Recommended Reading for a New Missions Pastor

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    Recommended Reading for New Missions Pastor Elicited Oct. 2015

    Greg Somerville, Covenant Life Church, Gaithersburg MD

    — The Mission Of God (Wright)
    — When Helping Hurts (Corbett/Fikkert)
    — Salvation To The Ends Of The Earth (Kostenberger/O’Brien) — Let The Nations Be Glad (Piper)
    — Filling Up The Afflictions Of Christ (Piper)
    — The Missionary Call (Sills)
    — Contagious Disciple Making (Watson/Watson)

    Ray Glinski, Grace Church of Dupage IL
    — Anything by the late Dave Mays would be good

    Cathy Nelson, Short & Long Term Missionary Care, First Evangelical Free Church, Manchester, MO

    — Cross-Cultural Servanthood,
    — On Being a Missionary by Hale, and
    — Foreign to Familiar by Lanier are good basic reads.

    Ed Grudier, Cherrydale Church, Colorado

    1. The Great Omission, Robertson McQuilkin (Biblical Basis for Missions)

    2. Let the Nations Be Glad, John Piper (Biblical Basis for Missions)

    3. Finish the Mission, John Piper and David Mathis (Shows why the emphasis on Missions needs to be on the Unreached)

    4. When Helping Hurts, Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert (essential for running a Missions Committee and funding projects… raises the important issues of dependency and how giving does not always help the situation but on the contrary sometimes hurts the overall missions task).

    5. Paradigms in Conflict, David Hesselgrave (getting a bit outdated now… written 10 years ago… but raises some of the important big issues in missions. There are some current issues that are not addressed in this book, but it helps illustrate how complex the whole missions endeavor can be and the need to be educated in these issues in order to make informed decisions).

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    Top Book Recommedations for a Church Wanting to Send a Missionary

    Submitted by Propempo on Thu, 01/15/2015 – 17:25

    Here’s a slightly annotated list in my order of recommendation for your situation, below. Please pardon me for including our own book in the list of these otherwise sterling options.

    HERE to THERE: Getting From CROSS to Your Mission Field, Propempo

    Originally written for a university student missions conference, it describes in succinct fashion the steps to get to the mission field. It is peppered with good biblical and missiological principles. When read from the perspective of local church leadership in missions, it can become the blueprint for raising up new workers for the field from your congregation. It’s on Amazon; but it would be cheaper to buy them directly from me/Propempo.

    Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God, J.I. Packer

    If your people have not read this, it is a classic. Very helpful in understanding God’s sovereignty in salvation and man’s responsibility in repentance and faith. It’s a higher reading level than may be comfortable for some.

    Serving As Senders, Neal Pirolo

    This is THE handbook for local support of a missionary. Unfortunately, it does not emphasize or center on the local church. I add three topics to Neal’s six: technology support, security support, MK education or MK home-schooling support. If you want to learn a model for organizing a “support team” that is church based similar to what is espoused in Serving As Senders, read articles on Barnabas Teams attached.

    Mission Smart, David Frazier

    Frazier saw so many missionaries burn out or stumble maladjusted on the field that he felt compelled to write this practical guide for the candidate or candidate-mentor to ask the right questions and obtain the right skills and experiences before they leave to insure a higher probability of effectiveness and longevity on the field. Solid stuff. Following the book’s advice WILL take longer for someone to get to the field; but it’ll be worth it.

    Test, Train, Affirm, & Send Into Ministry, Brian Croft

    This is not written for missionary candidates. It is written for ministerial candidates. But, it applies equally to missionary candidates. It is a small book, but full of essential distinctions for understanding “the external call” in very practical terms. You should read this, even if the congregation does not.

    When Helping Hurts, Steve Corbett & Brian Fikkert

    Essential for missionary candidates. Further, it will help ANY believer have a better framework for understanding relief and development ministries and opportunities. Too often, Christians get pulled in by sympathy to doing things that are detrimental to the long-term well-being of the recipients of merciful generosity. While I disagree a lot with the first three chapters of covenant- theology/presbyterian hermeneutics (I have notes on this book that would explain and help people avoid the potholes), the remaining chapters are excellent for guidance in relief and development. The scalding criticism of Short Term Missions chapter is worth the price of the book.

    Just Do Something, Kevin DeYoung

    This is a short book you might give to young people frozen in fogginess by the choices before them. It is a great, biblical lever to get them off their seats and into action. Again, it’s not specifically a missions book. But it helps people realize that they have no excuse for getting involved in ministry.

    From Jerusalem to Irian Jaya, Ruth Tucker

    This is an anthology of missionary biographies. It is the source book for good, unvarnished biographies of our Christian missionary heroes through the centuries. I recommend that every Christian family have one on a reachable bookshelf and work through a few biographies every year with their kids. I have a recommended short list (attached) of some of the best ones to start.

    Don’t Waste Your Life, John Piper

    Again, this is not written for the young missionary wannabe. However, it actually was initially written based on a message to mid-life adults seeking to serve God in the “second career” stage of life. It was later rewritten with a younger audience in mind. So, it can apply to folks on both sides of that
    divide. It is sweetly challenging to our assumptions of “the great American dream” similarly to “Radical Together” by David Platt.

    Let the Nations Be Glad, John Piper

    This might be at the top of the list, if you haven’t already read it. it is classic, foundational, important. 


    Be sure to visit to find other titles in digital format that could be just the thing you’re looking for. Take “Church Mobilization” for starters.


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