World Christian Podcast 2005-10-14

World Christian Podcast 2005-10-14

Ok, new podcast up today, talking about the book “Reformation in Foriegn Missions” and the response.  Here are some website I talk about on the podcast:

Since recording the podcast, I have visited the Christian Aid website and have to say, “My, my, are we not exaggerating a bit here?”  They write that their 700 national partners:

  • Send out native missionaries — over 90,000 now on the field.
  • Plant new churches — over 52,000 each year — 1000 every week.
  • Conduct evangelistic campaigns, broadcast on radio & TV, distribute lliterature.
  • Are training 40,000 new workers in hundreds of Bible institutes.

WOW! That would be great.  I hope it’s true – but I doubt it is.  I would have to agree, at least for now, with Dr. Winter.  They appear to be raising funds for missions by making outlandish claims.  I hope that they are given a chance to repond to Dr. Winter’s article.  I would look forward to reading it.

The strategy of Christian Aid appears to be, “Let’s be as controversial as possible to attract as much attention as possible.”  If they really believe the statements on their website, then my suggestion would be for donors to find other organizations to give to.  Some of the statements nicely crafted to manipulate the truth.  For example, “no record in the New Testament of God sending any missionary where he did not know the language.”  The reason it needs to say “New Testament” is that we find missionaries like Jonah in the Old Testament who were clearly cross-cultural missionaries.  Another example is, “They (native missionaries) are ten times more effective in reaching their people than foreigners could ever be, at a fraction of the cost.”  Hmm… I would like to see how the accounting department added that one up.

This is not an either/or situation.  We need to both send missionaries as well as support indigenous missions efforts.  In fact, that is what we do in the agency I work for.  Furthermore, Christian Aid’s website doesn’t address the issue of dependency, the primary issue that missiologists struggle over when it comes to “just send your money” approaches.

Christian, beware.

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