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by Frances Ridley Havergal (1836-1879)

Frances Havergal"Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost." Matt. 28:19

"Go" does not mean "send." "Go" does not mean "pray." "Go" means "Go!" simply and literally. Suppose the disciples had been content to take this command as most of us take it! Suppose three or four of them had formed a committee; and the rest had said, "You see if you cannot find a few suitable men to train and send to Rome, and Libya, and Parthia; and we will see what we can do about collecting funds, and anyhow subscribing a penny a week or a pound a year ourselves!" How would the good tidings of great joy, and the glorious news of the resurrection, have spread at that rate? But they did not subscribe; they went! Happily they had not silver and gold to give, so they gave themselves to their LORD and to His great work. JESUS had said, "I have given them Thy word," and very soon "great was the company" (margin-army) "of those that published it", and grand were the results. The company of those that publish the word of our GOD is very small in proportion to the number that are perishing for lack of knowledge. We are so accustomed to hear of the millions of India and China, or of the immense distances of America, that we get hardened to them. We do not take it in, that one man is standing alone among, perhaps, a hundred thousand dying souls; or placed alone in a district of a thousand square miles, with forest and rapid, and days of travelling, between every station in that district. Even from one of the best provided centers of missionary work in India, a friend writes that every missionary she has seen, whether clerical, lay, or lady-worker, has work enough of his or her own to divide "immediately" among, at least, six more, if they would only come. Yet our LORD'S very last command was "Go!"

The company is still smaller in proportion to those who might go if they only had the heart to go. Setting aside those who have not sought or found CHRIST for themselves, and who do not care to hear or read about these things, and those to whom the LORD has definitely closed this door by unmistakable circumstantial guidance, there must be, as a mere matter of figures, thousands of young Christians who might go, or put themselves in training for going. Yes, thousands, who have "freely received" salvation for themselves, but are not ready to "freely give" themselves to their Saviour's one great work; not ready even to take the matter into consideration; not ready even to think of turning aside out of their chosen profession or comfortable home course. Yet the command, the last that ever fell from His gracious lips before He went up from the scene of His sufferings for us, still rings on, and it is, "Go!" And He said, "If ye love Me keep My commandments."—From Marching Orders.

From The Evangelisation of the World: A Missionary Band... 2nd ed. London: Morgan & Scott, [1885?].

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