For Christians everywhere, life is a mission trip: God sends us into our corners of the world to live for his glory. For U.S. Christians, life’s mission trip presents many complex challenges, including an unrelenting pull toward affluence, our fervent religious-nationalism, and our deeply embedded individualism. Within today’s multifaceted context, God the Real Superpower navigates the potent undertow of our inherited assumptions about missions, pointing U.S. Christians toward constructive perspectives about God, ourselves, and others. God the Real Superpower integrates prophetic Christian living, international Christian identity, and multidirectional missions in a self-probing, multifaceted way. An analysis of missions that is beyond a simplistic, motivational approach.
Table of Contents:
Theme 1: Your Faith and Hope Are in God (1 Peter 1:21)
1. God Is the Mission Superpower
2. Four Facets of God’s Mission
Theme 2: Your Brotherhood throughout the World (1 Peter 5:9)
3. Who are we Concretely?
4. Who are we Collectively?
Theme 3: Keeping Your Conduct among the Gentiles Honorable (1 Peter 2:12)
5. Living as an Interdependent Worldwide Church
6. Living Locally as an Interdependent Worldwide Church
Theme 4: Serve One Another (1 Peter 4:10)
7. Organizing Missions in Today’s Multidirectional Mission Flow
8. Organizing Missions Today as American Churches
Theme 5: Throughout the Time of Your Exile (1 Peter 1:17)
9. The Ongoing Nature of Missions
10. The Comprehensive Scope of Missions
Appendix A: The Twentieth-Century Development of Mission and Missions
Appendix B: Christian Missions and Civil Authorities: Missionary Civil Disobedience among the Cherokee Indians
J. Nelson Jennings is president of Presbyterian Mission International as well as a professor at Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis. He received his MDiv from Covenant Seminary and his PhD from the Centre for the Study of Christianity in the Non-Western World at the University of Edinburgh.
“Someone once said, ‘I know two things: there is a God, and I am not him.’ Dr. Jennings has done a wonderful job of reminding us that missions belongs to God. He is the Redeemer and he is allowing us to be part of it. But it is his work and not ours. We as Americans are a ‘can-do’ people, and we have accomplished many things because of it. But one does not have to be involved in missions very long to realize that when it comes to redeeming the world, we ‘can’t do,’ and that is okay. We can relax in the thought that he is in charge and that because of that, missions will not fail.” — John Rollo, international director for Sub-Saharan Africa, Mission to the World
“For North Americans to participate in God’s mission for the twenty-first century, we must learn not only to see the world as Christ does but to see ourselves as Christ and the world see us. Sharing Christ’s sight requires that we share his heart—a heart formed out of humility, compassion, and suffering. Nelson Jennings explores these themes with passion, with hope and, most of all, with a profound love for the gospel of the Lord Jesus. The themes are stretching, transforming, and ultimately empowering for the new work of God’s mission.” — Bryan Chapell, president, Covenant Theological Seminary