1. Recover Jesus – there must be a primary focus on who Jesus is. Failure to do this can have severely negative consequences. In addition to the key themes of the birth, life, death, resurrection, and coming return of Christ, the church should see the incarnational life as a model for disciples to live.
2. Make disciples â€“ this is what Jesus calls the church to do. We are to make little living images of Jesus. If we fail to make disciples, we will not be effective at anything that is relevant to the church. It is possible to have people referring to themselves as Christian, but not to look anything like Christ. This possibility and reality according to some modern day claims should make the church have a serious re-evaluation of the discipling process.
3. Engage the world as sent people – God sent Jesus. Jesus came as one who was sent. God and the Son sent the Holy Spirit. The sending character of God says something about how we are to engage humanity. How we are to live life.
4. An apostolic environment – to have a missional church, you must have a missional ministry that encompasses the five aspects of ministry found in Ephesians 4. Having a ministry view of only the pastor / teacher is not correct. Church leaders that operate with this myopic view need to expand their understanding and ministry expressions.
5. Organic systems – the way the church should organize itself. Moving away from a top-down approach, the church needs to move toward development as viral or movement effect.
6. Communitas â€“ we must â€œput adventure back into the venture of the church.â€ Relating or fellowshipping together because we are together is not sufficient. There must be a greater cause that draws us toward the purpose of Christ and away from being safe in risk-free environments.
I would add one caveat to this list: We must define these terms as we see them in Scripture. In other words, many churches and believers would claim to have these things. But, when you compare them to Scripture, they look nothing alike.
So, what do you think of Hirsch’s list? What would you add or remove?