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Missions History for the Colorblind

Recently, Jeremy Webber at Christianity Today asked, "Was First U.S. Missionary Black Not White?" Referencing the little known George Liele (1750-1820), Webber rightly questions whether this freed slave should supplant Adoniram Judson as the first Protestant missionary from America.

Not only was George Liele the first Protestant missionary from America, his departure for Jamaica in 1782 actually puts him ahead of the widely recognized progenitor of the modern missions era, the British Baptist, William Carey. The right ordering of these pioneers of Gospel advance have been noted in recent years BY the, 1964, one, I, I, most, the, he in their own settings and all overcame significant opposition and obstacles to take the good news about Jesus to those who had yet to hear—even at great cost—George Liele is worthy of particular commendation in our day as he advanced the Gospel while this nation still gripped tightly to the constrictive fetters of slavery.

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Jason Duesing

Jason Duesing

Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and Assistant Professor of Historical Theology and assistant professor of historical theology at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.

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