The Great Omission


In this powerful call for the inclusion of indigenous believers in the Great Commission, Steve Saint shows how current mission strategies have unwittingly harmed the indigenous church and kept millions of believers from fulfilling their roles in God’s Kingdom — and millions of others from hearing the Good News.

This is a must read for anyone doing short-term missions but, even greater, is the power of this book when applied to church leadership, followers becoming producers, and finding fulfillment in becoming a part of the work instead of the recipient of the work. The Great Omission is full of big life truths that span far beyond the scope of missions.

Key Topics or Truths

Short-term mission investments
Empowerment of indigenous people
Empowerment of church members

This Book is Good For...

This book is good for people who intend to be the answer for other people by meeting every one of their needs. It is also a must-read for every Christian leader.

How I Use this Book to make disciples

I have disciples read this book in one week and review it the following week. It is an easy read and powerful. There are times when we have had to take two weeks just to discuss all of the disciples’ aha moments. I make sure the disciples get, at least, the following truths:

  • We should empower those we reach for Christ to be self-sufficient and reach others for Christ. This is a key teaching for Discipleship Three: we are trying to create skilled disciples that can be released into the world.
  • A vast amount of the world’s population has not heard the Good News. We need to be kingdom-minded and pray for them and actively work to reach them.
  • Our church is in essence a mission and each leader should be raising up, replicating, and preparing people to take their job and live independently leading and serving the church.
  • Jesus came to serve not to be served.
  • Often what we think is helping “people in need” is not at all helping.

I make sure to extend the many incredible truths from this small book into the many areas of the disciples’ lives by asking them tons of questions like, “Are you empowering your employees? Does God teach anything about that?” He does when Jethro gives Moses a structure for legal decisions. I ask, “Before you go reach Guatemala, are you reaching your break room, your street at home, or the people you hang out with?” The truth is that we are the most effective to reach the people right next to us. They in turn can reach the people right next to them.

One final big truth comes in the form of a question, “Are you taking care of and owning the resources that God has given you or are you waiting on others to manage your Christian life?”

I love this book because it first changed everything about how our church invested in mission work and second because it challenged and changed our theology of carrying out missions locally and empowering our people in ministry in the church.

Real Life Story

I was teaching a seminary class on missions, specifically short-term missions when I carried in a 100-foot tape measure to illustrate the ineffectiveness of the church’s long-held mission strategies. Using the example from “The Great Omission”, I unrolled the tape all around the students and classroom asking, “How many feet of this tape represents the number of people that we have reached with the Gospel of Jesus Christ to date?” After hearing many optimistic guesses, I gave them the answer, “Three inches…” They were as astounded as I was the first time I saw a physical representation of the failure of our current strategies.

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Steve Saint
Book Details
Reading Time
One Week
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This book is great anywhere. It is a one-off inspirational, challenging read.

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