The Church’s Mission
What is our mission? This is a question that can turn over and over in the head of someone who is leading a business, corporation, school, institution, or church. Knowing the mission (and communicating it) is key in evaluating whether or not you are fulfilling your mission. In other words, defining the mission is necessary for doing the mission. Otherwise, you will never be able to measure how efficiently your resources and energy are being used.
As we think about what the church’s mission is, let’s consider Scripture. Jesus said that the greatest commandment is to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind,” (Matt. 22:37) So, our highest priority is to love God, enjoy Him, take pleasure in knowing Him. Our next priority is a lot like the first. “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” (Matt. 22:39). As we love God and enjoy Him, so we also are to love people and enjoy providing for them as we would provide for ourselves.
How do we see this love played out in the church? We make disciples. Jesus gave us instructions for our mission: “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations,” (Matt. 28:19). We love God be making disciples who love Him. We love others by telling them the greatest story ever written—the gospel—the story of God’s love for us. Our mission, then, is this: To love God and love others by making disciples of all people.
The Mission’s Church
How do we do this? Are we left to ourselves to make disciples? Thankfully, no. We are surrounded by other believers on whom we depend and with whom we work in order to fulfill our mission. The church is the tool we have for making disciples.
I read a quote this week that made me think. I’ve looked and looked and can’t find the original in order to give proper attribution, but it is not original with me. It said this:
The church does not have a mission; the mission has a church.
That will recalibrate your perspective. While I’m not sure I agree with the first part totally, I do agree with the second part, which is something that we don’t hear much. There is one mission—to spread the gospel (good news) of Jesus by showing His love. This mission that God has given has a way to make it happen—the church. The church is a conduit through which the mission happens. The resources, manpower, and logistical wisdom all come from the people who are the church.
Your involvement in the church is critical to the advancement of the mission that we’ve been given. Thank you for all that you do in making this church a disciple-making church, and let’s press forward into our mission of loving God and others by making disciples of all people.