Dr. Martin Seitz – “Going into All the World Includes the World of Those with Psychological Illnesses”
“He [Jesus] said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.’” – Mark 16:15 (NIV)
Whenever Asbury University has a chapel or designated meetings devoted to missions, whether domestic or foreign, I like to remind students that the command to go into all the world doesn’t mean, simply, to go into each geographic region. Revelation 7:9 says, “After this I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language….” All the world really means all people groups of the world. We at Asbury have expanded our understanding of all the world to include all professional/vocational, age, and socioeconomic groups. But I think a full understanding includes people groups who share common characteristics, such as a psychological illness.
The founder of the first national set of support and advocacy groups for persons with mood disorders, such as major depression or bipolar disorder, was a Christian woman who struggled with a mood disorder. She was led to “comfort ... through the comfort with which [she herself] was comforted by God” (2 Cor. 1:4). I believe God calls Christians to minister to those lost in mental illnesses every bit as much as He calls us to minister to those lost in villages and cities.
- Dr. Martin Seitz, Associate Professor of Behavioral Sciences