Three heavy hitters from Dallas Theological Seminary (Pocock), Abilene Christian University (Van Rheenen), and Fuller Theological Seminary (McConnell) tackle the rapidly changing context in which evangelical missionaries attempt to bring people to faith in Christ and to establish them in biblical values. This volume is the second in a textbook series published by Baker.
They divide their work into three major parts: "The Global Context," "The Missional Context," and "The Strategic Context." Each part includes four chapters, so this work is both definitive and exhaustive. "The Global Context" is especially compelling, because rarely in a missiological text do we find such subjects as economic globalization, migration of peoples, HIV/AIDS, and children at risk. It's a great loss to the cause of world missions when missionaries try to do their work without giving sufficient attention to these non-missions subjects.
Parts 2 and 3 handle down-to-earth matters creatively and practically: things like spiritual warfare, reaching "closed" countries, self-support, new technologies, and contextualization.
Overall, this work is valuable literature because of the depth and scope of the material. It is also greatly enhanced by interesting sidebars, discussion questions, and a 22-page reference list.
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The Changing Face of World Missions is available from Christianbook.com and other book retailers.
In a Christianity Today interview with Michael Pocock, the co-author speaks on world missions.
Recent CT articles on missions and ministry include:
What's Next: Missions | Whole gospel: What evangelical leaders say are the priorities and challenges for the next 50 years. (October 4, 2006)
The New Missions Generation | Two centuries after Haystack, college students remain excited about missionsbut with fundamentally different assumptions. (September 1, 2006
The Whole Word for the Whole World | Fewer than 10 percent of the world's languages have the Old Testament. But that's about to change. (September 1, 2006)
Lost Missions | Whatever happened to the idea of rescuing people from hell? (July 2006)
Militants Besiege Mission in North India | Hindu nationalists crack down on ministry to poor, sick. (March 17, 2006)
Missions Incredible | South Korea sends more missionaries than any country but the U.S. And it won't be long before it's number one. (March 1, 2006)
Winning the Oral Majority | Mission agencies rethink outreach to the world's non-literate masses. (March 1, 2006)
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