Reading: “Ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” Acts 1:8

When I was a child I remember being taught a chorus that went like this: “Red and yellow, black and white, all are precious in His sight, Jesus loves the little children of the world.” Simple lines, but they have a solemn message: the gospel is for the world. Keep in mind that these disciples had probably never been far from Jerusalem or Galilee or even Judaea. They were Jews who had been brought up in Israel, yet here was their Lord commanding them to go to the uttermost parts of the earth. He was telling them the gospel was not just for the Jews but for the Gentiles.

This universal gospel really challenged the disciples. To go far and wide with the message of Christ would take them out of their comfort zone. In a very real way this was a follow up to what Christ had said in John 4:35: “Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already unto harvest.” John Wesley had this kind of vision when he said, “All the world is my parish.”

Have we the duty to go to Africa and Asia and Australia and throughout the Americas—everywhere and anywhere with the gospel? Yes we have! There are scores of millions of people—Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, Roman Catholics, and nominal Protestants—who need to hear that Christ is the only ”way, the truth and the life.” And we must go! We may not be the same politically, socially, culturally, or educationally, but they need Christ. May the Lord give me a burning desire for the salvation of soul­s—“a desire like Christ’s own!”