Go and Tell or Come and See?

“And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15 NKJV).

All the synoptic gospels end with a commandment to go into all the world with the good news. For the disciples, who were Jews, this was a new thing. They were used to a “come and see strategy”. The Queen of Sheba came to Jerusalem to see for herself if the “rumours” were true concerning the temple of God (1 Kings 10:1-13; cf. Acts 8:26-40). In that dispensation, people were to “come and see”. After Israel’s rejection of their Messiah, Jesus told His disciples about the Church, a brand new entity, not known in the Old Testament times (Matt 16:18; Eph 3:1-21; 1 Pet 1:10-12). This new work, including both Jews and Gentiles, would also bring a new evangelistic strategy – a “go and tell strategy”.  

Unfortunately, many Christians still adhere to the “come and see strategy” of the Old Testament, focusing on “persuasive palaces” with “exciting entertainment”. This is in the hope that people will believe if they can “come and see”. In the New Testament times God has chosen to save people through the foolishness of preaching (Rom 10:14-15;1 Cor 1:21). In the coming kingdom age, God will return to a “come and see strategy” and the nations will again be travelling to Jerusalem (Micah 4:1-2; Zech 8:22-23). But for now, God has chosen for us the “go and tell strategy” – let us go!