Morning Mashup 04/10

Morning Mashup

A daily mashup of book recommendations, articles, and videos for your information, edification, and enjoyment.


BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS

This Is Our Time: Everyday Myths in Light of the Gospel | TREVIN WAX

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12 Ways Your Phone Is Changing You | TONY REINKE

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ARTICLES

REMEMBERING THE RURAL | CANON FODDER

Michael Kruger: In recent years, this interest in the urban has sometimes turned into a superiorityof the urban, and even a disdain of the rural. Those who are a part of urban churches can sometimes project an attitude, even unwittingly, that urban centers are where “real” ministry happens.

ARE SHORT TERM MISSION TRIPS VALUABLE | EPM

Randy Alcorn‘s answer to the question, “Wouldn’t it be better just to take the money spent on short-term trips and send it to the mission field instead?”

THE OBSCENITY OF THE CROSS AND THE TRUTH OF THE GOSPEL | TPJ

Timothy Paul Jones: These forsaken bodies—the vast majority of the victims of Roman crucifixion—remained on their crosses to be consumed. Thus their remains disintegrated into the dust of the Roman Empire. But the case of Jesus—a Jew, crucified near Jerusalem on the eve of a popular religious festival—doesn’t fit this pattern.

WHY YOU MAY BE MISREADING SCRIPTURE | LOGOS

Tyler Smith: When we come to familiar passages, like the Easter story, we are tempted to rely more on our memory of the story and less on the text of Scripture itself.

RAISING EXPECTATIONS FOR YOUNG BELIEVERS| REFORMED MARGINS

Erik Odegard: There are young believers throughout our churches who are capable to be trusted with significant responsibilities, gospel labors, and growing in grace.  I pray that we would recognize that God has gifted young believers for the edification of our churches (1 Corinthians 12:7), raise our expectations of them, sharpen them training, and entrust them with significant tasks.

5 LESSONS FROM FALLEN PASTORS | ERIC GEIGER

Eric Geiger: As pastors are removed from ministry, the implications on churches and families are far-reaching. Here are five lessons from a season of fallen pastors, a season that has, at times, felt epidemic.

VIDEOS

Russell Westbrook Game-Winning Buzzer Beater | NBA

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Proper Posture and the Great Commission

And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20 ESV)

This is the Great Commission of Matthew’s gospel, given by Jesus as a final command to his disciples. It is a command to make disciples and uses three participles to designate the manner that is to be accomplished: going, baptizing, and teaching. This passage is extremely integral to the church, since it is a command to spread the good news of Jesus so that it may save souls and transform lives by making men and women into disciples of Jesus Christ.

However important the contents may be for the commission, though, the authority given to it is what determines its importance. It may be a good command, but if there is no authority behind it, it is not as important of a command. For example, If a young child tells another child not to eat a lot of sweets, that child is not likely to obey that command. By the same token, if that same child’s mother tells him not to eat a lot of sweets, he is likely (or at least more likely) to abstain from them. This is why Jesus prefaces the Great Commission with, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.” The weight of the command is determined and accentuated by the the magnitude of the greatness of the one proclaiming it. Therefore, since Jesus has been given categorically all power in heaven and on earth, his command bears immeasurable weight.

This is where the posture of the disciple’s heart enters consideration. Even if the weight of the command is immeasurably heavy, keeping it still requires submission. If a man desires discipleship under Jesus, he must submit himself humbly to Christ’s authority. I believe that the way a person submits to Christ is divided generally into two ways.

  1. Understand that Jesus is greater than you.

There are many people who treat Christ flippantly: “Jesus is my BFF.” “Jesus and I are tight.” This attitude shows a true disassociation with who Jesus is. He is God the Son, the Second Person of the Trinity. He has been given all power in heaven and on earth. He will return to judge the entire world in absolute righteousness. He is mighty, and he demands worship. Yes, we have a friend in Jesus, but do not forget that he is God.

In Mark chapter 4, Mark writes of Jesus’ disciples meeting a great storm on the sea. They wake Jesus up, he rebukes the storm, and it ceases. The disciples respond thus: “And they were filled with great fear and said to one another, ‘Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?’” They were filled with great fear. Jesus’ closest companions felt great fear when confronted with his greatness, yet we might have the audacity to treat him flippantly? God forbid.

This means you must realize that Jesus supersedes you. He is greater than you. He was sinless; you are sinful. He is powerful; you are weak. He is wise; you are foolish. If you want to fulfill the Great Commission, it is fundamentally true that you must submit to Christ and understand that he is greater than you.

  1. Value Jesus’ will as greater than your own.

This is an integral part of submitting to Christ. Valuing Jesus’ will this way is important, because it both reveals a true love for him (by keeping his commandments and valuing his word) and a respect for his wisdom by understanding the perfections of his will.

Submitting t0 Christ means surrendering your will, and Christ is clear about this. He says quite famously that anyone who loves their mother or father more than him is not worthy of him (Matthew 10:37). You must deny yourself of your own desires and your own view of perfection in favor of Christ’s. You cannot serve both yourself and Christ.

In fact, this is part of any real relationship. Wills between parties conflict in relationships, and part of the resolution to this conflict is that one party must show deference to the other. This is true of a Redeemer-redeemed covenant relationship too. Jesus’ words and ways will conflict with your will. Yet, this conflict is a true test of discipleship. Will you be stubborn, or will you yield to the immaculate Christ? If you will not, do not pretend that he is your God. Christ will not be bent to the will of men, perpetually permitting their behavior. If you will not bend to the will of Christ, he is not your God; he is an therapeutic idealization of a god, an idol of the mind.

Therefore, it takes both understanding Christ’s surpassing greatness and valuing his will over your own. If you do not think he is greater than you, his words are unlikely to inspire any real change in your thought or behavior. If you do not value his will over your own, you are unlikely to carry out any of those commands. But if you submit to him by realizing his greatness and valuing his will, his words will be like sweet honey and you will be in a great hurry to fulfill his commandments.

This summary returns us then to the Great Commission. It is obvious that there is a direct relationship between submission to Christ and following his commandments. This is a commandment of Christ. Now that you have evaluated your love for him and the value of his will, it is time to ask: Will you fulfill this commandment?


Avery Thorn is from Belmont, MS. He is a junior at Blue Mountain College, where he is a Biblical Studies major and a History minor. He is a member of Belmont First Baptist Church. He has a passion for preaching and studying Scripture. Avery’s hobbies include exercising, music, politics, reading, writing, and making and enjoying coffee. You can follow Avery on Twitter @Avery_thorn.

Morning Mashup 08/01

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A daily mashup of Kindle deals, articles, and videos for your information, edification, and enjoyment.


KINDLE DEALS

Atheism Remix: A Christian Confronts the New Atheists | Albert Mohler | $3.99

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What’s Best Next: How the Gospel Transforms the Way You Get Things Done | Matt Perman | $3.99

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ARTICLES

A Good Man Justifies a Wicked Deed: Grudem on Trump | John Mark Reynolds

We are not an age that likes absolutes. We temper, we hedge, we do not want to say a good man is doing a bad thing because we do not like conflict. I am thankful that a good man, Professor Grudem, has made his views known: he asserts a good man can vote for Donald Trump and, in fact, probably should. Sadly, his arguments are bad, his advice worse, and the outcome will be disaster.

Can You Vote for Donald Trump with a Clear Conscience? | Andy Naselli

If Donald Trump is the Republican nominee for President of the United States, can you vote for him with a clear conscience? This election cycle may force conservatives—especially religious, social conservatives—to answer that question.

The Excommunicated Member Who Thanked Me | Bob Thune

Six years ago, our elders put Jack under church discipline. Last week, he thanked me for it.

Albert Mohler and Russell Moore Explain Why They Can’t Support Trump | Caffeinated Thoughts

Albert MohlerThe first time I met Bill Clinton was hours after I had been on the O’Reilly Factor calling on him to resign, and that was a quintessential awkward moment, but I was right in terms of the issues. But I could not possibly be consistent and somehow vote for someone whose character I believe eclipses Bill Clinton on so many of those very same concerns. Someone who has bragged about his adulterous affairs, someone who has given himself to the pornographic industry, basically to a form of the sex trade, and let’s just go on. In other words, I can’t being single-issue dispositive does not give an adequate political grid for when you go out. Because character is pretty much and also how prolife someone supposedly is after being so pro-abortion that they actually supported partial birth abortion.

The Story of Iran’s Church in Two Sentences | TGC

Everyone loves a good story. As Christians, we especially love stories that tell us how, when all seems lost, God makes a way. One such story is about the church in Iran—and it’s one of the greatest stories in the world today. It’s a simple story that can be summarized in just two sentences: Persecution threatened to wipe out Iran’s tiny church. Instead, the church in Iran has become the fastest growing in the world, and it is influencing the region for Christ.

3 Types of Legalism | R.C. Sproul

Have you, as a Christian, ever been accused of legalism? That word is often bandied about in the Christian subculture incorrectly. For example, some people might call John a legalist because they view him as narrow-minded. But the term legalism does not refer to narrow-mindedness. In reality, legalism manifests itself in many subtle ways.

VIDEOS

 

Morning Mashup 06/03

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A mashup of Kindle deals, articles, and videos for your information, edification, and enjoyment.


KINDLE DEALS

ARTICLES

Fearfully and Autistically Made | Valerie Dunham

“In my experience, autism isn’t simply the narrowing of relationships to people and the outside world; it is the altering of relationships to people and the outside world. Perhaps that’s something that needs to be accepted, not cured.”

Embracing Liturgy in a Digital Age | David Roark

“As we embrace the liturgical practices of centuries past, I fear we’ll forget we live in the 21st century. When used discerningly, today’s technological innovations can both bolster our discipleship efforts and provide new platforms from which we can proclaim and embody the gospel.”

My Husband Doesn’t Put the Kids to Bed, And It’s Really Okay | Melissa Edington

“During the course of our seventeen years of marriage, my responsibilities and Chad’s have shifted and changed. In life, you adapt to your current circumstances, and marriages have to adapt as well.”

Evangelical Leaders: Tell Us to Vote for Clinton | Nick Rodriguez

An interesting perspective with which I’m inclined to disagree. Yet, it’s important to consider. Whether you agree or not, the motivation is valid.

5 Reasons to Read Missionary Biographies to Your Children | Christina Fox

“One evening, I was reading a different genre than usual. As I neared the end of the book, my eyes started to burn. I blinked and my vision blurred. Before I knew it, tears were streaming down my face. This was unusual for story time. I turned to my son, handed him the book, and whispered, “Can you finish, please?” He took over reading for me while I sat there in tears. We were reading a biography of Nate Saint.”

My Carefully Considered Views on the Upcoming Presidential Election | Alan Jacobs

“The Republican capitulation to Trump — complete with rhetorical reversals, especially on the part of Marco Rubio, that rival or perhaps even exceed any Trumpian schizo-inversions — marks the end of that party as a coherent and non-laughable body. If I were thirty I could imagine its renewal in my lifetime. I haven’t been thirty for a loooong time. So long, GOP. It was sucky knowing you.”

VIDEOS

Morning Mashup 06/02

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A mashup of Kindle deals, articles, and videos for your information, edification, and enjoyment.


KINDLE DEALS

ARTICLES

50+ Things You Miss Out On By Not Attending Church | Kevin Halloran

Unfortunately, for many in more comfortable settings, church isn’t a priority. Sleep, your kid’s soccer game, Netflix, football, or the lake house take priority, pushing church to the margins of life—if not out altogether. When we push God’s agenda and people out of our lives, we reap the consequences.

Alarmism and Transgendered Kids | Rod Dreher

Ten, twenty years from now, there are going to be a lot of maimed, broken people staggering around. This episode in history will be looked back on with horror. We will wonder how we gave in to such madness, and harmed so many people, or allowed them to harm themselves. Doctors, activists, celebrities, the media, and politicians will bear so much guilt, but probably little blame. It will all go down the memory hole. Progressives in the future will say of the transgender madness, “How were we to know?”

Why Abortion Makes Sense | Jonathan Leeman and Matthew Arbo

Is it any wonder, then, that pro-choicers call the entity inside a woman’s womb—well, what shall one call it? A fetus? Organic tissue? Uterine contents? A clump of cells? A part of the woman’s own body, like an appendix?

The Most Important Reason We Work | Phillip Holmes

Many lack a basic theology of work and, therefore, assume that work is a product of the fall. But God designed humanity to work from the beginning. We work because our Creator works, and we’re made in his image, to reflect him.

Play Hard | Jared C. Wilson

Why is playing hard so important? Because in our play we create and imagine and therefore tap into the very creative heart of God. We echo his story with our narratives of play. This is why on the playground little boys are playing cops and robbers or doing battle and little girls are playing house. They are vanquishing evil, subduing the earth, building civilization.

Most Common Mistakes Pastors and Church Leaders Make on Social Media | Jonathan Howe

Earlier this year I wrote about social media mistakes that churches make. Those were quite general and involved church communications. And while there is some overlap with personal social media accounts, there are some distinct mistakes made by church leaders that are typically not made by church accounts.

VIDEOS

Disney and Pixar Sings Hello | Brian Hull

The Biggest Misconception About Caring for Someone with Special Needs | Paul Martin

 

Morning Mashup 07/31

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A mashup of articles for your information, edification, entertainment, and enjoyment.


 

How I Changed My Mind About Abortion – Great confessional article from a feminist who changed her mind about abortion.

From Hashtags to Healing – Dan Darling encourages pastors to lead their congregations in how they should respond to Planned Parenthood and abortion: “Pastors should not shy away from stewarding their influence and addressing this issue. They should model for their people how to think and act in this cultural moment.”

Is Cecil the Lion More Devastating than the Planned Parenthood Videos? – Best thing I’ve read all week. Karen Swallow Prior nails it.

The Dangerous Calling of Christian Missions – Albert Mohler comments on the rising, but historical danger inherent to Christian missions: “This world is indeed a dangerous place — Jesus told us that it would be so. With the rise of both militant Islam and the velocity of secularization in the West, Christians cannot afford to remain silent and cease proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ. “

What Can You Do About Planned Parenthood? – Information and advice for contacting congressmen about Planned Parenthood.

Praying As Though Lives Depend On It – An open letter from Heath Lambert to the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors: “I want to invite you to join me and the staff at ACBC in a season of prayer and fasting on Monday, August 3. We will be praying that God would shatter the American culture of death, that he would save innocent lives, that he would protect women from the pain and sin of abortion, and that the representatives of our government would be overwhelmed with a desire to withhold funds from such a wicked organization.”

Whom Do Evangelical Insiders Favor in 2016? – WORLD Magazine reveals polls showing who evangelical leaders are favoring so far for the presidency in 2016.

The Lion’s Roar – Dan Dumas: “If an alien landed on earth this week and surveyed the mainstream television news programs they would hear about Cecil the lion. But they would have to look to internet sources mainly to learn about Cecile Richards, CEO of Planned Parenthood. The visitor might conclude, quite easily it seems, that we are greatly concerned with the protection of lions. The rights of the unborn, not so much so.”

Meet the Filmmaker Exposing Planned Parenthood – Thanks to this 26 year-old, the pro-life movement has been given new weapons to slay the abortion giant.

The Reinvention of Twitter – Interim CEO of Twitter has plans to reinvent the social media giant. Say it ain’t so!

Robert Kraft and NFL Betrayal – The owner of the greatest football team of the 21st century feels totally betrayed by the league he has served and the commissioner he has trusted for years. It will be interesting to see how the DeflateGate controversy plays out in court.

O Lord, I am astonished at the difference between my receivings and my deservings. –Valley of Vision

It Won’t Happen Over the Internet: Accomplishing the Great Commission in Our Generation

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There has been a great resurgence of both Reformed theology and the work of missions in young people over the past couple decades. This is no coincidence. Big God theology leads to risk-taking work to reach the unreached. For those of us who are confident that Jesus has sheep that are not in the fold that he must bring in also (John 10:16), are committed to sending and going to the nations with the gospel, which draws Jesus’ flock home.

This dual resurgence of both Reformed theology and missionary zeal among young people has people looking forward to the accomplishment of the Great Commission. Could millennials really be the final push of taking the gospel of the kingdom to the ends of the earth? Oh, how I pray this to be true of my generation.

But along with a desire for big God theology and a push for missions, millennials are more individualistic than generations before them. Much of this is due to the rise and reign of the Internet. The Internet has led many young, restless, and Reformed Christians (myself included) to take the gospel to the ends of the earth from a dorm room, office chair, or couch. We can watch Netflix and share the gospel simultaneously. And we have mastered this gospel multitasking.

Still, I fear that the Internet and our reliance on it has slowly but surely stagnated the surge of missions work. When we convince ourselves that we can proclaim the gospel to the nations from a laptop, we will be less likely to jump on a plane to move to an unreached people in the Middle East. We begin to convince ourselves that we can “Go and make disciples” without language learning or culture crossing.

I fall into the trap of individualistic thinking often. I see that hundreds from various nations read my blog and convince myself that I am reaching the nations right where I am. Now, of course we can reach the nations from home. It is not required of us to sell our homes and move to the Amazon Rainforest. But, biblical discipleship and the fulfillment of the Great Commission cannot be done from a dorm room or a study. We young, restless, and Reformed can smoke cigars, grow beards, and read Spurgeon all day long, but until we turn our hearts toward the nations, our big God theology will continue to be too small. However, when we do set our gaze on our global God, he will turn our gaze to the nations and show us that some of us must go.

For a while, I got in the habit of trying to spark gospel conversations through social media. I would either message people I noticed posting particular statuses, or I would get involved in Facebook debates. It was and still can be a great way to engage people with the gospel that live miles away. The Internet is an amazing resource for which I am truly thankful, because we are no longer limited to our geographic locations to proclaim the gospel. But I have learned through study and experience that truly impactful discipleship cannot happen through text messages or Twitter mentions. Truly impactful discipleship happens in the nitty gritty of life. Truly impactful discipleship happens face-to-face, hand-in-hand. When we go out to coffee with our lost friends rather than bash them on Facebook, we can truly impact their souls for Christ. When we cross a culture or an ocean to learn a language and live among a people, we can truly impact them with the gospel.

In his introduction to the book, Cross: Unrivaled Christ, Unstoppable Gospel, Unreached Peoples, Unending Joy, David Mathis argues that the fulfillment of the Great Commission “won’t happen over the Internet.” He captures my concerns perfectly.

[T]he computer will never replace the missionary–because the Commission doesn’t call for mere exchange of information, but for good old-fashioned disciplemaking.

Discipling the nations requires more than dropping a translated tract or piping in a recording, or even a well-produced video. Disicplemaking requires more than a low-bandwith, user-friendly website in multiple trade languages. Disciplemaking means getting your feet wet, and your whole body, in baptism, and teaching not just what Jesus commanded, but to observe all that he commanded. It means doing the long-term grunt work to entrust the gospel to faithful men who will be able to teach others also. It means older women training younger women holistically. It means being “among” the people we hope to reach with the gentleness of a nursing mother and the strength of an encouraging father. It means an eagerness to share not only the gospel, but our own selves, providing a life example to imitate, and empowering the disciples to practice what they have learned and received and heard and seen in us. Full-orbed disciplemaking cannot be accomplished remotely. It won’t happen over the Internet (Cross, p. 6).

I desperately hope my generation accomplishes the Great Commission. But if we do it, it will not be because of our clever quotes and blog posts. It will be because of our sacrificial commitment to give our lives for the sake of the joy of all peoples–peoples that we touch with our hands and love with our lives.


396110_519885398036913_1852978654_nMathew Gilbert is the Children’s Pastor at First Baptist Church East Bernstadt. He is the author of the forthcoming book Come to the Well: 50 Meditations to Fuel Your Joy in God. Mathew lives in London, KY with his wife, Erica, and their dog, Simba.

Ministry is not Missions

Global Missions - web imageMissions is not the same thing as ministry. Ministry includes missions, but the two are not one in the same. Just because one is working cross-culturally or ministering to people in one’s own community does not mean that one is doing missions. Ministry includes all the activities of the church carried out ‘in the name of Jesus,’ attending to the entire range of needs of people—social, physical, emotional and spiritual. Missions is focused specifically on the discipling and churching of the people who have not had the opportunity to hear the Good News.
According to Paul, the work of missions comprised of three things:

1. Preaching the gospel message to persons with intent of leading them to repentance and, thus, salvation

2. Planting of bodies of believers (churches) who were actively involved in ministry to one another and outreach

3. Cultivating these churches until they reached a point of maturity in Christ.

In Romans 15:19, 23, Paul said that he had fulfilled the ministry of the gospel from Jerusalem to Illyricum and that he no longer had any room for work in these regions. Paul had at most been in these regions for 15 years, so what did he mean?

It is conceivable that Paul’s meaning here was that he had left behind a number of churches in key places now capable of completing the work of evangelization and discipleship in the region (Timothy in Ephesus, Titus in Crete).

It is also conceivable that he meant all the existing people groups within the region now had a viable church or churches among them such that these churches could now finish the task of reaching their own people.

John Piper is very insightful on Paul on this point:

In fact, [Paul] goes so far as to say in Romans 15:23, ‘But now, since I no longer have any room for work in these regions…I hope to see you as I go to Spain.’ This is astonishing! How can he say not only that he has fulfilled the gospel in that region, but also that he has no more room for work? He is finished and going to Spain (15:24). What does this mean? It means that Paul’s conception of the missionary task is not merely the winning of more and more people to Christ (which he could have done very efficiently in these regions), but the reaching of more and more peoples or nations. His focus was not primarily on new geographic areas. Rather, he was gripped by the vision of unreached peoples. Romans 15:9-12 shows that his mind was saturated with OT texts that relate to the hope of the nations” (Let the Nations Be Glad!, 194).

If Piper’s interpretation of Romans 15 is accurate then it seems that missions is about laying the foundation among a people group—that is, the aim is to see spiritually mature, reproducing churches planted in strategic locations among a people group so that these churches themselves are capable of completing the task of evangelization among their own people and even moving beyond.

Ministry is not missions. Missions is taking the message of God’s purpose for humankind and proclaiming that message to the nations, specifically to the nations that have never heard. Missions goes beyond mere conversion of individuals to the planting of bodies of believers that are marked by outreach to the world and mutual ministry within the body.


396110_519885398036913_1852978654_nMathew Gilbert is a student at Boyce College (B.A. Biblical and Theological Studies). He is the author of the forthcoming book Come to the Well: 50 Meditations to Fuel Your Joy in God (CrossBooks). Mathew lives in London, KY with his wife, Erica, and their dog, Simba. You can follow him on Twitter @Mat_Gilbert.

Book Review: “Introduction to Global Missions” by Zane Pratt, David Sills, and Jeff Walters

51qHh90aFCLZane Pratt, David Sills, and Jeff Walters. Introduction to Global Missions (Nashville: B&H Publishing, 2014) 280 pp. $24.13 on Amazon [click image to the left to purchase]
Zane Pratt is the director of Global Theological Education for the International Mission Board. He previously served as dean of the Billy Graham School of Missions, Evangelism and Ministry at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

David Sills is the director of Global Strategic Initiatives and Intercultural Programs and the A. P. and Faye Stone Chair of Christian Missions and Cultural Anthropology at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Jeff Walters is assistant professor of Christian Missions and Urban Ministry and director of the Dehoney Center for Urban Ministry Training at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Introduction

Pratt, Sills and Walters have written a book together called Introduction to Global Missions. This book provides an intro to the many important subjects for missionaries. This book is written for one who feels called to full-time mission work, the pastor, and the member of the local church that seeks to be on short term missions. Introduction to Global Missions provides biblical foundations, history of missions, cultural studies and practical strategies to help the believer fulfill the Great Commission.  The authors break the book into those four sections with an introduction (biblical and theological foundations, historical foundations, cultural studies, and practical strategies).

Summary

In the introduction, the authors take the task of understanding the missionary call, what it is and how it relates to not just the global church but to the local church as well. They also discuss knowing God’s will which includes knowing God, knowing his word, prayer, seeking counsel, through the desires of the heart, etc. “The way to find God’s will is to become so close to him that your heartbeat resonates with his own” (14).

In section one, the authors discuss the biblical and theological foundations to take the gospel to all the nations. The authors bring up three ideas to bring the gospel to all the nations.

The first is understanding the culture. The missionary must understand the culture to relate to the people. They use terms such as cross-cultural, intercultural, multicultural, and cultural relativism. Cultural relativism is when culture A live in a mud hut, and culture B lives in log houses (25). In times like this, we should show respect. “the missionary should study to know the culture and why it lives, believes, acts, reacts, and interacts as it does” (26).

The second idea is strategy. We must think about how we will engage the unreached people groups, which includes many that are in the 10/40 window. The 10/40 window is an area of the globe that covers Northwest Africa to Asia, which includes men and women in Hinduism, Islam, and Buddhism.

The third idea is orality. Oral learning is when men and women learn by hearing. This is very important in cultures that do not have a high literacy rate to read something in their language, so it helps when one is able to tell the story of the gospel in oral form. The authors cover the missiological basis of the bible, in which God saves sinners. In creation, God made everything that exists out of nothing. It was good. But man rebelled, and fell.

Because of the fall, man was guilty and deserved death. God also gave the promise of redemption, that Satan would strike the seed of the woman, but the seed would strike the serpents head. The authors cover the Old Testament Law and Prophets, and the New Testament Gospels and Epistles. The Bible testifies of the glory of God, the messiah to come, and that Messiah is Jesus Christ! The nations will bring praise to King Jesus.

Also, in section one, theology is discussed as a foundation for missions. Evangelical theology is what the Bible teaches on the key subjects of faith and life (68), and theology and worship lead to mission (69).

In section two, Introduction to Global Missions discusses the historical foundations for Christian missions. Understanding the past is an important facet of missiology and can help twenty-first century Christians continue the work started by first-century disciples (96). The authors cover the works of the apostles, Luther, William Carey, and other men and women who have done a great deal for the advance of the gospel; some of whom even laid down their lives.

In section three, this great work brings about the thought of cultural and global studies. Culture is the learned and shared design or pattern of living for a group of people (138). It is very important to understand how a culture acts. Introduction to Global Missions does an excellent job of research to help provide the reader of understanding the culture, and then how to communicate in that culture. The authors use the word contextualization. Contextualization in international settings requires us to consider world views, languages, legal matters, and a host of other factors that may require some adjustment to our delivery style (150).

That is key, and the authors use a great example in scripture from 1 Corinthians 9, “To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews”. We should understand the culture and identify the culture, so that we may reach the culture. This section discusses the other religions of the world and how Christ can not be added to another religious system. It is all of Christ, or not at all. Christians should seek the good of man outside the church, but also he or she should seek their salvation. The authors also cover brief and concise overviews of Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Animism. This section is very help for all believers, it challenges us to know the context and the culture. For example, knowing the culture of a man in East Asia will help you share the gospel with him, because you know what he lives for, how he dresses, lives, works, and eats.

The fourth and final section of Introduction to Global Missions covers the practice of global missions. The authors make clear what a disciple is and what he or she should do. They should be striving to pursue holiness and godliness. Disciples make disciples. Church planting is an important to the global mission work. Church planting is concerned with local churches-the geographic, cultural expression of the universal church (210). The authors provide excellent practical advice for believers who are headed to the mission field, such as culture shock and rejection.

The local church at home is to be on mission and sharing the gospel with their local community. The authors say local churches are to be biblically understanding, having a global vision, understanding missiological principles (cultures), praying, connecting yourself to missions, and connecting the church to missions. When churches go on short-term missions, they must be well trained, but also this is a way to connect local churches to missions. The church or individual must be ready to define the task, do research, contextualize, and understand the access. The authors end Introduction to Global Missions by telling the reading to engage his or her city by open your eyes (praying and getting to know your city), open your heart (loving your city), open your door (love the people in the city), and open your mouth (share the good news).

Introduction to Global Missions provides an excellent overview of missions for the individual, the local church, and the world.

Analysis: 10 Takeaways

There are 10 takeaways from reading this book that I would like to discuss.

1. The book is understandable. This is not a book that will leave you in a fog. It is very clear and well written.

2. The authors hit on the consistent Bible. That the nations will bring glory and honor to King Jesus and we should be sharing the good news.

3. King Jesus is King over all nations. He is King in the United States, He is King over North Korea, He is King of All.

4. The authors focus on God’s glory is evident throughout this book. We share the gospel for the Glory of God, not for the glory of self.

5. The authors show a very important view of the history of missions. Missions has always been important in the New Testament Church.

6. The understanding of the culture and other religions. It will be helpful if you are sharing the gospel with a buddhist and you know what buddhism teaches.

7. Church planting is very important! We need good healthy churches that are a light for the gospel. I hope and pray that there are good healthy churches in your city. Attend them, and thank God for them!

8. The importance of local members sharing the gospel. If the gospel has saved us, share it. Why would you want to remain silent?

9. Believers are to care for the gospel and they are to care for one another. Love your fellow believers, but also love men and women who do not believe in Jesus. If your always around Christians, and never around non-Christians, your life needs to be shaken up a bit.

10. The importance of prayer. Prayer is not to be neglected. Pray for understanding of the culture, pray for understanding of Biblical passages, pray for discernment, pray for love of your neighbor and your church, pray for the gospel to spread, and pray for Christ to keep you, for perseverance, to keep pressing on in times of trial.


1557562_10153227664651515_1796309980_nEvan Knies is an undergraduate student at Boyce College where he studies Biblical and Theological Studies. He lives in Louisville, KY with his wife, Lauren. You can follow him on Twitter @Evan_Knies.

Morning Mashup 09/10

coffee-newspaper
The Church and Violence Against Women – Russell Moore: “Male violence against women is a real problem in our culture, one the church must address. Our responsibility here is not simply at the level of social justice but at the level of ecclesical justice as well.”

A Sobering Reminder from the Ray Rice Situation – Garrett Kell: “The TMZ video release is actually a great act of mercy from God. How? Because it serves as a reminder to Mr. Rice and to all of us that there is a day coming when all that is done in the dark will be brought into the light.”

Three Questions to Help Diagnose Possible Football Idolatry – According to Kevin DeYoung, watching football or being a fan of football is not automatically idolatrous. But he warns, “Wherever there is a consuming passion for anything that is not God there is the danger of idolatry.” Then he offers three questions for self-evaluation.

Illustrate to Help Rather than Impress – Gavin Ortlund interviews Bryan Chapell to find answers to the questions: “How can preachers use sermon illustrations today in way that reflects the example of Christ? Is it possible for illustrations to actually enhance, rather than dilute, biblical exposition?”

Advice to Young Pastors – Fellow younger guys in the ministry, take heed to these words from Sam Storms, David Wells (not the baseball player), and Wayne Grudem.

New Resource from Secret Church – Secret Church study guides have now been broken down into 6-week studies. I have always thought this would be a good idea. I look forward to making use of this great resource.

10 Ways to Execute Christlike Headship – Owen Strachan suggests ten ways by which godly husbands can practice Christlike headship in their home.

Status Quo and 2 Billion to Go – J.D. Payne: “Innovating upon the status quo is a good thing–being locked into the existing state of affairs is bad.”

The only logical response to inerrant Scripture is to preach it expositionally. –John MacArthur