Teaching all nations: Interrogating the Matthean Great Commission

Paperback
That Christian missionary efforts have long gone hand-in-hand with European colonization and American imperialist expansion in the 19th and 20th centuries is well recognized. The linchpin role played in those efforts by the Great Commission - the risen Christ's command to go into all the world and teach all nations - has more often been observed than analyzed, however. With the rise of European colonialism, the Great Commission was suddenly taken up with an eschatological urgency, often explicit in the founding statements of missionary societies; the differentiation of teachers and nations waiting to be taught proved a ready-made sacred sanction for the racialized and androcentric logics of conquest and civilization.