The Great Commission:
Evangelicals and the History of World Missions

Martin Klauber,

Scott Manetsch

B&H Academic

The Great Commission provides a substantial historical survey of evangelical missions courtesy of eleven different authors, each one a prominent evangelical church historian and theologian who has written extensively on the history of Christianity and the greater mission of the church. Readers will learn the origins and development of modern evangelical missionary activity, what led to the globalization of the Evangelical movement, and the finer points of the movement’s successes, failures, and future imperatives.


Martin Klauber

Dr. Klauber is an investment banker and author of several scholarly works on post-Reformation theology. In addition to teaching regularly on Trinity’s campus, he frequently teaches at Trinity’s extension sites.


Scott Manetsch

Scott M. Manetsch (PhD University of Arizona) is Professor of Church History at Trinity Evangelical Divinity school. His publication include Theodore Beza and the Quest for Peace in France, 1572-1598 (Brill, 2000) and Calvin’s Company of Pastors: Pastoral Care and the Emerging Reformed Church, 1536-1609 (Oxford, 2012). During graduate school, he was awarded a Fulbright fellowship and spent two years doing archival research on French Reformation history at the University of Geneva.

Book Reviews

In short, this collection of essays focused on the history evangelical missions is a necessary contribution to the noted scholarship on missions history. Supported by the contributions of various authors writing in their area of specialization, The Great Commission as a whole has many strengths, and several will be discussed here. Despite the overlap of material in some places—especially between Hinkson, George, and Nettles—the contributors have either collaborated well or the editors have done a good job in reducing redundant material... The Great Commission is an important and needed book that should be read by missiologists, seminary students in missiology and intercultural studies, and practitioners currently on the field. I personally plan to adopt it for a seminary course that I teach on the history of Christian missions.

Edward Smither

Professor of Intercultural Studies and History of Global Christianity, Columbia International University

Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 51, no 4 (2008): 878-881.

In a word, the release of The Great Commission is most timely... It is the great strength of The Great Commisnon that, taking impressive cognizance of this profusion of mission research of the last decades, it presents the mission history of the last half-millennium in a form assimilable by upper division undergraduates. Whereas the standard volume of Neill viewed the global expansion of Christianity from a decidedly European and late colonial standpoint, The Great Commission has an understandable interest in how the missionary mandate was pursued (for good or ill) within and from the Americas... The Great Commission is well researched, broad in its Protestant sympathies, and alert to the major issues at the forefront of today's mission history. I wish it a wide usefulness.

Kenneth J. Stewart

Professor Emeritus of Theological Studies, Covenant College

The Westminster Theological Journal 70, no 2 (2008): 406-408.

Unlike some edited volumes, The Great Commission has the virtue of cohesiveness... It is important to understand what this volume does and does not do. Written by evangelicals for evangelicals, The Great Commission unapologetically assumes that conversion to Christianity is, on the whole, a good thing and that God was actively involved in some way in these movements, assumptions that those coming from liberal, post-colonial, or secular perspectives might find disconcerting... Nevertheless, since we are still far from adequately understanding all the implications of the shift of the evangelical center of gravity from Europe and North America to the rest of the world, The Great Commission gives us a good grounding from which we can launch further investigations.

Jay R. Case

Professor of History, Malone University

Fides et historia 41, no 1 (2009): 149-150.