How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? (15) And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!Rom 10:14-15
The best way to understand this particular passage is to take each question and just answer it. Let’s try it:
“How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed?”
They won’t call on someone that they don’t believe in.
“and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard?”
They can’t. If they don’t know about Jesus Christ and the gospel message they won’t call, and will not be saved.
“and how shall they hear without a preacher?
The only way that they will hear about this saving message is if someone goes and proclaims the good news to them.
“(15) And how shall they preach, except they be sent?”
Sending does not just include supporting vocational missionaries to go to places where they can share the gospel. Of course, that is necessary and a necessary part of sending to foreign fields. But in this context, sending involves everything involved in the discipleship process to get someone from being a babe in Christ to becoming a spirtual mature, reproducing disciple. It doesn’t just involve financial preparation. It also includes the spiritual, educational, and philosophical equipping that it takes to help someone grow in Christ.
Sharing the Gospel is necessary for evangelism to happen. This may sound silly and fairly obvious. Yet there is a “lifestyle evangelism” philosophy that taken to its extreme isn’t really evangelism. The old addage, “preach the gospel, and if necessary use words” tries to make the point that our life should match our message. Our lives should be a witness in our behavoir and reputation, but preaching the gospel always includes words. It is a message that must be heard, and therefore must be proclaimed.
All evangelism should point people to life-long discipleship. All discipleship should send people out for more evangelism and discipleship making. The goal of disciple making is sending!
Where are you right now in the disciplemaking process?
- Are you a believer?
- Are you growing in your walk with the Lord as a disciple of Jesus Christ?
- Are you someone who proclaims the gospel?
- Are you helping others grow so that they can be sent to do the same thing?
- Who do you need to share the Gospel with today?