Poll on Missions

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by John of Japan, Mar 19, 2007.

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What do you believe about missions?

  1. I believe in worldwide missions.

    58 vote(s)
    81.7%
  2. I do not believe in worldwide missions.

    2 vote(s)
    2.8%
  3. I believe the Great Commission is valid for today.

    62 vote(s)
    87.3%
  4. I believe the Great Commission is not valid for today.

    3 vote(s)
    4.2%
  5. I believe the local church is where missions should start.

    58 vote(s)
    81.7%
  6. I believe the local church has no business doing missions.

    2 vote(s)
    2.8%
  7. I believe mission boards are okay.

    47 vote(s)
    66.2%
  8. I believe mission boards are unbiblical.

    13 vote(s)
    18.3%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. John of Japan

    John of Japan
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    Amity has been having a hard time--we've been giving her a hard time, I guess! Sorry, Amity! :wavey:

    She has been bothered that several of us have singled out the Primitive Baptists as being about the only group opposed to missions. So I want to give folk a chance to sound off here and let us know if they, too are opposed to missions.

    For the record, this thread is not an effort to pick on the PB folk or Amity at all. Please do not make it that. I'm simply trying to learn if she is right and there are other Baptist folk out there who oppose missions.

    Just for fun, I threw in a couple of spoiler questions about mission boards. If anyone wants to fuss about that, have at it.
     
  2. Bro. James Reed

    Bro. James Reed
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    In order to participate in the poll, I would have to know what exactly you mean by "missions".

    Your definition and mine are probably different.

    Do you mean simply evangelism?
     
  3. John of Japan

    John of Japan
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    Point taken--I should have given a definition. I specifically said "worldwide missions" hoping that would define the term. I mean more than simple evangelism. I mean worldwide evangelism, specifically with the goal of planting churches, including the sending and support of missionaries for that purpose.
     
  4. John of Japan

    John of Japan
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    By the way, I do not mean charity work, such as sending food and other items to victims of disaster, unless it is a means to get the Gospel out. Charity is not unbiblical, it is simply not missions IMO.
     
  5. Bro. James Reed

    Bro. James Reed
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    With that in mind, I only voted for 2 things.

    Yes, I believe the "great commission" is still valid. Although there are Primitives who probably disagree with me over whether it's still valid, I would say we do agree on the purpose of the commission and that the purpose is still valid; i.e. spreading God's word.

    I believe the commission was given by Christ to his disciples, and through them to the ministry, as an instruction to preach his word to his people wherever they may be. That, I believe, is the root of evangelism. I do not believe it was an instruction given to the church at anytime. Ministers are to preach the word wherever the Lord might send them to do it. That is evangelism the way I, and most Primitive Baptists, believe it.

    Yes, I believe missions are not scriptural. They were not set up as part of the New Testament church, and are contrary to my belief about the preaching of the gospel and who is to send and be sent to do so, and they are contrary to what I believe the gospel is for. Almost all Primitives would agree with me on this point.

    Read the Black Rock Address sometime, if you haven't already, to get an idea of the reason for the primitive/missionary split, especially with regard to missions and the reasons we object them.

    http://www.pb.org/pbdocs/blakrock.html
     
  6. bapmom

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    how are "Christ's disciples" and "Christ's church" different? I would think they would be the same.......I see no difference. More and more through this I believe that here is where a breakdown is occuring in communication (one of them at least)......I keep seeing a distinction being made by some between the church and the disciples. Who do you think makes up the church if not the disciples?
     
  7. Bro. James Reed

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    Christ had hundreds and thousands of disciples (followers), but I'm specifically referring to the 12. Maybe I should have said apostles. What I mean is, those who were charged with preaching to his people.

    I think you would agree with me that not everyone is called to preach the gospel. I think you would also agree with me that not everyone has the scriptural authority to baptize.

    Hope that better explains what I meant to say.

    James
     
  8. 2 Timothy2:1-4

    2 Timothy2:1-4
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    Very sad.:tear:
     
  9. amity

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    I agree with Bro. Reed. I voted that I thought the great commission was not valid for today, but I'll take that back IF your interpretation is limited to straightforward evangelism on the part of individuals who are called by the Holy Spirit.

    And in answer to bapmom, I don't think the church is supposed to fulfill all of our scriptural obligations by proxy.

    I don't know why I did not think of finding some excerpts from the Black Rock address to post. Here it is online:
    http://www.pb.org/pbdocs/blakrock.html
     
    #9 amity, Mar 20, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 20, 2007
  10. John of Japan

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    Thank you Brother James. You have educated me.

    I'm sure I've read the Black Rock Address at some time in my checkered past, but I'll check it out again.

    God bless.
     
  11. Bro. James Reed

    Bro. James Reed
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    I look at it the other way. I think it's sad that people spend so much time and energy trying to save the souls of other people when they don't even have the ability to save their own. I can't imagine how sorrowful it must be for people to live believing that so many people are going to hell because they didn't reach them with the gospel in time or because they didn't live a certain way or profess certain things. I would hate to have that on my conscience.

    It's really a relief for me to believe that God can and will save each and everyone of His people without the use of men, and that nothing we have done or can do can separate us from His love. I am happy to know that God has our salvation secure, and I am sad that others believe they must do the work of God and save people from Hell.

    It's all in your perspective, I guess.

    :wavey:
     
  12. John of Japan

    John of Japan
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    Thanks for participating, Amity.

    My view on the Great Commission is too involved to include here, but I see five statements of it, each with various audiences and emphases. At any rate, your vote is a help to my understanding.

    God bless.
     
    #12 John of Japan, Mar 20, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 20, 2007
  13. Bro. James Reed

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    I am curious about the Old Regular position on this. Especially from those associated with Brother Bob's side. Where are you brother?
     
  14. John of Japan

    John of Japan
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    I've just been reading the Black Rock Address, and I came across this horrible slander against missionaries: "The missionary, instead of going into such neighborhoods as Christ's ministers used to visit, where they would be most likely to have an opportunity of administering food to the poor of the flock, seeks the more populous villages and towns, where he can attract the most attention, and do the most to promote the cause of missions and other popular institution's. His leading motive, judging from his movements, is not love to souls, but love of fame; hence his anxiety to have something to publish of what he has done, and hence his anxiety to constitute churches, even taking disaffected, disorderly, and as has been the case, excluded persons, to form a church, in the absence of better materials. And the people, instead of glowing with the affection for the preacher as such, feel burdened with the whole system of modern mendicancy, but have no resolution to shake off their oppression, because it is represented so deistical to withhold and so popular to give."

    This is so slanderous I hardly know where to start. A missionary's greatest motive is a love of fame? What absolute balderdash! If a missionary wanted fame he certainly wouldn't leave his home country! Hey, nobody knows me in the States if their church doesn't support me--and even then I'm more often forgotten than not. As for fame in Japan--right! We are the lowest of the low to the Japanese. I could not even get permanent residency, though the law allows it.

    In that day and age, this slander would have been aimed at such men as Adoniram Judson, a Baptist who went to Burma. On the mission field, his first wife died, he married the wife of another missionary who died, his second wife died, several of his children died, and finally his third wife survived him. All this for fame? :BangHead: :BangHead:

    In the Anglo-Burmese War of 1824-26 (The Black Rock Address was in 1832) Judson spent 17 months of agony and torture in a Burmese jail, though he was American. His pillow for part of that time was the manuscript of the first ever Burmese Bible, which he translated from scratch. Every day they would come in an drag someone out to execute them, and he never knew if it would be him or not. And to accuse him of wanting fame? :BangHead: :BangHead:
     
  15. 2 Timothy2:1-4

    2 Timothy2:1-4
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    What an ungodly hypersensativity.
     
  16. amity

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    Bro. Reed, I have a question about the Black Rock Address. It states very clearly that misson societies do not belong in a church. But at one point it does say that it is the church's role to send out a man as an evangelist. Has the PB position on this changed? Most preachers who do travel do so on an appointment, and I have never seen a church vote on such an issue. I think most would say the preacher/evangelist should be sent by the Holy Spirit, and not by the church in any meaningful sense. Of course a preacher must be ordained, liberated to preach, etc., on the other hand. So would most PBs today say it was the church's role to send out an evangelist? I have never seen this happen.

    And John, please understand the BRA in reference to conditions in the 1830s. This was still the very early days of the missionary movement. If I understand right, the basic issue being addressed is sending missionaries into frontier America, not into other countries. Plus, the author does state that there were some honorable exceptions.
     
    #16 amity, Mar 20, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 20, 2007
  17. John of Japan

    John of Japan
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    Thanks for keeping me straight, Amity. I do see what you say about honorable exceptions in the next paragraph. But then the word "exceptions" that says to me that they believed that most missionaries were what the first paragraph described--glory hogging money grubbers.

    No doubt I would not have been acceptable to them since I am under a board. :smilewinkgrin: But then again, the IFB movement did not exist in those days. We do not do missions in the way they seemed to be objecting to, and indeed IFBs like myself oppose the denominational method with its bureacracy and vertical authority. IFB mission agencies exist to enable (serve as a clearinghouse for individual church support) and protect (serve to protect the churches from immoral or heretical missionaries, which occasionally do appear), not to rule. Our board never tells us how to run our ministry or tries to take the place of the Holy Spirit in leading us.

    Missions as the BRA objected to them were done in the SBC way, the denominational way. In fact, from what the BRA said they seemed worse than the SBC way in that churches were dunned rather than giving to the denominational program freely. Still, however, the churches did missions should not have reflected on the missionaries themselves, who simply wanted to served the Lord on the foreign field.
     
  18. bapmom

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    wait, I haven't read all the posts after this but, by proxy!? We ARE the church! You guys sound like your view of "church" is very Catholic.



    alright,
    someone asked if I think everyone is called to preach.......In a sense, yes, I do believe everyone is called to forth-tell the gospel. "Preaching" means to bring a message - and every saved person is called to do this.....male or female. We women cannot pastor, absolutely, but I can tell a lost man about Christ.


    And Brother Reed, we do not live under fear or guilt that we cannot reach the entire world. We do trust that God will and does bring His gospel to those places that we as individuals cannot reach. However, that knowledge does not divest us of the obligation to go where God sends US as individuals. We can only reach those around us where God has placed us.......but God also tells us to reach those around us and not just assume that God will somehow magically drop the knowledge of the gospel into their heads. He is the One who tells us that He has NOT chosen to use magical "revelation" in order to spread the gospel.....HE is the One who HAS chosen to use weak humanity to accomplish His goal. He does the saving in every single case. He commands us to do the telling.
     
    #18 bapmom, Mar 20, 2007
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2007
  19. bapmom

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    this part of the quote from the BRA really struck me as well. "better materials"??
     
  20. John of Japan

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    You should have seen our church in Yokohama, bapmom. It seemed like the Lord sent all the "disaffected, disorderly, and as has been the case, excluded persons" our way--a schizophrenic, her boyfriend (later husband who had been diagnosed shizophrenic but his father disagreed so he was never treated; a man treated for depression; a disaffected JW and her liberal sister; more than one smelly old bachelor (one who got saved after we left!), a mentally handicapped man, etc.

    Praise the Lord that He uses the weak ones of the world to do His will, and is glorified by the work of missionaries like the Apostle Paul: "Being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day" (1 Cor. 4:13).
     

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