Supporting missionaries is important because it is God’s purpose in this world that new churches are established and new believers are brought to Christ through the work of missions. Missions are often thought of as overseas work, but missionary work can also be done in our own country.
- The example of the early church. In Acts 1:8, after His resurrection, Jesus told the believers to carry the Gospel message “unto the uttermost parts of the earth”.
- Missionaries are dependent on churches for finances, resources and prayer. In 2 Thessalonians 3:1 Paul says that the church should pray for the missionaries so that God’s Word would be effective in the lives of the believers. In Romans 10:15, Paul reminds us that preachers must be sent. Current believers have the responsibility to support those who are going into the world with the Gospel.
- Missionaries work on behalf of their supporting churches. In the book of Philippians, the great missionary Paul wrote to the church to thank them for their support for his ministry. Because of the gifts of the Philippian believers, Paul said that God would credit the fruit of his ministry to the account of the church at Philippi.
- People need to hear the good news of salvation through Jesus Christ. God is not willing that any should perish (2 Peter 3:9). As a church, we are able to pool our resources to help fund the spread of the Gospel throughout the world.
- Jesus requested prayer for labourers to be sent to the harvest (Matthew 9:38). When Jesus looked upon the multitude of people, he saw a great harvest of souls, people who were ready to hear and receive the Gospel. It is necessary for missionaries to go and do this great work.
- Jesus commanded us to go and teach all nations. In Matthew 28:19,20 Jesus said to go into all the world with the Gospel, teach the hearers and baptise believers.
- What can I do? Even if you are not called to be a missionary on a foreign field, you can help the cause of missions through the local church. This support can be by prayer, finances, or labour.