“We Must Do Seven Things to Finish the Great Commission,” Rick Warren Says at Chinese Mission Convention

Rick Warren spoke at the Finishing the Task Conference 2020
Rick Warren spoke at the Finishing the Task Conference 2020 (photo: Screenshot of CMC Global 2020 )
By Karen LuoSeptember 29th, 2020

Last Saturday at the virtual opening of the Chinese Mission Convention Global 2020, Rick Warren shared seven things that need to be done to complete the Great Commission in a recorded video. The evangelism mobilization event urged Chinese Christians worldwide to preach the gospel to the unreached.

Founded 35 years ago, Chinese Mission Convention is an inter-church, inter-denominational missions convention for the local church, through a broad partnership between the local churches, mission organizations, and Ambassador for Christ, equipping Chinese believers and churches to preach the gospel in the Chinese world. 

After the opening lecture given by David Platt online due to COVID-19, the video of the sermon spoke by Dr. Rick Warren, the founder of Saddleback Church, at the Finishing the Task Conference 2020 was replayed. According to its official website, Finishing the Task is a movement of 1,600 churches and organizations coming together to reach the Unengaged, Unreached People Groups(UUPGs). The megachurch pastor claimed that we were closer to preaching the gospel to all nations than ever before. There were still “unreached people,” living in locations where less than two percent of the population is Christian.

Warren, who leads the Purpose Driven Network of Churches, a global coalition of congregations in 162 countries, urged Christians to take seven measures to reach those who speak more than 30,000 different ethnic languages in the world.

Citing Psalm 68:11 and 1 Corinthians 16:24, he said that we must speed up the task of Bible translation. He met ten of the major translation societies across the globe, challenging donors to contribute for Bible translation. In one event 32 million dollars was raised.

Second, he said that we must use every available channel to spread the gospel. This is a principle based on 2 Cor. 9:6: "A few seeds make a small harvest, but a lot of seeds make a big harvest." (CEV) We need to use saturation evangelism, which means using every available means to reach every available person and at every available time. In the parable of the sower, there are four kinds of hearts. The parable implies that at any given time, only 25 percent people around us are receptive to the gospel. So it is our job to spread the most seeds to the most receptive people. Even though there are some hard hearts, God can send a storm of suffering, such as cancer, bankruptcy, or a civil war to soften hearts. When there is chaos, God will move, so we can watch church growth with our own eyes.

Rick added that we must start all kinds of churches to reach all kinds of people. It wrong to think that there is just one way to plant a church because there are thousands of ways to plant and grow a church, according to 1 Corinthians 12:5-6. Having trained half a million pastors, he said God blessed people whom we might disagree with. He suggested to build three types of churches: “rabbit” church, “tiger” church, and “elephant” church.

A “Rabbit” church is similar to a house church where at least two or three people gather together, while a “tiger” church is made up of 120 people that can last because of fellowship. An “Elephant” church refers to a megachurch with more than 2,000 people for the main purpose of services. The first church was a megachurch because 5,000 people were baptized on Pentecost. Based on the pregnancy period of those animals, the simple structure of “rabbit” church can multiply within 30 days, a “tiger” church double in size every three or four months, and a megachurch produces a big “baby” within two or three years.

He said that we must mobilize all kinds of people to plant all kinds of churches and partner together. We also must be united around the Great Commandment and the Great Commission. Actually, there were five “verbs” that summarize these directives: “love God with all your heart, mind, and strength,” “love your neighbor as yourselves, ”go and make disciples of all nations,” “baptize them in the name of the Father, Son, Spirit,” and “teach them to obey everything I have commanded you.” The five “verbs” refer to those five functions of churches: churches that worship, minister, evangelize, fellowship, and teach.

Moreover, Warren urged Christians to empower every believer to follow as everybody is an ambassador of Christ.

The last point was that we must organize people to pray for the fulfillment of the Great Commission. The pastor said the power of God moved on its needs as we were in a spiritual battle. What was more, Jesus also commanded us to pray for more workers because “the harvest is plentiful and the workers are few.” (Matthew 9:37)

related articles
LATEST FROM Church & Ministries