When you talk about business as mission ten different people will think of ten different things, so today we wanted to take some time to define the two branches that we see when we talk BAM and how they go together.
What we are seeing is that these two ways don’t need to battle each other, but really be more of a “both and” type of scenario. We believe that we need to embody and proclaiming the Gospel around the world.
It’s true that BAM is changing everything!
You know, it’s interesting when we say business as mission or use the short phrase of bam, um, 10 different people will think of 10 different things and that’s become more and more obvious to me as we engage this conversation, both at home and, uh, overseas where business as missions is being used in, uh, missional contexts. And so I think it’s good to take some time to define and the way I see it, there, there are kind of two branches of this. And then, uh, they go different directions, uh, from there. But there are folks that are engaging in bam that see the objective as kind of a holistic gospel approach, which is to bring the kingdom or to embody the kingdom of God through the marketplace through entrepreneurship. And so they go into local communities and they hire locals. They make an economic impact. And the ultimate outflow is what we would say is, is maybe human flourishing to, to bring the kingdom in a way that brings human flourishing.
So we have, uh, an angle of business as mission that that is their focus. And then we have another angle to business as mission where business entrepreneurship, the marketplace is being utilized as an access point to proclaim the gospel and take the gospel into places where we cannot go with traditional missionary mindsets and methodology. And, uh, sometimes these two angles kind of hit up against each other. Missiologically and I think what I’m finding, what I’m processing through is that it really, as usual as a both, and rather than an either or, you know, the gospel is to be embodied. So we are to live it out. I mean, even here in the States, we are in the housing business, we are in the affordable housing business and we say every day we have the opportunity to embody the gospel to honor God and love our neighbor because of who God is.
Then we inject that into the business itself. So we embody and bring the kingdom through the marketplace. Um, so we believe that, right, but we also believe in proclaiming talking, uh, sharing about Jesus, pointing to the one who makes us right. And ultimately we believe that if, if we’re not both embodying and proclaiming, then we’re not engaging in a holistic missions or misseology. And so I don’t think these things need to go against one another. I think they’re part of a broad tapestry of business as mission and how the marketplace is engaging people for the gospel, both at home and abroad.