ten Reasons

Why I’m committed to Alliance Missions.

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In his continued service to Christ through Alliance Ministries, Peter Nanfelt wrote this article in March 2009. Since his "retirement" he has visited with hundreds of Alliance people and asked why they continue to support the mission of The Alliance. Here are the top 10 reasons:

Our Message

Is the centrality of Christ (Col. 1:27)

Our message has always been focused on the sufficiency of Christ as our Savior, Sanctifier, Healer, and Coming King. We sing, “Jesus Only Is Our Message” because He is all in all.

Our Mission

Is to complete Christ’s Great Commission (Matt. 28:18-20)

Christ provided, as it were, a reservoir of salvation, through His work on Calvary. But a reservoir is of no value unless there is a channel through which the living water can be brought to thirsty people. The channel that Christ provided is the Church. One of the primary functions of His Church is to be a channel of blessing to people everywhere.

Our Motivation

Is to bring back the King (Matt. 24:14)

Jesus made it clear that, in some mysterious way, we have a role in setting the stage for His return by spreading the Gospel across the world. The Apostle Peter also makes a reference to this when he speaks about the fact that we can “speed” the “Day of the God” (II. Peter 3:12). When the Gospel has been proclaimed to the extent that God has ordained, Christ will return as King. Every time we pray “Thy Kingdom come”, we are looking forward to that day.

Our Method

Is to plant missionary churches (Acts)

Many missions do exemplary things, and the C&MA engages in many different ministries as well: medical work, relief work, radio ministry, literature, Bible translation, etc. But the most effective way to evangelize the world is by planting churches. The Alliance has always made it a goal to gear all of its ministries toward this primary objective.

In 1975, there were 125,000 Alliance believers in Vietnam. The church was well established with good leadership and a strong pastoral training program. Then the government fell to the communists and our missionary team was forced to leave. It was a terrible time. Christians were persecuted, some pastors were put in prison, the Bible schools were closed and the seminary was turned into an army base. But now, thirty years later, there are over one million Alliance Christians in the country. This happened because the Church lasts! While starting orphanages and passing out literature is important, these efforts can never take the place of planting strong churches.

But the C&MA has done something else that few other agencies have done, at least not successfully. The Alliance has made an effort to plant churches with a missionary vision. The result is that today there are over 350 missionaries serving across the world who have been sent out by non-North American C&MA churches.

Our Missionaries

Are committed, well trained, and competent.

There is little argument that Alliance missionaries are among the best trained and prepared as any in the world. Our requirements are so stringent that they have often been criticized as being over done. But in addition to educational requirements, our Alliance workers are screened regarding their spiritual strength, their emotional health, their language learning ability and for many other factors.

Our Members

Form a missionary movement.

Many missionaries serve with a mission agency, and there are certainly many fine agencies which are supported by a variety of churches from various denominational backgrounds. One of the strengths of the C&MA, however, is that we are a missionary movement. Our local churches make world missions a major priority of their ministry and an effort is made to get every member of the congregation involved. Putting all of these churches together to form a “missionary movement” provides a phenomenal support base. Missionaries know that there are not just a few people in several dozen churches that support them; they go out with the full support of 2,000 congregations.

Our Means

Is a central funding system (GCF)

There are certainly advantages to a system which requires missionaries to raise their own support. The primary advantage is the personal link that missionaries develop between their supporters and themselves, and the work they are doing. But, there are also some important advantages to our central funding system. First of all, missionaries don’t need to spend two or three years raising their support before they leave for the field.

Second, there are no lone rangers in the C&MA. When missionaries raise there own support they sometimes find themselves in an awkward situation. Their colleagues decide that, as a team, they will embrace a particular strategy, but they know that their supporters want them to do something else. In such cases those missionaries are often forced to go off and do the thing that their supporters demand. In the C&MA our missionaries function as teams and have the ability to form field strategies in which all the members participate.

Third, in a “raise your own support system” leaders of mission agencies are sometimes put into conflict of interest situations. This happens when a young couple steps forward and says to the mission leaders, “We have our support almost completely raised and we would like to go out under your auspices”. The mission leaders know that 10-15% of those funds will come to the agency to cover administrative costs, but they may also discover that the missionary candidates are not well qualified. Sometimes in such situations, less qualified people end up going overseas. In the Alliance, our leaders are extremely careful in this process because they know that, as a movement, we will be responsible to support the appointees for many years. Our system tends to elevate the quality of the people that are sent.

Our Mobility

Is evidenced by strategic redeployment to the cutting edge

In the Alliance we practice “redeployment”, which means that we transition missionaries out of areas where the church has been well established and reposition them in areas that are unreached. We do this because we are committed to Great Commission completion!

It’s interesting to note that about five years ago (the last time I did the research) only 1% of all the missionaries in the world were located in the 10/40 Window, the least reached region on earth. The C&MA has positioned 40% of our overseas workers in 10/40 Window countries.

Our Management

Is characterized by integrity

It is important to know, when contributing resources to an organization that the money is going to be handled by people who recognize that the funds belong to God. Our Alliance leaders are people of exemplary Christian character who serve under the call of God and who carry out their responsibilities with a sense of keen devotion to Him.

Our Marks

Show significant achievements

The C&MA has set some significant goals over the years and has achieved some significant milestones. There are now over four million people in the Alliance family. At least seven times as many C&MA believers are found outside the United States than are here in our own country. There are 125 theological schools training hundreds of new pastors and missionaries for future ministry. The churches in the Philippines, Indonesia, Cote d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Vietnam all have memberships of between 300,000 and 1,000,000.

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