When a Christian shares the gospel with someone, we typically call that “evangelism.” People who are not Christians typically call that “proselytizing,” and it usually has a negative connotation. Christian missions is seen by many as a negative thing as well. “Why not do your clinics and water projects, but keep Jesus out of it? Why do you have to do a sports camp and disrupt the lives of people who already have a faith, by explaining Christianity to them, or sharing Jesus with them?” It’s a perceptive question, a common question, and sometimes a provocative one.
Acts 13-14 is the story of the first missionary journey of the early church. The Spirit initiates it, and sends representatives of the church in Antioch north into lands that were thoroughly Gentile. The majority of the people there had no knowledge of the Bible’s storyline, or of Jesus. As we study these two chapters we’ll answer three questions: what was the mission – particularly, how did they carry it out, and why was it necessary.
Scripture: Acts 13-14