Beyond Winsomeness: Michael Clary on the Church Planting Movement and Contextualization in an Age of Sexual Confusion

How can the church hold to its foundational truths while effectively engaging in a rapidly shifting cultural landscape? This episode features Michael Clary, a seasoned ministry leader with insights into church planting and cultural engagement. As we delve into topics like the dangers of cultural Marxism within the church and the balance between truth andContinue reading “Beyond Winsomeness: Michael Clary on the Church Planting Movement and Contextualization in an Age of Sexual Confusion”

Globalization and Blind Spots: Dr. Craig Ott on Contextualization

We’ve launched our premium membership! Visit missionspodcast.com/premium to join and gain access to exclusive bonus content. Join us in empowering the next wave of missionaries by supporting those still in the crucial phase of raising support. Visit abwe.org/prefield. In this compelling episode, we delve into the complexities and challenges of contextualizing the gospel in a rapidly globalizingContinue reading “Globalization and Blind Spots: Dr. Craig Ott on Contextualization”

Who Was John Nevius? Joshua Bowman on the Missionary to China and Three-Self Missiology

Who was John Nevius, and why does his legacy continue to influence missions today? In this captivating episode of The Missions Podcast, we delve into the life and groundbreaking work of John Nevius with the insights of Joshua Bowman, a seasoned missionary with extensive experience in Zambia and South Asia, and currently serving as anContinue reading “Who Was John Nevius? Joshua Bowman on the Missionary to China and Three-Self Missiology”

The Cross in Context? Exploring Atonement and Contextualization with Brad Vaughn

Engage in a thought-provoking continuation of The Missions Podcast as we delve into the ideas presented by Brad Vaughn in his book The Cross in Context. Join hosts Alex Kocman and Scott Dunford as they explore various perspectives on the relationship between Christianity and Western culture, the diverse metaphors of sin and Christ’s atonement, andContinue reading “The Cross in Context? Exploring Atonement and Contextualization with Brad Vaughn”

Saving God’s Face? A Dialogue With Brad Vaughn on Honor and Shame

Dive into a thought-provoking conversation with Brad Vaughn, previously known as Jackson Wu. With his book Saving God’s Face as the backdrop, we explore the concept of sin as a violation of God’s honor, the overlap between Chinese and biblical culture, and the distinct differences in how Westerners and Asians understand honor and shame. PrepareContinue reading “Saving God’s Face? A Dialogue With Brad Vaughn on Honor and Shame”

Making Disciples in Light of the Trinity: Chase Davis

Have we focused too much on contextualization and not enough on who God is? This week, we talk to J. Chase Davis, author of Trinitarian Formation: A Theology of Discipleship in Light of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In this episode, we explore how the doctrine of the Trinity can deepen our understanding ofContinue reading “Making Disciples in Light of the Trinity: Chase Davis”

Muslims and the Adopting Love of God With Joe Allen – #FTC22

What does the doctrine of adoption have to do with reaching Muslims for Christ? Dr. Joe Allen explains the connection. Joe Allen serves as Assistant Professor of Missions at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He wrote his dissertation on “Soteriological Adoption for Muslim Evangelism: Engaging Muslims with the Trinitarian Love of God.” Watch the video versionContinue reading “Muslims and the Adopting Love of God With Joe Allen – #FTC22”

The Beauty of International Churches: Dr. Michael Crane

English-speaking churches in cities like Dubai or Bangkok don’t appear to be the most missiologically strategic—at least on paper. But as with any local church, there’s more to international churches than meets the eye. Dr. Michael Crane returns to the show to share the beauties, challenges, and unique blessings of expat fellowships abroad and multiethnicContinue reading “The Beauty of International Churches: Dr. Michael Crane”

#RMC22: Steve Meister on Classical Hermeneutics and Bible Translation

Right now, two controversies are brewing. In the world of theology, conservative evangelicals are torn over classical theism and pre-modern hermeneutics. And in the missions world, Bible translation methodologies remain a lightning-rod issue. In this meaty conversation from the Radius Missiology Conference, Steve Meister, pastor and board member for Bible Translation Fellowship, explains why these twoContinue reading “#RMC22: Steve Meister on Classical Hermeneutics and Bible Translation”

Chad Vegas: Defining the ‘Proclamational Model’ (Part 2)

Watch the video version of this episode here. This week, we continue our conversation with Chad Vegas defining proclamation, outlining the dangers of pragmatism, and sketching a vision for a biblically-driven missiology. Miss part 1? Listen here. Chad is the founding pastor of Sovereign Grace Church of Bakersfield, the founding board chairman of Radius InternationalContinue reading “Chad Vegas: Defining the ‘Proclamational Model’ (Part 2)”

The Transcultural Gospel: E.D. Burns

Honor and shame. Fear and power. Guilt and innocence. Missiologists are increasingly identifying these cultural value systems as the key to communicating the gospel. But have we gotten them wrong? E.D. Burns, author of The Transcultural Gospel, returns to the show to explain how the biblical gospel message transcends cultures and all our imperfect effortsContinue reading “The Transcultural Gospel: E.D. Burns”

Is Innovation in Ministry Biblical? A Dialogue With Ted Esler

Ted Esler believes there’s a crisis in the Christian world. He believes leaders in ministry and missions aren’t innovating. Is this true—and is innovation itself biblical? Ted joins Scott and Alex this week to discuss his new book, The Innovation Crisis. Ted Esler is the president of Missio Nexus, an association of agencies and churchesContinue reading “Is Innovation in Ministry Biblical? A Dialogue With Ted Esler”

C.S. Lewis and Mission: Dan DeWitt on Recapturing Our Cultural Imagination

What does C.S. Lewis have to do with missions? More than you’d think. This week, Dan DeWitt explains how Lewis’ vision for literature, tradition, and the affections can transform cross-cultural ministry. Before joining the faculty of Cedarville University, Dr. Dan DeWitt served in academic and pastoral roles as Lead Pastor of the Campus Church, aContinue reading “C.S. Lewis and Mission: Dan DeWitt on Recapturing Our Cultural Imagination”

Sent From Zambia to South Asia: Joshua Bowman Explains

What is it like being sent out from a Zambian church as an American missionary to serve in a Hindu context? Joshua Bowman of Cedarville University shares his unique story. Joshua Bowman holds a Ph.D. in Missiology from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and is Assistant Professor of Missions and Theology at Cedarville University. He served withContinue reading “Sent From Zambia to South Asia: Joshua Bowman Explains”

Some Mocked, But Some Believed: Scott Dunford on Acts 17

The Apostle Paul models missional apologetics in Acts 17. What can we learn? In this episode, Scott Dunford walks through a crucial text and draws application for cross-cultural ministry at home and abroad. This episode features a sermon originally preached at Community Evangelical Free Church of Harrisburg, Pa. on June 13, 2021. Want to askContinue reading “Some Mocked, But Some Believed: Scott Dunford on Acts 17”

Heresy and Contextualization: Tim Bertolet on Galatians

We don’t normally think of Galatians as a “missions book.” Paul is confronting heretics, defending doctrine, and getting really, really detailed about circumcision. Yet according to Tim Bertolet, Ph.D., Galatians is all about God’s mission to the world. It exposes how we idolize contextualization, shows the healthy way to bring the gospel into new contexts,Continue reading “Heresy and Contextualization: Tim Bertolet on Galatians”

How to Share Christ With Muslims During Ramadan: Matt Bennett Speaks

Evangelism is hard. How can Christians share the gospel with Muslims during Ramadan? Should missionaries in Islamic lands adopt the spiritual practices of their neighbors? Matt Bennett, author and professor, shares his experience from ministering in the Middle East. Dr. Matthew Bennett joined the faculty at Cedarville University in fall 2017 after serving and living in NorthContinue reading “How to Share Christ With Muslims During Ramadan: Matt Bennett Speaks”

Mega Episode: Honor, Shame, and the Gospel With Chris Flanders

More and more missiologists are tired of talking about the gospel only in terms of guilt and innocence. This growing school of thought claims these concepts are “Western.” Writers like Roland Muller, Jayson Georges, and Jackson Wu say that honor and shame—not guilt and innocence—hold the keys to evangelism in Majority World cultures. Are theyContinue reading “Mega Episode: Honor, Shame, and the Gospel With Chris Flanders”

The Dangers of Insider Bible Translations: The Arlington Statement

Scripture calls Jesus Christ the Son of God and the Lamb slain for sinners. These glorious names run directly counter to the sensibilities of those belonging religions including Islam and Hinduism. Should Bible translators soften these words and concepts to contextualize God’s word? The framers of the recently-published Arlington Statement on Bible Translation say no.Continue reading “The Dangers of Insider Bible Translations: The Arlington Statement”

Know Your Place: How to Identify and Study Your Mission Field

In today’s technology-saturated world, we can “be” anywhere—except where we actually are. Place matters. So how can we identify what our “mission field” is around us and know the way it thinks? In this episode, Scott and Alex dive into the book of Acts for answers about worldview, context, and missional living. Remember to share,Continue reading “Know Your Place: How to Identify and Study Your Mission Field”

Are International Churches Missional? Scott Zeller on Pastoring Expats

Missions means doing hard things in hard places. So are English-speaking churches geared towards expats truly reaching the unreached, or does more need to be done? The answers may surprise you. This week, Scott Zeller, executive pastor of Redeemer Church of Dubai, reframes the issue. Scott Zeller is involved in regional church planting and theological educationContinue reading “Are International Churches Missional? Scott Zeller on Pastoring Expats”

Questioning Contextualization? With C.R. Wiley

Missiologists are always talking about contextualizing the church to the surrounding culture. But should we accommodate to a post-Christian culture, or a culture of death like we see in the West today? It’s time for us to rethink the ubiquitous acceptance of the logic of contextualization, says C.R. “Chris” Wiley. This week, Chris returns toContinue reading “Questioning Contextualization? With C.R. Wiley”

Dr. Robin Hadaway on Reaching Folk Muslims

What is the difference between folk Islam and orthodox Islam—or folk religion in general and any other major religion—and how can Christians meaningfully present Christ in a context of traditional spiritism? Dr. Robin D. Hadaway joins us this week to unravel these complex missiological questions. Dr. Hadaway is professor of missions at Midwestern Baptist TheologicalContinue reading “Dr. Robin Hadaway on Reaching Folk Muslims”

Is Christianity a ‘Western Religion’? The Ancient Path in Asia

Throughout southeast Asia, where John m has ministered with ABWE for years, one of the major barriers to the gospel is the misconception that Christianity is a Western or even American religion. Is that true—and if not, how can we counteract that understanding? In this episode, John explains the miraculous story of The Ancient PathContinue reading “Is Christianity a ‘Western Religion’? The Ancient Path in Asia”

How Do Chinese Christians Think? Diane Poythress on the Church in Asia

“Eastern” and “Western” aren’t just geographic labels—they’re terms that signify a massive worldview chasm. How do Chinese culture, the Confucian system of thought, and Eastern patterns of thought impact the church in Asia? What questions to Chinese Christians tend to bring to the Bible, and what questions should they—and we—be asking instead? Dr. Diane PoythressContinue reading “How Do Chinese Christians Think? Diane Poythress on the Church in Asia”

The Tragic Fruit of Liberalism in Missions: Mark Tatlock Explains

We often talk about the state of theology in the American church, but what about on the mission field? In this episode, Mark Tatlock, president of The Master’s Academy International (TMAI), explains why there is reason for rejoicing but also much concern—and how the root of many heresies overseas can be traced to a gradualContinue reading “The Tragic Fruit of Liberalism in Missions: Mark Tatlock Explains”

Insider Movements: Definitions and Dangers With Matthew Bennett

Can you identify as “socio-culturally Muslim” while still following Christ—and making disciples? That question lies at the heart of the Insider Movement methodology. In this episode, Matt Bennett joins to offer definitions and explain the dangers of the Insider Movement and provide practical guidance for pastors and missionaries navigating these controversial waters. Dr. Matthew BennettContinue reading “Insider Movements: Definitions and Dangers With Matthew Bennett”

Is All Theology Cultural? Biblical Authority and Contextualization

Biblical authority is under attack. A missionary’s job is partly to make the transcendents truths of God’s word understandable within human language, context, and culture. But is it possible to know God’s objective truth, or are we always “stuck” within our culture—making modern missions inescapably colonialist? In this episode, Scott Dunford and Alex Kocman dialogueContinue reading “Is All Theology Cultural? Biblical Authority and Contextualization”

What Missionaries Need to Know About the Faith and Works Debate: Chris Bruno on Justification and the Missiology of Paul and James

For New Testament students, fewer topics are more frequently studied and debated than the relationship between faith and works in the book of James and the letters of Paul. The question “how are we justified?” isn’t just a question asked in churches and seminaries—it’s also a vital question that relates to how we do missions.Continue reading “What Missionaries Need to Know About the Faith and Works Debate: Chris Bruno on Justification and the Missiology of Paul and James”

How Much Do the Unreached Know? Natural Revelation and Evangelism

When we consider unreached and unengaged people groups, we typically think of them as knowing nothing at all of God. But a biblical theology of natural revelation and common grace drives us to a deeper understanding of the fact that all human beings are surrounded by the visible glory of God—and it’s precisely this factContinue reading “How Much Do the Unreached Know? Natural Revelation and Evangelism”

Brad Buser on Tribal Religion, Contextualization, and Disciple-Making Movements

When we think “missions,” we tend to think jungles, tribes, animism, strange languages, and thatched roofs. That impression isn’t always accurate. But for veteran missionary and legendary mobilizer Brad Buser, that’s exactly what he experienced. In this episode, we pick Brad’s brain about the importance of tribal missions and long-term, patient language acquisition and contextualization.Continue reading “Brad Buser on Tribal Religion, Contextualization, and Disciple-Making Movements”

Culture: When to Bend, When to Break—Kenneth Nehrbass Explains

Everybody talks about “engaging culture.” Culture is a slippery concept. When should missionaries break from their host culture, and when should they bend with it? Is missions mainly about creating countless contextualized Christianities across various cultures, or is it also about assimilating believers into one overarching Christian culture? We discussed these issues with Dr. KennethContinue reading “Culture: When to Bend, When to Break—Kenneth Nehrbass Explains”

Breaking Down Cultural Walls to Reach Muslims: Mariya Dostzadah’s Story

Mariya Dostzadah Goodbrake comes from a Sunni Afghan background, dabbled into New Age mysticism, and found herself surrounded by Roman Catholics in Mexico—and it’s there that God brought her face-to-face with an evangelical Christian and the biblical gospel. Now, she draws on her rich cultural experiences to help Muslim refugees and expats realize that theyContinue reading “Breaking Down Cultural Walls to Reach Muslims: Mariya Dostzadah’s Story”

How to Think Like a Missionary: David Doran Jr. on Missional Living

What does it mean to be “missional”? We asked David Doran Jr., church planter in Lincoln Park, Michigan, an urban center in the Detroit metroplex, how thinking like a missionary has helped him reach with the gospel different communities just a stone’s throw from where he himself grew up. The result was a powerful chatContinue reading “How to Think Like a Missionary: David Doran Jr. on Missional Living”

John Chau: Missions, Methodology, and Martyrdom

Today we’re taking a break from our regular interview lineup to address the recent death of missionary John Allen Chau. In his final letter before being arrowed to death by the hostile North Sentinelese islanders, Chau penned, “It’s worth it to declare Jesus to these people.” As we mourn Chau’s loss, how should discerning ChristiansContinue reading “John Chau: Missions, Methodology, and Martyrdom”