A blog post - Five Secular Myths about Missions

Discussion in 'Evangelism, Missions and the Persecuted Church' started by Pergamum, Feb 25, 2019.

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  1. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    Here is a blog post I wrote after being criticized in the press for "wiping out" the lifestyle of a remote tribe.


    "April 1874 – the British Empire’s treasury pays £500 for the missionary David Livingstone’s funeral (around £38,000 today). A steamer carries his body to Southampton where he receives an artillery salute. His body lays in state at the Royal Geographical Society’s offices for two days and crowds throng to pay their respects.

    David Livingstone died after contacting many remote tribes for the first time and opened up Africa to commerce. But his primary objective was always to tell them about Jesus. He was hailed as a hero.

    November 2018 – a medically trained young man, John Allen Chau, was killed trying to go ashore to reach the unreached people of North Sentinel Island among the Andaman Island group. He is heavily criticized and even mocked online.

    This is one metric of how far the West has fallen.

    As Western civilization pulls away from its Christian moorings, we see a rising anti-missionary sentiment. Those who identify as Christians are not much different. Many professing Christians also criticized Chau. What is more, a recent Barna survey showed the shocking conclusion that, “Almost Half of Practicing Christian Millennials Say Evangelism Is Wrong.

    Attacked in the press by a Russian photographer

    This anti-missionary sentiment was brought home to me in a very personal way in September of 2018. While recovering from a swollen liver, spleen, and gallbladder from my 23rd bout with malaria after 12 years of service among the remote Korowai tribe, I was shocked to read this bold headline, “Ancient Tribe on the Brink of Being Wiped Out by Christian Missionaries.” In another newspaper I read these further accusations, “Fight for Survival: Ancient Jungle Tribe of Super-Strong Hunters Close to Being Wiped Out by Christian Missionaries.”

    The Russian photographer Maxim Russkikh traveled 15 days throughout Korowai territory and documented his journey. During a mere 2 weeks Russkikh, who does not speak the local or the regional language, saw some abandoned houses and concluded that the missionaries must be wiping out the tribe. Because of the sensational nature of the photographs, several Western media outlets published his reports, which slandered my missionary work among this tribe.

    Despite the Korowai being highly mobile and often possessing two houses (one in their jungle garden and another in the village) and despite Korowai sagu grub feast huts being abandoned after use, Russkikh falsely concluded that the empty houses were evidence that the tribe was dying off and that the missionaries were forcibly removing the tribe into reservation-type settlements. In reality, the Korowai themselves have organized several villages on their own initiative, have invited us missionaries in to help them, and are, in fact, increasing in population due to a decrease in mortality, a result of the work of the Papuan churches and missionaries. But nevertheless, these slanderous accusations by Mr. Russkikh have been read and believed by tens of thousands."

  2. ZackF

    ZackF Puritan Board Graduate

    Excellent article! Thanks you for writing it.
  3. Johnathan Lee Allen

    Johnathan Lee Allen Puritan Board Freshman

    Those who have escaped the wrath to come and are or will be in eternity with Christ are thankful for your efforts and the efforts of those who came before you.
  4. Tom Hart

    Tom Hart Puritan Board Junior

    You'll probably want to change this to lies.
  5. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

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