William Carey was an 18th century shoe-maker who is now known as the Father of Modern Missions. After a short career as a pastor he desired to go to India for the sake of missions but was lacking support from the church in America. His church considered mission work unnecessary because of an imbalanced view of the sovereignty of God. He was told by one man, “If God wants to convert the heathen, he will do it without consulting you, or me!” In response he wrote a rather long document that is now known as his “Enquiry.” I have been reading the Enquiry recently and these next few blog-posts will be devoted to sharing with you what I learned.
It has been said that we ought not to force our way, but to wait for the openings, and leadings of Providence; but it might with equal propriety be answered in this case, neither ought we to neglect embracing those openings in providence which daily present themselves to us.What openings of providence do we wait for? We can neither expect to be transported into the heathen world without ordinary means, nor to be endowed with the gift of tongues…when we arrive there. These would not be providential interpositions, but miraculous ones.Where a command exists nothing can be necessary to render it binding but a removal of those obstacles which render obedience impossible, and these are removed already.