Although there are other people groups unreached by the Gospel all over the earth, Islam is the single largest group – with over 1.8 billion adherents. All of these people are loved by God, who desires that they may come to repentance, receive forgiveness and enter into His goodness. This is the Good News or Gospel. Jesus commanded that this Gospel be preached to all nations (Luke 24: 47 ff) but at that time, the power to preach this repentance had not been given, so the disciples were told to remain at Jerusalem to receive the Promise of being clothed with “power from on high”. In Luke’s follow-up account, the Promise was clearly fulfilled with the immediate manifestation of God’s power on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1-8) and the subsequent miracles recorded in following chapters.
As God prospered the gospel, the number of the disciples greatly increased. However, the Apostles were faced with two challenges:
- The first, of preaching the Word in the midst of clear opposition and persecution
- The second was that of how to look after those who believed and were added to their number daily (Acts chapter 6)