Business as Mission: Looking Back and Looking Forward [Video]

Watch this 12 minute excerpt from a conversation Mats and Jo recently recorded on ‘The History of BAM‘. Hear some thoughts on the theme of ‘Celebrate’ for this month on The BAM Review, some of the history and context in which the current BAM movement fits, and some of the things we are looking forward to in BAM Global.

The full 45 minute conversation on ‘The History of BAM’ will be bonus material for the BAM Global Congress in April 2021. See more information on the Congress below.

Read more about the BAM Resource Team here and BAM Global here.

 

 

JOIN US AT THE BAM GLOBAL CONGRESS

A GLOBAL MEETING POINT FOR THE BAM COMMUNITY

Join us at this innovative virtual main event framed by a lead-in series of monthly webinars and a follow-up series of workshops and meet-ups.

We will CELEBRATE what God is doing through business around the world, CONNECT you with a global network of people and initiatives, and CREATE momentum to multiply the BAM movement for greater impact.

PRE-CONGRESS WEBINARS: October 2020 to March 2021

CONGRESS MAIN EVENT: 28 – 30 April 2021

POST-CONGRESS WORKSHOPS: May 2021 to July 2021

REGISTER NOW: Basic Congress Pass – $100, Premium All Access Pass – $175

It is not too late to register for the Premium Pass, all webinars in the pre-series have been recorded and will be available to ticket holders.

 

 

 

Let’s Celebrate! Significant Growth Areas for BAM Over 20 Plus Years

by Jo Plummer

Business and mission have been woven together in various ways through history since Paul the Apostle made tents in New Testament times and modelled Christian leadership in the marketplace. However, through the 1970s, 80s and 90s there was a grassroots growth of business professionals and entrepreneurs seeking to intentionally integrate business and mission, marking the beginnings of the contemporary tentmaking and then business as mission movements. At the very end of the 1990s and the early 2000s, there was a burst of activity around  business as mission: consultations, conferences, books, articles, the first websites etc. – and this kick-started greater momentum in the BAM movement, which has been growing to this day.

The Business as Mission Resource Team (who develop this website and blog) celebrate our 20th anniversary this month, having been founded in March 2001. We’re in a celebrating mood!

Two years ago, to celebrate about 20 years since the term ‘business as mission’ was first used and discussed, we asked a group of BAM leaders to share their view on what progress we can celebrate in the BAM movement over the last 20 years or so. We’re reposting it this month as part of our CELEBRATION series.

What are some wins, or significant growth areas in business as mission that we should note and be thankful for?

The movement has gained traction. People now understand the legitimacy and role of BAM in particular and the calling of business in general for the Great Commission. New organizations have been founded to address the gaps in the BAM movement such as mentoring, funding, events for promoting and networking, etc. More established older organizations have begun embracing BAM ministry by starting a division, department or group focused on BAM. The biggest win for me is the wider acceptance of BAM as a way to impact the world for Christ by the global Church (with a capital C). We still have a ways to go, but the progress has been significant. God has used the BAM movement to move the needle. – Joseph Vijayam, BAM Practitioner & Lausanne Catalyst  Read more

Celebrating God’s Purposes for Business

by Jo Plummer

We have chosen the themes: CELEBRATE, CONNECT & CREATE for the upcoming BAM Global Congress.

As we gather the BAM movement together from every corner of the world, we want to:
+ CELEBRATE what God is doing through business around the world
+ CONNECT with a global network of collaborators
+ CREATE momentum for the future of business as mission

In March, as we prepare for the Congress next month (see information below), we are going to focus on the theme of CELEBRATE!

I believe that to do effective business as mission, we must start with a solid foundation of thinking about business from a biblical perspective. In other words, before we get to the ‘as mission’, we need to understand God’s design for business – and yes, celebrate it, because it is really good!

Celebrating God’s Purposes for Business

It is no secret that my favourite quote about business comes from Dallas Willard who said that, ‘Business is a primary moving force of the love of God in human history.’ [1]

Business, done well, is glorifying to God and has enormous potential to do good. Business has an innate God-given power to create dignified jobs, to multiply resources, to provide for families and communities and to push forward innovation and development in human society.

In Deuteronomy 8 we read that it is God who gives us the ability to produce wealth. He provides abundant natural resources so that we can use our creativity, talents, and hard work to provide for ourselves and innovate for society. Business processes naturally generate wealth and resources; companies are able to create good products and services for the benefit of communities. Business pushes forward innovation, helping societies develop; enterprises bring in new technologies, skills, and training to communities. Business, done well – not forgetting the Lord our God (Deut 8:11) – is glorifying to him.  Read more

Transforming Views of Business in the Church Worldwide

by Jo Plummer & Mats Tunehag

This post is the third in a series of three that share the BAM Global Big Hairy Audacious Goals – our ‘BHAGs’ for the global business as mission movement.

BAM Global is one of the founding partners of this website and aims to be a catalyst for connection and communication across the BAM community. These goals are not ones we expect to accomplish by ourselves, instead they drive our mission to invigorate the BAM movement – to strengthen and enrich this community so that the hundreds and thousands of companies, networks, agencies, churches, institutions, etc. in the movement see these BHAGs realised together.

The BHAG: Transform views on business in the church worldwide

Business as mission is not simply a method or strategy; it encompasses a worldview and business praxis based on biblical principles and the church’s teaching. The sacred-secular divide is still permeating the church. What is considered ‘sacred’ (worship, faith, church activities, etc.) is often judged to be more valuable that the ‘secular’ (work, business, material goods, etc.) The clergy (pastor, missionary, etc.) are considered to have a higher calling than the laity (teacher, business professional, lawyer, etc.). This is still a dominating paradigm among many Christians around the globe.

As a consequence, business people and professionals in the church do not fully understand that their gifts, skills and experience are vital to God’s kingdom work on earth. Many feel that the most ‘spiritual’ thing they can do is to give financially to those doing the ‘real ministry’, and, if they really want to serve God, they should leave their company behind and become a missionary or pastor. While generosity and a true calling to church leadership is to be commended, this narrow view of the value of business ultimately hinders the mission of the church.  Read more

Reaching a Tipping Point for Macro Impact Through BAM Businesses

by Jo Plummer & Mats Tunehag

This post is the second in a series of three that share the BAM Global Big Hairy Audacious Goals – our ‘BHAGs’ for the global business as mission movement.

BAM Global aims to be a catalyst for connection and communication across the BAM community. These goals are not ones we expect to accomplish by ourselves, instead they drive our mission to invigorate the BAM movement – to strengthen and enrich this community so that the hundreds and thousands of companies, networks, agencies, churches, institutions, etc. in the movement see these BHAGs realised together.

The BHAG: Reach a tipping point for macro impact through BAM businesses

The global BAM movement has grown rapidly in the last 20-plus years. There are now thousands of BAM businesses, and countless BAM-related initiatives in businesses, churches, missions and academia. As a growing number of business people follow Jesus in the marketplace and shape their businesses for God’s glory and the common good, they will have a positive impact on the financial, social, environmental and spiritual well-being of people and societies.

Through the BAM Think Tank processes we have documented significant holistic transformation taking place through companies, affecting many stakeholders – employees, customers, suppliers, neighbours, officials, etc. – and on many levels. The BAM ecosystem is now large, varied and global, and has the hallmarks of a true movement. This is a positive growth and a strength.  Read more

Solving Global Issues with Innovative BAM Solutions

by Jo Plummer & Mats Tunehag

This post is the first in a series of three that share the BAM Global Big Hairy Audacious Goals – our ‘BHAGs’ for the global business as mission movement.

BAM Global is one of the founding partners of this website and aims to be a catalyst for connection and communication across the BAM community. These goals are not ones we expect to accomplish by ourselves, instead they drive our mission to invigorate the BAM movement – to strengthen and enrich this community so that the hundreds and thousands of companies, networks, agencies, churches, institutions, etc. in the movement see these BHAGs realised together.

The BHAG: Solve global issues with innovative BAM solutions

Business as mission is about serving God and people, seeking holistic transformation through business. We know that businesses are strong transformational agents and they can bring solutions to many human problems and needs.

The biggest lift out of poverty in the history of mankind has taken place in our generation. This has happened not through aid but trade – through businesses – especially small and medium sized companies. Financial wealth has been created through business, but so has physical wealth (health, medicines, etc.), cultural wealth (books, theatres, museums, etc.), and many other kids of wealth. Wealth creation through business and job creation has been and continues to be a key driver for welcome progress in society.  Read more

The A to Z of BAM: U to Z – from Untapped to Zero

by Mats Tunehag

U – Untapped

The Church is bigger than we think. If we want to see holistic transformation through business for generations to come, we need to recognize the scope of the Church, and think strategically.

There are about 2.4 billion Christians in the world; every third person on the planet has some Christian faith and affiliation. That’s an untapped resource.

Opus Dei [1] is a Catholic order founded in 1928 and operating in 66 countries. Its main message is “that every honest work can be sanctified”. The mission is to empower this relatively untapped and huge group: “They are making the Gospel present in all their activities, whether brilliant or humble and hidden, … in order to love and serve God and other people”.

The 2nd Vatican Council worked from 1962 to 1965, involving 2400 bishops and 500 experts. One of the documents affirms the godly role of laity, which should be equipped to serve in the marketplace. [2] It talks about a “royal priesthood”, which should “witness to Christ throughout the world, … in everything they do”.

Lausanne is a global network of Evangelical leaders initiated by Billy Graham in 1974. Lausanne organized a Global Workplace Forum in the Philippines in 2019. It was another important time of reflection, and mobilization of the untapped; [3] relating to about 500 million Evangelical Christians.

We want to affirm, equip and deploy business people from the whole church to serve God and the common good. 

 


V – Vocation

Work is not to be confused with employment. In English we sometimes use the word vocation, and for some it merely means a job, a profession. But the Christian concept is deeper and wider. Vocation has Latin roots and is related to calling. [4]

God calls and equips people to work in different vocations. The English writer Dorothy Sayers talks about Kingdom values in relationship to work and vocation, “not, primarily, as the thing one does to live, but the thing one lives to do.” She notes in her essay ‘Why Work’ that “what the Church should be telling him (a carpenter) is this: that the very first demand that his religion makes upon him is that he should make good tables.” [5]

There is also a call to business, it is a vocation: “Entrepreneurs, managers and all who work in business, should be encouraged to recognise their work as a true vocation and to respond to God’s call in the spirit of true disciples. In doing so, they engage in the noble task of serving their brothers and sisters and of building up the Kingdom of God.” [6]

Let’s give Thomas Merton the final word: “All vocations are intended by God to manifest His love in the world.” [7]

W – Wealth

There are different kinds of wealth: financial, social, intellectual, cultural, and spiritual. Wealth can be created, shared, hoarded and destroyed. Hoarding is condemned, and destruction is certainly not commended! Sharing is good and encouraged. But there is never any wealth to be shared unless it has been created.

Our views on wealth, wealth creation and wealth creators are important.

One can compare the health and wealth of nations with the same culture and language like South and North Korea, and West and East Germany. We can witness how a potentially rich country like Zimbabwe has gone from being a bread basket to a basket case in southern Africa. The oil rich Venezuela is another tragic example of how disregard for basic wealth creation principles has destroyed a country.

So, what is the role of wealth creation when it comes to the holistic transformation of people and societies? What does the Bible say, and the Church teach? What lessons have we learned throughout history and around the globe about wealth creation, especially through business? How is wealth creation related to justice, the poor, human trafficking and creation care? All these questions and more are addressed in a blog series [8], reports, and an educational video series. Learn more about “The Global Impact of the Wealth Creation Manifesto

X – Xenophile

Many of us love learning about different cultures, customs and cuisines. We are intrigued by a vast and varied universe, and the complexity of our planet. They make up a beautiful mosaic which speaks loudly about a creative Creator. And He became one of us, in space and time, in a specific culture and country. The first Church council, recorded in Acts chapter 15, paved the way for celebrating a God who identified with a people and culture, but who at the same time can be manifest in all cultures, and also transcends them all. An incarnational mystery! These are reasons we are xenophiles.

BAM businesses come in all shapes and forms, and speaks different languages and have many cultural expressions. BAM is not one-size-fits-all.

The BAM movement has many centers on different continents, operating in many countries and cultures, advocating various BAM causes in a multitude of ways, and it gathers a variety of BAM constituencies. BAM exists in many languages, and some of the biggest BAM initiatives in the world do not operate in English. The Wealth Creation Manifesto, to give one example of the polyglot nature of BAM, exists in 17 languages. See footnote [9] for a few BAM websites in different languages.

We embrace and celebrate our diversity. BAM is xenophile!

Y – Yes

Business as Mission, BAM, is not our idea. It is a part of God’s plan of creation, redemption and restoration. BAM is a story within the greater meta-narrative, from the garden to the city, from Genesis to the book of Revelation.

Thus, BAM is not something we have made up, and now try to impose on others. No, BAM is about responding to God’s call, and to affirm, embrace and internalize His purpose for business, and our call to it.

We say yes when he says “come and follow me in the market place”. As we follow Him, we are inviting other to say ‘yes’, and to join us on our journey with God in the business world.

Z – Zero

Pizza night! You and your wife decide to share a pizza, but then your two kids show up. So, you decide to share, a quarter each instead of half a pizza per person. Then the neighbors come over, a family of four. What do you do now? Smaller slices per person? Or do you get more pizza?

Your answer may reveal an attitude, and a problem-solving method which is also used when it comes to economics and business.

To continue the analogy, some argue that there is a fixed amount of pizza, and the more people show up, the smaller the pieces. Some call for ‘simplicity’ or a ‘simple lifestyle’ as a solution; which nobody can really define. They state that resources are finite and projections are usually linear. This can lead to doomsday scenarios, which even Malthaus presented but was proven wrong.

Others say: let make more pizza! Let think creatively, and outside the box. How can we start more businesses, create more food, more green energy solutions, more housing, and more jobs? That is the BAM response. Creating more wealth does not make other people poorer. That is a zero-sum game.

We believe in a God who creates in abundance, and who wants us to create more and in abundance, so all can flourish.

 

Read more:

A-E – Avodah to Environmental

F-J – Freedom to Justice

K-O – Kingdom to Opportunity

P-T– Power to Tikkun Olam

 

Look out for the final part of the A to Z of BAM series: from Untapped to Zero on The BAM Review blog next week.

 

BAM: A to Z graphic design by Tanner Germany

Footnotes

[1] Opus Dei is part of the Catholic Church. The name is Latin for “Work of God”. Opus Dei’s mission is to spread the Christian message that every person is called to holiness and that every honest work can be sanctified. The founder Saint Josemaría says that Christians working in the world should not live “a kind of double life. On the one hand, an interior life, a life of union with God; and on the other, a separate and distinct professional, social and family life.” 

[2] See also blog The Global BAM Think Tank and the 2nd Vatican Council 

[3] See the paper on BAM submitted to the Global Workplace Forum: https://www.lausanne.org/content/business-mission-global-workplace

See also Lausanne’s Cape Town Commitment: 3. Truth and the workplace, and an article by Lausanne’s leader Michael Oh: https://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2019/june-web-only/apology-christian-99-1-percent-lausanne-gwf-michael-oh.html

[4] Albeit not the final arbiter on the issue, Wikipedia nevertheless has some helpful observations on the word vocation, the concept and its Christian use.

[5] D. Sayers in ‘Why Work?’: “In nothing has the church so lost her hold on reality as in her failure to understand and respect the secular vocation. She has allowed work and religion to become separate departments, and is astonished to find that, as a result, the secular work of the world is turning to purely selfish and destructive ends. and that the greater part of the world’s intelligent workers have become irreligious, or at least, uninterested in religion. But is it astonishing?  How can any one remain interested in a religion which seems to have no concern with nine-tenths of his life?  The Church’s approach to an intelligent carpenter is usually confined to exhorting him not to be drunk and disorderly in his leisure hours, and to come to church on Sundays.  What the Church should be telling him is this: that the very first demand that his religion makes upon him is that he should make good tables.”

[6] Vocation of the Business Leader, published by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace

[7] Thomas Merton, No Man Is an Island

[8] Blogs in this series:

Shaping Our Views on Wealth, Wealth Creation and Wealth Creators

Creating Wealth for God’s Glory and the Common Good

Business Is a Holy Calling That Should Be Affirmed by the Church

Alleviating Poverty by Creating Businesses and Sharing Wealth

Business as an Agent of Human Flourishing and the Greater Glory of God

Business as Good News to the Poor

A Cup of Cold Water: Business and the Stewardship of Creation

The Global Impact of the Wealth Creation Manifesto

[9] Chinese: chinesebam.com 

Dutch: businessasmission.nl 

English: bamglobal.org & businessasmission.com

Portuguese: bamglobal.com.br 

Romanian: bamromania.ro

Russian: businessasmission.ru 

BAM in 21 languages: MatsTunehag.com

 

Mats Tunehag is a senior global ambassador for BAM and has worked in over half the countries of the world. He is the chairman of BAM Global and contributes to TransformationalSME.org. Visit MatsTunehag.com for BAM resources in 21 languages.

 

 

 

WANT MORE CONTENT ON ESSENTIAL BAM CONCEPTS & PRACTICES?

JOIN US AT THE BAM GLOBAL CONGRESS

A GLOBAL MEETING POINT FOR THE BAM COMMUNITY

Join us at this innovative virtual main event framed by a lead-in series of monthly webinars and a follow-up series of workshops and meet-ups.

We will CELEBRATE what God is doing through business around the world, CONNECT you with a global network of people and initiatives, and CREATE momentum to multiply the BAM movement for greater impact.

PRE-CONGRESS WEBINARS: October 2020 to March 2021

CONGRESS MAIN EVENT: 28 – 30 April 2021

POST-CONGRESS WORKSHOPS: May 2021 to July 2021

REGISTER NOW: Pre-Series Pass – $50, Premium All Access Pass – $175

It is not too late to register for the Pre-Series Pass, all webinars have been recorded and will be available to ticket holders.

 

 

 

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

 

 

The A to Z of BAM: P to T – from Power to Tikkun Olam

by Mats Tunehag

P – Power

Rabbi Lord Jonathan Saks said, ”Poverty crushes the spirit as well as the body, and its alleviation is a sacred task”. There are of course different kinds of poverty and wealth. One can be financially rich but socially poor. One can be endowed with great intellect but suffer from spiritual poverty. Business as Mission, BAM, is addressing this by creating different kinds of wealth through business.

Many are asking: how can we fight poverty? We rather ask: how can we create wealth? The biggest lift out of poverty, in the history of mankind, has happened in our generation – not through aid, but through trade. Check this four-minute video which deals with the affirmation in the Wealth Creation Manifesto, which observes that business has the “power to lift people and nations out of poverty”.

Businesses, especially small and medium size ones, are powerful instruments for holistic societal transformation.

 


Q – Quadruple

Business as Mission, BAM, is about having a positive impact on multiple stakeholders through multiple bottom lines.

BAM is about serving people, aligning with God’s purposes, being a good steward of the planet, and making a profit. These four words starting with ‘p’ make up the quadruple bottom line.

For planning, operation and evaluation we need at times to look at the bottom lines separately. But they belong together, they interact and overlap. They should never be disconnected; we only distinguish in order to unite.

BAM is a part of a broader movement which appreciates the importance of multiple bottom-line impact for multiple stakeholders. Many in the corporate world talk about corporate social responsibility (CSR) and social enterprise. In BAM we recognize God as the ultimate stakeholder, and thus also talk about a spiritual bottom line or Kingdom impact. [1]

BAM is praying and working towards a holistic transformation of people and societies: economically, socially, environmentally and spiritually.

R – Return

Companies need financial capital to start and grow, and investors seek return on investments. That is good and right, but BAM reframes the discussion on what we mean by investment and also return on investment.

While acknowledging money and financial investors, we seek a broader understanding of capital that can be invested apart from money, like intellectual, social and spiritual capital.

An old school concept is maximization of shareholder value, focusing on increasing financial rewards to financial investors. Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, said our focus should rather be “the maximisation of human flourishing”.

Thus, the return on investment can take different forms, and even go beyond the original investors. The Wall Street model is too limited; we need a more broad and impactful BAM Street concept. Check this short video, less than 2 minutes: Wall Street vs. BAM Street.

You can also use St Patrick’s Prayer for Investors, excerpts:

Christ with me, as I invest for the common good and God’s glory

Christ before me, as I steward the wealth entrusted to me

Christ behind me, as I evaluate opportunities near and afar

Christ in me, as I invest time, treasure and talents in others

 

S – Shalom

Shalom is a Biblical concept of good and harmonious relationships. But relationships were damaged and broken through the Fall, as described in Genesis chapter 3.

Business is so much about relationships with staff, colleagues, peers, customers, clients, suppliers, family, community, tax authorities, competitors, and so forth. Through Christ there is a way to restored relationship with God, with one another, and with creation.

How can we as Christians in business strive towards Shalom, do business as Shalom? [2]

T – Tikkun olam

Business as Mission, BAM, is part of a greater godly plan which the Jews call tikkun olam – repairing the world. We are living in the tension of the world that is and the world as it ought to be. Tikkun olam means co-creating with God, and bridging the gap between the world which is, and to a world as it ought to be.

The American Jesuit theologian Roger Haight writes in ‘Spirituality Seeking Theology’ (2014), “God has entrusted creation to human beings not merely as caretakers of a past condition but as co-creators with God of the future.

The 2nd Vatican Council also dealt with this, “Christ’s redemptive work includes also the renewal of the whole temporal order. … God’s plan for the world is that men should work together to renew and constantly perfect the temporal order. … the family, culture, economic matters, the arts and professions, the laws of the political community, international relations,…

Thus, we pray: May your Kingdom come in the marketplace, and may your will be done in my business.

Read more:

A-E – Avodah to Environmental

F-J – Freedom to Justice

K-O – Kingdom to Opportunity

U-Z – Untapped to Zero

 

Look out for the final part of the A to Z of BAM series: from Untapped to Zero on The BAM Review blog next week.

 

BAM: A to Z graphic design by Tanner Germany

Footnotes

[1] I wrote a brief paper in 2009 called The Mission of Business: CSR+ http://www.matstunehag.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/The-Mission-of-Business-CSR+1.pdf

[2] Please see article Business as Mission is Bigger than you think: http://www.matstunehag.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/Business-as-Mission-is-bigger-than-you-think.pdf

 

Mats Tunehag is a senior global ambassador for BAM and has worked in over half the countries of the world. He is the chairman of BAM Global and contributes to TransformationalSME.org. Visit MatsTunehag.com for BAM resources in 21 languages.

 

 

 

WANT MORE CONTENT ON ESSENTIAL BAM CONCEPTS & PRACTICES?

JOIN US AT THE BAM GLOBAL CONGRESS

A GLOBAL MEETING POINT FOR THE BAM COMMUNITY

Join us at this innovative virtual main event framed by a lead-in series of monthly webinars and a follow-up series of workshops and meet-ups.

We will CELEBRATE what God is doing through business around the world, CONNECT you with a global network of people and initiatives, and CREATE momentum to multiply the BAM movement for greater impact.

PRE-CONGRESS WEBINARS: October 2020 to March 2021

CONGRESS MAIN EVENT: 28 – 30 April 2021

POST-CONGRESS WORKSHOPS: May 2021 to July 2021

REGISTER NOW: Pre-Series Pass – $50, Premium All Access Pass – $175

It is not too late to register for the Pre-Series Pass, all webinars have been recorded and will be available to ticket holders.

 

 

 

 

Photo by Karyatid on Unsplash

 

The A to Z of BAM: K to O – from Kingdom to Opportunity

by Mats Tunehag

K – Kingdom

Christ is Lord of all, or He is not Lord at all. The early Church confessed Christos Kyrios – Christ is Lord. [1] It was revolutionary when the greeting was supposed to be Kaiser Kyrios – the Emperor is Lord. [2]

May God’s Kingdom come – may Christ the King be the ruler of our lives, business and the marketplace. BAM is recognizing the Lordship of Jesus Christ, and connecting Sunday with Monday. BAM is following Christ into the marketplace, among all peoples and to the ends of the world.

As the BAM Manifesto states: “We believe that God has called and equipped business people to make a Kingdom difference in and through their businesses.

Here’s a practical way to be Kingdom oriented in your daily life, and King Jesus-centered in your business: Pray St. Patrick’s BAM prayer. [3]

 

 


L – Lifestyle

BAM is not merely a superficial lifestyle choice, like the “flavor of the month”. BAM is rather a worldview and concept you internalize; it is like food you eat and water you drink – it becomes to some extent an integral part of you.

Ad fontes! Thus, we need to go back to the ancient sources, and drink from the deep wells of Judeo-Christian thought. We must internalize values and concepts found in the Holy Scriptures.  We must recognize our roots and understand our history, and acknowledge that we are standing on shoulders of giants who have gone before us.

Then – and only then – can BAM become a lifestyle, a natural expression of a Bible infused worldview. BAM will have a lasting impact if we are deeply rooted for the future. [4]

M – Mission

God so loved the world that he sent his Son. Christ sends us to the world, to all spheres of society – including the business world.

We are to make Christ known among all peoples on all continents, also through business. BAM means doing business in this global thrust: to all peoples!

Thus, we can never be satisfied with just local marketplace ministries, even though they are needed. We must venture beyond our default mode – which for most of us is to stay local, in our Jerusalem – as it were. But BAM is doing business with God and for people in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and to the ends of the earth. BAM is a global mission – from everywhere to everywhere!

N – Needs

There is no shortage of needs around the world: physical, emotional, social, economic, spiritual, and environmental. There are needs related to poverty, slavery, corruption, environmental degradation and reaching the unreached peoples with the gospel.

Solving global issues – the world’s most pressing issues – with innovative BAM solutions is one of the Big Hairy Audacious Goals for business as mission championed by BAM Global. [5] The good news is that God cares for all of us in our totality.

Bishop Barron wrote: “When God came among us in Christ, he affected the work of repairing his broken and hurting creation. He is not interested simply in souls but in bodies as well.” [6] [7]

Business can and should be an integral part of addressing various needs. The BAM Manifesto states:

“We believe that the Holy Spirit empowers all members of the Body of Christ to serve, to meet the real spiritual and physical needs of others, demonstrating the kingdom of God. …. Christians in business should therefore be a part of this holistic transformation through business. … We recognise that there is a need for job creation and for multiplication of businesses all over the world, aiming at the quadruple bottom line: spiritual, economical, social and environmental transformation.”

O – Opportunity

Some see needs, and others see opportunities. Some see businesses as problems, others see them as problem solvers. Yes, business can be bad – just think mafia and human trafficking, for example. But God’s intention is for businesses to create opportunities to develop products and services, opportunities to solve environmental challenges and opportunities to create flourishing communities. BAM is about seizing this God given opportunity.

It is an opportunity to serve people: customers, staff, suppliers, families, investors, competitors, the industry and nations. Business is a strategic opportunity to create different kinds of wealth for many stakeholders. This is a godly mission. And our mindset should be abundance, diversity and flourishing.

The Wealth Creation Manifesto, which is available in 17 languages, says: “Wealth creation is rooted in God the Creator, who created a world that flourishes with abundance and diversity.” [8]

Business is also an opportunity to glorify God! Both the BAM Manifesto and the Wealth Creation Manifesto conclude with: Ad maiorem Dei gloriam – For the greater glory of God.

Read more:

A-E – Avodah to Environmental

F-J – Freedom to Justice

P-T– Power to Tikkun Olam

U-Z – Untapped to Zero

BAM: A to Z graphic design by Tanner Germany

Footnotes

[1] “…the claim of the first Christians was Iesous Kyrios—Jesus is Lord. This was bound to annoy both Jews and Gentiles. The Jews would be massively put off by the use of the term Kyrios in describing an ordinary human being. … And for the Greeks, this claim was subversive, for a watchword of the time was Kaiser Kyrios—the emperor is lord. A new system of allegiance was being proposed, a new type of ordering and lordship—and this was indeed a threat to the regnant system. We Christians are not announcing a private or personal spirituality, but rather declaring a new King. Every aspect of life—business, family life, the arts, sexuality, and entertainment—must come properly under his headship.”  Daily Gospel Reflections, by Bishop Robert Barron, 19 Jan 2021

[2] To learn more how this relates to BAM, see BAM 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 & Beyond”: http://matstunehag.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/BAM-TALK-2.pdf

[3] It is also available in Bahasa, Korean, Portuguese and Russian: http://matstunehag.com/2017/03/17/st-patricks-bam-prayer/

[4] In the article Deeply Rooted for the Future I elaborate on these deep wells; the wealth of Judeo-Christian heritage which we need to draw from so BAM can become a lifestyle. See

http://matstunehag.com/2020/12/23/deeply-rooted-for-the-future/ It is also available in Russian: https://businessasmission.ru/ukorenyatsya-radi-budushhego/ and Portuguese: https://bamglobal.com.br/blog/profundamente-enraizado-para-alcancar-o-futuro

[5] Learn more about BGlobal and the global needs and challenges that BAM Global has identified as BHAG’s: Big Hairy Audacious Goals at: https://bamglobal.org/about

[6] Advent Gospel Reflection, by Bishop Robert Barron, 16 Dec 2020.

[7] See short vignette in the Wealth Creation video series: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJajgVcPyzo&list=PLYGxDL2dvuo5k-Uk8FGxZj1QYcBe70_Vx&index=2

[8] See another short video in the Wealth Creation series: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJajgVcPyzo&list=PLYGxDL2dvuo5k-Uk8FGxZj1QYcBe70_Vx&index=2

 

Mats Tunehag is a senior global ambassador for BAM and has worked in over half the countries of the world. He is the chairman of BAM Global and contributes to TransformationalSME.org. Visit MatsTunehag.com for BAM resources in 21 languages.

 

 

 

WANT MORE CONTENT ON ESSENTIAL BAM CONCEPTS & PRACTICES?

JOIN US AT THE BAM GLOBAL CONGRESS

A GLOBAL MEETING POINT FOR THE BAM COMMUNITY

Join us at this innovative virtual main event framed by a lead-in series of monthly webinars and a follow-up series of workshops and meet-ups.

We will CELEBRATE what God is doing through business around the world, CONNECT you with a global network of people and initiatives, and CREATE momentum to multiply the BAM movement for greater impact.

PRE-CONGRESS WEBINARS: October 2020 to March 2021

CONGRESS MAIN EVENT: 28 – 30 April 2021

POST-CONGRESS WORKSHOPS: May 2021 to July 2021

REGISTER NOW: Pre-Series Pass – $50, Premium All Access Pass – $175

It is not too late to register for the Pre-Series Pass, all webinars have been recorded and will be available to ticket holders.

 

 

 

 

Banner photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

 

The A to Z of BAM: F to J – from Freedom to Justice

by Mats Tunehag

F – Freedom

Winston Churchill said: “All the great things are simple, and many can be expressed in a single word: freedom, justice, honor, duty, mercy, hope.

Today tens of millions of people around the world are held as slaves, they are victims of human trafficking. A root cause to is unemployment. About 80 percent of those who are rescued from trafficking are re-trafficked unless they find a job with dignity at the other end. Thus, jobs with dignity and transformational businesses are essential for true freedom. Freedom businesses exist to fight human trafficking, providing jobs for prevention and restoration. [1]

There is no quick fix to human trafficking. There is no ‘jump to freedom’; we have a long journey ahead. As Nelson Mandela said: “There is no easy walk to freedom anywhere.” This is true for millions of slaves around the world, and also for the freedom business movement. [2]

 

 


G – God

We are not just Christians doing social enterprise. God is the owner of our businesses; our business praxis should be God-centered.

Let me mention two groups in Asia which are engaging with thousands of business owners and operators.

I have worked for over ten years with Julian Foe and his team, who lead the Kingdom Business Community, KBC in Indonesia. KBC have run camps for over ten thousand business people. It is an induction program, which always emphasizes – as number one: be God centered in your life and business.

Another group is The Brotherhood of Christian Businessmen and Professionals in the Philippines. Their motto is to “Make Disciples of All Nations”, and their vision is “bringing Christ into the marketplace and winning the marketplace for Christ”. They are “are a community of business people and professionals committed to living out Christian values and being change agents in the marketplace”.

BAM is about being God-centered and making Christ known.


H – Holistic

BAM is not doing business with a touch of ‘churchianity’. It is not about doing some church-like activities in a business. BAM is about meeting needs, different kind of needs: economic, social, spiritual, and other needs – as we do business.

BAM is about having a holistic outlook and approach, just like Jesus. He never told anyone they had the wrong kind of need. He constantly and consistently met all kinds of needs; preaching and demonstrating the Kingdom of God. This is a guiding light in BAM. “Businesses that function in alignment with the core values of the Kingdom of God are playing an important role in holistic transformation of individuals, communities and societies.”  – Wheaton Declaration on Business as Integral Calling

We believe that the Gospel has the power to transform individuals, communities and societies. Christians in business should therefore be a part of this holistic transformation through business.” – BAM Manifesto

I – Integrated

BAM is taking our Sunday talk into a Monday walk. It is about integrating what we profess in church into a daily praxis – 24/7.

H2O is hydrogen and oxygen. It can be compartmentalized and analyzed and it can manifest itself as water, ice and steam. But if you’re thirsty you don’t want a chemical formula but water, the integrated whole.

The Church teaches that God is triune; we can observe the three in one, and one in three in the holy Scriptures and throughout history. We can compartmentalize God; focus on the Son for example. But we mustn’t fail to see how the three divine persons overlap, interact and connect. Separate but never disconnected. It is a mystery, indeed, but nevertheless a truth to embrace. [3]

BAM is an expression of a holistic lifestyle, where godly values and good business practices are integrated. 

J – Justice

Business as mission is about embracing Biblical themes, narratives and values, and live them in the marketplace. [4]

God loves justice and hates injustice. God sent prophets again and again who spoke out against injustice, and they demanded change and correction. Injustice often manifested itself in the marketplace: it was corruption, labor exploitation and abuse of vulnerable people like immigrants. To pursue honest business and care for staff is business as justice. To treat customers and suppliers well is also a part of this God-honoring pursuit.

Business as justice includes fighting corruption, bribery, labor exploitation and human trafficking.

 

Read more:

A-E – Avodah to Environmental

K-O – Kingdom to Opportunity

P-T– Power to Tikkun Olam

U-Z – Untapped to Zero

 

BAM: A to Z graphic design by Tanner Germany

Footnotes

[1] To learn more, check Freedom Business Alliance, FBA: https://www.freedombusinessalliance.com/

[2] Read more at https://businessasmission.com/let-freedom-ring-fighting-slavery-with-business-solutions/

[3] Read more at https://thirdpathinitiative.com/holistic-integrated-bam-will-make-history/

[4] See article dealing with 12 such values: http://matstunehag.com/2012/09/29/business-as-mission-is-bigger-than-you-think/

 

Mats Tunehag is a senior global ambassador for BAM and has worked in over half the countries of the world. He is the chairman of BAM Global and contributes to TransformationalSME.org. Visit MatsTunehag.com for BAM resources in 21 languages.

 

 

 

WANT MORE CONTENT ON ESSENTIAL BAM CONCEPTS & PRACTICES?

JOIN US AT THE BAM GLOBAL CONGRESS

A GLOBAL MEETING POINT FOR THE BAM COMMUNITY

Join us at this innovative virtual main event framed by a lead-in series of monthly webinars and a follow-up series of workshops and meet-ups.

We will CELEBRATE what God is doing through business around the world, CONNECT you with a global network of people and initiatives, and CREATE momentum to multiply the BAM movement for greater impact.

PRE-CONGRESS WEBINARS: October 2020 to March 2021

CONGRESS MAIN EVENT: 28 – 30 April 2021

POST-CONGRESS WORKSHOPS: May 2021 to July 2021

REGISTER NOW: Pre-Series Pass – $50, Premium All Access Pass – $175

It is not too late to register for the Pre-Series Pass, all webinars have been recorded and will be available to ticket holders.

 

 

 

 

Banner photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash