GOSPEL LIFE, PART 3: OUR MISSION, WHAT WE DO

3_Mission_Blog

QUICK REVIEW

 

In Part One, we discussed the “why” behind it all. The Gospel is the good news of Jesus Christ whereby He ransomed a people for Himself to unify all things together in the fullness of time so that the world might know the reality of God in all His goodness.

 

In Part Two, we discussed how the reality of this good news gives us a new identity. As redeemed believers, we are not defined by what we do. Who we are is now based on His perfect work – not on our ruined attempts to be good, and what we do is an outpouring of our new identity in him.

 

This changes everything! With this understanding of the “Why” and the “Who,” we now turn our attention to the “What.”  How does the Gospel inform what we do – our Mission?

 

WHAT IS OUR MISSION?

 

This may seem overly simplistic, but our Mission is to make disciples. This is what we are to do with the rest of our lives. If we aren’t careful, we will dress up church or design overly complicated systems to produce numbers – all in the name of discipleship. And we totally miss the one thing Christ commanded us to do.  All the other mandates we find in scripture assume the directive that the church is to be about disciple-making.

 

WHAT IS A DISCIPLE? 

 

A disciple is quite simply a follower or learner. To be a disciple of Christ is to be a follower of Christ. This is exactly what Christ prescribes in Luke 9:23:

 

And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”

 

HOW DO WE MAKE DISCIPLES?

 

Again, this is actually not a complex answer. It is actually more difficult to apply than to understand. Remember Matthew 28:18-20:

 

And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.  Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.  And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

 

WE SEE THREE LINKS IN THE CHAIN OF MAKING DISCIPLES:

 

GO AND MAKE DISCIPLES. 

 

The Greek translation of this phrase actually adds a whole new understanding to this basic English phrase. Jesus is literally saying, “As you go, make disciples.” The idea is that disciple-making is not a specific, defined event necessarily, but it actually happens as we go, where we go, and when we go. It’s a fluid process, continually changing. We will talk about this more in the next blog.

 

BAPTIZE INTO TRINITARIAN IDENTITY. 

 

This phrase means that we baptize those who profess faith in Christ. Let’s not get too fancy with this. There are some incredible implications for community when it comes to baptism. Our baptism into the names of the Trinity is an outward sign of our new identities. With that being said, one of the roles of community in discipleship is to consistently affirm our new identities in the Trinity to one another. We are to remind each other daily who we really are – not what we feel like, not who we act like – but who Christ says we are.

 

TEACH THE COMMANDS OF CHRIST. 

 

This is simple and should remain clear. As followers of Christ we are to regularly gather together to study, teach, and apply the commands of Christ to our lives. This happens in proactive ways by implementing committed plans of study. This also happens in reactive ways such as the spontaneous opportunities to apply the Gospel to each other’s lives in the “ordinary” moments of every day.

 

Disciple-making happens in many environments at SC3. The most obvious environments for us are the Home, DNA groups, Missional Communities, and Collectives. We will discuss these in a later post.

 

 HERE ARE A COUPLE OF POINTS TO NOTE IN CONCLUSION:

 

  • Disciple-making happens best in smaller environments. The larger the environment, the less likely true discipleship will happen.
  • Disciple-making increases with practice and equipping.
  • Disciple-making requires us to be ready and open to the work of the Spirit in the everyday moments of life. Every ordinary moment is a potential moment for discipleship.
  • There is no difference between “evangelism” and “discipleship.” Same gospel, same message!

 

We are called to it & it is simple, but it will cost us everything. Honestly, is there anything more worthwhile to give our lives to? Next week we examine Gospel Rhythms, the “How” of the Vision.

 

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About Mark Sellers
Mark the Antiblogger lives with his wife Staci in Madison, Alabama. Apart from his crusade to destroy all things blog he and his wife are in over their heads with Summit Crossing Community Church, a cool Christian community of believers. They have two precious adopted children, Andrew (Guatemala) and Ava (USA), that fill their days with excitement and joy. You can also find Mark's blogs on www.summitcrossing.org, and follow him on Twitter @dmarksellers.

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