing

2. A national geographic blessing to Israel

3. Spiritual blessing to all nations.

B. Abrahamic covenant renewed

C. Abrahamic covenant fulfilled 

1. Numerical blessing fulfilled

2. National inheritance part fulfilled

3. Passages in Isaiah speak to the fulfillment of God's covenant that through Israel, all nations would be blest.   

D. The New Testament records the fulfillment of what was promised and planned before. It doesn't initiate something new. 

  • For people who are pastors or will serve as pastors, this course will expose you to what you need to know about missions to be effective in the local church. This is also a foundational course for people who are preparing for missionary service by considering topics dealing with practical and theological aspects of missions. For everyone, regardless of your vocation, this course will challenge you to become a world Christian. (Note: It is helpful to know that a pericope [pair – ik – o – pay] is a section of scripture containing a teaching or describing an event.) 

  • Mission is the reconciling work of God in the world. Missions is the obedient, Spirit-led strategy and implementation of plans to fulfill God's mission in the world. The basis of the Torah is not untethered from a global heart of God for the nations of the world.  Even in the Writings and the Prophets, the covenant is being celebrated in the context of the nations of the world, including ramifications of both blessing and cursing.

  • Mission is the reconciling work of God in the world. Missions is the obedient, Spirit-led strategy and implementation of plans to fulfill God's mission in the world. The basis of the Torah is not untethered from a global heart of God for the nations of the world.  Even in the Writings and the Prophets, the covenant is being celebrated in the context of the nations of the world, including ramifications of both blessing and cursing.

  • As the early Christians experience missiological breakthroughs, they will cite the Old Testament because they see these events as a fulfillment of what had already been written. The Abrahamic covenant is cited to demonstrate how God is using the Messiah to bless the nations. The theology of Great Commission found in culminating texts in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John and reinforced in Acts 1:8. Jesus repeated the Great Commission to his disciples in different ways and at various times. Matthew’s account begins by saying that Jesus is giving authority by the Father for the extension of His kingdom. God has given us a mandate to present the Gospel publicly to the world, not just to separate into a cultic community. The only main verb in the passage is, “make disciples.” God’s command is to disciple all people groups, not just people in each country.

  • As the early Christians experience missiological breakthroughs, they will cite the Old Testament because they see these events as a fulfillment of what had already been written. The Abrahamic covenant is cited to demonstrate how God is using the Messiah to bless the nations. The theology of Great Commission found in culminating texts in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John and reinforced in Acts 1:8. Jesus repeated the Great Commission to his disciples in different ways and at various times. Matthew’s account begins by saying that Jesus is giving authority by the Father for the extension of His kingdom. God has given us a mandate to present the Gospel publicly to the world, not just to separate into a cultic community. The only main verb in the passage is, “make disciples.” God’s command is to disciple all people groups, not just people in each country.

  • The verses that contain Mark's version of the Great Commission first appear in later copies, but there are good reasons to treat these verses as part of the inspired text of the Gospel of Mark. In Mark, the proclamation is to be made to all creation. The emphasis in Mark is preaching. The emphasis in Luke is witnessing. The emphasis in John is sending.

  • Acts 11:20 describes the first time the Gospel is intentionally preached in a cross-cultural situation. A church was planted in Antioch and Saul and Barnabas discipled believers there for a year. The Antioch church sends them out, and they come back and report to them what happened. Both local evangelism to your own people group and cross cultural evangelism are important. 

  • There have been changes in missions between 1792 and the present. Many people credit William Carey with beginning the modern missions movement. The Moravians were taking the Gospel to places all over the world, even before Carey began his ministry. The eras overlap because it takes a while for new ideas to catch on. A key figure in Beachhead Missions is William Carey. In Carey’s book, “An Inquiry,” he challenges the inaction of the church in cross-cultural missions. He says God has given to the Church, the responsibility of spreading the Gospel   to other parts of the world, summarizes missions history, gives anthropological data and discusses practical issues people give for not going. Ultimately, people need to be open to the call of the Holy Spirit and willing to respond to the challenge. Carey’s motto is, “Expect great things from God, attempt great things for God.” He and Judson wanted to plant churches in a new country. 

  • Hudson Taylor went to China as a first era missionary. Taylor travels inland and pushes the limits of what the missions organizations were willing to do. Frontier missions focused on the interior areas of countries, used a faith missions model for organization and funding, and recruited lay people, including students and women. Contextualization is preaching the Gospel in a way that is sensitive to the recipient.

  • The close of the second era, Beachhead Missions, came in 1974 when Ralph Winter gave his address at the Lausanne Conference on world evangelism. As a result, people began looking at missions in terms of people groups rather than geographic areas. The fourth era of missions emphasizes “by whom” the Gospel is presented. Lausanne II and the Global Consultation on World Evangelization took place in 1989.

  • In this lesson, you will learn that the “ten forty window” is one of the places where there is a concentration of unreached people groups. A window is a way to recognize the big picture while realizing that every local context is unique. The main focus is to look at each of the five mega-spheres and identify what is unique about each one.
  • The “ten forty window” is one of the places where there is a concentration of unreached people groups. A window is a way to recognize the big picture while realizing that every local context is unique. The main focus is to look at each of the five mega-spheres and identify what is unique about each one.

  • It’s helpful to summarize what you need to know as a pastor to communicate to people about missions and what the pathway is to getting prepared to serve as a missionary. Every continent should be a sending and receiving continent. Short term missions is the best thing and worse thing that has happened to the local church.

    Previous to the beginning of the audio, there was a video shown that is not available to us. It was an account of the breakthrough of the gospel into a culture.

  • By studying this lesson, you'll gain insights into the top ten key aspects of 21st-century missions, including their holistic approach, indigenous leadership, partnerships, technology, urbanization, short-term missions, Global South's influence, contextualization, business as mission, and diaspora focus.
  • Some mission boards are associated with a denomination and some are independent. Most missions organizations belong either to the IFMA (Interdenominational Faith Missions Association) or EFMA (Evangelical Foreign Missions Agency). Fundamentalist missions organizations each have a specific focus. The steps you go through before you go to the mission field are designed to help you get good training and build a team that will support you. Churches are tending to provide a larger percentage of support for fewer missionaries. Terms are usually 3-4 years at a time. Your first term is usually spent just learning the language and culture. Missionaries spend time between terms connecting with people and preparing to return. People often are more receptive to the Gospel when they are living in a culture other than their native culture. Air travel and email have made asynchronous relationships possible. People with professional training have access to some countries that won't allow people to come in as missionaries.

  • As you consider becoming a missionary, it is helpful to recognize areas in the world where the population predominantly identifies with another religion. Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism are popular with large population groups in the 10-40 window. There are also large immigrant populations in locations throughout the US.

    The map referred to in the lecture with the world religions color coded is not available to us.

  • Hinduism is practiced by a large percentage of the people in India. It also has an impact on the culture and politics of India. Buddhism teaches that there is one path to spiritual enlightenment, as opposed to Hinduism that teaches that there are many. 

  • Understanding world religions affects our strategy and the way we do our ministry around the world. 

    Most people who need a gospel presentation are members of another world religion (e.g., Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism). We study other religions so we know the context of belief of that people group. Identification vs. extractionist model. By understanding the teachings of different religions, you can explain the gospel in terms they can understand. Muslims agree on many parts of the Old Testament but don't believe in the Trinity or that Jesus is God. Religions in China and Japan emphasize sincerity, orderliness and personal and public conduct based on precedent. 


Recognizing the responsibility of all Christians to complete Christ’s commission, this course gives an overview of the strategic and historical progress of worldwide missions today. The ways in which a local congregation can fulfill its worldwide biblical mandate are also considered.

Recommended Books

How God Saves the World: A Short History of Global Christianity

How God Saves the World: A Short History of Global Christianity

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Invitation to World Missions: A Trinitarian Missiology for the Twenty-First Century

Invitation to World Missions: A Trinitarian Missiology for the Twenty-First Century

Invitation to World Missions "combines a strong biblical anchor with practical suggestions. This unique text is arranged in three parts according to the Trinity's...

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Encountering Theology of Mission: Biblical Foundations, Historical Developments, and Contemporary Issues

Encountering Theology of Mission: Biblical Foundations, Historical Developments, and Contemporary Issues

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[00:00:01] What we'll do. Let's move to the writing's just kept Daniel. Come back to the prophets and just make a few very basic observations in the Psalms as an example of this. Again, there are hundreds of text we could look at, but in the Psalms, it's important to understand that the covenant is being explored and celebrated in the context of the nations of the world and all of the ramifications of that, both blessing and cursing. I would say also that if you take time sometime to go on to a searchable concordance on a computer and just run just for when your spare time typing the word nation or nations and just push, enter and see the dozens and dozens of texts that come up, the reference to the nations in the Old Testament. It is truly staggering when you actually begin to explore it all theologically and break it into various categories, because it's actually used in a wide variety of ways. You're going to make some really, really powerful theological observations, and I would really encourage you to take time to do that. We're just taking a few examples from each of the strands of the Old Testament. But in Psalm two, you have this Enthronement Psalm. You have this marvelous text about the Messianic anointed one, the Messiah, who has been, you know, emerging. This is, of course, the text that the early church quotes book of Acts when they acknowledge the fury of anger of the nations against them. So here you have the early church feeling pressed on every side by the persecution of the Jewish and secular authorities. And they quote this passage, which reminds them that even though the kings of the earth take their stand and the the rulers stand against the Lord anointed one, the nations are plotting in vain and they're going to throw off the chains and fetters and all of this. 

[00:02:07] But the one in town in heaven laughs. The Lord scoffs at them. So you have this picture of your way in complete control. This is mission de stuff. This is clearly I'm unfolding this the rage of the nations is not going to thwart my purposes. The nation is in the nations are plotting schemes. They're plotting plans. But Yahweh says, I'll tell what I'm doing. I've installed my King on Zion, my holy hell. And then he proclaims his decree. This is an unchangeable decree of Yahweh, declared to his anointed one, which we of course recognize is our Lord Jesus Christ, because this is the Psalm two and Psalm 110, of course, the most quoted Psalms, the New Testament. You are my son. Today I become your father. Ask of me and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth, your possession. So again, tied up with a messianic promise is not just the Messiah is going to come and save the Jewish people. The Messianic promise is tied up with a much larger point that in that anointed ministry you're going to make the nations your inheritance, you're going to rule them, you're going to dash them to pieces like pottery. This is a global thing. He calls the nations and the rulers the world to kiss the sun. Very powerful kind of statement. You have this statement made in Psalm 22, where again, very powerful, messianic psalm. This is the psalm that discusses the gains. My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? This is the text that has that they have pierced my hands and my feet, divide my garments among them. All of these famous texts that Jesus himself quotes the first verse from the cross calling to mind the whole text and the whole text culminates in this powerful statement. 

[00:04:20] All the ends of the earth will remember and turn to the Lord, and all the families of the nations will bow down before him. Invoking the actual language of the covenant for Dominion belongs to the Lord and He rules over the nations. One of the interesting things about the scholarship, the more liberal scholarship, I should say, in terms of the history of religions, I spent years studying this literature and it's basically one of the main themes of the literature is that religious. Spasm develops along kind of an evolutionary line. This is very, very widely believed by secular historians of religion. And they basically argue that people have developed tribalistic views of God, that God is over their tribe or their people, or that they have gods that are weather gods or they control the climate or whatever. And then over time, they gradually expand their view of God and they infuse it with new kinds of propositions and various kinds of beliefs to the point that eventually it can be viewed as a creator. God. There are many, many people who studied African religions, especially, who have, I think, wrongfully made the observation that the African religious scene starts out with kind of gross fetishism, various kinds of very low level views of God, and gradually migrate into a conception of a supreme God. If you take that kind of evolutionary idea as your baseline and you read the text of the Old Testament, you are amazed because doesn't fit absolutely cannot find that scheme because you have from the very beginning, we didn't have time to look at this text, But going back even before the Covenant, you have Genesis chapter ten, the listing of the nations, and if you count the tech, the number of nations there at 70 and the Hebrew is 72 in the Septuagint, which later is part of the symbolic textual variation of these in out 70 or 72 disciples out to witness in the New Testament Luke Chapter ten one and two. 

[00:06:45] So you have this powerful and almost you might say arrogant from the perspective the liberal theologians idea that the Jews have of claiming that their God is the God of all nations. This whole thing is very important theologically to recognize that from the very beginning, the author reveals that God is the God of all the nations. He's not just the God of Israel, He's the God of all nations. And he calls all nations to account. He's the creator of all the nations. And therefore, it flies in the face of all of this in the language it's used all through the Old Testament, is that our God is the God of all the world, all the Earth. And you again, do a run on that in your computer and look at how many times the world in the earth is used. And you'll find that very regularly. Yahweh makes it very clear I am the God of all the Earth. Turn to me all the ends of the earth. That's an Old Testament. Text this lighter side in the New Testament, these are Old Testament text that are quoted. So this comes out very powerfully here. All the ends of the earth were number and turn to the Lord, for dominion belongs Lord and He even pictures the nations of the earth bowing down before his suffering servant very, very powerful thing. Every knee will bow, every tongue confess that Jesus Christ the Lord is foreshadowed in all of these these text. And then just to bring us to the blessing language also on your memory text, if you'd like to memorize this is this wonderful passage in Psalm 67, which does invoke the blessing language that we found in Genesis 12, and it's also in other places. 

[00:08:30] But the soul opens up. May God be gracious to us and bless us and make His face shine upon us. This great, marvelous prayer that we often use now that in many ways is also part of the covenant. You know, I will bless you. I will make you into a great nation. But David here understands this psalm to be much more. David understands the covenant. I realize that there are people in Israel who did not fully understand this point, obviously, but the leadership that those anointed by God understood the global ramifications of the mission. You have, you know, examples, for example, of where and the whole Elijah Elijah sequence where with the healing of Maimon, they go back and he comes down, he wants to cart home, you know, ten loads of cartloads of soil take back with him because somehow or another he thinks, Gosh, if I can just bring the soil back to my land, then we'll have the blessings of Yahweh, where you have the situation where they fight and they say, Oh gosh, you know, we need a farm in the plains because the always the God of the hills. If we can just find a different location, we'll be victorious over them. Those are pagan mentalities. That's not biblical mentality. And that mentality of that God is tied to. Our land, our place, rather than the God of the whole world, is something which is a counterbalance to the pagan ideas of deity. So here you have on one hand, God blessed us. But then what is the purpose of the blessing? Verse two that your ways may be known on Earth, your salvation among all nations. First two. So here clearly he is praying that the blessing of God would be known among all nations, all the Earth and serving all peoples, and in the whole West. 

[00:10:35] The Psalm rejoices in this marvelous prayer of Thanksgiving. May the nations be glad. This is the source of the Book of Missions by John Piper. Guide the Nations of the Earth. This is not some kind of tribalistic deity being celebrated. This is not some kind of small vision. This is a global vision that's even found here in the Old Testament. So this continues all throughout the Old Testament. Many of the texts that are there, we won't take time to look at those, but we will take a moment to go to this third strand and ask the prophets. But before we move into the prophets now and look pretty much at Isaiah, just because they'll give you the best taste of it, let's look back over and over to Isaiah and make a few observations about how the three parts of the covenant are celebrated in a firm such as the third in Isaiah's writings of the King, particularly the latter part of Isaiah. Some really remarkable statements that are made. If you turn over to Isaiah 49, you have yet another one of the suffering servant passages, some of the Lord passages found in the Prophet Isaiah. This chapter, Isaiah 49, is essentially a conversation that's going on between Yahweh and The Servant. And of course, we know this because this is quoted in the New Testament in specific reference to Christ. This is a reference to the role and the mission of the incarnation of the Messiah, which is, by the way, this is the way the word mission was used by the church fathers in reference to this kind of interchange, which we now extended to a much larger kind of use in our vocabulary. But nevertheless, in this conversation, you have a wonderful point made in verse six, by your way, to the Messiah to talk about his mission in the world as the one who comes and suffers and serves Israel. 

[00:12:59] Now, the importance of this can't be really fully seen without appreciating the context of Isaiah, because, look, you put yourself in Isaiah's shoes. Okay? The first part of the covenant has been established. They are numerically great. Okay, fair enough. That's there. The second part of the covenant, they have continued to falter on how much progress they made is irrelevant at this point. They are in exile or on the verge of exile. So Isaiah's prophecy is both predicting their exile, but anticipating their return and God's work after the battle in exile. So if you were to be in Isaiah's time and place and you were to kind of look about and see the status of Israel, you would be thrilled if you could just have the nation back. I mean, this is part of the whole thing that people often say about missions. I'll say, well, you know, there's so much work to be done here at home is the trap that we people fallen into for centuries. Isaiah could almost be forgiven for this problem, saying, well, gosh, you know, if we could just restore our nation, then we can think about the other later. But so, Isaiah, if the nation was all in the promised land and halfway living out the Covenant, then you could almost expect them. Okay, let's don't forget that we are God has blessed us in order to be a blessing to the nations. But in this kind of decrepit state of immorality and faithlessness and broken covenant and sin and judgment and literally being carried off to exile, this is not a is unusual time for Isaiah to give us the whole vision all over again. But he does. That's the power of it, because it shows the great expansive view of Isaiah to the Holy Spirit speaking about the exile and the return of exile. 

[00:14:55] This is what the Lord says. It is too small of. Thing, by the way, you can memorize this verse and one of your verses is too small a thing for you. Be my servant. To restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back those of Israel I have kept. Now that you can't get any more explicit than that, if you think that the whole covenant is about restoring Israel so they can have their own nice relationship with God and be blessed and live under his blessing, if you think that's what it's all about, you're thinking too small. It is too small thing. If that's the vision is the vision is too small. So we clearly see from the very beginning that the Messiah is about a lot more than restoring. Israel is too small a thing for my servant. It's hard to tap Jacob's brain back. That was a vision I have kept. I will also make you a light to the Gentiles that you may bring my salvation to the ends of the earth. And that is the great vision of Isaiah. Isaiah understands that, and this is not something new Isaiah is introducing here. This is Isaiah simply saying this is what the covenant is always been about. The Covenant was never about just blessing Israel or even Boston Abraham individually. The Covenant did bless Abraham, it did bless Israel, but it was always about being a blessing to the nations. I will make you a light for the Gentiles. And by the way, the in the Septuagint, the very language here, the word there is ethnic, which we'll come back to later and gives New Testament salvation to the ends of the earth, which is the last spoken words of Christ and his ascension, as you know, Acts one eight, You're my witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria. 

[00:16:57] And then in then exact language is used. Isaiah and to the ends of the earth, the very last thing that Jesus ever says in his public ministry is that phrase ends of the earth as reference. Six ends of the Earth bring my salvation to the ends of the Earth. This is the messianic mission. It is not just to be the messiah for Israel. So Isaiah already sees that very, very clearly. And I think it's a great reminder for us not to think so small, especially today when the church in the West is largely sleeping and overly affluent and insensitive to the incredible work of God. I had this quote You'll hear me quote this in chapel because I want to use this in my when I preach in chapel next month. But it was just amazing when the pope was naming these new cardinals awhile back, they interviewed this woman who was a Catholic nun that was there to celebrate because one of the men who is being elevated to the role of Cardinal was a bishop from Scotland. And it's pretty rare event for a Scottish guy to be made a cardinal. So she was so excited. She was waving the Scottish flag and she was so excited, you know, and here's this guy. She could just see him now as a cardinal with a bagpipe. I don't know. Or do they make a cardinal like with a, you know, killed in sport? And I don't know. But anyway, she was all excited. So this reporter was there. You know, I'm believing a partner just there to report on the event there in the Vatican City. And the reporter said to her, isn't this exciting? What do you think about this? And she said, Well, I'm extra excited. 

[00:18:44] And she's but I'm very worried about the state of Christianity, she said. And these were her exact words. She said, the churches are getting smaller and smaller and there are just no young people anymore. And I said something you could have said anywhere. And many, many churches in North America, especially mainline churches especially, and certainly if you look at the world from Scotland, and here's this woman who from Air Scotland, from southern Scotland, Robert Burns country, and she looks out at the the world from the point of view of Scotland, and she sees churches being closed all around her. They call them redundant churches. That's the term for it. And there's so many in Scotland. People have homes in churches. There's in Edinburgh where I lived, there were all kinds of businesses and church buildings. You know, they had people like making furniture and stained glass windows. Unbelievable because there's so many churches being closed down. So her mentality is, you know, of course Western Europe is a center of Christianity and therefore if things are bad in Scotland, they must really be bad when you get out into the, you know, the mission field into Africa or into. The far reaches of Asia because she's totally, totally ignorant about the actual state of global Christianity. And she has no idea that the whole Christian church could collapse in Scotland, God forbid, but it would not fundamentally change the dynamic, powerful reassertion of the church in the world today. And that means that in some ways we are increasingly say we mean those of us in the Western world are on the peripheral of the most dramatic things that are happening in Christianity. And therefore, all the more reason for us, especially me, a pastor here in the States, to engage with the larger global Christian community, because otherwise we'll be caught in this very trap thinking that, Oh, wow, well, let's just see if we can see if the church in America will be restored. 

[00:20:52] Well, that's a great prayer, but it's too small a thing if it's not tethered to the incredible larger work of seeing the ends of the earth come to the feet of Christ. And this is happening. This is a great global move that's happening in the world today. And Isaiah is able to keep that perspective that we have our local crisis. I mean, who could say our crisis is any worse than this crisis? Israel's in shambles, They've defected, they've lost the covenant, they've fallen in the sand. All their thoughts about what used to be, which is often the talk in church today. But Isaiah says don't get caught in that trap. Always keep the full covenant in mind and live your life as a global Christian. And God may call you to work and live out in a dynamic, growing church. But you may be on some, you know, edge of the planet somewhere. A place like Scotland where it's a difficult, hard, rocky soil and you have to defend the gospel there. And the only way to successfully defend the gospel there is to do it in light of the global situation. Otherwise, you can be extremely discouraged and you'll think like this woman. There's no hope for the church. It's all going to close our doors. Okay, so let's move on to Isaiah a little bit here. If you go on to Isaiah 54, just a text I want to draw to your attention because we'll come back to it later in the course, when we look at the historical section, we'll begin to explore a lot of the key figures in the modern mission movement. We'll introduce to you the life of William Carey. William Carey launched what is now known as the modern Global Missionary movement. 

[00:22:37] In 1792, he was preaching in England and of course, part of Western Europe. What since the Reformation has been the center of Christianity until our day. And he challenged the church to think about, in his case, India. And he called the church to reengage with the global implications of the gospel. He at a time when there was a hyper Calvinism that had taken over the evangelicals and the other liberals had lost the gospel all together. So between those two dynamics, there was no missionary effort going on much. So you think about all the texts that William Carey could have used to launch the global missionary method. He could have used as his text Go and make disciples of all nations going preach, got every creature he could use that x18 passage you or my witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, almost parts of the earth. He could have used the great text in the eschatological text of Matthew 2414, where Jesus says that this gospel can and will be preached in all nations and then the end will come. And there's so many text that we may naturally drawn to. If we were someone said to you, by the way, would you next week launch the whole modern missionary movement and you have a two days prepare your sermon. You might write quickly one to the great commissions or one to even Revelation. But William Carey turns to Isaiah, and there's so many theological reasons for this, which we're just now beginning to kind of shed light on. But he wanted to demonstrate that this is about something much bigger even than the New Testament church. This is the whole church includes all of God's saints and the old covenant as well. We stand in a long line of people who are bearing witness to God's light, which naturally finds its culmination and beauty and normative ness in the incarnation. 

[00:24:46] But this is something Isaiah rejoiced in. I mean, Jesus himself to Isaiah saw my day and rejoiced. How could he do that? Because Isaiah spoke of me. Jesus told the to on the road to a mass. So William Carey used. Is this tax as 54 versus two and three in large, the place of your tent. Stretch your tent curtains wide the whole back length in your card strength in your stakes for you, or spread out to the right and to the left. Your descendants will dispossess nations and settle in their desolate cities. That was his text as he preached that sermon that became so famous, the refrain of which expect great things from God, attempt great things for God. A remarkable sermon. And he chose Isaiah because he was actually connecting to the larger vision of Isaiah, because over 53, just prior to that is, of course, the picture of the cross. He took our infirmities, he carried our sorrows. He was pierced for our transgressions, that wonderful text. And as a victory, the Lord is indicative of us all on Him, all of this marvelous redemptive language that she's not 53 and we all wanted to stop there. But from the from then on, Isaiah from 54 on, Isaiah just burst forth in this declaration of the global implications of this suffering, the global implications of this piercing and him bearing the sins of many, as I says, and I say 53 first 12, even that text goes on to say he will be called the God of all the Earth. That's first five as a 54, not just the God of Israel, the God of all the Earth. Israel, despite the faithlessness, the leadership of Israel, never loses the vision that continues to go forth. 

[00:26:41] And then as this develops, Isaiah 56, for example, verse three, let no foreigner who is joining of the Lord say the Lord will exclude me from His people. Let not the unit complain. I'm only a dry tree because foreigners verse six will bind themselves to the Lord and serve Him in verse seven, Bringing the sacrifice of the temple, He says from my house will be called a house of prayer. For whom? What's to say? You know the text for all nations. And that's, of course, the very point that Jesus makes when he comes into the temple and he cleanses the temple in the gospel of Mark. He chastised them because they set up their money changing in the court of the Gentiles. That was the place that the nations were supposed to gather to hear the word expounded. And Jesus is one of the few times Jesus is angry. We only have in the texts expressed anger. He takes the cords, he whips them, he runs them out, and he says, From my house, we call it a house of prayer for all nations. So Jesus quotes Isaiah, You think this is about your own enterprising, your own fundraising, your own selling. They're selling that and raising money. But it's about the nations. Don't forget that the court of the Gentiles in many of our churches today is closed. There's no place for the Gentiles, no place for the unbelievers to come, no witness to the world, because we have our own enterprising going on. We're too busy. He even says in verse eight, The sovereign lord declares, Who gathers the exiles of Israel. That's the part one of those. 849 six He will gather the exiles, but goes on to say he who gathers the exiles of Israel, says, I will gather still others to them. 

[00:28:36] I have others. I'm going to gather not just the Jewish exiles. So this is a theme that is brought up over and over again. And then finally, just to complete Isaiah, it's all through here, by the way. We just got and read it, but the whole of Isaiah ends the 66 chapter. If you look at the language of the concluding verses of Isaiah, this is verse 18 and I, because of their actions and their imaginations about to come and gather all nations and tongues, and they will come and see my glory. He goes on to talk about the islands of the world, the distance islands who have not heard. They will hear verse 20 and they will bring all your brothers from all the nations to my Holy Mountain Jerusalem, offering them to the Lord on horses, chariots, wagons, mules, camels, only on and on and on. Verse 22 as the new heavens and the new earth I make will endure for me, because the Lord, so will your name and the sentence endure. And then that's the closing of Isaiah. So you had this marvelous statement about him gathering the nations. I'm going to gather all nations and all tongues. The very thing that's finally later we'll see fulfilled in Revelation. Where John. Celebrates mean every nation and tongue is gathered before him. So part of this is to demonstrate that each of the strands of the Old Testament, the law, the prophets, and the writings in all three, you have clearly delineated themes that emphasize the commitment of the covenant to be extended to and to be a blessing to the nations of the world. And therefore, the idea of seeing the Old Testament, essentially a Jewish kind of interchange with your way that excludes and this is later breached to Christ is false. 

[00:30:41] If you viewed the New Testament as some kind of new invention or innovation of the whole thing. But you really should see that from the very beginning that was promised. And when Christ comes, he fulfills that. He shows how it's going to happen, but it's always in fulfillment of the original promises made to Abraham. And we'll see how the New Testament all through the text, including, by the way, at least in Luke, the Great Commission in Luke's Gospel, Jesus himself makes it very clear that this is being done in fulfillment of the Old Testament and is not something new being inserted into the veins of the people of God. Thoughts, comments, or questions about this very quick run through of some of the strands of the Old Testament. Yes. One of the pillars that they would always talk about was a diversity and multiculturalism. And are we going to talk about like how we interact with this new course? Of course. We'll definitely we'll address that in this class. There is no greater diversity than is present in the church, a global church, Islam, which is the second largest religion and the fastest growing religion in the world. Today, though, they have 1.2 billion people, does not begin to approach the diversity in the church. The church is is the most diverse community in the world. As a matter of fact, because Islam is the second largest community at all in the world and it is not as diverse as the church. So in that sense, we are the greatest celebration of diversity. I think it's only a situation where you have to be careful not to let things rob rob us of our language and our vocabulary, because if by diversity people are saying that, as I'm sure you've heard in college, that it's a crime to, you know, impose your faith or show your faith of somebody else, because to say that someone is a muslim is lost or a Hindu is lost, you know, is not respecting their diversity or their right to affirm their own religion or belief or whatever. 

[00:32:53] We will definitely explore this biblically and theologically in this class. So one of the lectures that we'll spend at least 3 hours on is are the lost really lost? And we'll talk about many of the common questions that are asked. So in that sense, we will definitely respond to kind of the modern understanding diversity, which basically wants to rob us of a unique Christ and a message or a mandate to bring that message to the ends of the earth. So, yes, all of this, ironically, on one hand, and then we said this morning, flies in the face of what you hear diversity spoken about in the GA and in the world. And on the other hand, the amazing thing about it is that this is celebrating the greatest diversity in the world, which is the worst part of Jesus Christ. There's no greater or diverse community than those those who worship Christ. That's more diverse than America itself is more diverse than even India and other places that we often think about in their diversity. So we have nothing to be ashamed of. One of the interesting things about that's happily changing is that because people identified Christianity with Western Europe, white peoples, they by default assumed and this is still in the minds of many people that Christianity is basically a Western European thing and therefore who are the Europeans to God or another imperial, imperial kind of imposition and bring their message in colonization and all this brought together into Asia or Africa. But see, God has the last laugh because the Western European segment of Christianity is shrinking, as is the North America, and the growing segment is the fastest growing church today is in Africa and very quickly followed by Latin America and Asia. 

[00:34:52] So what's happening is there is a dramatic diversification of the global church. And you read a book. Like this book by Philip Jenkins. The next Christendom, he documents all this. I mean, there's no doubt. There's no question this is happening. There's a huge demographic shift going on in the global church. So to follow your point. Take, for example, this marvelous movement, the Chinese led by Brother UN, that is taking the gospel back from the Silk Route backward to Jerusalem. So here you have the Muslims all fortified against Western. You know what all this about imperial ization and all that and the you know, the Americans want to come over and convert us. And what they don't realize is the Chinese are coming up their rear guard trying to bring in the gospel. And in India, you know, I had this said to me all the time in India, Indians will say to me, why should we except, you know, the British God as a British God. Who's that? What's that? Queen Elizabeth, the second. Who is this British God? Because they, they. They have no they, they they associate Christianity with Western Europe and of course, the British colonization there. So I'll say to Indians to this number one, did you know that Christianity is far more ancient in India than it is in the West and Christianity was in India in 72 A.D.? I'm sorry, 52 A.D.. That means Christianity is centuries older in India than it is in America or the Western Europe. Even there. Really? Yeah. You've had you've had Christians all over than we had. Certainly the majority of Christians today are nonwhite, non-Western in their ethnic orientation. They if you want to look at the typical, you know, flash, what does a Christian look like in 1900 1904? Let's just do that. 

[00:36:49] 100 years ago it would be a white male, Western European. 100 years later, the typical face of a Christian church would be an African, maybe a Nigerian woman. So therefore, this whole what's happening is the perception of Christianity by the secular media and the college is about some kind of Western European imposition tied to colonialism is actually totally changed today. And even if we even if we were to totally disengage from the global movement, it wouldn't fundamentally alter the fact that Christianity is dramatically growing in Latin America, Africa and then in Asia. So I think we do need to address a lot of these issues, some of our theological, some are personal. And what I would encourage you to do is listen, I started years ago. That has been of huge help to me as a pastor and later as a teacher. And I keep a little notebook. And when I was a pastor and people would ask me these kind of questions, Well, who are you to say that, you know, Jesus should be worshiped by, you know, someone over in India? Who are you to impose or, you know, whatever you ask, you know, do you really what about the people who are lost or never heard the gospel in, you know, the rain forest or whatever? When you hear these questions, write them down. And what you'll find eventually is that basically the same questions get recycled over and over again. And so in India, for example, we have roughly 800 million Hindus, but they don't have 800 million questions about Christianity. They have about 15 questions that they ask over and over again in every village we go. So I just published last two months ago a book called Your Questions Our Answers, which actually examines the top 15 most asked questions of Hindus to Christian workers in North India. 

[00:39:00] And it took two years of research interviewing our church planners to make list after list or list. And eventually I isolate the most asked questions. And I wrote a book responding theologically to this the top 15. I found out that our seminary over there was not preparing our students to do it. And I would suspect, though I can't say for sure that we may not be doing a very good job here because they we learned theology as a set here. But in church history and biblical studies and missions, everything else, we kind of learn this in segments. But then when you actually go out into ministry, no one comes to you and says, you know, are you in for that, sir? Inasmuch super lapsed, honest has never been asked me. People don't ask you your theory of the atonement. Now it's good to know all that, but they ask you questions like what you were asked, you know, who are you to say that that someone over in India should accept Christianity? Why can't they believe sincerely in the gods of Hinduism? If someone's a sincere follower of Buddha, isn't that just as good as an insincere person who's going to a church baptized in the West or whatever? So those are really the actual most valuable questions, because the old in the old days or in the 19th century, not that old, but they that theology was always taught that way. If you actually go into our library and you pluck off the shelf a copy of Charles Hodges Systematic Theology, it's all done in questions and answers. Questions and answers. Now, what I would like to do is to eventually develop a series of these. So you would start by saying, okay, what are the top 20 questions that unbelieving secular people in North America ask to evangelical Christians? And this is definitely one of them. 

[00:40:49] These kind of questions, they basically say, you guys are so narrow minded. You're so, you know, what's your problem? Where are you? Don't you understand diversity and all these things? So you write these down and then you begin to think theologically about those questions, and that will actually call upon you to use your theology that you've learned here very effectively, because you can apply it to real questions you can answer. And we'll do that in this class for some of these questions that are asked. But you should also have it be great if such for your New England to have another list of questions that Catholics ask evangelicals. Because if you actually listen to what Catholics ask us, if you have an actual Catholics, they don't ask same questions. Is that the kind of the secular person ask? And as Muslims have a whole nother set of questions they ask. And so I've been working on this. I think it really is important to listen carefully to what people ask us. So in many ways, your college experience, especially especially you went to a secular college or university, whatever, can be very valuable to you because if you could sit down while it's still fresh in your mind and jot down like, what are the things that people said in the dorm or people who've said, you know, you've got to be kidding when you said that you believe whatever, you know, that kind of thing, that's really valuable because you can promise yourself that if someone asks you that there's a million other people who ask the same question easily a million more than a million. So if you can develop a theological reply to a million questions, which effectively you're doing by doing that, that's very, very powerful. 

[00:42:26] Because by answering one you can answer a many and we can teach our churches how to respond when they're on the subway or on or whatever. And there's so much misinformation missions about the gospel and about everything else. And my experience, not so much in America but overseas especially, is that there's so much misunderstanding in the gospel, so much ignorance that many people are actually rejecting a caricature of Christianity, not the actual Christianity. So one of my favorite lines to Muslims, when they say that, you know, they find it just impossible to believe that in the Trinity. I'll ask them what they mean by Trinity. And I usually say, well, you know, I don't I find that just as appalling as you do, if that's what Trinity is. You know, the Mary and God, the father had intercourse. That kind of idea is so repulsive to any Christian. And so you'll find that there's a lot of people who reject something other than the gospel, and a lot of people who think still think today that the church is largely a bunch of Western European people who are trying to impose their tribal deity on, you know, people over in India. But that's what this whole thing of this morning. This is about a global god. And the Europeans. Okay, We've had a pretty long run from 1500 till the present, where we have really been dominant in this whole story, but no longer. That gives us a huge advantage. Now it's sounding increasingly and increasingly weak for someone to claim this is a European thing when so few Europeans are actually following the gospel and so many more Africans and Latinos and Asians and others are following the gospel. Tomorrow we will start with the New Testament and we're going to have a few again general verses we'll look at, including some of those texts that refer back to the Roman Covenant. 

[00:44:33] And then we're going to do a fairly careful study of each of the great commissions in Matthew, Mark, Luke, John Wall to look at Acts one eight. I don't think we'll have time to finish that tomorrow. So tomorrow will be spent pretty much in fairly serious biblical study of those text. Thank you for listening to this lecture. Brought to you by biblical training, dawg. Feel free to make copies of this lecture to give to others, but please do not charge for these copies or alter the content in any way without permission. We invite you to visit our website at W WW dot Biblical training dawg. There you will find the finest in evangelical teaching for use in the home and the church. And it is absolutely free. Our curriculum includes classes for new believers, lay education classes, and seminary level classes taught by some of the finest seminary teachers drawn from a wide range of evangelical traditions. Our mailing address is Post Office Box 28428. Spokane, Washington 99228 USA.