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Episode 189 “Eight Million Exiles” with Christopher M. Hays

Episode 189  Eight Million Exiles with Christopher M. Hays

We have heard a lot about refugees in the last 20 years.  War and violence drive people away from their cherished homes.  Displacement creates all manner of suffering for good and decent people. 

Christopher Hays stopped by the Lanier Theological Library recently to talk about a project he led in Colombia, South America, to address some of that suffering.

Who Is Christopher Hays?

Christopher M. Hays is the president of Scholar Leaders.  Prior to that he served as a missionary and visionary in Medellin, Colombia. 

Hays earned a PhD in New Testament from the University of Oxford. For eight years he taught New Testament at the Biblical Seminary of Colombia. He was the chief investigator on the Faith and Displacement project.

Eight Million Exiles

Colombia has been in the grip of a vicioius, civil war for nearly 75 years.  In the last twenty-four years, there have been one million murders. 

Eight million people have been violently ejected from the homes  The net effect of all this deprivation, displacement, and  discouragement has deeply injured millions of people. 

Teams of scholars, friends, and church leaders banded together to do something about these casualties of war. 

Hays writes about this in his new book, Eight Million Exiles: Missional Action Research and the Crisis of Forced Migration. (Eerdmans, 2024).

The technical term for these “exiles” is Internally Displaced Persons (IDP).  The Colombian government has done little to help them. 

The UN does not typically help IDPs.  So the best group to come alongside, house, feed, counsel, and help are the thousands of Christian churches already in many of these communities.


For Dr. Hays’ book Renouncing Everything: Money and Discipleship in Luke (Paulist Press, 2016) click here.

For his book When the Son of Man Didn’t Come: A Constructive Proposal on the Delay of the Parousia (Fortress, 2017)  click here.

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