Another quote from Brian Stanley’s excellent Christianity in the Twentieth Century: A World History. This one might bother a few regular Kouyanet readers, but I think he is spot on.
Protestant and Catholic mission theology in the nineteenth and earlier twentieth centuries had derived the origin of Christian mission narrowly from the parting command of Christ to his disciples, or what evangelical Protestants in the course of the nineteenth century began to term the “Great Commission”; by the early twentieth century they had to to associate this phrase almost exclusively with Matthew 28:18-20. They had also tended to define the goal of mission as the universal confession of Christ as Lord, with comparitively little attention being paid either to the hidden agency of the Spirit or to the achievement of the Father’s redemptive purpose, extending to the renewal of all creation. If Christian mission was reduced to what Western Christians could do to “make Jesus King,” the planting of curches and educational institutions closely patterned on Western models funded by Western money, and controlled by Western personnel, inevitably took centre stage.