Where does “the mission” in the Bible begin?
Does it begin in Matthew 28, when Jesus commissions his followers to “go into all the world and make disciples…”? If so, what’s the point of Genesis, Exodus, and (God help us!) Leviticus?!?
No, the mission begins on the first page of the Bible, when God—the main character of this whole shebang—creates the heavens and the earth.
Have you ever asked yourself: Why did God up and decide to create the earth? Did God need to for some reason?
The Bible tells the story of a God who will stop at nothing until the whole earth is full of the blessing of God’s presence. God creates the universe, and then God creates humanity as God’s representatives—in God’s image—and says: “Go, fill the earth, take care of it.” From the beginning, God intends humans to be ambassadors of God’s love, blessing, and presence. And God won’t stop until the whole earth is full of people recognizing they are God’s image-bearers and are reflecting God into the world.
Habakkuk, a spokesperson for God many centuries ago, put it this way:
The whole earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of Yahweh, as the waters cover the sea.
It’s the story of Yahweh, a missionary God. That’s the story we’ll walk through together on Sunday morning.
Do you have a favorite passage that gets to the heart of God’s obsession with blessing the whole earth? Share it in the comments below!
By the way, Katie, Adileen, and I are so excited to be with you the next three Sundays. Let’s grab a cup of coffee (will there be anything good, Spencer?) and swap stories about how God is at work in the world. See you Sunday!