For reasons I hope to write more about this year, Matthew Bennett’s article “Finishing the Task? A Cautionary Analysis of Missionary Language,” Southeastern Theological Review 9, no. 2 (2018): 33–55, caught my attention a couple of years ago. Happily, he has made this discussion available over at the ABWE Blog:
- “Finishing the Task? (Part 1): A Cautionary Analysis of Missionary Language,” ABWE Blog, February 22, 2021, https://www.abwe.org/blog/finishing-task-part-1-cautionary-analysis-missionary-language.
- “Finishing the Task? (Part 2): A Cautionary Analysis of Missionary Language,” ABWE Blog, March 11, 2021, https://www.abwe.org/blog/finishing-task-part-2-cautionary-analysis-missionary-language.
- “Finishing the Task? (Part 3): A Cautionary Analysis of Missionary Language,” ABWE Blog, April 7, 2021, https://www.abwe.org/blog/finishing-task-part-3-cautionary-analysis-missionary-language.
- “Finishing the Task? (Part 4): A Cautionary Analysis of Missionary Language,” ABWE Blog, July 14, 2021, https://www.abwe.org/blog/finishing-task-part-4-cautionary-analysis-missionary-language.
- And, finally, the précis of Bennett’s argument: “It’s Not Our Job to ‘Finish’ the Great Commission,” ABWE Blog, July 5, 2021, https://www.abwe.org/blog/its-not-our-job-finish-great-commission.
This is a necessary conversation for the world Christian movement, which must continue to evaluate its motives and methods in the twenty-first century. I commend Bennett’s insightful reflection.
Greg McKinzie is a PhD candidate in theology at Fuller Theological Seminary, writing on missional hermeneutics at the intersection of constructive theology, theological interpretation of Scripture, and missiology. He is also an adjunct professor of Bible and ministry at Lipscomb University (Nashville, TN), the executive editor of Missio Dei: A Journal of Missional Theology and Praxis, and the lead administrator of missiology.com. From 2008 to 2015, he served in Arequipa, Peru, as a partner in holistic evangelism with Team Arequipa and The Christian Urban Development Association. Greg holds an MDiv from Harding School of Theology (Memphis, TN, USA) and a BA in missions from Harding University (Searcy, AR, USA).