▪ In the Bible, we find this command of Jesus to his followers: “Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, . . . teaching them.” (Matthew 28:19, 20) Does this apply to all Christians? Jesus’ earliest disciples understood that it does. For example, the apostle Peter stated: “He [Jesus] ordered us to preach to the people and to give a thorough witness.” (Acts 10:42) And the apostle Paul wrote: “Necessity is laid upon me. Really, woe is me if I did not declare the good news!”—1 Corinthians 9:16.
Not only Paul and Peter but also first-century Christians in general acted on Jesus’ command. They made preaching the hallmark of their activity. (Acts 5:28-32, 41, 42) Jehovah’s Witnesses today endeavor to do so as well. They preach the same message as Jesus did, namely, “the kingdom of the heavens.”—Matthew 10:7.
To whom should the Kingdom message be preached? Jesus indicated that it should be preached to all people everywhere. He told his disciples: “You will be witnesses of me . . . to the most distant part of the earth.” (Acts 1:8) He even foretold that before the end of this system arrives, “this good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness.” (Matthew 24:14) Accordingly, first-century Christians strove to speak with all people, not just personal acquaintances or individuals without a religion. (Colossians 1:23; 1 Timothy 2:3, 4) Likewise, Jehovah’s Witnesses today try to reach everyone. *
What is the most effective way to spread the Kingdom message? Jesus, who knew how to reach as many as possible, sent his disciples to cities, villages, and homes of the people. (Matthew 10:7, 11, 12) After Jesus’ death and resurrection, his disciples continued to preach “from house to house.” (Acts 5:42) As Jesus did, they too preached in informal settings and in public places. (John 4:7-26; 18:20; Acts 17:17) Today, Jehovah’s Witnesses use those same methods to preach to all people.
Jesus indicated that not everyone would listen. (Matthew 10:14; 24:37-39) Should that deter Christians from preaching? Consider this comparison: If you were part of a rescue team following a severe earthquake, would you stop searching simply because after a while only a few survivors were being found? No, you would persist as long as there was hope of saving one person. Jesus instructed his disciples to persevere as long as there is hope of finding some who will respond to the good news about God’s Kingdom. (Matthew 10:23; 1 Timothy 4:16) By searching out such ones from house to house, Jehovah’s Witnesses show love for God and for their neighbors, whose lives depend on hearing and responding to the Kingdom message.—Matthew 22:37-39; 2 Thessalonians 1:8.
The magazine you are reading conveys that Bible message. For more information, please speak with Jehovah’s Witnesses the next time they call, or write to the publisher of this magazine.
^ par. 5 Jehovah’s Witnesses are currently preaching in 236 lands. Last year, they spent 1.7 billion hours in the preaching work and conducted 8.5 million home Bible studies worldwide.