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Missions 101

Posts Tagged: Missions

Is the West Hoarding Theology?

Jun. 30, 2015By: Darren CarlsonAuthor Bio

Don Sweeting, president of RTS-Orlando, recently interviewed Dr. Richard Pratt on the role of theological education in the US and the rest of the world. Dr. Pratt was insightful (and provocative) as always, and he gave a lot to think about in terms of not only how theological education is done, but also how, in many ways, the West has been quite selfish and inwardly-focused regarding that theological education. The entire interview is worth watching:

HT: JoelWS

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Does Calvinism Kill Missions? These Guys Didn't Get the Memo

Jun. 26, 2015By: Darren CarlsonAuthor Bio


Does Calvinism kill missions? Consider the following:

  • John Calvin: Calvin sent missionaries from Geneva into France and as far away as Brazil. Most of these young men sent to France died a martyr’s death, but the church of Geneva continued to send them.
  • John Eliot: A missionary sent to the American Indians in the 1600′s. He is believed to be the first missionary among this people group. As many have said, if William Carey is the father of the modern mission’s movement, then John Eliot is its grandfather.
  • David Brainerd: A missionary to the American Indians in the 1700′s. Many historians believe that he has sent more individuals into the mission field than any other person in the history of the church via his diary, An Account of the Life of the Late Reverend David Brainerd.
  • Theodorus Frelinghuysen: The great evangelist and preacher, who set the stage for the First Great Awakening in the middle colonies.
  • Jonathan Edwards: The great theologian, writer, and preacher of the First Great Awakening. He was also a missionary to the Indians.
  • George Whitfield: The great voice and preacher of the First Great Awakening. He journeyed across the Atlantic Ocean thirteen times and scholars believe he preached over 18,000 sermons.
  • William Tennent: He founded the Log College, which later became Princeton University. This college trained pastors and provided many of the revivalist preachers of the First Great Awakening.
  • Samuel Davies: The famous President of the College of New Jersey (Princeton University), preacher of the First Great Awakening, and evangelist to the slaves of Virginia. It is believed that hundreds of slaves came to saving faith through his evangelism efforts.
  • William Carey: He is the famous missionary to India and is considered the father of the modern mission’s movement.
  • Robert Moffat: The first missionary to reach the interior of Africa with the Gospel. He translated the entire Bible and Pilgrim’s Progess into Setswana.
  • David Livingstone: Arguably, the most famous missionary to the continent of Africa.
  • Robert Morrison: The first Protestant missionary to China and the first to translate the Bible into Chinese.
  • Peter Parker: An American physician and missionary to China who first introduced Western medical techniques to the Chinese. He also served as the president of the Medical Missionary Society of China.
  • Adoniram Judson: The famous missionary to Burma, translated the Bible into Burmese, and established multiple Baptist Churches in Burma. His mission work led many to enter the mission field and was foundational for forming the first Baptist association in America.
  • Charles Simeon: The vicar of Holy Trinity Church and the founding figure of the Church Missionary Society. This organization was instrumental in leading many students to the mission field. The Society itself has sent more than 9,000 missionaries into the world.
  • Henry Martyn: The renowned missionary to India and Persia. He preached in the face of opposition and translated the New Testament into a number of languages.
  • Samuel Zwemer: He is affectionately known as “The Apostle to Islam.” His legacy includes efforts in Bahrain, Arabia, Egypt, and Asia Minor. His writing was used by the Lord to encourage and mobilize an entire generation of missionaries to labor in Islamic countries.
  • John Stott: Scholar, preacher, pastor, and evangelist of the twentieth century. He was one of the principle authors and the influential leader in establishing the Lausanne Covenant, which promoted world-wide evangelism.
  • Francis Schaeffer: Pastor and found of L’Abri, which has been used by the Lord to draw many to saving faith as they intellectually wrestled with the tenants of Christianity.
  • D. James Kennedy: The founder of Evangelism Explosion, which many believe is the most widely used evangelistic training curriculum in church history.
  • John Piper: Pastor, writer, and theologian, who has been used by the Lord to define missions and send many young people into the mission field.

HT: Jason Helopoulos

Originally Published on the Gospel Coalition 

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Answering Seven Common Objections to Long-Term Missions

Jun. 12, 2015By: Darren CarlsonAuthor Bio


Ever heard these before:

  • It destroys foreign cultures
  • It’s based on outdated theology
  • It’s unnecessarily offensive
  • Short-term teams can do the same thing but more efficiently
  • It is much more effective to just fund foreign nationals
  • It distracts people from the needs of our own nation
  • Because people from every nation have immigrated to American’s cities, it would be more cost-effective and strategic to stay and reach them here 

Ben Stevens answers them here.

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Let the Buyer Beware

Jun. 10, 2015By: Darren CarlsonAuthor Bio


Craig Ott offers some advice on what is becoming the popular practice of supporting national pastors and missionaries:  

  1. Western support of native workers is a model that national churches cannot reproduce.
  2. Such a strategy is based on the assumption that the spread of the gospel depends on money.
  3. It can create dependency and stunt giving in national churches.
  4. Heavy dependence on Western funds can reinforce feelings of inferiority.
  5. Western support can create a mercenary spirit among nationals.
  6. Foreign paid workers are not always more effective, and sometimes are even less effective and credible than lay workers.
  7. It can rob the national church of the joy of being a truly missionary church.
  8. Employing national missionaries may not be the bargain it appears.
  9. Sending money instead of missionaries comes dangerously close to compromising the very essence of the Great Commission.

Read the whole article here.

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Dear World: Let’s Stop Giving Our Crap to the Poor

Jun. 3, 2015By: Darren CarlsonAuthor Bio


From Kristen Welch:

On the church’s Facebook feed a few days later, I saw an appeal that said something like, “We want to support a ministry with a used iPhone. If you have an old one you can donate, please let us know.”

I was given an older iPhone a week later. On the ground in Kenya, I realized it wouldn’t hold a charge for more than 10 minutes. The phone was junk.

So, when I left Kenya, I gave Maureen my used one that worked.

The church contacted me after the trip and asked how Maureen liked her new phone? I told them it was useless and said, “Don’t worry about it. I gave her mine.”

“Oh, we feel badly, please let us replace your phone! We want to buy you a brand new one, an upgrade. You deserve it,” I told them I used my husband’s upgrade and already had a replacement phone. “Ok. Instead we would like to write you a $500 check for the inconvenience.”

Read the whole thing here.


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