Chapter 2 – It’s All About the Kingdom – Not Missions
It’s a sad state when we celebrate theology that is lined up to the letter, but a life that does little. Give me a person who knows little theology but wants to learn as he or she goes.
Missions has been a religious response to the world for the past two hundred years. Church leaders like to think people today are excited about missions – they’re not. It’s about glocalization – that’s where the fires are burning.
We have to move from a one-shot evangelism perspective that says, “Boom – here’s the four spiritual laws. If you don’t accept them, it’s over. I’ve done my duty,” to a radically different faith response where one is unabashedly proclaiming the gospel and serving, and loving.
The kingdom is a wholistic, viral response to the different infrastructures of society within a connected world.
…what we’ve done to “missions” is to make it only the gospel of proclamation regarding accepting Jesus as Savior. While that is definitely true, we stop much too short. Accepting Jesus as Savior is only the beginning of walking in the kingdom and doing his will; it is not the ultimate aim. God’s kingdom, his perfect rule and reign, is the ultimate aim.
There is not a single area of life or society that God does not want to transform and bring hope to. As followers of Christ, we are to proclaim the good news of the kingdom of God and engage society so it can see kingdom principles lived out in our individual lives and communities.
Today, the prevailing theological wind toward society is “us against them” The assumption is that things are going to get worse and worse and worse until Jesus returns – so what’s the point? Why do anything to help society at all if it’s all going to put anyhow? What a pessimistic view! That’s totally opposite of what Jesus told his followers. He told them to be ready, be busy, be watchful – time is short. I wish we lived more that way.
When the church glocalizes, it acts as a connection center between believers and all of society’s domains. It focuses on training the people in the pew hot to view their vocation as their “Jerusalem” in terms of ministry. From there, it motivates them toward how they can use that vocation to intersect a domain locally – and globally – throughout the ends of the earth! The church connects to society through the natural infrastructures, equipping and sending people through their jobs to affect a particular domain.
Roberts in chapter two speaks of the impact churches can have on all the domains of life: art, economics, family, government, agriculture, education, medicine and justice. When we can teach people how to use their giftedness and vocation in the domains of life, we being to move towards kingdom work, not missions.
In addition, Roberts gives us an overview of the kingdom, how it is comprehensive, and here and now.