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The Mission of God's People

A Biblical Theology of the Church’s Mission
Christopher J. H. Wright
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Chris Wright’s pioneering 2006 book, The Mission of God, revealed that the typical Christian understanding of “missions” encompasses only a small part of God’s overarching mission for the world. God is relentlessly reclaiming the entire world for himself. In The Mission of God’s People, Wright shows how God’s big-picture plan directs the purpose of God’s people, the church. Wright emphasizes what the Old Testament teaches Christians about being the people of God. He addresses questions of both ecclesiology and missiology with topics like “called to care for creation,” “called to bless the nations,” “sending and being sent,” and “rejecting false gods.” As part of the Biblical Theology for Life Series, this book provides pastors, teachers, and lay learners with first-rate biblical study while at the same time addressing the practical concerns of contemporary ministry. The Mission of God’s People promises to enliven and refocus the study, teaching, and ministry of those truly committed to joining God’s work in the world.

About the Author

Dr. Christopher J. H. Wright is International Director of the Langham Partnership International. After teaching the Old Testament in India and the UK, he also served as chair of the Lausanne Movement's Theology Working Group and was the chief architect of the Cape Town Commitment at the Third Lausanne Congress, 2010. His books include: Knowing Jesus through the Old Testament, Old Testament Ethics for the People of God, Deuteronomy (Understanding the Bible Commentary), Salvation Belongs to Our God, The Mission of God, The God I Don't Understand, and The Mission of God's People. Chris and his wife Liz who have four adult children and a growing number of grandchildren, live in London, UK, and belong to All Souls Church.

Table of Contents

Queuing the Questions
1. Who Are We and What Are We Here For?
Arriving at Answers
2. People Who Know the Story They Are Part Of
3. People Who Care for Creation
4. People Who Are a Blessing to the Nations
5. People Who Walk in God’s Way
6. People Who Are Redeemed for Redemptive Living
7. People Who Represent God to the World
8. People Who Attract Others to God
Interlude – Pause for Thought
9. People Who Know the One Living God and Saviour
10. People Who Bear Witness to the Living God
11. People Who Proclaim the Gospel of Christ
12. People Who Send and Are Sent
13. People Who Live and Work in the Public Square
14. People Who Praise and Pray
Reflecting on Relevance
15. The Journey So Far and the Journey Ahead


A wonderfully kaleidoscopic biblical overview of the privileged role afforded to all of God’s people in fulfilling the Missio Dei in the world. Chris Wright demonstrates that the theme of the mission of God and his people is a prominent and unmistakable thread running through the elaborate tapestry of the whole of Scripture. In so doing, he provides a ringing affirmation that it is the responsibility of the whole church to bear witness to Christ and his kingdom in every area of the world geographically, as well as in every sphere of society. -- Lindsay Brown, Director

If Chris Wright’s Mission of God’s People is a harbinger of things to come in Zondervan’s new series, Biblical Theology for Life, we are in for a treat. As the first in this series, this volume not only serves as a delightful sequel and complement to his highly acclaimed The Mission of God, but it has also put his holistic interpretation of the Scriptures into the hands of laypeople. This is biblical theology at its best. For too long biblical scholars, theologians, and pastors have driven a wedge between the Hebrew Bible and the Christian New Testament by focusing on the discontinuities. Wright has shown us another way. Through his comprehensive reading of the whole Bible, he offers a robust portrayal of Israel’s mission and our own. Just as Israel was called and sent out into the world to give witness to the grace of “the LORD” (Yahweh), so we are “the people whom God has loved, chosen, redeemed, shaped and sent into the world in the name of Christ” (p. 433). Thank you, Chris, for showing us that God’s election is not about us; it is about the world. May this work inspire his church to greater faithfulness in giving verbal witness to God’s redemptive grace for the cosmos, but also to greater ethical faithfulness as we embody his grace in the microcosms in which we live. -- Daniel Block, Professor

Following his landmark book, The Mission of God, Christopher Wright shows in The Mission of God’s People that grounding missions practice in the prior action and plan of God does not render the church static or passive. In this masterful survey, Wright demonstrates decisively what happens when the whole church starts reading the whole Bible and reflecting the full scope of God’s good news in all our life and witness in the world. This is the long-awaited road map that moves missions from the practice of a few elite professionals to the faithful witness of all of God’s children. If want to help your church become a missional church, I cannot think of a better place to begin that journey than this book. I assure you, you will discover afresh who you are in Christ and what you are here for! -- Timothy C. Tennent, Professor

This is the first volume in a new series on biblical theology. It is extraordinarily readable, written by a preacher who knows how to communicate simply, clearly, and fascinatingly. It is refreshingly adventurous, as it explores the theme of mission in biblical passages where you might not have expected to find it. It is excitingly controversial in discussing such matters as the relation of care for the planet to evangelism, but always in an irenic manner. It is also remarkably practical, being concerned with the theological underpinning for the church’s action in the world. It is surprisingly relevant, concerned as it is with the central story of God’s mission to the world as the template that must shape the work of the church. It is outstandingly down-to-earth in showing how our daily lives must be outworkings of our missionary calling. It is thus eminently commendable both for its own sake and also as setting a high standard for the other volumes to follow in this series. -- Howard Marshall, Professor

What a marvelous author Chris Wright is! Here you get the distilled insight of someone who knows mission and knows the Scriptures---and because he is an Old Testament specialist, he gives that major part of the Scriptures the prominence it deserves, even (especially?) when we are thinking about a subject such as mission that might seem to belong to the New Testament. And he doesn’t confine himself to scriptural themes but enables us to get inside lots of particular Scriptures, all in easily manageable chunks. What do theology and mission have to do with each other? This book powerfully answers the question. -- John Goldingay, Professor

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  • General
  • Chapter 1 - Who Are We and What Are We Here For?
  • Chapter 2 - People Who Know the Story They Are Part Of
  • Chapter 3 - People Who Care for Creation
  • Chapter 4 - People Who Are a Blessing to the Nations
  • Chapter 5 - People Who Walk in God's Way
  • Chapter 6 - People Who are Redeemed for Redemptive Living
  • Chapter 7 - People Who Represent God to the World
  • Chapter 8 - People Who Attract Others to God
  • Chapter 9 - ­People Who Know the One Living God and Saviour
  • Chapter 10 - People Who Bear Witness to the Living God
  • Chapter 11 - People Who Proclaim the Gospel of Christ
  • Chapter 12 - People Who Send and Are Sent
  • Chapter 13 - People Who Live and Work in the Public Square
  • Chapter 14 - People Who Praise and Pray
  • Chapter 15 - The Journey So Far and the Journey Ahead
  • Product Details
  • Page Count: 304
  • Format: Softcover
  • ISBN: 9780310291121
  • Release: August 11, 2010
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