II. Spy out the Land
Step one on your journey to reach a country with the gospel is to learn all you can about the country. Many missionaries fail not for a lack of ability or knowledge but for lack of a strategy. They do not know what they are going to do. They have a good heart. They want to do right but since they do not what to do, how to do it, or what they are facing they go to the field and do not accomplish what they really wanted to accomplish.
Before you go as a missionary you must know something about the country where you are going. The idea of spying out the land is not something that we developed but comes straight from God’s Word!
In Numbers 13:1-3 we see that God told Moses to spy out the land. “And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Send thou men, that they may search the land of Canaan, which I give unto the children of Israel: of every tribe of their fathers shall ye send a man, every one a ruler among them. And Moses by the commandment of the LORD sent them from the wilderness of Paran: all those men were heads of the children of Israel.” In Numbers 13:18-20 we see: “And see the land, what it is; and the people that dwelleth therein, whether they be strong or weak, few or many; And what the land is that they dwell in, whether it be good or bad; and what cities they be that they dwell in, whether in tents, or in strong holds; And what the land is, whether it be fat or lean, whether there be wood therein, or not. And be ye of good courage, and bring of the fruit of the land. Now the time was the time of the first ripe grapes.”
1. They were to search out the land.
2. The spies were men, rulers, heads of the children of Israel, leaders
3. There were to check out the people.
4. They were to develop a strategy to conquer the land.
You will be completely unable to develop a strategy and know how to go about reaching your country without knowing all you can about the area. We need to have the attitude that a general would have or a man of war. You don’t go where you do not know what is there and how it is happening. Before you leave for the field you need to investigate your country and know at least the following things about your country.
∑ The geography of the country.
o Crops that are produced
o Type of roads
∑ The politics and history of the country
o Type of government
o Social development
o Attitude towards the government
o Attitude towards North Americans
o Communism, socialism, democracy
o Respect for the law
o History of unrest
o How the country functions
o How the country got to where it is
∑ The economics and development of the country
o Salary of the people
o Menu that the people have
o Type of housing
o Health, hospitals etc
o Banking, how will you get money,
o How stable is the economy
o Main source of income
∑ The demographics
o Where do the people live
o How are the classes divided
o How many have cars, telephones, TVs, cell phones, etc
∑ The psychology
o What they are like
o Are they organized
o Open or closed
o Warm or cold
o Trusting or distrusting
o Family situation
o Attitude towards missionaries.
o What have missionaries done that has caused hard feelings and problems
∑ The spiritual condition
o How many fundamental independent Baptist Churches are there in the city
o What missionaries are working in the city, from what boards, what type of ministry do they have
o What national missionaries are working in the city
o Christian bookstores?
o Christian radio or television?
o Other types of churches and ministries in the city or area
o History of missions in the country
o Church history in the country
∑ What you will need to know to live there as comfortably as possible