Great Commission

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The Great Commission is the exhortation by Jesus of the disciples to convert the world to Christianity and baptize them, as set forth at the end of the Gospel of Matthew, at Matthew 28:18-20. The Great Commission includes the duty to teach all the peoples of the world everything that Jesus taught us and baptize them.

The Great Commission is a personal instruction to every Christian to evangelize the faith for the benefit of all, each according to their ability as enabled by the Holy Spirit.[1]

The Great Commission and the state of World Evangelism is therefore of utmost importance to the Universal Church. All Church leaders and all Christians interested in being docile to the action of the Holy Spirit to evangelize the world must study the task before us with the greatest attention.

In addition to the command at the end of the Gospel of Matthew referenced above, Luke wrote in Acts 1:6-8:[2] Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” 7 And He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. 8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

Status of World Evangelism: The Progress of the Great Commission, 1900-2020

In the year 1900, over 557 Million (out of 1.6 Billion World Population) identified as Christian. [3] This means the total number of non-Christians in the world was only around 1 Billion. The total percentage of Christians in the world was roughly 35%.

In the year 2019, there are roughly 2.5 Billion Christians in the world (out of 7.7 Billion World Population). [4] The number of non-Christians in the world has grown to well over 5 Billion. At the same time, the number of Christians in the world has grown by roughly 2 billion. But the total percentage of Christians in the world has declined to under 33%.

Table 1: Rough Figures of Christian and World Population

Year World Population Christian Population Unreached Population
1900 1,600,000,000 560,000,000 1,040,000,000
2020 7,700,000,000 2,500,000,000 5,200,000,000

Growth of Christianity over the past decades: Challenges and Successes

"The 2019 Status of Global Christianity report shows there were 2.5 billion Christians in the world as of mid-2019 – a major increase from the 1.98 billion Christians in 2000 and more than double the number of Christians (1.2 billion) in 1970. Christianity is growing worldwide at a rate of 1.27 percent each year and outpacing population growth (1.20 percent) – and is booming in Africa (2.37 percent), Asia (2.79 percent) and Latin America (2.29 percent).

By comparison, there were 138 million atheists around the world in mid-2019 – slightly more than the 137 million in 2000 but less than the 165 million in 1970. Atheism’s annual growth (.04 percent) is less than that of the population, and the number of atheists worldwide is projected to decline to 132 million in 2025."[5]

In prayer and study, the Universal Christian Church must discern under the leading of the Holy Spirit the best path forward for World Evangelism. Christians are called by the Lord and the Holy Spirit, as many Evangelists like Reinhard Bonnke have said, to plunder Hell and populate Heaven.

Since the world population is expected to grow by 800 million from the current 7.7 Billion to 8.5 Billion by 2030, 475 Million new disciples will have to be evangelized over the next decade to ensure the percentage of reached people groups remains around 35%. In order to attain a 40% target, 900 Million Christians will have to be baptized.

Table 2: Expected World Population and Percent Reached

World Population Year 30% Reached 40% Reached 50% Reached 60% Reached
8,500,000,000 2030 2,550,000,000 3,400,000,000 4,250,000,000 5,100,000,000
8,750,000,000 2033 2,625,000,000 3,500,000,000 4,375,000,000 5,250,000,000
9,000,000,000 2040 2,700,000,000 3,600,000,000 4,500,000,000 5,400,000,000
9,900,000,000 2050 2,970,000,000 3,960,000,000 4,950,000,000 5,940,000,000

The Billion Soul Harvest

Many men of God have prophesied there is a billion soul harvest on the horizon: "We are living in urgent times. We are living in historic times.

We are in the middle of the greatest battle for souls! Souls, souls, souls! And the enemy is busy trying to distract the church and divide her so that we will not gain greater ground and win souls for Christ.

Stop the small dissensions and stop the immature bickering! It’s time for the Church to rise up with truth and love in the greatest hour of earth’s history. Now is the time for the Church to stand united and win in these battle for souls." [6]

Project 100 Million

Network211 has a Mission to reach 100 Million for Jesus Christ by 2028 through Internet evangelism.

Bible Prophesies on the Success of the Great Commission:

"And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come." (Mat 24:14).

This verse should be a witness verse for unbelievers, for it was spoken 2000 years ago, yet has been remarkably fulfilled already to a large measure.

For Christians, it is a calling that urges zealous Spirit-filled efforts in the field of world evangelism, so that the Lord's return can be hastened.

In Rev 7:9, Christians are described as a "great multitude, which no man can number": "After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands". (Apoc 7:9)

This calls to mind the ancient promise to Abraham, which is fulfilled through Jesus Christ, the Seed of Abraham, " And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered." (Gen 13:16). And, "That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice." (Gen 22:17-18).

References

  1. 1 Corinthians 12:4-28; Romans 12:3-8
  2. New King James Version (NKJV)
  3. Status of Global Christianity, 2019, in the Context of 1900–2050. https://www.gordonconwell.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/13/2019/04/StatusofGlobalChristianity20191.pdf
  4. Status of Global Christianity, 2019, in the Context of 1900–2050. https://www.gordonconwell.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/13/2019/04/StatusofGlobalChristianity20191.pdf
  5. https://www.christianheadlines.com/contributors/michael-foust/christianity-booming-atheism-declining-around-the-world-report-says.html
  6. http://b100lim.org/3-major-signs-of-the-billion-soul-harvest/