Gospel, Community & Mission: What Missionally-Educated Christians Value

Missionally-Educated Christians Value:

Gospel, Community, and Mission as the matrix for meaning in life.

  • Gospel: Too often the Gospel is relegated as mere historical information to be cognitively believed rather than as a theory of everything (TOE) to be affectionately embraced (1).   This Gospel of the Trinity—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is the good news that God sent his only Son, Jesus, into this world to die for our sins; and then he was buried, and rose from the grave, ascending to the right hand of the Father, where he gloriously reigns with all authority over all things, and giving the Spirit to those who are his (2).  The missional disciple ought to aim for Gospel saturation in all of life and thought, as one who reflects the love of Jesus for the sake of others.
  • Community: The Triune God is a community of Persons (3).  Humanity has been created and is being recreated after the image of the Trinity (4).  Only through Christ and his Spirit can his people cultivate communities of Spirit-led disciples and participate in such communities (5).  For the missional student, a discipling community is necessary for understanding (6).
  • Mission: The Triune God is a missional God. The Father sent the Son into his world to dwell among and redeem peoples and cultures (7).  And, the Father and the Son sent the Spirit to lead communities of Gospel-centered disciples to live among and engage peoples and cultures (8).  In this midst of such a community on mission together, the missional disciple is given the opportunity to rethink which elements of what he believes belongs to the gospel and which belongs to his culture (9).

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(1) As a TOE, the Gospel “affirms the personality and soul of all individuals because they were made for relationship with a personal Creator. The Gospel restores and renews that relationship over and over again.” From, Austin City Life: Partnering on Mission. (Unpublished, p. 21).

(2) Further, Jesus will soon return to judge those still alive and those already dead; and, thereafter, he will make all things new for the sake of his people and the glory of God.

(3) “…each [person] distinct but inseparable from the others, whose being consists in their relations with one another.” Gunton, Colin. The Promise of Trinitarian Theology. (Edinburgh: T&T Clark, 1991), 113.

(4) Gen 1.26-27; Rom 12.5; 1 Cor 12.12-31; Eph 4.23-24; Col 3.10 .

(5) Chester, Tim. Delighting in the Trinity, (Grand Rapids: Monarch Books, 2005), 168. See also, Acts 2.1-13.

(6) Chester, Tim. Total Church: A Radical Reshaping Around Gospel and Community. (Wheaton: Crossway, 2008), 159.

(7) Jn 1.11, 14; Jn 3.16-17; Jn 20.21.

(8) Matt 28.18-20; Luke 24.47-49; Jn 14.16-17; 16.7; Jn 20.21; Acts 1.8; Rom 1.5; 16.26; Rev 7.9.

(9) Chester, Tim. Total Church: A Radical Reshaping Around Gospel and Community. (Wheaton: Crossway, 2008), 156.

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