I wrote about the Blessings Of Independent Baptist Missions which is “an incredible network of independent churches that are willing to partner with missionaries from various Baptist churches of like faith and practice to evangelize the world.” This post is in that same vein and builds upon it.
In general, we have a strong focus on church planting. And this is something that makes our approach to evangelizing the world very unique (and Biblical). As our movement grows,
Although I believe our focus as a movement is still on church planting as a whole, there is a trend that sees the importance of their local church and even the importance of supporting national church planting but regulates “foreign missions” as just a “good works outreach” instead of a “foreign church planting effort”. But missions should equal church planting, and here are a few ideas why:
- Missions should equal church planting because it is the result of obeying the great commission—”make disciples of all nations through going and preaching the gospel, baptizing new believers and teaching them all that Jesus taught. As a result, new local churches would be established all around the world.”
- Missions should equal church planting because churches can be the light of its community by its good works outreaches. For example, a church in America doesn’t need to have a missionary to foster kids in its local community, the members of the church can reach out and foster the children and care for them. The church is the answer to this problem. In the same way, the foreign field doesn’t need a missionary sent out to start a foster care ministry on the foreign field, they need a local church planted by a missionary who teaches them to be light in their community through the various means. Again, the local church is the answer.
- Missions should equal church planting because it is an active and constant witness. What greater gift can you give to a community
than“a group of believers who consistently gather together in one place for the common purpose of carrying out the will and work of God and to grow in the grace and knowledge of their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ”—this is a local church.
Sometimes there are needs for various ministries as “stop-gap measures” meaning trying to evangelize or be light in communities around the world until we have a local church there to do the job, but if we never send church planters then the temporary fix becomes permanent.