How The Great Commission Will Be Completed Part 2
We are beginning to understand that those who are not networking will eventually not be working. We are moving from consumers to contributors. Instead of asking what we will get out of it, we are asking what we can sow into it. We are moving from WIFM—What’s in It for Me—to WIFJ—What’s in It for Jesus.
The Church has enough momentum to get to the finish line. Look how far we have come over the last 120 years. By 1900 AD, the Church had evangelized 45.69 percent of the world. By 2000 AD, the Church had evangelized 73.09 percent. However, with the growth of the population of the earth and the pace of the population growth of the earth outpacing the growth of the Church even though the Church will continue to evangelize during this century, by 2100 AD, it is estimated that at our current rate, 83.25 percent of the world will be evangelized.
With the previous information concerning the growth of the Church in mind, approximately two billion people will still be unreached—the exact number that is approximately unreached today. What is the answer? It is the synergistic model of building the body of Christ together and speeding things up accordingly to cut that distance down by the 2,000-year birthday of the Church. Population will continue to grow and evangelization will continue to go; but if we are going to finish the Great Commission by the 2,000-year birthday of the Church, synergy is the only way it will be accomplished.
It is important for us to understand that we are living in an unparalleled time in the body of Christ, and it is possible for us to complete the Great Commission. Why? Because we have enough members. We have enough methods. We have enough multiplication. We have enough money. We have enough motivation. We have enough momentum. And with all these powerful forces synergized together, it is possible to finish the grandest race of our lifetime—the Great Commission.
How the Great Commission Will Be Completed
Why is the doorway to wow. Without the correct why, the buy-in necessary to get to wow and on to how cannot be achieved. A big enough why will produce a big enough how. With the why, we will finish the Great Commission so we now must focus on how we will finish the Great Commission. When the Holy Spirit downloaded the acronym for FINISH into Dr. Timothy Hill’s heart and mind, it became a roadmap for the Church of God in particular as well as for the body of Christ worldwide to get to the finish line.
Dr. Timothy Hill and Dr. James O. Davis have discussed at length what it will take to complete the Great Commission. Dr. Davis has committed all he can through the Global Church Network to synergize church leaders throughout the body of Christ. Church leaders have the opportunity to help lead the rest of the body of Christ toward the finish line. We can either be part of the parade, or we can read about the parade that marched down Main Street to the completion of the Great Commission.
Over the last five years, Dr. Davis has shared the FINISH acronym and roadmap with key Christian leaders all over the world. It is simple, memorable, and transferable. It is easy to understand, easy to remember, easy to apply, simple, and profound. The late Dr. Adrian Rogers used to say, “Simplify, simplify, and simplify again; and people will call you profound.”
The FINISH acronym includes six strategic steps that will take the body of Christ to the finish line.
We must FIND the remaining unreached people groups. A lot of leaders like to shoot the arrow and then move the target accordingly so that it looks like they shot the arrow accurately. However, we are putting our targets out first and shooting our arrows second.
There are still over 6,000 unreached people groups. Before we went to Wittenberg 2017, we decided as a network to focus on the hardest 3,000 because if the Church is ever going to finish the Great Commission, the Church has to get the hard ones done first. Oftentimes, the Church continues to pick the easy fruit rather than climbing the mountain to reach the hard fruit.
For example, Global Church Network is in partnership with every major denomination in building the first-ever training center in the high altitudes of Nepal. Mount Everest Training Center is located just five minutes from the Hillary-Tenzing Airport at an elevation of 8,500 feet. This state-of-the-art leadership center will be used to train church planters from all major denominational groups to plant churches at the highest altitudes in the world.
For 2,000 years, villages have existed at high altitudes of 15,000, 18,000, and 21,000 feet; but there has never been a church planted there because there are no roads. You cannot take a car, a motorbike, a bicycle, or a helicopter to these villages. The only way the gospel can go there is for an individual to plant a church there. The Mount Everest Training Center gives access to the finest training of leaders in the high altitudes that they have never had before.
The hardest groups must be our focus in the next 8-10 years. Reaching the hardest 3,000 unreached people groups will guarantee the completion of the Great Commission.
Additionally, the Church in general and the local church in particular must synergize their efforts together for the hardest 3,000 Bible translations. A massive biblical translation paradigm is taking place.
In 2003, Dr. James O. Davis visited with Dr. Roy Peterson, then president of Wycliffe Bible Translators, in Orlando, Florida. While Dr. Peterson was showing him the vision walk that was outside his office, he was articulating that the Bible translation vision included a completion date of 2250 AD. While this vision was being shared, James did not know how it could be done faster but thought, “There has to be better and faster way to complete this,” and stated to Dr. Peterson, “At this rate, the world population would have to die twice before everyone in the world had access to the Word of God.”
At some point during the next year, James was lifting his Chinese daughter, Olivia, into the air at a nearby park when the Holy Spirit said, “Look at who I have lifted up all over the world.” With that admonition, Dr. Davis began flying worldwide to meet with a single key leader whom the Lord had lifted up and began tying relational knots worldwide.
Today, the mission field has become a mission force. We are moving from parenting to partnering. It is now possible for the Church worldwide to participate in Bible translations. By 2030-2033, nearly 3,500 more translations will be completed. The focus is on the hardest unreached people groups and the hardest Bible translations left to be done. It will put the Church in a position of reaching out and completing the Great Commission. In the last 80 years, just over 700 Bible translations have been completed. However, in a 15-year period of time, another 3,000 plus translations will be finished!
Dr. Roland Vaughn, former director of World Missions for the Church of God, developed the Missionary Arrowhead for unreached peoples. It is a masterpiece of strategic thinking. Dr. Davis took the Arrowhead and tweaked it to represent a little different feel, but Dr. Vaughn perfectly thought it through.
What we need to do is seek the unreached. Jesus came to seek and to save. Our goal is to find one, two, three, or a handful of disciples in the unreached people groups. God has His people everywhere. There are Christians in every nation, and God is the greatest manager of all time. We need to seek the unreached.
We need to get close to where these men and women are. How do we do this? We go to save the unreached. The neighbors know the neighborhood. If we do not know any specific Christians in an unreached group, we go to the next level—to the neighbors—because they know the neighborhood. When missionaries left their own countries to go other nations many years ago, they did not necessarily need to ask, “Are there Christians there or other missionaries in the area?” Today, however, when missionaries go to other countries, they must ask if Christians or other missionaries are there for we must not go to compete but to complete.
If we do not know any neighbors, we synergize the national church in the nation. We synergize for the unreached, the national church, national leaders, Bible schools, and missionaries in that nation that gets us closer to the neighbors which gets us closer to the neighborhood.
However, if a national church organization does not exist, we take the next step of sowing into the region closest to the unreached people group we are interested in reaching. We look at the region because those in the region would know some in the nation who would know some of the neighbors among the neighbors who would know the neighborhood.
If the first four approaches do not work, we go to leading pastors and encourage them to adopt and send laborers to work toward the specific unreached people group that God has laid upon their heart. What is the overall strategy? We seek, save, synergize, sow, and send. Find the world’s unreached people groups and engage them.
Not only must we FIND in order to get to the finish line, but we must also INTERCEDE in order to get to the finish line. The Church is filled with prayer warriors and intercessors and with men and women who believe in fasting and prayer. It is important to build a prayer movement like this world has never seen before. In October 2011, there were 7 billion people on this planet. In November 2022, we will cross 8 billion mark.
By the time we get to 2030 and beyond, we will have 8.7 billion people in the world. Global Church Network has proposed that we pray 8.7 billion hours for the 8.7 billion people who will be on this earth during our watch. We must motivate and challenge the Church worldwide to pray at least one hour for every person on the planet.
These 8.7 billion prayers hours can be achieved on:
- The personal level: Commit to pray for 100 hours over a 10-year period of time. One hundred hours over a 10-year period of time is only 10 hours per year.
- The partner level: Pray with others in order to compound the hours. Five hundred hours is only 5 prayer partners over the next 10 years.
- The pastor level: Thirty members equals 3,000 hours, 120 members equals 12,000 hours, and 240 members equals 24,000 hours.
Dr. David Mohan, founder of New Life Assembly in Chennai, India, which averages 45,000 each weekend, said, “If we are not praying, we are not planting. We first have to break the stronghold of the enemy in the town or city.”
NETWORK is the third step to completing the Great Commission. For far too long, we have tried to finish the Great Commission alone. For hundreds of years, various organizations have said, “We will finish the Great Commission ourselves”; and with each attempt, the Great Commission has not been completed. We have to tie relational knots for national, regional, and global impact. In other words, we have to tie relational knots for our nations, our regions, and our world. Relationship currency properly invested becomes relationship capital; and with relationship capital, we can complete the Great Commission. Relationship currency is the greatest currency in all of the world.
Many years ago, Dr. Davis was asked, “How do you expect to finish the Great Commission?” His answer was then and still is today, “We will finish our assignment by tying enough relational knots—no knots, no net; no net, no catch; no catch, no harvest; no harvest, no completed assignment. Without the tying of the knots, we are little strings loosely lying on the sands of time. We cannot accomplish much until we learn to tie relational knots. Not only do we need to tie relational knots but also to transform our mental paradigms.
What is the hardest part of networking? Changing people’s mindsets and transforming their perspectives. It is not you or I; it is all of us together. It is too late in the day to be arguing over the little things that do not matter. The Lord did not call us to defend our distinctives to the point of not being able to preach the gospel to all the world. The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing. For far too long, we have been more interested in obtaining missions credit in our denomination or fellowship without asking or considering whether or not we were getting closer to the finish line.
It is imperative that we transform our old mental paradigms. The battle is between our ears. If we believe what the Scripture says, then we are to love all the saints and pray for all the saints. We will have to enlarge our circumference of love large enough to finish the Great Commission. If we will commit to digging deeper and expanding wider, we will then be able to build high enough to network the body of Christ together. The Church is poised in a position to build a circle of love like never before that will grow the body of Christ worldwide.
We must learn to network like never before. We need to synergize the best relationships. We need to systematize the best training, strategize for the unreached, and scripturalize for new Bible translations. Global Hubs of Christianity is the prime example of leaders being able to synergize, systematize, strategize and scripturalize. It is there where leaders from different streams of Christianity are equipped in the various countries to go to the finish line.
Dr. Peter Thomas, Africa Director for the Church of God, recently met with Dr. James O. Davis in Zambia, Africa. For four hours they synergized their efforts to finish the Great Commission along with key leaders representing 46 nations. They are currently synergizing their efforts to place a hub in all 46 of these nations so that Church of God leaders can help tie relational knots in the body of Christ to move us closer to the best training and best strategies for fulfilling the Great Commission.
We need to INVEST strategically in order to finish the Great Commission. We need to invest our time in relationships, in our thinking, and in our strategies. We need to invest our talents as we all have a role in the goal and a part in God’s heart. God gave us skills and talents in order to help fulfill the Great Commission. We need to invest into our temples as we are the temple of the Holy Spirit. We need to take care of ourselves, eat properly, and exercise. We need to learn to move from racing to pacing in order to finish the Great Commission.
We need to invest our treasure—our money. We need to invest what God has placed in our hands in order to complete the Great Commission. We need to lead by example and encourage others to do likewise. The Church is going to need at least another billion dollars to complete the Great Commission. Dr. Timothy Hill made reference to a bank metaphor at a Church of God General Assembly. He said a bank was established for church planting with $1 million and another half a million was added to it. The Church needs a bank filled with resources which are focused on fulfilling the Great Commission. The Church will need at least $1 billion worldwide to invest into training the young emerging generations to go farther than we have ever gone before. If the global Church were to invest $100 or $1,000 into the training of one million young, God-called leaders, the cost would be $100 million and $1 billion respectively.
On the heels of INVEST, we need to SEND. We need to send young, equipped leaders into the harvest field. There is no Christian organization that can say, “We have plenty of young men and women who are called into ministry coming up in our ranks. You can pass us by and give them to somebody else.” There is no Christian denomination that can say, “We have plenty of young, called ministers in the pipeline. You can pass us by.” One of the greatest needs, if not the greatest need, is a harvest of young men and women called into ministry like never before. Most preachers are called during their teenage years.
We not only need a harvest of young men and women called into full-time ministry, but they also need to be equipped, empowered, and energized in order to take the gospel farther than we have ever gone before. We call this the Million Ministers Mandate. The Church must look for and believe God for at least one million young men and women called into the ministry in the next ten years who will carry the gospel to the hardest places on earth.
We need to inspire, instruct online, and involve young, called ministers. Every denomination should know what God is doing in their local churches as well as in their youth camp ministry programs. Dr. Davis is encouraging all youth leaders to provide a list of names and email addresses of those who have been called into ministry to their general superintendents each quarter. We need at least one million new ministers in ten years.
We will need at least 250,000 church planters, 250,000 additional pastors, 250,000 youth leaders, 150,000 evangelists, and 100,000 missionaries worldwide. The Church must create the learning on-ramps necessary for the emerging generation. While we celebrate the traditional models of equipping and training through our seminaries and Bible schools around the world, these models in and of themselves will not get us to the finish line. What got us here will not get us there. With the advancement of population growth like never before, the traditional models we have had in this current generation are too slow to get the men and women to the harvest field in time.
In every global hub, our goal is to have at least 40 percent of the hub membership to be between 15 and 35 years of age. If we are going to finish the Great Commission, we need a huge army of kingdom-minded and Christ-centered young leaders who are willing to go to the hardest places in the world with the gospel.
It takes two wings to fly. A one-winged bird will never get off the ground nor will a one-winged sermon. Sermons must have two wings—style and substance. In this generation, we must be online and on-ground. We must create the on-ramps necessary for young leaders to get on the highway where we are today. Global Church Network created the Global Church Divinity School (www.GCDS.tv). We established preaching, teaching, healing, story, arts, Christ formation, and contextual semiotics as seven major ministry training tracks for the upcoming generation. GCDS was not created to replace what other organizations may currently have but to offer additional assistance in the training of one million ministers from every major denomination and independent group.
If we are faithful to find, intercede, network, invest, and send, we will bring in a HARVEST like the world has never seen before. The harvest requires both decision-making and disciple-making. There will be a revival like the world has never seen—a sweeping, weeping, reaping revival. There will be a harvest where the churches are full, where new churches are being planted, and where there have never been churches in 2,000 years since Jesus Christ came out of the grave. Our harvest will be measurable. There will be compounding growth. The harvest will be motivational with people wanting to be involved in the harvest like never before. The harvest will be memorable with people writing in their church history books what God did in the early 21st century.