My heart became hot within me. As I mused, the fire burned; then I spoke with my tongue: "O Lord, make me know my end and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting I am!"

31 May 2006

Positively Speaking

The last post focused on one possible way to get off-track in our thinking about worship. That is, using worship is a tool to attract unbelievers to Christ sure sounds nice, but ultimately detracts from the greatness of what worship really is: God's covenant people drawing near to Him through Christ in order to raise their voices to Him and be made new in the image of their Savior. As always, more and Biblical thinking on worship will save the church from many pitfalls.

Beyond this, though, my mom spurred me on to think more of the lessons we could learn from the "church growth" corner of the American church. To me, the clearest lesson is the great sense of mission these churches have. If their mistake is making this mission the primary purpose of worship, my mistake might very well be not considering the full extent of the Great Commission. Though we need to reject some of our brothers' methodologies, certainly much work remains for the reformed church to continue thinking Biblically about our outward mission.

Thus a new question for discussion: if our commission shouldn't look like that (see below), what is it to look like?

A first part of the answer might be that our mission ought to look like church planting, not just individual evangelism. How better to follow the Apostle Paul than to see the work of church planting as vital and necessary part of being a church than a side-effort we may or may not engage in, depending on our resources? Toward this, check on Tim Keller's great article: Why Plant Churches?

5 comments:

Ellen Olivetti said...

Thought Tim Keller's article was great.

Our church's mission is to glorify God by reaching the lost and discipling the found - a two-fold mission. To that end, we put a lot of effort into outreach. Hopefully, we do it in a godly way.

In fact, in these last seven years as we have planted a church, our faith has grown more secure than ever AND more joyous and exciting as we have been more active in following the Great Commission.

Anonymous said...

let's see if i have this right. you think that others who don't believe in your sky daddy need to be taught to believe in something they didn't know existed, right?

why, oh why can't you "believers" learn to respect others' right to believe (or not) as they so desire?

are you so against the concept that you have to intrude yourselves on others' lives? are you so "finished" yourselves, so perfect, that you have lots of time to disturb others?

it is the height of rudeness to simply assume that others want or even need to share your delusion. I can't begin to describe how disrespectful it is to be told by dewy-eyed "believers" that all I need is to be saved, especially if they don't know me or even know anything about me.

how friggin' disrespectful!!

get real jebus-monkeys -- grow up and accept that the rest of us have the right to NOT be forced to hear and see your delusional stuff.

signed, one who's tired of the sanctimonious assumptions of the right-wing pharisees.

Jared said...

Wow. Hi, mr. non-sanctimonious. Can't tell if your comment is a joke or not.

Instead of deleting your comment, I'll just leave it there for the fool to expose his folly. And because you do a better job than I ever could at proving this world's need for the gracious gospel of Jesus Christ.

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