Missionary statesman George Forbes boldly declares: God has always had a plan!
He planned everything from eternity to eternity.
His plan for this world is on schedule and there is nothing that can change his purpose or thwart his plan. This is not fatalism, but rather, recognition of the authority of the Sovereign God who loves this world. That is… he loves people and has a plan for them. A plan for every people.
Believers have God on their side and as we obey his command we have the assurance of his presence and power. We read in Isaiah chapter 45 verse 22 the declaration of Almighty God. ‘Turn to me and be saved, all you ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is no other.’
His declaration in the next chapter is, ‘From the east I summon a bird of prey; from a far-off land, a man to fulfil my purpose. What I have said, that will I bring about; what I have planned, that will I do’ (Isa.46:11).
New power for a new day
We must look forward, with thankful hearts because in every generation God calls people whom he has prepared, or whom he is still preparing, for leadership in the greatest cause on earth. New people, new possibilities and new power for a new day!
God is raising up an amazing number of national workers, national missionaries and national ministers, to take leadership in the great harvest of the unreached peoples of the world.
He is also raising up an increasing number of mission churches that have an international impact. Their leaders have caught the vision of the knowledge of the glory of God filling the earth. They have a new agenda, with the peoples of the world in clear focus. These churches are growing dynamically as they commit their resources to the release and training of national church planters and partner with missions working among the unreached peoples of the world.
We must catch the vision, go, pray, give
Harvest hands are needed! Harvest hands are in short supply. There is hard work to be done in what may prove to be the darkest places on earth. God promised to pour out his Spirit on all nations.
This is why we must go, we must pray, we must give, so that others may live eternally. God’s Plan has always been the ‘nations.’ He revealed this to Abraham when he made a covenant with him.
The Abrahamic Covenant, recorded five times in the book of Genesis, promises blessing for Abraham and his seed and blessing for the peoples of the world. Blessing for Israel and blessing for every nation is the scope of God’s plan.
This is especially the day for the developing church of Africa, Asia and South America to lead the way in the harvest of all harvests. This will mean great outpourings of the Holy Spirit, great awakenings of the churches and great fruitfulness for harvest workers. The Message paraphrase of Matthew 9:37-38 says, ‘What a huge harvest!’ he (Jesus) said to his disciples. ‘How few workers! On your knees and pray for harvest hands!’
Multiplied nations still without a gospel witness
Over the last forty plus years, it has been my joy and great privilege to serve the Lord and his church in world missions. I have seen firsthand the raising up of many harvest hands in Africa, Asia and South America.
Asia in particular is where there are multiplied nations without a gospel witness. Too few missionaries and missions are involved in these regions of the world. Too few committed to the unreached peoples, even though this is God’s plan.
My time of active service is coming to an end as I near my 82nd birthday. To now see the beginnings of a new generation rising to this task fills my heart with thanksgiving. I am greatly encouraged. God’s plan is perfect, he is fulfilling his promise. To him be the glory and praise.
Commitment challenge to churches and individuals
The question I leave with you is, ‘What part are you fulfilling in this glorious plan that embraces every people group (nation) on earth? Is the church where you worship and serve God a truly mission church? Have you understood God’s Plan for all nations?
The New Testament affirms God’s Plan unmistakably in the words of the Lord Jesus. He said, ‘Go and make disciples of all nations’ (Matt. 28:19).
I invite you to commit yourself to the greatest task on earth! The fulfilling of the Great Commission and in consequence, the completion of the plan of God for all nations.
The King of Kings is waiting for the precious fruit of the earth!
George Forbes is the former General Director of Assemblies of God World Missions in Australia. He served as head of this dynamic mission for thirty years, during which it grew from one field to thirty countries.(1969-1999). Internationally recognised as a missionary statesman with a heart for the lost of the nations, George Forbes is an able mission communicator with a wealth of missionary knowledge and the ability to communicate the global picture. He is widely known as the ‘story-teller.’ Contact: georgeforbes2 AT gmail.com