Tuesday, January 11, 2011
How important do you understand God’s sovereignty in salvation to be for the mission of the gospel? How are the doctrines of grace specifically helpful for the individual missionary? How do you envision the burgeoning Reformed movement in America impacting our work in missions?
"It is evident that God loves all people, Jesus died for the sins of the world and God is acting in providence and power to draw men from every tribe, people, language and nation to salvation for his glory. To put salvation in the proper perspective of God’s divine grace alleviates a tremendous burden of having to discover the appropriate strategy or effective methodology as if results were dependent on human effort.
The doctrines of grace are liberating to the missionary. Because the message of the gospel is indwelt with the power of God, the task becomes one of boldly communicating the claims of Christ and communicating the gospel which is the power of God to draw all men to himself.
I see the growing Reformed movement in terms of encouraging prospects of fulfilling God’s mission. When the church discovers that bringing people to salvation is not a matter of counting numbers through human evangelistic efforts but of being an instrument of God’s grace and for his glory, motivation for missions will be greatly enhanced. It is amazing how the Reformed movement is misperceived as passive and anti-evangelistic rather than understanding the mission of God will only be compelled by the desire for him to be glorified in the salvation of the lost."
Jerry Rankin is President Emeritus of International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention.