If You Build It, They Will Come

John Koedyker

READ : Matthew 28:11-20

One of the hardest things for Christians to learn is that nowhere in the Bible are we instructed to say to the world, “Come to church.” For years believers have thought that all we have to do is open the doors of the church and people will come. To borrow the words of a well-known movie, “If you build it, they will come!” Although that may have been true at one time, it is not now.

When we read the New Testament, we see that we have often had it backwards. The world is not to come to us; we are to go to the world. That is what Jesus tells us in today’s Scripture lesson. Unfortunately, when we hear these words we think of missionaries serving God in faraway places. We praise God for our missionaries who do that, but we also realize that most of us will never have such an opportunity. Nevertheless, we have a responsibility to go into an increasingly secular North American world that is without Christ. All around us are people who need to know Christ and His love the waitress at the restau- rant, the bank teller, the cashier at the grocery store.

In the New Testament, it is clear that Jesus usually did not have to go out of his way to help someone. He just seems to have walked along and reached out to those who crossed His path. For Jesus, witnessing was not a program, but a way of life.


Lord, help me to fulfill the Great Commission where I live. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.