United Pentecostal Church of Pittsburg
United Pentecostal Church of Pittsburg
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Ephesians 4:5
God's Purpose In The Crucifixion

Reverend Donald O'Keefe

Posted: November 1, 2007

BEFORE there was an Adam and Eve, there was, in the plan of God, a Savior to save man from the sin that was not yet committed. Calvary's sacrifice was planned from the beginning. The crucifixion, creation, mercy, grace, heaven, and hell are all bound together in the single purpose of God to redeem a people to share eternity with him. In fact, it was the reason for creation. So, creation and the crucifixion served to fulfill the ultimate purpose of God, which was to save a group of people, through grace, to populate heaven. When Jesus died on the cross he gave everything for the cause that meant everything to him. He went through extreme suffering and willingly laid down his life to provide redemption for a lost world. He who was God manifest in flesh had no greater concern. Nothing meant more than offering salvation to a hell bound world.

If I love Jesus Christ, I must love what he loved, and I must give myself to the cause for which he gave himself. He gave everything that men might be saved. Jesus made clear to his disciples what was to be done with this blood bought Gospel. He told them to take it to “the uttermost part of the earth,” to “every creature,” to “all nations,” and to “all the world.”

We cannot leave this responsibility to chance. While we are busy with our local church, we must remember that we are called to an area far, far bigger than any local community. We are called to reach the world. And no man has the right to say that because he is working for his local church that he is fulfilling his obligation to reach the world. And reaching the ethnic community surrounding your church, though good, is not a fulfilling of the Great Commission. And just being part of a corporate body that has a foreign missions outreach does not mean that an individual has fulfilled his personal responsibility to reach a lost world. The Great Commission speaks to individuals, not to organizations. So, every Christian individual ought to be involved in an organized, focused, and concerted effort to reach each and every nation.

There are billions of people that have never heard the Gospel, and there are millions that would receive it if only given the chance. Shall people go to hell that never heard the Gospel? People that would have received it had they been given an opportunity? Shall the cause of the cross be in vain for millions. Shall the passion and pain that Jesus bore in sacrificing himself be wasted? Is it not intolerable for masses to go to hell, the very masses for whom Christ died, when they would have been saved if we had reached them. That is not acceptable. Jesus wants them reached.

Some years ago I heard a very arresting statement. The speaker said that the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, though it be the central event of all eternity, is not one bit more important than our telling the world about it. Calvary's sacrifice is in vain unless we tell it. Jesus wants every nation to be the audience that hears the Gospel.

Jesus started this race and passed the baton to his disciples, and they to the martyrs of the middle ages, and they to us who run the anchor leg, i.e., the final leg of this relay. Let us not fail the team. Let us reach the finish line by reaching every nation with the truth of Acts 2:38.

Please, note the list of New Testament notables that were involved with foreign missions work: Peter, John, Andrew, Philip, Thomas, Paul, Barnabas, Silas, Mark, Luke, Matthew, Timothy, Titus, Matthias, Bartholomew, James, Jude, Simon, Aquila, Priscilla, Apollos, Stephanas, Fortunatas, Achaicus, Epaphroditus, Tychicus, Chloe, Onesimus, Onesiphorus, Lois, Eunice, Simeon, Lucius, Manaen, Barsabas, Justus, Crispus, Tyrannus, Erastus, Gaius, Aristarchus, Sopater, Secundus, Trophimus, Eutychus and others.

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"Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."— 2 Timothy 2:15
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