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Business and Church Planting: Made for Each Other!

Mon, Dec. 07, 2015 Posted: 05:27 PM

In recent years, many people have begun to more fully appreciate the huge power and potential of "business as mission" (BAM) as a way to glorify God in our lives as well as among all peoples. It's both a means to enter into contexts where missionaries are unwelcome, and a mechanism to catalyze church planting among unreached peoples. In fact, while other models often work in other contexts, BAM is distinctly qualified to open doors where the Gospel and church planting often are most needed. I won’t say “uniquely” qualified because I don’t want to get an influx of emails calling me a BAM extremist, but I will admit I lean in that direction!

Yet while the power of BAM to catalyze church planting becomes increasingly apparent to us, this relationship is not a new one. Luke, in apparently hyperbolic fashion, wrote in Acts 19:10 that in a period of two years, “all the residents of Asia (roughly today’s Turkey) heard the word of the Lord, both Jews and Greeks.” What was he thinking? Surely a medical doctor and historian would never resort to such embellishment of the truth!

Paul took the disciples with him and had discussions daily in the lecture hall of Tyrannus. This went on for two years, so that all the Jews and Greeks who lived in the province of Asia heard the word of the Lord. – Acts 19:9-10, NIV

Everyone? In a huge geographic territory? In just two years! Well… yes. Pretty much. Apparently, Paul’s “Tyrannus Training Institute” (Acts 19:9) was neither a residential program, nor purely theological in nature. Rather he seems to have been discipling and training people who came and were equipped and then went out into the highways and byways of Asia, sometimes as “missionaries” entering into unfamiliar regions, sometimes as “lay people” returning home to their place of origin, but always on mission. It seems that so many people came and went, so many teams were equipped and sent, enough “so that all the residents of Asia heard the word of the Lord.”

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João Mordomo