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Missions 101

Simply in Obedience to Jesus

Feb. 15, 2012By: Ben StaffordAuthor Bio

Last week, in this series on the motives for evangelism we looked at the apostles and saw that one of their motives was a sense of the need of others, exhibiting itself in love and compassion for them. 

This week we look no further than Jesus' final words to the apostles:

Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.”45 Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, 46 and said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead,47and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.48You are witnesses of these things.49And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high. (Luke 24:44-49)

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth. (Acts 1:8)

After living with Jesus for years, what could the disciples do but obey his Great Commission?  They certainly had other motives yet duty was one of them. 

The sense of duty to obey the call of God also explains the lives and work of men like David Brainerd and George Whitefield, who travelled far and wide in their call and faithfulness as steward of the Gospel.

Ben Stafford is the Director of Short-Term Ministries, overseeing the logistics and vision of all the short-term trips as well as representing TLI to students, teachers, and other organizations. Before joining TLI, Ben was the Director of Programs at the Foundation for Economic Education where he oversaw the educational events geared towards high school and college students. His work primarily involved strategic planning, managing, and measuring the department’s resources and results, bringing the programs department to a new level. Previously, he worked as a research intern for two summers at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. He still teaches students of all ages about business and economics on the side.

Ben graduated in 2008 from Hillsdale College with a degree with Economics. He enjoys real food, barefoot runs, playing classical guitar, climbing mountains, and international travel. More than all these, he echoes the sentiment of Jonathan Edwards in that God’s purpose for his life is that he have a passion for God’s glory and that he has a passion for his joy in that glory, and that these two are one passion.

He currently resides in Atlanta, GA where he is actively involved with the saints at Perimeter Church.

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Tags:  evangelism, missions, great commission
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