Being a man studying for Ordination, the Church has been a piece of Doctrine I’ve been wrapping my heart around.
I must confess, I’ve never asked (before these past two years) these two questions “What is Jesus view on the Church?” “What should His Body be doing on this earth?”
This may surprise everyone who reads this, but I was stuck in my “micro” thinking of Youth Ministry rather than my “macro” thinking on the Church. I asked myself: “What would Christ have me do as a Youth Pastor?” and “What’s Christ mission/vision/core values of my specific micro group?” BUT, I never connected this to: “What is Jesus’ view of the Church?”, nor “What should His body be doing on this earth?”
This reality makes me sad.
It makes me sad, because I am not alone. I’m not the only “micro thinking” Youth Pastor, nor am I the only “micro thinking” Christian.
Writing a paper on the Church helped me to solidify my “doctrine of the Church”. I am going to release bits here and there of the paper, so we can wrestle through together. Here is the beginning.
The church, both the local and the universal are called to be the Body of Christ, of which He is the head (Eph. 1:22-23 & 1 Cor. 12:27). This would suggest then, that the mission and purpose of the church would be the same as that of Christ Jesus. The Church then is called to walk the earth as Jesus did, to teach the way Christ did and seek that which Christ sought. Christ’s time on earth was full of mission and purpose; he made it clear what his mission and purpose were. Here is a list: He “came to seek and save that which is lost” (Luke 19:10); “came to serve, rather than be served” (Mark 10:45 & Philippians 2:1-18 ); “be the doctor for the sick” (Matt. 9:12); came to make disciples (Matthew 28:18); “humble himself to death on a cross” (Philippians 2:1-18 ).
These are only SOME of the purpose and mission that Christ came to fulfill. When He was leaving this earth to await his Second Coming, he gave the church a specific mission, which was:
“Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:18-19).