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Theology and Practice of Mission: God, the Church, and the Nations Paperback – September 1, 2011
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From the Back Cover
In order to build a biblical-theological framework for understanding God’s mission, the church’s mission, and the church’s mission to the nations, one must first understand the unified biblical narrative, including its four major plot movements—creation, fall, redemption, and restoration. It is with this in mind that the
contributors to Theology and Practice of Mission address some of the most compelling, practical, and crucial issues facing the global church today, issues such as justice, discipleship, community, and unreached people groups.
Faithfully addressing a comprehensive understanding of mission through the lens of those most directly involved and engaged—God, the church, and the nations—the contributors don’t just establish the need for theory and practice to cooperate. They walk the reader, whether student, scholar, or practioner, through how that can be done to the glory of God no matter the context.
It is enormously encouraging to read a book on mission that consistently puts God and God’s mission first, that applies the grand biblical framework of creation, fall, redemption and new creation thoroughly and repeatedly across almost every issue it addresses, and which tackles some very controversial areas with grace, wisdom, and biblical thoroughness. Here is a book that will richly reward all who patiently digest it, but will especially nourish teachers and practitioners of the mission that God has entrusted to His church.
–Christopher J. H. Wright, International Director, The Langham partnership International, author of The Mission of God
Bruce Riley Ashford is associate professor of Theology and Culture, dean of the College, and research fellow for the L. Russ Bush Center for Faith and Culture at southeastern Baptist Theological seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina, where he received his M.Div. and Ph.D.
About the Author
He is the editor of Theology & Practice of Mission (Nashville: B&H, 2011).
In January 2009, Ashford became the Dean of The College at Southeastern.
He is a member of the American Academy of Religion, the Evangelical Philosophical Society, the Evangelical Theological Society, American Philosophical Association, and the Evangelical Missiological Society.
In addition to his teaching schedule, Ashford has taught or preached for churches of various denominations, including Southern Baptist, American Baptist, Mennonite, Presbyterian Church-USA, Presbyterian Church of America, United Methodist Church, Episcopal, Assemblies of God, Church of God, United Pentecostal, Four Square, and Russian Baptist.
He has also worked and toured overseas in The Pacific Rim (Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam), North Africa & The Middle East (Bahrain, Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, Oman, United Arab Emirates), West Africa (Ivory Coast, Liberia), Sub-Saharan Africa (Botswana, Kenya, Madagascar, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda), Central Asia (Armenia, Turkey, Uzbekistan), South Asia (India), East Asia (China), Central & Eastern Europe (Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Romania, Russia), Western Europe (France, Germany, Great Britain, The Netherlands, Switzerland) and the Caribbean (The Bahamas, Jamaica).
He has lectured or spoken on college campuses, including UNC-Chapel Hill, Duke University, University of Florida, Appalachian State University, Methodist College, UNC-Wilmington, UNC-Greensboro, Gardner-Webb University, Campbell University, West Virginia University, Marshall University, Anderson College, Criswell College, and Kazan University (Russia).
Recently, he was a co-recipient of a creative teaching grant from Yale Divinity School’s Center for Faith and Culture. Together with David Nelson, associate professor of theology at Southeastern, he received one of four $5,000 awards from Yale for a course they designed to help pastors equip their congregations to live wisely in the context of contemporary American culture.
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Top customer reviews
Section One lays out a theological framework that should broaden the scope of what people consider "mission" related. The four-fold "creation-fall-redemption-restoration" provides a structure through which many authors engage their particular topic.
Section Two aims at reconfiguring our paradigm for linking theology and mission practice. Again, there is healthy integration here between the two, yet with priority given to develing a right perspective (from which application flows). The articles show unusual balance on issues that tend to divide people into camps---like social responsibility, evangelism, church planting, etc... For instance, they are critical of stressing CPMs to the loss of healthy churches, yet they clearly express a desire to see CPMs happen
Section Three particularly deals with cross-cultural missions. Here, authors look at how we should look at various other worldviews and practices related to the task. Here, you get less "how to" advice and more tangible ways of understanding what other books treat in too abstract or ideal ways. Personally, my favorite chapter in the book comes from this section, "The Gospel and Lifestyle".
The closing section gives some open ending challenges to missiologist-theologians and churches alike.
The theme of God's glory keeps partisan agendas in balance. Christopher Wright and John Piper are among the most cited authors. I think this book will become standard reading in mission-oriented classes.