On closer examination, insider missiology and movements (IM) are like a fiberoptic cable: Multiple theological threads are bundled together to present a singular case for retaining Muslim identity. This complicates the theological assessment of what IM advocates “say.”
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After looking through a September 1998 survey conducted by the Center for Sociological Research, I was intrigued and began wondering, Who should we be spending time with as evangelists?
If handled properly, history provides a picture of both what was done well, and what was not. It also has a way of showing us quite explicitly how God often achieves his purposes without us, and even in spite of us. History is the great revealer and the great adjuster of applied missiology.
I believe we can look at certain trends and surmise what God might be up to in the next ten years. Historians have suggested that the agendas set within the first two decades of a new century generally carry the gravitas for the remainder of that century.
In many traditionally “resistant” parts of the world (where we must keep our missionary work discreet), it is indigenous diaspora kingdom workers who are reaching other indigenous diaspora workers who in turn reach out to their “resistant” hosts, and it is they who are returning to their own countries as “reverse migrants.”
History and theology of God’s mission inform the philosophy and practice of mission. Among mission historians, Andrew Walls is credited with prompting the realization that the center of gravity for Christian witness has shifted from the North to the Global South. This missiological phenomenon has implications for the Global Church today, particularly in Africa.
The stories of Paul in Philippi and of the issues that little church faced are stories for our churches today. God’s call on them is God’s call on us.
In large parts of North America, there is not only a new public ignorance or casual disregard of Christianity, but there is a disdain for Christianity and its perceived record of judgementalism and divisiveness within the culture. Christianity is no longer the consensus religion it once was in the West.
Just how versatile is the gospel? Does it have to change in order to stay ‘the same’ in a new context?
In the postmodern West, however, it has become increasingly common not only to question what is true, but also what we mean by truth in the first place.