Evangelisatie, prediking

"En dit Evangelie van het Koninkrijk zal in heel de wereld gepredikt worden tot een getuigenis voor alle volken; en dan zal het einde komen. 

"Ga dan heen, onderwijs al de volken, hen dopend in de Naam van de Vader en van de Zoon en van de Heilige Geest, hun lerend alles wat Ik u geboden heb, in acht te nemen.” Matt. 28:19.

"Het Evangelie, dat u gehoord hebt, dat gepredikt is in de hele schepping die onder de hemel is,” Kol. 1:23.


From Jerusalem, twelve men went out into the world. These were uneducated and of no ability in speaking. But by the power of God, they proclaimed to every race of men that they were sent by Christ to teach the word of God to everyone. Justin Martyr (c. 160, E), 1.175.

“His blood I will require at your hand. But if you warn him, you will be innocent.” For this reason, out of fear, we are very earnest in desiring to witness according to the Scriptures—but not from love of money, of glory, or of pleasure. Justin Martyr (c. 160, E), 1.240.

There is not one single race of men, whether barbarians, or Greeks, or whatever they may be called—whether nomads, vagrants, or herdsmen living in tents—among whom prayers and giving of thanks are not offered through the name of the crucified Jesus. Justin Martyr (c. 160, E), 1.258.

The church having received this preaching and this faith, although scattered throughout the whole world, yet, as if occupying but one house, carefully preserves it. . . . For the churches which have been planted in Germany do not believe or hand down anything different, nor do those in Spain, nor those in Gaul, nor those in the East, nor those in Egypt, nor those in Libya, nor those which have been established in the central regions of the world. But just as the sun, that creation of God, is one and the same throughout the whole world, so also the preaching of the truth shines everywhere, and enlightens all men who are willing to come to a knowledge of the truth. Irenaeus (c. 180, E/W), 1.330, 331. 

After our Lord rose from the dead, the apostles were empowered from on high when the Holy Spirit came down [upon them]. They were completely filled and had perfect knowledge. They departed to the ends of the earth, preaching the glad tidings of the good things sent from God to us. Irenaeus (c. 180, E/W), 1.414.

To which course, many nations of those barbarians who believe in Christ do assent, having salvation written in their hearts by the Spirit. Without paper or ink, they carefully preserve the ancient tradition. . . . Those who have believed this faith without any written documents are barbarians as to language. But as to doctrine, manner, and tenor of life, they are, because of faith, very wise indeed. Irenaeus (c. 180, E/W), 1.417.

The word of our Teacher did not remain in Judea alone—as philosophy did in Greece. Rather, it was diffused over the whole world, over every nation, village, and town. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.520.

His disciples [the twelve apostles and Paul] also, spreading over the world, did as their Divine Master commanded them.
Tertullian (c. 197, W), 3.35.

We see that the voice of the apostles of Jesus has gone forth into all the earth, and their words to the end of the world.
Origen (c. 248, E), 4.424.

[Celsus, the pagan critic] says, “If all men wished to become Christians, the latter would not desire such a result.” Now, that this statement is false is clear from this: that Christians do not neglect (as far as in them lies) to take steps to disseminate their doctrine throughout the whole world. Accordingly, some of them have made it their business to travel not only through cities, but even to villages and rural houses in order to make converts to God. And no one would claim that they did this for the sake of gain. For sometimes they would not accept even necessary sustenance. Or, if at any time they were pressed by a necessity of this sort, they were content with the mere supplying of their needs. Origen (c. 248, E), 4.468.

We do desire to instruct all men in the word of God, so as to give to young men the exhortations that are appropriate to them. We desire to show to slaves how they may recover freedom of thought and be ennobled by the Word. And those among us who are the ambassadors of Christianity sufficiently declare that they are “debtors to Greeks and barbarians, to wise men and fools.” Origen (c. 248, E), 4.485.

The Word of God declares that the preaching is not sufficient to reach the human heart (even though it may be true and worthy of belief), unless a certain power is imparted to the speaker from God. Origen (c. 248, E), 4.573.

There are some who are capable of receiving nothing more than an exhortation to believe. To these, that is all we address. However, we approach others, to the extent possible, in the way of demonstration by means of questions and answers. Origen (c. 248, E), 4.577.

© OTR 2023