Thoughts on ‘Emerging Churches’…(3)

Identifying with Jesus…

So, moving onto the first point…

I guess this is the stuff I’ve been going on about in the past, about the obsession with the Missio Dei, and acceptance that we are created and saved to participate in God’s plan for the redemption of the world. That Christianity is not just about ‘life after death’ but about ‘living life for Christ’.

The authors point out the Jesus’ mission, once understood in it’s cultural context, was relatively straightforward. Indeed, it was definable in two words – to serve and to forgive. Everything he did, everything he taught revolved around those concepts. Think ‘whoever wants to lead must learn to serve’ (not the actual quote, but you know what I mean’…think what the Cross represents (grace and forgiveness on a universal scale – by that I don’t mean universalism!)…

We draw these ideas together, and we can begin to see that Church isn’t about inviting others to come and join in our little sacred group, but getting out there to see where God is and what he’s doing, and seeking to serve our communities, seeking to bring about redemption through our lives and our actions, not only our words…

the kingdom, or the reign of God, is about our life here and now, and it is concerned not just with indiviual needs and aspirations but also with the well-being and mission of the community of Christ’s representatives. It is directed beyond the present membership of the body of believers to encompass the world that Jesus came to save from the consequences of its rebellion by turning it in a radically different direction. The gospel of emerging churches is not confined to personal salvation. It is social transformation arising from the presence and permeation of the reign of Christ. The gospel of the kingdom is prominent through the four Gospels. Emerging churches are no longer satisfied with a reductionist, individualized, and privatized message.
(Gibbs and Bolger, p63)

Basically, I guess this is about going beyond the borders of religion, and getting obsessive about being like Jesus…


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