There are few matters more important than God's mission in the world. This book offers a fresh contribution to a long-standing debate in Pauline and missional studies regarding the apparent absence of a missionary mandate for the churches of the New Testament. Through a literary and socio-rhetorical study of 1 Corinthians, and in conversation with the emerging discipline of social identity theory, this book invites the reader to consider how Paul's missional expectations may have been received and put into practice in first-century Corinth by the first readers. Along the way some new lines of inquiry are opened for certain texts which have remained for a long time in a state of scholarly stalemate. But these technical discussions give way to a larger goal: to offer a missiology in action, in all its Corinthian complexity. Could such an approach inform a robust missional identity for the church of today? As the Western church searches for a new self-understanding in an increasingly post-Christian culture, the intention of this book is to cultivate the missional imagination of contemporary believers for their ongoing participation in God's mission in the world.
“Scott Goode has effectively combined the fruits of first-class research (primary and secondary) with warm pastoral experience. His detailed analysis of the text of 1 Corinthians and his engagement with a breadth of scholarship has issued in a text that is astonishing in its insights and practical applicability. A must-read for pastors and pastoral educators.”
—Paul Barnett, lecturer emeritus, Moore Theological College