JACKSON, Tenn. – Sept. 25, 2012 – While many of the homes in which Union University students grew up have more Bibles in them than people, more than 1.7 billion people around the world have little or no access to the gospel, Chuck Lawless said during Global Opportunities Week at Union.
Lawless, vice president of global theological advance for the International Mission Board, spoke in chapel addresses Sept. 17 and Sept. 19 in G.M. Savage Memorial Chapel as part of the weeklong emphasis on missional living.
Today’s world is needy, dangerous and overwhelming, and yet God very intentionally and directly calls Christians to do what appears to be impossible to reach the nations with the gospel, Lawless said.
Turning to several passages in the Old Testament for evidence, Lawless said God has often led his people under a battle plan that focused on his power, not on theirs.
“(God) put his people in a place that made little sense,” Lawless said. “He said, ‘I want you to go into a battle, but do it my way.’ Remember this word: the battle is not yours, but God's.”
Lawless said that living with a missions mindset can be daunting, but the account in the Old Testament of David slaying Goliath shows that God uses weak people to make his name known.
“God uses the shepherd boy that the nations may hear that there is a God in Israel,” Lawless said. “This is the way God operates. God calls us to do what we cannot do.”
Union alumnus Shane Critser, the North American Mission Board’s team leader for church mobilization, gave the Sept. 21 chapel address. He said that North America needs missionaries just as much as other areas of the world because of the decreasing percentage of Christians in the continent and the growing worldwide influence of North American nations.
Audio of all three chapel addresses is available at www.uu.edu/audio.
By Samantha Adams (’13)