Missions And Christ’s Return
By Robert Hall Glover
Our object is to relate the present-day work of missions with the blessed hope of the Lord’s Return. The relation between the two is unquestionable, and also most vital.
Christ, after He had wrought out His great redemption for all mankind, and ere He ascended to heaven, gave the Great Commission and left the church an explicit task to perform, namely, to carry the good news of His Salvation to the whole world. He left also a clear and comforting promise that He would return. That promise still awaits fulfillment, but its fulfillment may in turn perhaps await the carrying out more completely of the task of reaching the uttermost part of the earth with the Gospel.
The Bridegroom cannot return for an incomplete bride. That glorious company that is to surround the throne of the Lamb in adoring praise for its redemption is representative of “every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation” (Rev. 5:9). This makes it clearly necessary that the Gospel witness shall reach to the remotest regions of the globe.
Just what constitutes the fulfillment of this worldwide witness we do not presume to say dogmatically. But what has already been pointed out surely invests the work of world evangelization with both solemn responsibility and glowing inspiration.
Do we cherish the “blessed hope”? Then let us obey Christ’s last command. Do we long for His appearing? Then let us give ourselves unreservedly to the task of gathering out of all nations that “people for His name,” the perfect bride for whom He has waited so long and still waits. No Christian can consistently believe in the Lord’s Return and not be an active partner in worldwide missions.
The necessity and urge of the speedy evangelization of the world rests solidly upon at least three grounds – the explicit command of Christ, the desperate need of mankind, and the blessed hope of the Lord’s Return. This being so, any church or Christian accepts a grave responsibility in being less than wholeheartedly interested and engaged in this task of tasks.