Motus Dei: The Movement of God to Disciple the Nations

Motus Dei is a very fine book about the biblical basis of praying for “movements to Christ.” What are movements? Movements are large numbers of of non-Christians turning to Christ in surprising brief moments. The Bible says God will whistle, and nations will come swiftly (Isaiah 5:26). Some church leaders have spoken out against movements. I listened as one critic referred to movements as “diabolical.” He should not have said that. I forgave him. Another referred to movement thinking as “gimmicks.” I forgave him as well.

Study the Bible. Study it, and when we do, we will pray to God for movements of non-Christians to become Christians. Consider what God has said in the Bible:

Many nations shall join themselves to the Lord in that day, and they shall be my people; and I will dwell in the midst of all of you, and you shall know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you. Zechariah 2:11

Thus says the Lord of Hosts: Many peoples shall yet come, even the inhabitants of entire cities. The inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying, “Let us go at once and entreat the favor of the Lord, and seek the Lord of hosts. I am going!” Many peoples and strong nations shall come to seek the Lord of hosts in Jerusalem, and to entreat the favor of the Lord. Zechariah 8:20-22

He will lift up a banner to the nations from afar. He will whistle to them from the end of the earth; Surely they shall come with speed, swiftly. Isaiah 5:26

It shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established as the highest of the mountains; It shall be lifted up above the hills. And peoples shall stream up to it. And many nations will come and say, “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the temple of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways, so that we may walk in his paths.” Micah 4:1-2

Here is what we just read: “Many peoples,” “inhabitants of entire cities,” “streams of peoples,” “many nations,” “God will whistle, and the nations will come swiftly.”

Therefore, we are praying for movements to Christ in non-Christian countries. We are praying according to God’s promises. We do not lose heart. Movements are always an answer to prayer. Miraculous movements have occurred among Muslims in the past 30 years.

Here is a graph depicting the entire 14 centuries of Muslim-Christian encounter. For 13 centuries we can count only three movements. That is, until about 1990. In our time more Muslims have come to faith in Christ than all the previous centuries of combined. I think of Samuel Zwemer, the great “apostle to Islam” who thanked God for five converts in his lifetime. Zwemer’s prayer was Luke 5:5—“Lord, we have fished all night and caught nothing, but at your word, we will let down our nets again.” By a miracle, great numbers of fish filled the nets. Today, in a few parts of the non-Christian world, we are seeing what Zwemer longed to see.

Let’s keep praying to the Lord of the harvest. This is what this book is all about. Warrick Farah tells the story of movements to Christ in his superb book, Motus Dei.