Our Mission, Method, & Message
1. Our Mission, given to us by King Jesus: Our charge as the church, God’s covenant community, is to be so filled with God’s glorious presence that we go into the world and make disciples by declaring the gospel of Jesus Christ in the power of the Spirit, thus, expanding and filling the earth with God’s presence by gathering these disciples into churches, that they might worship and obey His commands to the glory of God the Father (Matthew 28:18-20; Psalm 67:1-7; Revelation 21:1-3).
The mission of the church is the Great Commission.
2. Our Method, given to us by King Jesus: The method of the Great Commission is threefold: Preach Christ, baptize new believers, and teach everything Christ has commanded (Matt. 28:18-20).
Preach: making disciples demands proclaiming Christ to the world. “How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent” (Rom. 10:14-15).
Baptize: baptism signifies and seals a new life of discipleship. “We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life” (Rom. 6:4). Furthermore, this new life of discipleship grows in the green pastures of a local church. Through the ministry of the Word and sacrament rightly administered by church officers, God delivers Christ to the baptized believer. The arrow points downward, from God to them. We do not go and get the gospel; God comes and delivers it to us.
Teach: Church officers do not have all the gifts that a church needs in order to flourish. As disciples are made through the teaching of God’s word, they respond through the means of gratitude (habits of grace). Personal and corporate prayer, spiritual gifts, singing, the Lord’s Day, and evangelism. These are all ways disciples respond in gratitude to the Lord. Thus, the arrow points upward and outward!
The method of the church is Word and Sacrament ministry.
3. Our Message, given to us by King Jesus: “Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ” (Col 1:28). “For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified” (1 Cor. 2:2). “But we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling to Jews and follow to Gentiles” (1 Cor. 1:23). The message we must proclaim is the gospel of Jesus Christ; the good news of what God in Christ has accomplished for the ungodly. Namely, that “for our sake he made him to be sin, who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” (2 Cor. 5:21). “Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us” (2 Cor. 5:20).
The message of the church is the gospel.