By Dustin W. Benge
This post continues an interview with Evan Burns begun on Tuesday (see here for Part 1).
How does Fuller's personal spirituality impact his public gospel witness?
Fuller’s missionary spirituality is marked by God-enamored activism. The unbreakable force of the Doctrines of Grace and atonement-centered theology that Fuller beheld so clearly in Scripture awakened his heart to love God and glorify him by declaring the gospel indiscriminately for the salvation of sinners.
What contribution do you think Fuller's theology of mission can make upon a new generation of missionaries?
I am a product of the exciting rebirth of Reformed theology of the last ten years, which is seen in movements like The Gospel Coalition, Together for the Gospel, etc. My concern is that the current of our narcissistic culture will sweep away too many Reformed ministers into ministerial self-promotion, theological pipe-smoking, and a functional hyper-Calvinism masked behind a trendy “Gospel-centered” sub-culture that talks a lot about the right doctrines, applies them to our families and churches, but fails to equally call for proclaiming the gospel to the lost, both at home and abroad, and for investing our lives to make disciples of all people groups. I fear that the next generation could end up practicing a neo-Scholasticism or hyper-Calvinism….enter Andrew Fuller. I believe the Reformed zeal of today’s young ministers and seminarians could regularly use a strong dose of the convergence of Fuller’s Edwardsean theology, Scripture-driven reasoning, cross-centered instinct, God-enamored spirituality, and missions-promoting activism.
What is the mission of your blog, “Gospel Worthy”?
The aim of my blog is to essentially promote the God-enamored missionary spirituality of Andrew Fuller to two main types of readers: the first are those ministers who love Reformed theology, Jonathan Edwards, the Puritans, etc. to be pastor-theologians that summon, train, and send out the next generation of God-enamored missionaries like William Carey; and the second are those missionaries who have compassion for the nations to work hard at thinking theologically and biblically, to cultivate God-enamored piety, and to proclaim fearlessly the gospel to the lost and make disciples through the Christ-centered Word.
Please visit Gospel Worthy often and feast from the words of Fuller as he helps us understand how our call to the Christian mission must flow out of a Christ-centered spirituality.
Dustin Benge serves as the senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Jackson, Kentucky. He is also a PhD candidate at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and a junior fellow at The Andrew Fuller Center for Baptist Studies. Dustin and his wife, Molli, live in Jackson.