on January 31, 2004
I used this book in a college-level course titled "Business and Missions" I just finished co-teaching at Spring Arbor University. The focus of the course is to examine the role for-profit companies can play in world mission. We thoroughly enjoyed the book - it is very well written, thought-provoking and sets a solid foundation for our understanding and discussion of the subject. Sound economic/business and missional principles are discussed and followed. The students were asked to analyze the case studies of Great Commission Companies (GCCs) presented in the book and evaluate the business and missional viability of each case and they did a fine job. We also liked how the authors classified the GCCs. Overall, the students enjoyed the course and the book, and some even expressed an interest in working for or starting a GCC in the future. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in seeing how business and missions can be integrated, and those who have a desire to start a GCC. This would also make an ideal first text for a business/mission course.
on March 3, 2004
Many books that deal with the topic of Christianity and business fall into one of two camps, either they are very theoretical, providing a lot of thoughts about business, but no practical examples of ways to integrate faith and work. Or they tend to offer simplistic advice about how to be a "Moral" worker.
Steve Rundle and Tom Steffen avoid both traps by providing well thought through theory combined with case studies that show that theory in action. They really provide the reader with a diverse set of examples of people working hard and moving God's kingdom forward at the same time. This deserves to be widely read.
on August 9, 2009
The authors begin by describing how many Christians view vocational callings, an idea that businessmen are at the bottom of the ladder, and then come teachers and doctors, then pastors, and finally missionaries. This vocational hierarchy implies that the truly spiritual businessmen should abandon his secular employment and seek to serve God as a missionary or in some other church related role. The authors then set out to refute this paradigm by showing how God is using people from the business world to fulfill the Great Commission.
The authors define a Great Commission Company (or GCC) as "a socially responsible, income-producing business managed by kingdom professionals and created for the specific purpose glorifying God and promoting the growth and multiplication of local churches in the least-evangelized and least-developed parts of the world." They then explain how business touches the whole world and often kingdom professionals can work among those who would not respond to a traditional missionary.
They classify GCCs as either facilitative, meaning that their main purpose is to support the ministry of others, and pioneering, being those GCCs involved in direct ministry. The second part of the book gives in-depth descriptions of five GCCs with the personal testimonies of the entrepreneurs and the challenges of the GCC, both from a business and ministry perspective.
I found this book to be a good introduction into the field commonly called `Business as Mission' or BAM. The examples cited are a reminder that both business and ministry are difficult work as the ministries described are not stories of success on the scale we might expect.