The Bible and Missions Part 2 -- By: Robert Hall Glover

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 093:370 (Apr 1936)
Article: The Bible and Missions Part 2
Author: Robert Hall Glover

The Bible and Missions
Part 2

Robert Hall Glover

(Concluded from the January-March Number)

II. The Missionary Heart of the New Testament

The missionary idea which we have seen in the bud in the Old Testament Scriptures bursts into full bloom the moment we cross the threshold of the New Testament. The New Testament is uniquely and preeminently missionary-the greatest missionary volume ever produced. Every section of it was written by a missionary, and with the primary object of meeting a missionary need and promoting missionary work.

To use the words of Professor W. O. Carver: “If there had been no Commission, or no obedience to its spirit, there would have been no need for the New Testament writings and no occasion for their production. A product of missions, the New Testament can be truly interpreted only in the light of the missionary idea.” As another writer puts it: “The New Testament draws its breath in missions, it incarnates missions, wherever it goes it creates missions.”

In considering briefly the missionary significance and teaching of the various books of the New Testament, let us begin with the Gospels. These obviously furnish the missionary with his message. They set forth Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God, the Savior of the world. Particularly do they record and emphasize the death and resurrection of Christ as being the ground of redemption. Paul, the great Apostle to the Gentiles, states this clearly in 1 Cor 15:1–4: “I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto

you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures.” How vitally important, in these days of shifting emphases and loose ideas, to keep in mind what the real and only message for every true Christian missionary is!

When were the Gospels written, and why? They were written when the extent of gospel witnessing became so wide that mere oral testimony was no longer adequate. Their object was to record and preserve the true message and make it available to reading men, and this work was done by four evangelists chosen and inspired by God from among those “which from the beginning were eye witnesses, and ministers of the word” (Luke 1:1, 2).

The four Gospels, then, are missionary documents of tracts, being part of the inspired Scriptures and forerunners of the vast volume of gospel literature w...

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