In This Issue
This issue of Direction was planned to focus on the church and mission. And indeed it does. But, as it turned out, it does not deal only with foreign mission or, even, with evangelism. And that is symbolic of the fact that to “go . . . and teach all nations” means more than preaching for conversion and applies as much to Canada and the United States as to “foreign” countries.
The article by Peter Hamm raises the question whether increasing wealth and high social status will alter the piety and zeal for mission developed by Mennonite Brethren during their more ethnic and sectarian past. He interprets recent data to mean that this has not yet happened. But he obviously fears that it will if materialistic trends persist.
Walter Unger describes a renewed evangelical concern that observing “all things whatsoever I have commanded you” includes action in the social and political dimensions of life. He cites evidence that this more wholistic approach was part of earlier evangelical discipleship.
Despite Christ’s promise, “Lo, I am with you always,” many church people do not experience release from guilt nor do they find the power to grow toward the maturity which Jesus modeled. In his article, George Konrad discusses the way in which pastors and other Christian counselors can help others to receive healing from the one who claimed that “All power is given unto me. . . .”
Howard Loewen studies the Great Commission in Hearing the Word, and several reviewers analyze books which discuss the Great Commission, which describe theological movements in the Third World, and which ask all of us what it means to be a witness for Christ.