Sunday, February 22, 2009

Missional Imperatives

From Shane's blog, in the discussion section, Shane comments;
missional imperative is totally about what you wear, what you eat, whether you are circumcised or not, the length of your hair, how much or how little alcohol you drink- the way you run church.

Why is this so?

What do these things affect in regard to people hearing about Jesus and loving him more?

Is it a New Testament imperative?


Ben said...

I heard a sermon by Phillip Jensen recently in which he said we're already just like the people around us. We don't need to try to fit in, we already do.

He told us we need less 1Cor 9 and more Matt 5 (you are the light of the world).

I hadn't thought about it like that before, and it struck me how much 'like' the people around us I really am.

geoffc said...

If it's the sermon on the mount series you're talking about, it's one of the best sermon series i've ever heard.

As I read the New Testament I don't get the vibe that people came to know christ because the apostles were 'fitting in'. quite the opposite.

Shane said...

I think you guys need to go to bible college and look at Paul's missionary methods :)

and also think about a biblical hermeneutic that doesn't pitch one part of scripture against another- though I am sure the eminent teacher was suggesting that. ;)

ben of course you are like the people around you - but do you actually identify with them - there is a difference. part of identification is listening to the culture and working out the best way to serve it - that is the missional imperative.

geoff - who said it was about fitting in? very sloppy! its about what you are prepared to sacrfice for the sake of serving others.
in the context of the comments of the blog- and what Rob Forsyth was saying at the the induction - he was suggesting that maybe they need to sacrifice their traditions for the sake of tradition.
more context please.

it is a powerful combination when you live distinctively AND become all things to all me n in order to save some. I wish I had that more.

geoffc said...

geoff - who said it was about fitting in? very sloppy!

thanks shane. 'fitting in' is a sloppy way of describing it, and I wasn't claiming that that's what you're on about. It was a response to the last paragraph of Ben, not so much the quote on your blog. Though in the context I can see no other real way of interpreting my words as saying you were about 'fitting in'. So yes, sloppy and unfair.

its about what you are prepared to sacrfice for the sake of serving others.

And I agree with this. I was just wondering where length of hair etc comes into loving and serving our brothers, and wondering how to balance the tension between what strategic decisions we make in how we do church against the fact that holy spirit is going to be the one who does it, despite our sloppy and misguided efforts.

I love Driscoll, but I do struggle with this tension, and sometimes I do get a vibe of a "ten steps to a healthy church" type thing, which leaves me with a sour taste in my mouth, justified or not. But yes, perhaps I read Paul more on methods. My favourite is 1 Corinthians 4:9-13.