Why Missions?

17 Nov

Why Missions?  This is both a legitimate and weighty question which demands a significant answer.  While often unstated, it is the question of the hour by many of my peers, especially those with a different world view.  Our answer must flow directly from Scripture, and I believe Psalm 96 captures it well:

O sing unto the LORD a new song: sing unto the LORD, all the earth. Sing unto the LORD, bless his name; show forth his salvation from day to day. Declare his glory among the heathen, his wonders among all people. For the LORD is great, and greatly to be praised: he is to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens. Honor and majesty are before him: strength and beauty are in his sanctuary.”

God demands that all His creatures bring Him glory through passionate worship, therefore those who have been redeemed are responsible to proclaim His glory throughout all nations.  Notice this string of quotes from John Piper’s book Let the Nations be Glad, which reflect the purpose of missions as stated in Psalm 96:

“A heart for the glory of God and a heart of mercy for the nations make a Christ-like missionary.’ These must be kept together. If we have no zeal for the glory of God, our mercy becomes superficial, man-centered human improvement with no eternal significance. And if our zeal for the glory of God is not a reveling in his mercy, then our so-called zeal, in spite of all its protests, is out of touch with God and hypocritical (cf. Matt. 9:13).”[1]

“The gospel demand that flows from such a God to the nations is an eminently shareable, doable demand, namely, to rejoice and be glad in God. The LORD reigns; let the earth rejoice; let the many coastlands be glad!” (Ps. 97:1). “Let the peoples praise you, 0 God; let all the peoples praise you! Let the nations be glad and sing for jot’!” (Ps. 67:3-4). “Let the oppressed see it and be glad; you who seek God, let your hearts revive” (Ps. 69:32 Rsv). “May all who seek you rejoice and be glad in You! May those who love your salvation say evermore, ‘God is great!”‘ (Ps. 70:4). What message would missionaries rather take than the message, “Be glad in God! Rejoice in God! Sing for joy in God! For God is most glorified in you when you are most satisfied in him! God loves to exalt himself by showing mercy to sinners.”[2]

“The human race has failed to work for God so as to increase his glory but that we have failed to delight in God so as to reflect his glory, for God’s glory is most reflected in us when we are most delighted in him.”[3]

“The motive of compassion and the motive of zeal for the glory of God are not separate… No one will be able to rise to the magnificence of the missionary cause who does not feel the magnificence of Christ. There will be no big world vision without a big God. There will be no passion to draw others into our worship where there is no passion for worship.[4]

I am thoroughly convinced that if we would genuinely grow daily in the glorious privilege of an intimate knowledge of our Redeemer, we would become passionate lovers and worshippers of Him.  This alone will properly position us to be faithful ministers of the Gospel wherever He might direct us in His great work of drawing men to Himself.  Are you growing in this love?

Oh that Christ would dwell in our hearts by faith; that we, would be rooted and grounded in love, able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and that we would know the love of Christ, which passes knowledge, and that we might be filled with all the fullness of God! Ephesians 3:17-19

For the transcript of a fantastic message by a friend on this topic see the following message by Lukus Counterman Wichita Falls Baptist Church November 13, 2011





[1] John Piper. Let the Nations Be Glad! 2nd Edition (p. 35). Kindle Edition.

[2] Ibid, (p. 37). Kindle Edition.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Ibid, (p. 42-44). Kindle Edition.



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