Book Review: Mission Shift


I’m back in the office today after a great time of vacation with my family. One of the things I love to do when I get away is read. I read tons of material all the time anyway but my focus is usually split. It’s nice to get away from it all and to just lose myself in a book.

The best book I read while I was a way was Mission Shift. This book, edited by Ed Stetzer and David Hesselgrave, is a compilation of essays and responses. It’s a pretty academic book on missions. The book is hot off the press and, in fact, I was able to get my hands on an early release copy to take with me. Power house theologians in the area of missions such as Paul Hiebert (deceased), Charles Van Engen, and Ralph Winter provide three foundational essays with other greats such as Norman Geisler and Avery Willis responding.

The focus of the three foundational essays is – Missions: Past, Missions: Present, and Missions: Future. This was an incredibly stimulating book intellectually and in light of the emphasis in the SBC on the Great Commission Resurgence I thought the book was timely as well. We are putting a lot of emphasis in our church on the Great Commission and on being a missional church. If missions is your thing or if you are a pastor this is a must read.

The book will help you understand the history of missions and mission movements, consider the role of contextualization of the gospel within culture, and to anticipate the coming place of missions within the future of our churches.

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