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Vision Series: For Others Around the World

Genesis 12:1-3; Revelation 7:9 CSBTrey VanCamp | October 2, 2022


Throughout the storyline of the Bible, we see that God’s desire is to bless all of humanity. It starts with Adam and Eve, but rather than spread God’s blessing and goodness to the world, they spread sin and death. But God doesn’t leave humanity hopeless and helpless.

Instead, he chooses the people group of Israel to provide blessing and healing to the rest of the world. As a nation of people set apart by God, Israel was given the unique opportunity of allowing God to bless the whole world through them. Today, we have the same opportunity. But rather than waiting for the nations to come to us, Jesus’ last command while on earth was to go to the nations ourselves.

As we allow ourselves to be formed by Jesus, we must remember that we do this for the sake of others and not just for our own self-improvement. We also must remember that God’s intention is to restore all of humanity from all nations. By intentionally praying for the nations, giving sacrificially, and by actually going to the nations, we can continue God’s work of providing blessing and salvation to the rest of the world.


You can take interactive notes. At the end of the message, you can email the notes to yourself.


Hi, I’m Shalee. And I’m gonna be reading Genesis 12, one through three. The Lord said to Abraham, Go from the land, go from your land, your relatives, and your father’s house

to the land that I will show you. I will make you into a great. I will bless you. I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse anyone who treats you with contempt and all the people. And all the people on the earth will be a blessing through you.

Amen. Thank you. Open your Bibles to that passage in Genesis chapter 12. 2000 years ago, the godman, Jesus walked this earth to rescue all of mankind. And what I love about the story of Jesus is instead of making his way to the Roman Coliseum or the Acropolis in Athens, he came to Bethlehem and he was raised in Nazareth, the city that everyone says, Can anything good come from Nazareth?

And he went on to live the perfect life. He died. The death that you and I deserve and the beautiful part of this story that no other God man, that no other religion can point to. We have historical evidence. We have the God man raise again in victory and we love even. The gospel continues and it explains how he ascended to the right hand of God and he sent down his Holy Spirit to us, which is why we were singing these last three songs asking the Holy Spirit to come among us.

And now 2000 years later, We are here today because Christians carried this gospel message of Jesus. Like Acts one, eight says, From Jerusalem to Judea, to Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. And so Jesus started This whole movement that has changed the world by making disciples, or the Hebrew phrase that we’ve been talking about the last 10 weeks is Talmid.

We’ve been asking ourselves this question the last 10 weeks saying, what is the vision? What is the heartbeat? What is the identity of Passion Creek Church? And we’ve asked this question, how can we faithfully follow Jesus as our rabbi? And not 2000 years ago, but today in our modern world of distraction, disenchant.

And disbelief. Now we wanna make sure we know that this is not an exhaustive answer. Our framework for discipleship certainly will have some gaps, but we think it’s our best attempt at explaining to our church and taking along people on the journey of what it means. To follow Jesus. Essentially it’s nine steps.

It’s like the ba, the Dave Ramsey. Seven baby steps. We have nine for you. And what’s great is every single level, there’s another invitation to something deeper. So if you remember 10 weeks ago, we had said initially right away, the most foundational element of us being formed by Jesus Together for others is to be formed by his.

He defines our identity. He is who we are because of him, not because of what we’ve done, but because of what Christ has done on the cross on our behalf. I know I can literally preach hours. I’ve done this already so I’ll be quick. But his life, we are foreign by his life, his behaviors, his habits. We look at those and say, Okay, let’s adopt those into our daily rhythm.

Today and his leadership friends, there are a lot of toxic ideologies. There is a lot of lies, masquerade masquerading as truth in today’s. And it’s our duty to study the scriptures and follow his leadership and believe that his way is the best way. And we talked about what does this mean to do this together?

This is maybe even more challenging for us in the room. We need to be together on Sundays. So bravo for coming today. We think something spiritual is happening even right now. But not only that, in our groups, we’re so grateful for the feedback of our groups. I just talk about pastor appreciation. I just.

Really appreciate Pastor Caleb’s the one who’s really put our whole group guide curriculum. He does it every week and just the way that he has shifted it to practice based, it has been a blessing to our community on Tuesday nights. I think it’s a game changer for our church and so be sure to thank Caleb for that among the many other things we do, and also just as a family, we’re in this thing together.

We need the older folks to be with the younger folks. We need to be a multi-generational community. And then I continue for. Man, we are not a church if we just exist for ourself. We need to be for the people outside of these four walls. And so it starts in the neighborhood. And I love the story. Some of you have actually.

Brought neighbors over to your house and had dinner. And we believe we don’t make demonstrations out of people. We make dinner for people and then also at the workplace. Actually somebody called me the next day after the message last week and said, Hey, I already shared the gospel to my coworker.

I said, It’s only Monday. Pace yourself. Like you’re already applying the message. Pretty incredible how God is using that. And today I want us to talk about, and this is it and we’re gonna keep doing this the rest of our lives, okay? But this is our last explanation, is we’re gonna be four others around the world.

Cuz this is so adamantly in the scriptures and I want us to be faithful to it. Let’s pray. Father, we just ask you Holy Spirit, to have your way among us. This a. . God, thank you for the ways that you have blessed our church. Thank you for the ways, God, that you have led our church. And Jesus, you’re the chief shepherd.

May we take our cues from you. God, I just ask you if we look at, as we look at the whole Bible today, God help us see from Genesis to Revelation that you have had a heartbeat for the world since the beginning. God, what a privilege to be a church that participates in your purpose of reaching the nations for Christ.

In Jesus’ name I pray, everybody says Amen. Amen. One of my favorite books of all time, it’s called The Mission of God by Christopher j h Wright. He says, The following, the proper way for disciples of the crucified and risen Jesus to read their scriptures is messian. And Missionally. What does he mean by those two words?

Briefly allow me to give an explanation. Messian the root word there is Messiah. And so the Bible we have to always remember, this is not a list of rules to save ourselves. We think it’s clear throughout Scripture without Christ. We are guilty, we are filthy, and we are spiritually dead. Without Christ, we are God’s enemies.

We are in bondage to corruption. Even though you don’t wanna do it, you still find yourself doing it. And the worst of all is we are alienated from the presence of God. And so from Genesis to Revelation, it’s been a story of saying we need a messiah, a phrase and other phrases. We need a savior to do what we cannot do in our own.

So from Genesis to Revelation, we read the scriptures and we see Jesus in every single passage pointing to our need for him, pointing forward in the Old Testament and then showing Jesus and now looking back and ahead in the New Testament. But not only should we read it, Messian knowing we need a savior outside of us, we must read the scriptures.

One of the biggest, I think, hard obstacles for us as Americans, we tend to view the Bible as a cook, a cookbook, a recipe book to make us happy. Now, we sure hope following the way of Jesus. We believe it does bring happiness. It’s found all throughout the text, but we believe it’s a byproduct of life with God.

So in other words, if you’re coming to God to get happy, you’re not really coming to God. You’re trying to come to happiness. But if you come to God to get God, you will find happys. Come along the way, but the purposes of God are never just to make us. It’s actually a beautiful invitation. It’s something much more than that.

We’re supposed to take these blessings and extend those blessings through us throughout the world, and a huge misconception is a lot of people believe the Old Testament is not missional that the Old Testament, nobody. Care that God didn’t care about the nations. It’s just when that failed experiment happened, then Jesus came.

That is not the truth, and I want to just preach the entire Bible this afternoon. Welcome to church. We’re gonna be quick about this, but I want to show the mission has always been there the entire time. A brief overview, Genesis one through 11. Is actually the introduction to the Bible. Pastor Caleb and I were talking, we’re probably gonna be going through Genesis one through 11 as a faith family this next year leading up to Easter.

There’s five stories in Genesis one through 11, and in those five stories you will see three repeated themes. Number one, man’s sin. Man fails us. We are sinners. We, God says, do this. We don’t do it. God says, Don’t do this, we do it. The second is God’s judgment. And it’s hard for us to believe this and receive it, but you want a totally unjust God and he has to judge the sin.

And then the third element though is a hope of redemption. There is a promise for a Messiah to come in the future and to make these things right. This Genesis one through 11 is the intro, five stories. Those three themes are throughout. So now the rest of the Bible is now asking this question, How will God restore this broken world that is filled with sin death.

The devil. So allow me to geek out for just a minute. This is important, but again, I’ll try to be as brief as I need to be. Write this down In the Old Testament, God so loved the world that he chose Israel, so we as a church, wanna be about the nations. We have to remember our God has always been about the world.

It’s a major mistake. When we read our Old Testament to believe it was just for the. Nation. Let’s read again what Shaley just read for us at the beginning. Genesis 12, one. So that’s one through 11. Intro Manson, God’s judgment, Hope of redemption. Now the story begins of how the redemption happens.

Verse one, Genesis 12, The Lord said to Abraham, what’s his name gonna be later on? Abraham. Okay, Abraham, go from your land, your relatives, and your father’s house to the land that I will show. I will make you into a great nation. I will bless you. I will make your name great. By the way, we so read this in our context.

We think individual, just you, Abraham, just you, Abraham, just you. In this context you’re saying, I’m gonna make your lineage, your people, your name, great, and you the people of Israel will be a. verse three. I will bless those who bless you. I will curse anyone who treats you with contempt and all the peoples on Earth will be blessed through you.

So right away, the first book of the Bible, all the peoples on Earth, the whole world, there is a hope for redemption. And what’s happening is going to happen through the people of. Okay. This is the store we have to see. So here’s the missionary method you have in the Old Testament. This almost feels like seminary.

Real quick, here it is. Okay. Missionary method in the whole Old Testament is come and. . So you have in the Bible. Now this rest of the story in the Old Testament, they, they build a temple, right? Everything’s about building. Okay? Now they’re building these things up and this scientific phrase is cental. The point is not that we go and then go out.

The point is the world comes out and comes in. The nation’s hear about God’s glory in Israel, and they come to hear. About what God is doing in this little nation called Israel. Ezekiel five, five, it points this out. It says, This is what the Lord God says. I have set this Jerusalem in the center of the nations with countries all around her.

This was intentional. God chose Israel who was the center of all of these other nations in the world. You see this repeated this. Come and see 50 of the Psal. In the Old Testament, there’s 150 chapters. 50 of them are about God’s glory in all the nations, and a lot of it’s about them coming to Israel to hear about the true God, the God of the world.

Keep going. Here’s what the law was about. We so misunderstand the law and the Old Testament. The law was actually designed for mission. What the law did was set them apart as people who hoped in a redeemer that is not of this world. in the world. They were finding other ways to find salvation, and yet the law was saying, We’re gonna organize our life.

We’re gonna sacrifice. Look forward to a future Messiah who will save us. Deuteronomy four, five through eight says, Look, I have taught you statues and ordinances as the Lord my God has commanded me, so that you may follow them in the land you are entering to possess. Written right, Moses, they were in the wilderness.

They were about to go take over their land, the Promise land, and he’s saying, Here’s the whole purpose of why you’re going into the promise land. He says, Carefully follow them. for this. We’ll show your wisdom and understanding in the eyes of the peoples, all the other people, groups around that area. When they hear about all these statutes, they will say, This great nation is indeed a wise and understanding people for what great nation is there that has a God near.

As the Lord our God is to us whenever we call to him, the God of Israel, the God of the Bible is so unique. The gods of the other ancient nearest times, we’re not personal gods. It blows. It’s amazing that Jesus came down to us. We don’t deserve that, but God’s a God of love and they see that in the Old Testament.

Verse eight. And what Great nation has righteous statutes and ordinances like this entire law I set before you. We tend to look at the law as a burden. We look at it as, Wow, what a terrible thing. But the law was a beautiful invitation. to say, Let’s live for something greater than ourselves. A brief, quick example, Leviticus 1928.

I grew up memorizing that passage because it says, Do not mark yourselves. Other translations say, Do not tattoo yourselves, right? Honor the Lord. So what does this verse mean? Why was that a law? Briefly in that time, context matters. Whenever you read scripture, you have to know context. In the context.

There were people all around that would tattoo mark themselves. . If I just mark myself, my ancestors will go from purgatory to heaven. It was a form of punishment. See this, I will be punished so that I’ll receive the punishment they deserve so that they go to heaven. Now, do you see the gospel there? We say no, we don’t punish ourselves because we look forward to a Messiah who will be punished in our place.

So that is the truth of the. So that’s why it says you, you need to be unique, set apart. So this group, because of this context, no tattoos because you are showing a dying world. Your trust is in something greater. Now, today, people don’t get tattoos for that reason. So I think that gives us the ability to understand the context and say, Oh, okay, it’s fine for me to do this.

Does that make sense? It’s understanding the law and the context of mission really brings the text alive. And so you have throughout the whole. Gentiles people are not Jews coming to see this God. You have Queen of Sheba is impressed by King Solomon. You have King ne Ezer who’s impressed by the people of God, impressed by Daniel, for example.

And then you have name in the Syrian, which is a beautiful story. And he came to be saved because of his leprosy, and he now worshiped God. So the Old Testament was always looking forward to the Messiah, and it was always about saving the whole world from corruption, oppression, and heartbreak. Does this are you?

This is Bible 1 0 1. This is why a lot of us, when we read our Old Testament, we’re so lost cuz we don’t get that context. There’s your context, right? This mission was to look forward to a Messiah. Now Jesus comes to the neighborhood and some of us say and changed everything. He did changed everything, but the mission was actually always the same.

The method had changed and it was more effective. Read the book of Hebrews. Write this down in the New Testament. God so loved the world that he gave his. So his first missionary strategy was through choosing Israel. Now through Israel came Jesus, and now Jesus is the answer for the whole world. Enter John three 16 whom we all know.

I think you should read the two following verses cuz it’s powerful for God, love the world in this way. He gave us one and only son. So that everyone who believes in him will not perish, but have eternal life. Eternal. We talked about this last week, not just referencing quantity of time, but quality of time.

We’re saying new life in Christ. Jesus says in John 10 10, a few chapters later. You come to have life and life in abundance. That’s eternal life. That starts now for God to not send his son into the world, to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Why do they need saving? Read Genesis one through 11, We turned from God and anyone who believes in him is not condemned, but anyone who does not believe is already condemned.

Why? Because we condemned ourselves. Our sin has condemned us. We have done this to ourselves because he has not believed in the name of the one and only. Of God. This is why we say through Jesus Christ alone, are we safe? So what is the missionary method? The Old Testament is come and see. The New Testament is go and tell.

Jesus comes onto the scene. It’s no longer cental, meaning out coming in now. I’m trying to like, I’m so an not, I almost said anti-science. I’m not anti-science. I’m just really bad at science, so I don’t even know if this is a scientific term that shows you how bad it’s, but it’s no longer cental.

This just sounds cool. It’s now centrifugal, meaning it’s like when you throw rock in a pond and the waves go out, The gospel message now is being sent. It’s no longer you have to come to a temple. Now we, the church, are the living temple read First Peter two, which we’re studying starting next week. We go out into the world, Allow me a few scriptures, but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come on you, and you’ll be my witnesses in Jerusalem.

This is where it all started in Judea. It’s almost like saying in Phoenix, in Arizona in Phoenix or sorry, in Arizona, in America. And I’m trying to think of the place. Never mind. I can get in trouble here. Samari is the place you hate. We don’t hate anybody, right? Cause we’re Christians and to the ends of the earth.

This was just a picture of further out the gospel. One more passage for everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. How? Then this is Romans sin. Can they call on him? They they have not believed in. And how can they believe without hearing about him? And how can they hear? A preacher.

This is why we’re saying our mission. We need to figure out how to share the gospel in our neighborhoods and our workplace and around the world, and how can they preach unless they are sent? We now need to go out as it is written. How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news? This is the beauty of the gospel.

In the beginning, God loved the whole world and through Christ. We now enter into that love yet again. Christ has done a lot for us on the cross in the resurrection. This is why we always say Jesus is better. It’s all about Jesus. It’s not about what we do. Allow me quickly. This is, man, I’m telling you.

This is now Seminary 2 0 2 theology ready. This is by Christopher Morgan. He was my mentor in college and he wrote a great book called Christian Theology. This is one chart that he created to show what Christ did for us on the cross and the resurrection. I wanna show you this to show this is the gospel.

We’re here to bring this good news of what Christ has done throughout the whole world. So let me be quick. This first picture is called substitution. You may hear preachers say this all the time, right? That he was substituted. What was the need? We are guilty because of our sin. We. Substitute to pay our penalty, but thankfully he paid that penalty, so now you and I are justified.

It’s just as if we have never sinned. When you put your faith and trust in Christ, you are now forever. But also we have foes. We have the world, the flesh and the devil. We need victory, but we cannot experience it in our own power. We need a champion to step into our place and win the battle. And Jesus did that by raising, again, saying death, Where is your sting?

And now we have victory in Christ. Also we have, we feel filth. We even feel this psychologically when we sin, right? You fill the filthiness, we cannot enter into the presence of God. This is an Old Testament shows that, right? You need to be perfectly clean. Now we’re asking the question, how can we be clean?

We need a great high priest. In the book of Hebrews mentions, the high priest is Jesus. He offers himself so that when you and I, Hebrews four, I’ve been memorizing it this last couple weeks, it says, So then you can approach the throne of God’s grace with confidence. so that you may receive mercy and find grace.

How can we do that? How can we go to God in confidence because Jesus went for us and now we are purified. Let me keep going. We have death. It’s so sad. In the life of a church, what I love doing community. We always have somebody who recently passed away and it’s so sad and we hate. God did not create us to die, but sin entered the story and so did death because of it.

See, the first Adam, if you read Romans five, the first Adam is the one who brought death because of what he did in the fruit of eating the fruit in the garden. But the second Adam is Jesus instead of disobeying God. The second Adam, Jesus obeys God, and so he reverses the curse. He no longer, our life’s no longer defined by death, but we have new life in Christ.

Again, that begins now, but also is throughout eter. A couple more. You and I are in bondage. You ever feel that where it’s like I keep sin even though I don’t want to sin? The beautiful thing is Jesus came as our redeemer. This is to free us from our slavery. Paul says, We go from being slave to sin, to being slave to Christ, but Christ is a good master.

Amen. So he frees us, and you and I, we believe this. You’re not just forgiven. You can be free from your sin today. Lastly, alienation. When Adam and Eve sin, what happened? They were pushed out from the. You and I, we feel this alienation, we struggle to experience the presence of God, and that’s because we’re in a world full of sin and a life full of sin.

But Jesus came to be the mediator. He makes peace. He’s fully God, fully man, and he is the one who bridges the gap. And now we have peace and peace in abundance. This is the good news of the gospel. This is what Jesus has done for us. And so now in the old. The law is, was designed for mission, but now in the New Testament, our lives are designed for mission.

The gospel, we talked about this last week, doesn’t just save you where legally you’re now forever forgiven. And that’s true, but it changes you. I read a book this morning and says, Look at this church. This guy was writing. We believe at this church, you’re gonna change. You’re gonna be transformed by the person and work of Christ.

If you are humble and you submit, and you’re formed by the love of Jesus, the life of Jesus, and the leadership of Jesus, this is a beautiful thing. And so your life is a picture again to reference first Peter. Peter talks about how when we do life together, we are like a beautiful temple, a living temple, showing the world the glory of God.

And here’s the thing, we talk so much about Christ coming back and it can happen in any moment. I’m almost confident it won’t happen in the next five minutes. Here’s why. Cuz the scriptures are pretty clear that every people group in the world will be represented. . We have pretty great data today to show there are still hundreds and hundreds of people groups in this world who have no access to the gospel.

Look at Revelation seven. It says this after list. I looked and there was a vast multitude from every nation, tribe, people, and language, which no one can. standing before the throne and before the lamb. By the way, this isn’t just saying like America is one people group. There’s so many people groups within each nation, so they were clothed in white robes with palm branches in their hands.

Worshiping King Jesus. This is God’s purpose to bring the whole world people from every people group to the throne of God at the end of all things, and we worship him with all that we do. Now, here’s my. If God has a purpose, I went in on it cuz I want to have a purpose that I know is gonna work. Joe 42, 2.

What does Joe say? He says, I know God that you can do anything and no plan or purpose of yours can be stopped. Ops, I want my life to have purpose. I think the best purpose is to follow God’s purpose. You with me? What is God’s ultimate purpose? Is to bring the nations back to him, to save the whole world.

And this is why we gather. This is why we say we are for others. And here’s the reality. There is a lot to be done to fulfill God’s command, to fill the earth with the gospel of Christ. Let me give you some stats that I think should be sobering. Only three missionaries for every 1 million Muslim. That means we only have in the world today one missionary for every 306,000 Muslims, and the Muslim faith is very hard to preach the gospel to.

We need way more missionaries. It’s actually amazing, by the way, God, we’re hearing more and more stories that God is still saving Muslims, even though we’re not sending enough missionaries. There are stories of God giving these men dreams and a missionary comes and they’re like, Oh, is his name Jesus?

I’ve been hearing about this man in my. . God has a heart for the nations. There’s only one missionary for every 179,000 Hindu. And there’s only one missionary for every 17,000 unreached people, group and tribe. The problem is there’s a bunch of different tribes and they need somebody to dedicate their entire life to go learn their culture, learn their language, give them an alphabet to their language, then take that language, take the Hebrew Old Testament, interpret it for them, and then take the Greek New Testament, interpret it to their language, and give them a Bible before they.

What a, what purpose. If you love language, do this. Okay. Pretty incredible. The need is enormous. Let’s look at Matthew. Jesus continued going around to all the towns of villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and every sickness. When he saw the crowds, he felt compassion for them.

This word actually references his gut. He felt it in his gut because they were distressed and dejected friends, your neighbor, the nations, everywhere around us are people who are distressed and dejected. And maybe it’s you and here’s why. Because they’re like a sheep without a shepherd. We were created to follow God and to have him as our shepherd, to have him as our rabbi, and if you’re not following in that purpose, your life is empty.

But then he says this, Then he said to his disciples, he looks at the crowd, then he looks at his crew and he says, The harvest is abundant, but the workers are few, therefore, prey to the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into his harvest. And this is our prayer for our church. We have so many goals, right?

There’s at least nine, right? To be formed by his love, life, leadership, all those things. Man. Do we have a goal to be a church that is for the world, that sends out missionaries, that sees the harvest and is broken by it? And praise that maybe we too can be a part of that story. So I was praying this week about that asking.

It’s actually the whole reason we started our church. I wanted us to be a church that send out missionaries throughout the world, and I’ve had to be honest for a moment, and here’s where I can get in trouble, I believe as I was processing this week, there’s one major obstacle for our church in particular to fulfilling the great commission, to sending out workers to the harvest, to sharing the gospel to people around the world.

It’s very uniquely an American problem, but I think we are in a cultural moment. Where we love the idea of church going out to the nations, going out to reach the least of these. We don’t so much love the idea as much for those least of these to come to us, right? Whoa to us when we are four others around the world, but we are not for those others to be around our dinner.

This is a unique challenge we have in this moment. I think we need to repent, humble ourselves, and realize that God has a plan for every people group. Now we live in a time, This is why it’s scary. This is why it’s a hard thing for us. We live in a time where I’m pretty convinced there’s not enough people in our country to be grateful for our country.

I don’t think we know our history enough. I don’t think we need, I don’t think we remember that the, for the founding fathers knew there was a lot to be done. That’s why they kept saying This is an unfinished symphony. This, there’s more to, to fix. So I wanna give that out as a thing.

Like we have faults, but we also have successes. And I’m very grateful to be an American. However, here’s where I see it. Rubber hits the road and it’s hard for me. We need a greater love for our country, but as kingdom. , our love for our country cannot lead us to hate any other country. That’s where it gets really difficult.

Politicians will tell you that’s not possible. Politicians will tell you, in order for you to love this country, you have to hate that people group or that people group. I know for me, it got really real. I went to Israel and I, instead of us saying with the Jewish. Which I growing up, that those, this is the people of God, that’s who I wanna be with.

We were with the Palestinians. We were with the Gentiles of the Gentiles. We were with the people that I saw on the news as terrible people, but I was with those Palestinian Christians. I thought, in reality, my American framework says don’t like them. But in reality, their family, while some of those Jews are not, cuz they don’t follow the Messiah, but these Palestinians.

And I thought, Wow, how come my framework of being a citizen in this country has so wared my idea where I’m not a kingdom person, I’m a country person. We have to be careful here. I’m not again saying to hate America. We have enough of that today and that’s a lot of our problems. But hear me, God in Christ died for the whole world.

Jesus loves every people group. That’s right. And if Jesus were here today, he’d be having dinner with them. And the question is, how can we do. Where we can love people, not just out there, but we bring them in here. By default, it’s an us for them, us first, the mentality, but by design through Christ, we are called to a different perspective.

So Passion Creek Church, we are going to be a people. Who are four others around the world and we hope they’re in our neighborhood. This week I got to share the gospel in the sauna again. Do I keep sharing those stories to you guys? The sauna’s the best place you feel this heat. Imagine hell, it’s like whatever.

It’s great. So anyways, I was sharing the, and this guy he had a really, it was having a hard time speaking English. So I was like, where are you from? Cuz I know a little bit of Mandarin. Not really, but I act like I do. And so it turns out he’s from Cambodia. And I was like, Do you know Mandarin?

He’s No. I was like, good. Me neither. But anyway. So he was from Cambodia and his family escaped. It was the Kama Rouge she called. There was a huge genocide, 3 million people killed in Cambodia. And he was talking about the hopelessness that his country still has and he fled 40 years ago. And I said, Man, this world has broken, but who I follow has come to bring it back together.

And I don’t know how much you heard cuz you know English and there was some translation error. But this is what we’re called to do. So let me give you, every week we’re trying to get real practical. So let me end this way. Three practices to engage with this week. And I, if you’re in a together group, you’re gonna talk about those this week.

And if you’re not, it’s not too late to join one. Number one is to pray for a people group. When I was at cbu, I learned this strategy and it changed my life. We’re called, We can’t, we can say God save the whole world, but there’s something beautiful about saying, Okay, God, I know you have a plan for the whole world, but I’m praying for this.

For us, we are really drawn for me, sorry, is Southeast Asia. I’ve been there several times. One website to use is joshua I’ll say it one more time. Joshua You can go on there and it’ll show you every people group throughout the world and how reach they are for Christ. So for me and my wife, we love Malaysia.

We have a whole picture of koala lumpur, the capital huge in our house. Why do I do that? To remind myself to pray. . There’s 181 people groups in Malaysia. 76 of them are unreached. That means 42% of all Malay have never even heard the gospel, have no access to it. There’s 34 million people in Malaysia. 17 million have never heard the gospel.

It is a majority Muslim culture and get this, it’s only 3.5% Evangelical Christian. There’s a lot of work to be done in Malaysia, so we pray. But the second way that you can do this is to give to our church. This is one reason. We are unapologetically great Commission Baptist. We’re the second largest denomination in the world.

We set aside our differences and we have a lot. We have a lot of crazy uncles in our denomination, but we’re better together. Because together we can recruit, we can train, and we can resource missionaries all throughout the world. Just to give you a overview of what you do, when you give to our church, 10% of our budget, we ask you to give 10%.

So we do the same. 10% of our budget goes to missions. 7% of that goes to missionaries and church plants and seminaries. So you have the international mission. You have the North American Mission Board, which by the way, for example, this week you have disaster relief being sent out to Florida. If you guys check the news, Florida got hit really hard with the hurricane.

Who’s there to help? Guess what Baptists are? It’s called the disaster relief. And the money you’ve given, we’ve already handed over to them and they’re using that money to bless people who need food, who need water, and all those sorts of things. You also, every time you give of that 7% we give towards seminaries, so people like me who are.

We could go and get educated about the gospel of Jesus. Lastly, so it’s 7% we give to missions around the world. And 3% we give to missions here in our state. Children’s services, family life, pregnancy crisis. We give to Christian challenge that we’re really involved in. That’s our college campus ministry youth camps, and also us specifically, we are praying about giving a specific amount every single week to a church plant in Tucson.

Tucson’s, one of the most unreached people groups and talk about a temptation to hate a city. You know what I’m saying? . Wow. But we gotta love them too. Even two sonian all. So we need to share the gospel to them and empower churches as they reach a really hard to reach area. And lastly, go to the nations.

I’ve been praying that God would call our church to be a church that sends out missionaries. And so maybe this message is just for you. Maybe the call for you is to get trained through the international mission. Maybe the call for you is to understand you have a very marketable skill set that the world would love to pay you for, and you go around the world being paid for your job.

Meanwhile, your real job is to share the gospel, to start churches. We hope that you go to the nation. Some of us we’re gonna engage in voluntary mission, meaning you take up your life and you go across the world. Others of us, we go to the nations because the nations have come to us. The beautiful thing about being American is a lot of them wanna come here and we are able to preach the gospel to them as they come to our local sauna.

This is the invitation. Friends. I know some of us, the temptations to hear this message and go, How’s this help me, man? I was hoping to get a word for me. Friends, I tell you, you want. You want purpose, you hit your wagon to the purposes of God. You make your life about bringing peace to others, the good news of the gospel and that peace will keep returning to you tenfold.

May we be a church that is not just for this city, but we’re for the whole world and we give our lives.

Group Guide

Looking for community? Join a Together Group!

Meal & Conversation

Open the night with a quick prayer over your time together. As your Group shares a meal, feel free to use the following question to check in with everyone:

What’re your highs and lows for the week so far?

Overview of Teaching

Throughout the storyline of the Bible, we see that God’s desire is to bless all of humanity. It starts with Adam and Eve, but rather than spread God’s blessing and goodness to the world, they spread sin and death. But God doesn’t leave humanity hopeless and helpless.

Instead, he chooses the people group of Israel to provide blessing and healing to the rest of the world. As a nation of people set apart by God, Israel was given the unique opportunity of allowing God to bless the whole world through them. Today, we have the same opportunity. But rather than waiting for the nations to come to us, Jesus’ last command while on earth was to go to the nations ourselves.

As we allow ourselves to be formed by Jesus, we must remember that we do this for the sake of others and not just for our own self-improvement. We also must remember that God’s intention is to restore all of humanity from all nations. By intentionally praying for the nations, giving sacrificially, and by actually going to the nations, we can continue God’s work of providing blessing and salvation to the rest of the world.



Read Matthew 9:35-38 and discuss the following questions:

  1. What strikes you about the way Jesus responds to the crowds coming to him for teaching, healing, and blessing? Do you often see God as someone determined to bless you and the world? If not, what is your view of God?
  2. How would you describe the “good news of the Kingdom?”
  3. As you think about where you live and who you live amongst, do you consider yourself sent as a “worker into the harvest?” Why or why not?
  4. Who in your life do you sense God might be inviting you to connect or reconnect with; who you might love, serve, or bless in the name of Jesus?


Debrief last week’s practice as a Group:

How did you feel about last week’s practice? What steps did you take to meet, invite, or serve a coworker?


Group Practice to Do Right Now

As we consider different ways that we can be obedient to God by bringing the gospel to the nations, one thing we can all do together is pray. Praying bold prayers and asking for revival among entire nations and people groups is often uncomfortable and foreign to us. But Jesus instructs us to ask God for his Kingdom to come down to the whole earth as it is in heaven, and these types of prayers are good reminders that followers of Jesus can be found all over the world.

Spend some time right now praying as a group for the nations. Specifically, our church supports mission work in Malaysia and Honduras. If you’d like to choose another people group to pray for, you can briefly visit The Joshua Project for ideas.

Have 3 to 5 volunteers pray for a specific nation using the following prompts:

  1. Pray against the demonic and evil spiritual influences that hold people captive under the burden of false religions like Islam and Hinduism.
  2. Pray for an outpouring of the Spirit on the local churches, believers, and missionaries working to spread God’s goodness and blessing to their lost neighbors.
  3. Pray against the social and systemic injustices that keep people poor, oppressed, and without hope. Pray for spiritual as well as physical, emotional, and relational needs to be met.
  4. Pray for a burden and willingness in the hearts of the people in our own church and city to go to these nations and help spread God’s blessing.
  5. Pray for revival among all of God’s people in all nations around the world.


Individual Practice for the Week Ahead

This week, consider taking one of these next steps to practice mission the way of Jesus:

  1. Pray daily for a people group or nation. Again, consider Malaysia or Honduras, or use The Joshua Project for other ideas.
  2. Give sacrificially to Passion Creek Church. Every single month, we give 10% of our budget to missions. 7% goes to missionaries, church plants, and seminaries. 3% goes to local missions in our own area to support Tucson church plants, family service centers, youth camps, and organizations like Christian Challenge.
  3. Consider going to the nations. Pray and ask God if he’s calling you to short-term or long-term missions. Don’t let the lack of knowledge, resources, or fear be the reason you don’t ask. Simply ask if God is inviting you to deeper discipleship and obedience by taking this step of faith.


Before you go, discuss this last question together:

What would success look like for you as you engage with this practice this week?