In 1856, a young Englishman traveling in the interior of China would become one of the most effective pioneer evangelists by abandoning conventional missionary traditions.
As a young man, Hudson Taylor had dedicated his life to mission work in China. Persevering through hardships but baring little fruit, Hudson decided to adopt the lifestyle and dress of a traditional Chinese teacher in order to better reach out to the culture. This decision ostracized him from his fellow British missionaries.
However, throughout his 51 years in China, Hudson would raise up over 800 western missionaries and baptize over 50,000 Chinese to the Christian faith.
In 1 Corinthians 9:22, Paul states: "That I have become all things to all men, so that by all possible means I might save some."
Christians have always been called to contextualize the message of salvation to their cultural surroundings. Although the truth of the gospel remains the same, the methods of communicating this truth can change according to cultural dynamics. Hudson Taylor accommodated his methods to enhance the proclamation of Christ to the Chinese people. As he said, "Let us in everything unsinful become like the Chinese; that by all means we might save some."