According to IMB reported statics, there are 11,485 people groups in the world today with around 7.3 Billion people.
- The IMB defines a "people group" as "an ethnolinguistic group with a common self-identity that is shared by the various members. There are two parts to that word: ethno, and linguistic. Language is a primary and dominant identifying factor of a people group. But there are other factors that determine or are associated with ethnicity."
The IMB also designates 6,792 of these people groups with over 4 Billion people as "unreached."
- The IMB defines an unreached people group as "people groups where Evangelical Christians comprise less than 2% of the total population."
The IMB further designates 3,021 people groups as unengaged and 322 of these groups have over 100 thousand people each.
- The IMB defines an unengaged people group as "a people group unengaged by any long term church planting or missionary activity."
By the grace of God we have been born into world and a situation that has allowed us to not only hear the gospel but to respond to it. That is not without meaning and significance in the context of the this world. Our faith in God was never meant to just be about us. God called us unto Himself for a purpose. God doesn't need us for this mission but again, by His Grace, He has chosen to use us and to allow us to play a part in His great mission. So let us ask the question: Why should we live for this mission?
- Because the glory of God deserves it. "The Lamb who was slain deserves the reward of His suffering." The creator God deserves the creation to recognize His sovereignty over their lives. We live on this mission first and foremost because God is worthy of it.
- Because of obedience. We live for this mission because we are commanded to live for this mission. There is no greater pursuit with which we can live our lives. We live this way because God has said this is the way we should live our lives. We do not live this way contingent on the results and we do not choose not to live this way because of fear. We live on this mission because He said to and everything else is up to Him. We worship Him by obeying Him and we are conformed into His image in the process.
- Because the numbers above should be simply unacceptable. How can we continue to live driven for the comfort and pride of the American dream when our fellow brothers and sisters in creation are dying and going to hell without knowledge of the one hope and peace that is available to them?
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Romans 10:13-14 - for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” 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?
- How does living on mission for God bring Him glory?
- How does living on mission for God sanctify us and conform us in the image of Christ?
- What are some practical ways that we as individuals and as churches can help to foster a heart for the lost around us?
Pray that we continue to grow in our understanding of what it means to live first and foremost for the glory of God. Pray that we make decision and goals in our lives that are conducive with wanting to be conformed into the image of Christ and wanting to live for what He died for. Pray that we continue to grow in our hearts for the lost. Pray that, like Paul, we feel our lives in are in debted to those who have not heard. Lastly, pray for the lost to come to know Christ here, there, and everywhere.