“This gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14).
Many in the church today try to determine the nearness of Christ’s return by reading the signs of the times; for instance, the return of the Jews to Israel. Jesus clearly states that the end will come only after the gospel has been preached to all nations as a testimony.
“Proof of fact” is the definition of the Greek word that is used for “witness” in the verse above. Christ isn’t speaking of just preaching the gospel but presenting it as a testimony. He says that the gospel we preach is effective only if it’s backed up by a life that testifies to its reality.
One would think that America, with its thousands of evangelical churches, would present a strong gospel witness. In one large southern city alone, there are over 2,000 evangelical churches. But many of these churches have so compromised the true gospel of Christ that very little of Christ’s lordship shines through in the lives of the people.
Far too many ministers, both young and old, run all over the world attending seminars, conventions and “think tanks,” searching for the key to building larger ministries. Young ministry professionals are armed with charts and polls while listening to lectures on how to “grow your church.” Still others flock to “revivals” hoping to learn new methods of enabling the Holy Spirit to fall on their congregation.
As missions societies send out more workers, too many missionaries are coming home within just a few years, discouraged and beaten down because they never developed a firsthand knowledge of Christ’s lordship or the fullness of the Holy Spirit. There is a need for more qualified people to win the nations to Christ but only the presence and anointing of the Holy Spirit will bring lasting success. The gospel of Jesus Christ will be preached as a testimony — and then the Lord will come!
Beloved, your plans are in vain if Jesus is not enthroned in every area of your life. As you acquire knowledge and employ new ideas and strategies, be sure the life of Christ dwells in you.