by A.W. Tozer
Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him. Psalm 37:7a
The popular notion that the first obligation of the church is to spread the gospel to the uttermost parts of the earth is false. Her first obligation is to be spiritually worthy to spread it. Our Lord said “Go,” but He also said “Wait,” and the waiting had to come before the going. Had the disciples gone forth as missionaries before the day of Pentecost, it would have been an overwhelming spiritual disaster, for they could have done no more than make converts after their own likeness, and this would have altered for the worse the whole history of the Western world and had consequences throughout the ages to come.
To spread an effete, degenerate brand of Christianity to pagan lands is not to fulfill the commandment of Christ or to discharge our obligation to the heathen. These terrible words of Jesus haunt my soul: “You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as you are” (Matthew 23:15).
To win men of Judaism from among the Gentile nations was altogether a good and right thing to do. Thousands of happy converts were won to the religion of Moses during the years of Israel’s spiritual ascendancy; but at the time of Christ Judaism had sunk so low that her missionary effort wrought actual harm instead of good.
by A.W. Tozer