the weblog of Alan Knox

Missions-Minded?

Posted by on Jan 21, 2008 in blog links, missional | Comments Off

Ken Sorrell has written a great guest article at “SBC Impact” called “Is your church missions-minded?” I love what Ken says about the relationship between the church and missions:

Matthew 28:19-20 and Acts 1:8 are two of the most popular biblical passages utilized in any discussion or motivation of missions. If indeed these two passages provide our Scriptural framework for being on mission with God, then many of our congregations are operation under a false assumption. Our understanding and practice of missions can never be reduced to an event, a project, or even a program of the church.

He also gives a few examples of how he thinks a “missions-minded” will act:

A missions-minded church is a church whose heartbeat is missions, whose thinking is missions, and whose doing is missions. From the Genesis to Revelation, the message is clear; salvation for all the nations of the earth. (Psalm 67)

A missions-minded church is a church where missions is so intertwined into all aspects of church life that church members assume that involvement in missions is normative for Christians. From their home and around the world, we are to be witnesses. Acts 1:8

A missions-minded church never goes somewhere else to do missions, but wherever they go they are on mission. Matthew 28:19

A missions-minded church is a church whose use resources reveal their true heart’s passion for missions. It has often been stated, “follow the money”. In a missions-minded church, “follow the heart and you will also find the money”. Matthew 6:21

A missions-minded church is a sender of missionaries to the nations. Acts 13:1-3

I grew up in several churches that considered themselves to be “missions-minded”. What did that mean? Well, it meant that there was a Women’s Missionary Union and a Baptist Men’s group. It meant that the church took up offerings for missions. But, for the most part, “missions” remained a job for professionals. “Missions” was treated much like teaching, evangelism, discipling. They were not “our responsibility” because we paid other people to take care of that for us (another example of “Representative Obedience“).

I think we begin to understand God’s heart for missions when we start to recognize that God has called all believers to be missionaries – to take the gospel and make disciples wherever they are. Thus, to me, to be “missions-minded” or “missional” is to be actively involved in the missio Dei – the mission of God.