Missionary Service In The Life Of Paul: -- By: Ken Fleming

Journal: Emmaus Journal
Volume: EMJ 01:2 (Summer 1992)
Article: Missionary Service In The Life Of Paul:
Author: Ken Fleming

Missionary Service In The Life Of Paul:

Ken Fleming1

Part 1: Paul The Evangelist--A Model To Missionaries

Michael Borodin was sent to China in 1923 by Lenin as a special advisor from the Communist Party in Russia. His job was to help reorganize the Kuomintang into a highly disciplined central party. His most promising students were Sun Yai en, Chiang Kai-shek, and a young man from Viet Nam named Ho Chi-minh.

Borodin was interviewed by an American correspondent concerning his purpose to “take over China for a Communist movement.” The correspondent finally said, “You are too few. You’ll never do it.”

“Oh yes we will,” came the cool reply, “You forget, young man, that I am not here for my health, comfort, or personal success. I am totally dedicated to the cause of the Communist movement.”

After a long silence, Borodin began to murmur, half to himself, “You know,” he mused, “I used to read the New Testament. It is the most wonderful story ever told. That man Paul, he was a real revolutionary. I take my hat off to him.”

Suddenly Borodin whirled around and shook his fist in the face of the correspondent. “But where do you find him today?” he shouted. “Answer me that. Where do you find him today?”

Borodin’s question is an excellent starting point for an enquiry into the missionary work of the apostle Paul. Where do you find him today? Where do you

find missionaries who are totally dedicated to practising the simple yet profound principles which Paul used in the early church? A re-examination of the Pauline strategy of mission may do much to sharpen our own focus and to make us more effective ambassadors for the Lord Jesus Christ.

There are more Christian missionaries in more places today than at any time in history. They have become increasingly involved in specialized ministries from “a to z” (agriculture to zoology). Growing specialization holds a danger of which we ought to be aware. The danger is that in our emphasis on special ministries we may lose the primary principles of the great commission. The result is that a decreasing percentage of missionaries are directly involved in the basics of evangelism, teaching, and church planting. Instead the tools of mission, such as social improvement, have become ends in themselves.

Paul used tools, but concentrated on the primary principles. This study is concerned with the New Testament record of Paul’s missionary strategy. It is a restatement of biblical missionary principles which are seen in the life ...

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