Vol.V No.III Pg.2
May 1968

The "How" And The Plough

Robert F. Turner

The elders of a church in Virginia explain why a man and his wife, whom they have been supporting in Korea, will soon return to the U.S.A.

"As we all know, Ron's mission to Korea was to be a unique approach to evangelism. Ron was convinced prior to returning to Korea that he could work with and help the rural people to learn modern farming methods and by gaining their confidence in this way follow through in teaching the word of God. Ron found that this approach was not possible due to cultural traditions. It was insulting to the Korean farmer to have a guest do work for him, even though it was voluntary. Ron tried other approaches, such as an agricultural and Christian vocational school, but sufficient funds were not available. While Ron was occasionally able to establish a Bible class in a rural village, he was not able to gain a foothold and become fully accepted. Because of this Ron has concluded that it is not possible to evangelize the rural Korean people through the approach for which he was prepared.

Ron has found that his efforts have become almost purely evangelistic in the traditional manner. While he recognizes that there is a definite need for preaching and teaching he also recognizes his own shortcomings in this area. He is trained in and desires to evangelize through the agricultural approach, whereas he has not been trained as an evangelist. He has determined, and adequately explained to us, that the plans for the foreseeable future will not improve the situation. We feel that Ron has been sincere and straightforward in his appraisal, and this we appreciate very much. We wanted you to know his feelings and ours."

I will agree that both "Ron" and the elders seem to be open and aboveboard in this matter -- BUT WHAT A COMMENTARY ON THEIR CONCEPT OF EVANGELISM AND THE GREAT COMMISSION!!

"Ron" teaches farming, to make opportunity to teach truth; but admits he is not adequately prepared as a preacher or teacher of God's word. If his farming "approach" had been successful, he would have "arrived" with nothing to offer. Of what value is an "approach" if you can't deliver when you get there?

The elders continue, "Your support has represented a sincere desire to "go into all the world." WITH WHAT?? When will brethren learn that ploughs and cows are neither the "what's" nor "how's" of teaching salvation from sin through the blood of Jesus Christ??