Abstract: Matthew 24:14 teaches us to preach the gospel in a way in which present-day workers and missionaries fall far, far short.
Matthew 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.
The gospel of the kingdom of course must be preached in the whole world exactly as Jesus did—and as he taught and commanded his disciples in the gospels.
How did Jesus teach his disciples to preach the gospel?
Luke 9:1 When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, 2 and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. …6 So they set out and went from village to village, proclaiming the good news and healing people everywhere.
Luke 10:1 After this the Lord appointed seventy-two[a] others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go. …9 Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ …17 The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.”
It should go without saying (especially for non-cessationist evangelicals) that “the gospel of the kingdom must be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations” exactly as Jesus commanded his disciples. His command is of course still valid today.
The problem of course is that up until the present time we are not preaching the gospel exactly as Jesus commands us, but rather in accordance with traditional missionary models which typically involve humanitarian and social good works.
Yes, the political and cultural environments in which present-day missionaries operate differ considerably from what the early disciples faced in the First Century AD. Some might even say that resistance to the gospel today is greater than it was back then in Acts.
If so, how much more do we need the dimension of the miraculous today when preaching the gospel of the kingdom as compelling and irrefutable evidence to resistant peoples that Jesus is the Messiah and the only way to our Father in heaven!
If we are going to fulfill Matthew 24:14 during the remaining short time, we must be trained to preach the gospel of the kingdom exactly as Jesus commanded his disciples—and as he commands us today.
This is precisely the calling of The Elijah Challenge.