Throughout the years the idea has been advanced that Calvinism is against evangelism and missionary efforts. This statement is not only not true it has no bearing throughout the history of Reformed thought and practice. Calvinist missionaries and evangelists have gone all over the world to advance the cause of the gospel. Consider Charles Spurgeon who is one of the most well-known preachers in church history. He was a Reformed Baptist and proclaimed the gospel in season and out of season, including calling men and women to repent and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. Or consider Jonathan Edwards who was not only a pastor but a missionary who had no problem calling people to believe on the name of the Lord Jesus. Yet, many people view Calvinism with suspicion and suggest that Calvinism is against evangelism and missionary activity. The example of George Whitefield is instructive as he labored both in the United States and the United Kingdom to expand the gospel. Here was a man who was Reformed in his thought and theology and yet he sought to engage in evangelism and missions. Simply put the charge that Calvinism is against evangelism is unfounded from church history. To respond to the charge that Calvinism is against evangelism and missions, Drs. Michael Haykin and C. Jeffrey Robinson Sr. wrote To The Ends Of The Earth Calvin’s Missional Vision And Legacy.
Chapter one looks at John’s missional focus in his teaching. Chapter two looks at the dynamics of Calvin’s view of missions. Chapter three looks at missions to France and Brazil. Chapter four explores the Puritans missional efforts in the 17th century. Chapter five looks to the example of Jonathan Edwards and missional prayer. Chapter six looks at Samuel Pearce and developing a missional passion.
John Calvin is rightly known as one of the leading voices of the Reformation. What is often missed is that he was also a pastor with a heart for missions. As the author explore in this book, Calvin and his successors had a biblical and practical view of missions that pulsated throughout their entire work. To the Ends of the Earth is a very helpful book for those wondering exactly how Calvinists view missions. Calvinists have been leading voices in the mission’s movement since the Reformation. Their work has not only made an impact in a variety of fields but in some cases has helped unearth fresh insights in a variety of fields.
Whether you’re new to Calvinism or you question the legitimacy of Calvinism, To The Ends of the Earth has something for you. This fascinating and helpful study will open new insights into the study of Calvinistic missionaries while helping you understanding more of what the Bible teaches about the vital topic of missions. Through a close look at John Calvin’s life, writings, and his successors, the authors reveal a passion for the spread of the gospel and the salvation of sinners. The authors sweep away longstanding stereotypes related to the Reformed tradition and Calvin’s theological heirs, highlighting the Reformer’s missional vision and legacy. This well-written, and well-researched book not only helps set the record straight it will stimulate those inside and outside the Reformed tradition to heed the Great Commission by the grace of God.
Author: Michael Haykin and C. Jeffrey Robinson Sr.
Publisher: Crossway (2014)