Old Testament: Conclusion
The Old Testament includes the drama of God’s love for the whole of his creation. His mission to reconcile creation to himself and to the rest of creation has been in place since the beginning (Martens 59). Generally, the mission of God in the Old Testament has been characterized as “centripetal.” In other words, the nations were moving to Yahweh, the center. While that image is certainly dominant, there is also evidence of God’s desire for his people to move out into the nations as a witness to him. This “centrifugal” mission is more fully developed with the dawning of a new age, the birth of Jesus and the birth of the church.
New Testament: Beginning
The mission of God finds full flower in the pages of the New Testament. Much of missiology has focused on the New Testament for rationale and models for missionary work. Therefore, we will link the impulses of mission in the New Testament to the findings of mission in the Old Testament. To accomplish this, we will look at the life of Jesus (particularly the Gospel of Luke), the work of the church in Acts, and the letters of Paul.
Tomorrow: Jesus and the missio Dei in Luke