If the average citizen was asked to define a missionary, the answer would be as diverse as the stars of the sky. Sadly, many Christians would have variations as to the word missionary as well. How can this be? It is obvious that somewhere in the past we have failed to properly teach the Biblical view point of missions.
From the definition above, it is safe to say that a Biblical missionary is a person or family that is "sent" out. Our English word "mission" originated around the 16th century from the idea of the Holy Spirit being sent into the world. It then carried the applicatlon into what has become known as missionaries. According to the Bible, the local church has to be the sending agency of a missionary. Being armed with the information and definition above, we can now understand that the missionary does not go unless they are sent.
Many ministries have been started because of someone's heart to start something. As great as that is, we need to realized that in order to have God's blessing, the Lord uses the local church and the leading of the Holy Spirit to send out the missionaries that will change things for eternity's sake. May God Bless.
Saved to Serve,
Pastor Darrell Roe