Samuel Escobar IVP Academic 2003-12-02

A noted voice among veteran church leaders of Latin America, Escobar reflects on the significant southern shift of the Christian “center of gravity.”

In the first millennium the Eastern Church or Orthodox Church dominated Christianity. The second millennium saw the rise of the “Western church.” Now in the third millennium the “Southern church” is rapidly moving into prominence.

Adapting the title of a 1990 volume by Pakistani missiologist Michael Nazir-Ali, From Everywhere to Everywhere, Escobar expounds on a cogent theme expressed in the subtitle of this new work, “The Gospel from Everywhere to Everyone.” Christian missionaries now form a global force.

A passionate and incisive writer, Escobar reviews the historic backdrop, the contemporary challenges, and the biblical moorings for world missions. As a key participant in the 1974 International Congress on World Evangelization held in Lausanne, Switzerland, this noted professor at Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary and past president of the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students speaks from extensive experience and exceptional wisdom.

Key topics are forcefully addressed, including marketing methodology, contextualization, globalization, postmodernism, holistic missions, paternalism, migration movements, and a host of other contemporary issues. Several chapters are devoted to a refreshing Trinitarian view of missions. God the Father is clearly the author and sending agent, Christ is the model missionary, and the Holy Spirit serves as the “director” of this movement around the world.

The concluding chapter reviews additional resources from a wide range of reputable authors on the changing scene of world missions.

This volume is essential reading for the task of forging transcontinental partnerships in mission outreach. A fragmented church will not effectively impact the fragmented world. The body of Christ must work together in accord with God’s Word and His will to reach the world with the good news of salvation through Jesus Christ.

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