DAY 12, THE MISSION OF THE CHURCH

Scriptural Text

Matthew 10:27-28 27 What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops. 28 And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.

Ephesians 2:4-7 4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— 6 and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.

His compassion never fails.

Exposition

“What is the mission of the church? The mission of the church is to go into the world and make disciples by declaring the gospel of Jesus Christ in the power of the Spirit and gathering these disciples into churches, that they might worship and obey Jesus Christ now and in eternity to the glory of God the Father.’

“This may sound like mere semantics, but it’s not. In a world of finite resources and limited time the church cannot do everything. We will not be effective in our mission if everything is mission. Likewise, we will not deliver on our mission if we are not sure what it is … definitions matter because focus matters.’

“In the end, the Great Commission must be the mission of the church for two very basic reasons: there is something worse than death, and there is something better than human flourishing.  Something worse: We will never make sense of the Bible, the church’s mission, or the glory of the gospel unless we understand this seeming paradox: death is the last enemy, but it is not the worst.  In fact, there’s something worse than death. Much worse: Jesus did not want (the disciples) afraid of much, but he did want them to be afraid of hell. “Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul,” Jesus warned. “Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell”.  It was not beneath Jesus to scare the hell out of people.  Since hell is real, we must help each other die well even more than we strive to help our neighbors live comfortably.’

“Sometimes we miss what the end of the story is all about. Yes, there will be a new creation…heaven will come down to earth… there will be peace and prosperity, security and abundance… But shalom is not the end of the story unless it’s shalom with God at the center. Or to say the same thing in different terms, human flourishing is not human flourishing without worship in spirit and truth.  Worship is the quintessential task of those who belong in heaven.’

Application

“Worship is the end of the end of the story, not human flourishing, because a redesigned world is nothing without delight in God. This means that Christian mission must always aim at making, sustaining, and establishing worshipers. And if this is our aim, our passion, our joy, then discipleship must be our task—the Great Commission must be our mission.’

DeYoung, Kevin. What Is the Mission of the Church? Making Sense of Social Justice, Shalom, and the Great Commission. Crossway. Kindle Edition.