This past Sunday I introduced a new teaching series we are calling Making Room. The very best thing we can do for ourselves, others and our relationship with God is to make more room for God in our lives and allow him greater influence in us and over us. In this series, we’ll look at four practices that will help us do that. Last week, I talked about priorities and making sure we focus on the important and uncrowd or free our lives of the unimportant.
Years ago, I had a profound realization of what was most important to God. God’s priority and whole purpose is focused not just in saving me or you, but saving people from all nations. He made a promise to Abraham that through him all nations or peoples would be blessed (Genesis 12:3). Jesus came and gave his final and Great Commission to the church to fulfill this promise by going and making disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:19-20). Paul reminds us that it is the church’s responsibility to fulfill the promise God made to Abraham when in Galatians 3:7-8 he says that we, the church, by faith are the children of Abraham and that God would save the Gentiles, or all nations, by faith. What’s fascinating about what Paul wrote is that he says the gospel was announced to Abraham in advance and that “gospel” or good news was that “all nations” would be blessed! Yep! That’s what it says!
And we see why reaching all nations is a priority for God because in Revelation we see who will populate heaven. God will fulfill his promise to Abraham and all nations will be present in heaven (Revelation 5:9 and 7:9). So if all nations must populate heaven, then God will not send Jesus back again to earth until the gospel has gone to every nation (Matthew 24:14). That’s not my idea. That’s what Jesus clearly stated! The only thing holding God back from sending Jesus is the church. God is waiting on us, the church, to do what it was commanded to do: go to every nation, culture, people group and language to share the hope of Jesus. And that is what we have committed to do at Pantano.
We’ve sent several individuals and families – like Lena (last name intentionally not used for security reasons) and the Brown, Francisco and Tompkins families. We support national leaders who are planting hundreds of churches a year among the least reached peoples. We are seeing village after village come to faith and experience a transformation in their community. THIS IS GOD’S PRIORITY FOR OUR CHURCH!
And we are offering an amazing class that I’ve taken and taught for over 20 years. It is called PathLight, and will be held on Sunday mornings at 9am beginning Feb 4th. It is a 10-week class with two weeks devoted to each the 5 major topics, or 5 paths: Biblical, Historical, Strategic, Cultural, and Partnerships. We’ve got great teachers lined up, the cost is just $20 and you can register here! This was the very class that opened my eyes to God’s priority of reaching the nations. Whether you have any interest to go on a short-term mission, or go to the mission field or just want to understand God’s priority of global outreach better, this is THE very best class offered.