Good news and good works are inseparable. - Manila Manifesto
Getting to know John and Vera Mae Perkins has been one of the special blessings in my life. They have lived the kind of incarnational kingdom Christianity that I am pleading for.
John Perkins fled the racism of rural Mississippi as a young man, but after his conversion, John and his wife, Vera Mae, moved back to the small, segregated town of Mendenhall to live and preach the gospel. First they did evangelistic Bible clubs in the high schools, but when they saw how much the black students needed special help, they started a tutoring program. The same attention to the needs of those with whom they were sharing the gospel led to housing programs, medical clinics, and cooperative businesses—even political engagement.
Through everything, John and Vera Mae kept leading people to Christ, discipling a new generation of converted leaders and building the church. For them, evangelism and social concern are inseparable partners.
I want to show how inseparably intertwined they are. In real life, they are frequently very closely interrelated as in the holistic work of John and Vera Mae Perkins. And even when specific organizations properly focus largely on one or the other, there are numerous interrelationships.
I want to explore five specific areas of interrelationship.
The Theological Framework of Biblical Evangelism
Genuinely biblical evangelism provides a theological framework that shows that evangelism is inseparable from social action. This is true as the evangelist explains sin, invites people to accept Christ as Lord, and does both—using the contextual incarnational model of Jesus.