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What in the World Is God Doing? The Essentials of Global Missions

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In What in the World Is God Doing? C. Gordon Olson examines the state of world Christian missions through five lenses: the biblical, the historical, the contextual, the regional, and the functional. Olson seeks to create “world Christians” that are aware of God’s vision for his kingdom. The text is designed for those who might not have extensive knowledge of cultures, geography, or theology. Olson’s book is accessible, while remaining a substantive scholarly introduction to missiology.

The Logos edition of What in the World Is God Doing? enhances your study with amazing digital functionality. Use the Timeline to follow along with Olson through the history of Christian missions. Use the Topic Guide to compile verses addressing missions and evangelism. Study with your community and leave comments on the go with Faithlife and free tablet and mobile apps. With Logos, the most efficient and comprehensive tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

  • Examines the state of world Christian missions
  • Traces the history of missions from the first century to today
  • Provides a substantive and accessible introduction to missiology
  • The Biblical Dimension
    • Dispelling the Fog
    • Is Missions Really in the Old Testament?
    • The Jewish Messiah’s Global Plans Disclosed
    • His Church Bridges the Cultural
    • The Only Light in the Deadly Night
    • Why in the World Should I Go?
  • The Historical Dimension
    • Pre–Reformation Expansion & Missions (33–1517)
    • Reformation Missions (1517–1786)
    • Missions Restored: Pioneers (1786–1865)
    • Expansion to Interior Frontiers (1865–1945)
    • Transition to the Contemporary Scene (1945–)
  • The Contextual Dimension
    • Non-theistic Religious Contexts
    • Theistic Religious Contexts
    • The Secular Context of Missions
  • The Regional Dimension
    • North America: Our Samaria
    • Asia: The First and Vastest Challenge
    • Sub-Saharan Africa: Growth Through Struggle
    • Latin America: a Christo-pagan Melting Pot
    • The Muslim World: Neglected Challenge
    • Europe: Re-evangelizing Secular ‘Christians’
  • The Functional Dimension
    • Why in the World Do We Need Mission Agencies?
    • How in the World Do We Get Good Missionaries?
    • What in the World Do Missionaries Do?
    • What in the World Can My Home Church Do?
    • Where in the World Do We Go from Here?
What continues to make this book a standout is the variety of topics that are masterfully yet practically handled, giving the reader a comprehensive and biblically solid introduction to missions.

—Marvin J. Newell, senior vice-president, Missio Nexus

What in the World Is God Doing? is just the right question to ask and Gordon Olson is uniquely qualified to answer it. He has been engaged in both theological reflection and missiological application for 60 years. You will discover the interconnection between the Bible and its mandate upon us all and the world—a glimpse from 35,000 feet—yet, with practical application and mature insight. Thousands of students have been challenged and blessed by this work, and the 7th edition continues the tradition.

—Greg H. Parsons, US Center for World Mission

Finally someone has written an introductory text that respects missiology’s interdisciplinary nature and treats the areas of concern for modern missionary ministry . . . a balanced blend of theory and practice. It proves to be a useful textbook for introductory missions course in Bible colleges and seminaries.

—Keith E. Eitel, missions professor, Southwestern Baptist Seminary

  • Title: What in the World Is God Doing? The Essentials of Global Missions
  • Author: C. Gordon Olson
  • Edition: 7th ed.
  • Publisher: C. Gordon Olson
  • Publication Date: 2013
  • Pages: 383

C. Gordon Olson was an engineering student when he converted to Christianity. He studied theology at Dallas Theological Seminary and founded the Pakistan Fellowship of Evangelical Students and worked in Urdu and other areas of Pakistan. He was professor of theology and missions at Northeastern Bible College (1967–1990) and a trustee of Christar mission (1968–2004). He earned his doctorate in missiology from Trinity International University. He is currently a speaker and adjunct professor at Liberty University.


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Enjoy the Monthly Sale!


Digital list price: $18.99
Regular price: $14.99
Save $4.50 (30%)