“Here is the motive of our mission: the final victory awaits the completion of our task. ‘And then the end will come.’ There is no other verse in the Word of God which says, ‘And then the end will come.’
When is Christ coming again? When the Church has finished its task. When will This Age end? When the world has been evangelized.
‘What will be the sign of Your coming and of the close of the age?’ (Matt. 24:3). ‘This gospel of the kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations; and then, AND THEN, the end will come.’
When? Then; when the Church has fulfilled its divinely appointed mission. Do you love the Lord’s appearing? Then you will bend every effort to take the gospel into all the world.
It troubles me in the light of the clear teaching of God’s Word, in the light of our Lord’s explicit definition of our task in The Great Commission, that we take it so lightly. ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me.’ This is the Good News of the Kingdom….
His is the kingdom; He reigns in heaven, and He manifests His reign on earth in and through His church. When we have accomplished our mission, He will return and establish His kingdom in glory.
To us it is given not only to wait for but also to hasten the coming of the day of God. This is the mission of the Gospel of the Kingdom, and this is our mission.”
–George E. Ladd, The Gospel of the Kingdom (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1959), 139-140.