Audio Transcript:

Welcome to Missions on Point, the Propempo perspective on Church and Missions. Hello and welcome to episode 51 of Missions on Point. In my interaction with church leaders and missionary candidates, churches trying to grow in their effectiveness and strategic focus and missions and missionary candidates preparing for the field, I'm quite regularly asked about what are the best resources in books. There are lots of internet resources available, but what are the key books that I have used or have impacted me and my message and thinking for missions development? So I want to spend a couple of episodes talking about books that have had a significant impact on me and that have a significant message that church leaders, churchgoers, missions advocates, potential missionaries, will find helpful in their ministry growth and maturity. I'm very interested in feedback from you as a listener.

If you think my choices of books are great, then fine. Let me know that. If you have other suggestions, please let me know. Probably the easiest way to do that is by email. Just email me at That's, P-R-O-P-E-M-P-O, and I will really appreciate your feedback and input into whatever you would like to hear in these episodes of Missions on Point, but particularly now with regard to missions books. This first group is primarily directed to the pastor or missions leader of the church. If you are not a pastor or missions leader, that's okay. You would find them very helpful to your thinking as well, and they might be something that you would read and then pass on to your pastor or missions leader to help them.

The first one is Let the Nations Be Glad by John Piper. This is an essential foundational book for understanding missions throughout the Bible. And then in the later additions, John Piper has added some supplementary material that go along with his own passion for the kind of missionary work and the sacrifices that are made to do the work of missions in hard fields. There is a really interesting backstory to this book, which you can find on Propempo's website in a blog article called Getting Church Leaders on Board with Missions. The next book is Key to the Missionary Problem by Andrew Murray. This is actually an old book. It's been modernized in some versions. It started with a response to the mission's conference of 1901. The thesis of the book centers on Leaders of Churches to develop missions, heart, passion, and missionaries from their church. A little quote on the back from FB Meyer says this, "if it were read universally throughout our churches by ministers and people alike, I believe it would lead to one of the greatest revivals of missionary enthusiasm that the world has ever known."

One of my historic favorites is a booklet, really it's a very small handheld booklet called Get Involved in Missions by Michael C. Griffiths. He was the leader of Overseas missionary fellowship, and he wrote quite a bit. Actually, anything you get by Michael Griffiths has a similar tone and tack to it in that he really believes that churches are the key for developing and sending missionaries and the shepherding of missionaries. This little booklet Get Involved in Missions, has some really great little quotes I just want to share with you quickly. He says, "A far greater involvement of the congregation in selection that is of missionaries would serve to eliminate some of those unhappy cases where young people go overseas as missionaries and are subsequently found to be fruitless misfits." The little chapter three in this booklet says, "Ministers and elders have the central responsibility for ensuring that missions are a principle passion of their congregations and not a peripheral program for the Super Saint Lee."

How's that for a chapter title? I love this little book. I've gotten a lot out of it. The subtitle he puts on it is some suggestions for ministers and congregations disenchanted with the traditional muddle. Just the fact that he's a British author and has this great vocabulary is and frankness is refreshing. The next is a really solid contemporary book entitled What is the Mission of the Church. Subtitle, Making Sense of Social Justice Shalom and The Great Commission by Kevin De Young and Greg Gilbert. These guys have a great handle on the topic and keeps balance, I think between sort of domestic and foreign concerns. But the mission of the church is not simply the Great Commission, but it is all wrapped up in the gospel. They have great material for your consideration and it's really encouraging and sharpening to read this.

A similar book is A Vision for Missions by Tom Wells. It's a small paperback. It is fantastic at driving toward the central passion and motivation for missions founded in God's sovereignty. What a great book for pastors and for would be missionaries to understand those things. The last one in this little group is for the sake of his name by David Duran with Pearson Johnson and Benjamin Eckman. The subtitle is Challenging A New Generation for World Missions. Here's a couple of things I really love about this book. First, David Duran, by his own admission spent years in pastoral ministry and hadn't really figured out that the local church is central to God's whole plan and program for missions and fulfillment of the Great Commission. So this is sort of the treatise that deals with that biblically as well as practically in terms of raising up workers and sending them out. This message and content exactly parallels the Propempo perspective on church and missions, which you'll find expounded a little bit in episode one and two of Missions on Point.

For the sake of his name by David Duran and co-authors. This next group of books would be for the missions pastor or missions committee chairperson, whoever that may be, missions coordinator or director in a church. It is useful material for teaching in a Sunday school class or a small group or for helping people understand some missions things in general. But I'm going to drill down a little bit and get to some more specifics. The first one is Introduction to Global Missions by Zane Pratt, David Sills and Jeff Walters. This is a great little handbook. It is typically an intro class book in Bible school or seminary. It's very useful, covers a lot of material. I like almost everything about what they write. It's concise and covers all the bases. The next one is just entitled Missions, How The Local Church Goes Global by Andy Johnson. It is one of those hardback handbooks from nine marks. Andy Johnson has been the missions pastor at Capitol Hill Baptist Church for a number of years, and it's just very practical in dealing with sort of missions leadership and missions committee type of orientation toward missions in the local church.

So that's how I would use it for a group of people that are active in leading and guiding and working in the missions area that they understand what Andy Johnson has in this little book missions. It's always important for us to understand a biblical basis for world evangelism and Robertson McQuilkin gives us that in a book that's been out for a good while called The Great Omission, a biblical basis for world evangelism. Robertson McQuilkin is just a very warmhearted teacher and missions statesman. He really deals with the topic very well. This next one I would make a requirement for every missions team or missions committee member, every elder in the church, every team leader of a short-term project or short-term missions trip, and probably even the participants if they go more than once, the title is When Helping Hurts by Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert.

The subtitle is How to Alleviate Poverty Without Hurting The Poor and Yourself. I have to say that I don't agree with the biblical hermeneutics used in some of the early chapters of the book, but the latter chapters totally redeemed the value of the book and it's very, very useful and practical in those ways when Helping Hurts by Corbett and Fikkert. This next book is entitled Well Sent by Steve Beirn with George Murray. The subtitle is Re-Imagining the Church's Missionary Sending Process. I love this little book. Steve is a great missions pastor from Calvary Church of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and he basically uses their structure and setup at Calvary Church to explain how churches can send out missionaries 100% supported from their church. Over the course of time their church has sent out hundreds of missionaries this way. Although every church is not a Calvary Church of Lancaster, every church does have capacities that can be patterned after well sent by Steve Beirn.

This next one is out of print. I'm sure it's Culture Shock by Myron Loss. The subtitle is Dealing with Stress in Cross-Cultural Living. This book is just packed with really good useful information for those who are dealing with missionary candidates and missionaries on the field dealing with culture shock. It would be required reading in a missionary preparation course for those going to the field. If you can find it in a used book sale, it has lots of very practical information and helpful things, and one of the coolest things I love about a book like this is it actually has some neat, funny, appropriate cartoons. This next book is of particular interest in those who are interested in praying for understanding and ministering to Muslims. There's so many books out that are descriptive of Muslim ministry or ministry in the world of Islam, and it is a really big deal in the Christian missions world to be able to have a good understanding of what Islam is really like and have clear gospel presentation and proclamation of Jesus Christ from the Bible is essential.

This little book called The Unseen Face of Islam by Bill Musk is subtitled Sharing the gospel with ordinary Muslims at street level. One of the things he does is uncover the fact that most of Islam in practice is wrapped around what we call folk Islam. There are a lot of beliefs and superstitions and falsehoods even, traditions that Islamic Muslim friends carry around with them, maybe even subconsciously, that Christians need to understand and appreciate in order to get beneath the surface and get to the heart of their dear Muslim friends in sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with them. So this book and another companion book that Bill Musk writes is a really good entree to understanding that. The last book in this series for this episode is an out of print publication from ACMC. ACMC stands for Advancing Churches' and Admissions Commitment.

They published several editions of this called the Church Missions Policy Handbook. I don't think that it is available in print any longer, but if you email me, I might be able to send you an updated PDF copy of the latest edition that I have. That email address is The Church Missions Policy Handbook is a guide for 65 different issues that a missions team or missions committee might face with regard to writing some kind of policy. Policy is our friend, it helps us make decisions so that we don't have to discuss everything all over again when we come to the same issue. The way this book is written, it presents the issue and it presents possibilities for resolution. It doesn't mandate or tell you what is best, but it allows you in a checklist format to figure out what are the things that are important to you that you might want to include as statements or phrases in a policy guiding your mission's policy for your church.

And it's divided up into major sections regarding the purpose statement, the missions' leadership team structure, the responsibilities of the mission's leadership team, and then financial and support policies. All of these things are very practical and useful to many, many churches over the course of time before a ACMC dissolved. So there you go. There's our first episode on Essential Missions books. I certainly don't expect you to run out to Amazon or wherever you find your books and go looking for them and buy them all, but you might find that a couple of them would be really useful to you say this year and have a deeper influence on your church and your philosophy of missions for the rest of your life. As they have done so for me. Thanks for joining us today on Missions on Point, the Propempo perspective on church and missions. I trust that you'll find more help and resources on the website, Please prayerfully consider supporting this ministry. Now to God be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus forever and ever. Amen.

Comments (0)

Please login to comment.

Register for an account