How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? (Romans 10:14)
It might be argued that the most important thing about a person is what he or she does with and believes about Jesus. The early Church thought this was so important that they committed to spreading the news about Jesus to all who were willing to listen. They carried an incredible responsibility, and they boldly did everything they could to fulfill it. In our modern times, the Church somewhat neglected that great responsibility in our 21st century American culture.
The number of people in America who don’t know who Jesus is and who haven’t heard of what it means to have a personal relationship with him is growing. Our churches have been content to sit back with a self-centered focus of gaining more “knowledge” by studying the Bible together rather than spending time introducing others to the one person who has the power to change their lives. How can people call on Jesus if they don’t know who he is? How can they believe in him if they’ve never heard of him? And how will they hear if no one tells them?
Sadly, the American churches have been happy to send missionaries to other cultures to share about Jesus with people in other countries, but they often fail to see the same need right at home. When a church purports to reach out to those who don’t know Jesus, it is accused of compromise. And yet that was the role of the early church: to tell others about Jesus.
If you are a church leader, what are you doing to lead your church toward sharing about Jesus? If you’re a church attender, what are you doing to help others within your sphere of influence know about Jesus? We have to work together to carry this message of hope because people can’t believe if they’ve never heard, and they’ll never hear unless someone speaks.
Father, You have given us such an incredible responsibility of sharing about the hope, joy, and peace that comes from knowing Jesus. Please help us to be faithful in spreading that message, and let Your name be glorified and magnified in the world around us.