These are statements, I was told, came from a tribal man who met with missionaries about the possibility of a missionary team moving in to learn their language and culture, for the purpose of sharing a clear Gospel message with them.
When he heard that they would need to learn his language, that was his response. Looking back at this story that I heard, I have to say that I agree 100% with this man. This idea of being “reborn” has plagued my heart and mind quite frequently as of late.
While we are here at the missionary training center, it seems that the more training we receive, the more we realize how difficult the task at hand is. It’s no wonder that Jesus said to pray for more laborers in Luke 10:2.
We are constantly being reminded of how important it is to realize that we think much differently than people from unreached people groups do. At times, I will admit, this realization becomes very discouraging. As we look ahead at the years of literal blood, sweat, and tears, we wonder to ourselves, “God if you really cared so much about these people, why did you make it so difficult?”
And then I begin to realize to what great lengths His own Son went for us. Understanding that He Himself was reborn as one of us, that He might reconcile us back to Himself. And that we can hold on to the promise that we read about in Revelation 7:8, which says that there will be people from every tribe, tongue, and nation.
A missionary named Scott Phillips said, “…this verse is an encouragement to me because God has a commitment to His name. And His commitment is even greater than our commitment.” In discussing some of these thoughts with one of my instructors, he said, “That’s what it means to have the love of Christ compelling us. It’s not missions, it’s God’s love for the world.”
I believe that Christ was NEVER obligated to do anything for us. And yet starting in Matthew 1:18, we begin to find a baby boy named Jesus who was reborn for the sake of the world.
A teacher in Bible school once asked me, “What are you willing to become, in order to take part in what God is doing around the world?” Will I make minor outward changes? Or am I really willing to be reborn for the sake of the Gospel going to every tribe, tongue, and nation?