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Every Christian Man's Mission

April 30, 2020
35 upvotes

This is my take on Mission. It starts with worldview.

Our Worldview

There are two worldviews according to the Bible: Belief in the true God or belief in false gods. For those who refuse to worship and submit to God, they have, knowingly or unknowingly, created their own god. Even those who haven't heard the Gospel are accountable according to Paul (Romans 1:20). To summarize, every human worships something. Religious people worship false gods and people who reject religion make themselves god. I did not create this concept, it's been plainly stated for centuries in different forms. But it is important to differentiate those who follow Jesus as God and those who do not. If you profess to be a Christ-Follower and believe the Bible, then you submit to God as your highest authority and His Word as true and infallible.

Our Purpose

As Christ-Followers, what is our purpose? The Bible makes it clear that God created man and that He created him for His glory. Therefore, the ultimate purpose of man, according to the Bible, is simply to glorify God.

We fulfill our purpose of glorifying God by living our lives in faithful service to Him (1 Samuel 12:24 John 17:4). Since God created us in His image, our purpose cannot be fulfilled apart from Him. King Solomon concluded that the only worthwhile life is one of honor and obedience to God (Ecclesiastes 12:13–14).

First Mission

Jesus told his followers their Mission - To make disciples of all nations. That includes both in words and actions.

Actions: Matt 5:16 says to let your light shine before men so they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Words: Mark 16:15 Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.

Big Mission

This Mission, by default, is huge and unreachable. That's key because men often choose a mission that is too easily achievable, and the satisfaction that comes from easily achievable goals is fleeting. Think of the greatest thing you've accomplished in your life. Does it sustain you still to this day? Can you honestly say that this massive goal you accomplished gives you an ongoing sense of fulfillment? I bet you would say it does not. In fact, I would argue that achieving the goal was not as fulfilling as the journey to complete the goal. The mission to make disciples is a lifelong, never-ending goal that we know will never be completed. This means that we can continue pursuing this mission until we die. Along the way we may see great success bearing fruit, but the key here again is that we will always have the mission to pursue and therefore something to strive for and a place to exert our energy. This fulfills our purpose to glorify God through following His commands and it creates legacy. Legacy is the effect of our actions after we are gone. As we make disciples, we are expanding the Kingdom of Heaven. We are removing souls from eternal wrath away from God and adding souls to eternal peace with God. What better legacy can a man leave? When God asks me, "What did you do with your time on earth?" I need to be accountable for my actions. I need to store up treasure in heaven.

Because the Mission is so big (and important), we shouldn't arrange the Mission around our lifestyle, we should fit our lifestyle around the Mission. See Francis Chan quote below.

Second Mission

If we are believers and disciples of Christ, we turn our focus to the external world to make disciples. But what about existing believers? Is that part of the mission? Of course! We are to serve one another using our gifts and talents (1 Peter 4:10). The definition of humility is not to think less of yourself but to think more of others. Isn't that the essence of serving? Cynical people may suggest that serving others is validation seeking. If that were so then the Apostles were constantly seeking validation! But it is a point that needs addressing. The Pharisees were religious people who did the right thing with the wrong motives so it's entirely possible that you could be serving people out of a selfish desire for validation. But Paul's writings exhort believers to support and serve others so let's add this to our Mission.

Every Man's Outwardly Focused Mission

Every Christian Man's Mission is to be outwardly focused on making disciples and serving others. This includes through both words and actions. John The Baptist was "the voice of one crying in the wilderness" and Paul boldly proclaimed the Good News of Jesus Christ everywhere including synagogues, marketplaces and even prisons. We should follow Paul's example of spreading the Gospel with words and actions.

Lifestyle Evangelism

My family are full-time missionaries to our local community of around 50,000 people. When we mention we are missionaries, church friends often respond, "We let our lives point to Jesus," which would be great if it worked. But I don't see it producing fruit. It sounds good, but rarely is lifestyle alone effective. At some point you have to outright explain the Gospel. Be careful however because we are commanded to proclaim not persuade. Persuading is the job of the Holy Spirit (John 16) and He does it better than you ever could.

Jesus traveled from town to town telling men to follow him and intentionally teaching large crowds. The book of Acts is an entire book about preaching and proclaiming the gospel.

But to those who don't often proclaim the gospel, this is just as important as letting your lifestyle point towards Christ.

Get Started

Francis Chan wrote a free book called "You and Me Forever" which talks about our mission in life. Here's my favorite quote:

Command: Make Disciples. This command should dictate everything about your life: Where you live, where you work, where you spend your money, how you spend your time - EVERYTHING! You should not make a single decision without the words 'Make Disciples' factoring in. We should be constantly asking ourselves the question: How can we free up more time and resources for making disciples.

For the sake of your eyes, I removed about 50% out of this post and condensed it to a few main points. As I was re-reading the sidebar content on Mission it struck me that discussion about Mission isn't what is lacking in this sub, what's lacking is action. I encourage each of you to post in OYS and create opportunities to make disciples.

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Post Information
Title Every Christian Man's Mission
Author coachdad8
Upvotes 35
Comments 3
Date April 30, 2020 11:08 AM UTC (2 years ago)
Subreddit /r/RPChristians
Archive Link https://theredarchive.com/r/RPChristians/every-christian-mans-mission.658098
https://theredarchive.com/post/658098
Original Link https://old.reddit.com/r/RPChristians/comments/gatn5d/every_christian_mans_mission/
Comments

[–]BLUEDIESEL0073 points4 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

love it.

We often hear from a redpill view or a rational point: ''believe what they do, not what they say''. Now imagine God applying that to us.

thank you. this is fuel to keep going and a kick in the ass to get it done.

from a redpill sexual dynamics angle- we have to be careful not to make the woman our false god and let her get in the way of our mission. If the woman is going to be the helpmate/ partner/ queen/ or whatever , then she should compliment that mission and God given purpose.

[–]Red-CuriousMod | 35M | Married 11 yrs1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I'm a little disappointed ... after our prior discussion, I was expecting this to be something I'd disagree with and we could start a fascinating conversation on mission ;)

This is all good stuff - and I greatly appreciate the references to back it all up.


A few things to think about ...

Jesus told his followers their Mission - To make disciples of all nations ... Mark 16:15 Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation

I'm a bit surprised you didn't use the more obvious Matthew 28:19-20, as it's more clear on the disciple-making language. Given that most scholars agree Mark was written first and Matthew had Mark available to him when writing his book, it's generally accepted that Matthew wrote his "make disciples" bit as a clarification of the calling as being not merely to preach (which, of course, would have been an essential part of it), though the discrepancy can also be in the differing audiences, where Mark is more open to the idea that Gentiles would be reading his book, and therefore wouldn't be as fluent with Jewish concepts of discipleship as Matthew's Jewish audience.

But, I do get that you were trying to use a passage that focused on the "words" component.


But what about existing believers? Is that part of the mission? Of course! We are to serve one another

If I wanted to be nit-picky, this is probably where I could dig in a bit. But I'm guessing we'd end up both saying "semantics!" on the interplay between discipleship and evangelism and what discipleship actually is (i.e. not just verbally preaching).

Even still, when you get to this point:

Paul's writings exhort believers to support and serve others so let's add this to our Mission

Why isolate this into the Christian mission and not the tons of other things Paul's writings exhort believers toward as well? Not that I'd remotely propose this myself, but: Paul also exhorted us not to be sexually immoral, so why not add, "The tertiary Christian mission is to avoid sexual immorality," and then when we read an exhortation not to eat food sacrificed to idols in front of a younger believer who believes it is sin, we add, "The quaternary Christian mission is blah blah blah"? Why is "support and service" singled out here?

I had a conversation a while back with u/TheChristianAlpha and u/angusisin about how churchianity's focus on "service" was really off-base. It seemed to resonate with them at the time, so I'll let them chime in if they want. The gist of it is that we don't see Jesus LOOKING for service opportunities. They find him and he engages (though also often running away and avoiding them - though that was more due to the quantity). Modern churchianity is OBSESSED with looking for service opportunities, which ultimately becomes a distraction from their mission to make disciples, which is why we see all kinds of "I love my city" projects nationwide among congregations, but virtually none of these congregations actually train men in the basic principles of discipleship that Jesus modeled.


Every Christian Man's Mission is to be outwardly focused

Here's where you seem to have gotten into a semantics game with the MRP guys. First, they don't accept the notion that a man should get his mission from an external source - someone else telling a man what he must do with his life. I COMPLETELY agree with them. A man's mission should come from within. When God gives us a new heart and begins sanctifying us and transforming us with the whole "renewing of your mind" stuff from Romans 12, we internally change. Just like secular RP sees all the "I'm a new man" stories, Christians literally become a new person. God creates in us desires that are aligned with his purposes - and those desires increase as we continue to be transformed. This is why Paul can say in Philippians that the true measure of spiritual maturity is taking part in the discipleship principles of life modeling - because it's inherent that as we grow in our faith, we will eventually, of our own initiative, have the same compulsion toward discipleship that Jesus modeled.

At that point, we're not doing it "because the Bible says so" - a rationale that I vehemently reject as an end-reason for doing anything. We do it because we have internally been transformed to someone who WANTS to do it. It is part of our core being - the very essence of Christ, because Christ is in us and one with us, therefore we do by nature the things Christ did. The one who merely does it "because the Bible says so" is merely functioning on behavior-modification. But if it is not flowing from internal transformation, we can only conclude that he's operating on a works-mentality. Yes, there are phases of life where behavior-modification is inevitable. I have to employ these tactics with my children while they are very young. But that's just it - it's a sign of immaturity when people operate on that level. This is why on every red pill sub guys will implore to noobs: "Lift! Start working out. Go to the gym." They don't explain why. The guy just has to conform his behaviors. But if he never internalizes it, it's a pointless endeavor. But by beginning with the behavior, if he does eventually internalize it as a part of who he is as a man, he no longer does it "because the MRP guys will ridicule me if I don't." He does it because he wants to.

Now, I suspect you agree with all of this - and I'm not pretending you don't. But the key word in the phrase I quoted of yours is "Christian." For non-Christian men, they don't have Christ internally changing them toward unity as a singular body being "one in Spirit and in purpose" (Philippians 2). Because they don't have a common, singular purpose, non-Christians can feasibly, within their own frame, develop other missions that make sense and can be internally focused (such as many Buddhist monks trying to achieve a state of zen) or externally focused, just as they can be small (earn $1mil) or grandiose (cure world hunger).

But for the Christian, specifically, all of us collectively being part of a singular body with a singular Spirit and a singular Head and a singular purpose - it only makes sense that the mission we innately want for ourselves from our inner-most being will ultimately emerge to be the one that Jesus lived - and to do it in the way that he lived it. And because Jesus' mission, while internally sourced, was externally focused toward changing the world, so should ours be. In this, you are precisely right in what you said.


"We let our lives point to Jesus," which would be great if it worked. But I don't see it producing fruit. It sounds good, but rarely is lifestyle alone effective.

This is spot on. The whole, "Preach the Gospel always, and if necessary use words" is a total farce (by the way: the original quote was "WHEN" necessary, not "IF"). But the "words" are only the first part. I already linked 208, above. Jesus only ever started with the "tell them what" phase. This is mostly all we can do on reddit as a red pill forum - we can tell people what they need to know. But true discipleship moves on to "show them how," "let them try," "send them out," and ultimately, "pass it on."

Congregations all over the world love to SKIP from "tell them what" to "send them out" with no actual life modeling. This is the real danger. And it's the cause of what you're noticing. People don't know how to verbally share the Gospel because nobody has shown them how or given them an opportunity to practice it.

I believe in the 50s things were different. If you lived a good life, people would assume, "He must be a Christian." Nowadays people just think, "He's a good person." Lifestyle alone doesn't cut it. There has to be intentionality and initiation as part of the process. This is, of course, no different than dating/marriage. What kind of moron walks out the door to go to a restaurant, then gets mad that his wife didn't follow him ... when he never told her where he was going or invited her to come along.

But again, there's the point. Jesus lived a life that people wanted to follow. He DID invite them. But he invited them while he was doing his thing. He didn't hunt them down (except maybe Paul - he could be an outlier).

Be careful however because we are commanded to proclaim not persuade

I agree with this too. Though I think proclamation is not where it ends. We are also called to model - and not in a passive, "I hope someone comes by," pining for external attention kind of way. Rather, we model by projecting our frame and self into the world. Jesus did his thing. Along the way, he saw people who he could use and he invited them to join him. From there, he not only proclaimed the truth - he told them, "Look at me. Watch what I do. Immitate my life. Walk as I walk." Then he put himself out there in a way that they could actually observe and comprehend. This is why the proclamation of the prophets still resulted in a failed people - because even proclamation doesn't cut it. Even the people who BELIEVED the prophets were the ones who killed Jesus. That's why God said, "Fine, if you won't listen to what I tell you, I'll become one of you and you can see the model of my life through my physical presence - and I'll make sure, through discipleship, that model is passed down for spiritual generations for thousands of years until the earth is filled."

Francis Chan

He's one of the few guys who seems to understand discipleship. You watch his Multiply Movement videos with David Platt?

discussion about Mission isn't what is lacking in this sub, what's lacking is action

I wouldn't say it's lacking - but that's because I get all the PMs, phone calls, small group conferences, etc. that nobody else here gets to see. I watch it happening first-hand. It's a beautiful thing.

[–]DeChef2Endorsed0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

If that were so then the Apostles were constantly seeking validation!

Also Jesus.


This is a good post, we are not lacking in knowledge but action.

You can kill a man, but you can't kill an idea.

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