The Write Place- Curtis Bruce Kessler

July 24, 2010

The church is…

Filed under: Uncategorized — cbkessler @ 8:46 pm

“As the Father has sent me,” Jesus told his disciples, “so I send you” (John 20:21)

Since my shoulder surgery I have had plenty of time to ponder and reflect upon many things relating the church. I find it stimulating and exciting to revisit and re-affirm why I believe or practice certain things in the church. One topic that I have re-examined is our “mission statement”. Many churches are now formulating mission statements for their churches. We have done something similar a few years back in the wonderful congregation I am privileged to be an elder with here at South Canadian Valley Church of Christ, Norman, OK. You can find our mission statement in our newsletter or on our website- Here is our mission statement:

“As Christ’s church our purpose is to go and make disciples of Christ (Mt. 28:19), foster their spiritual growth (Mt. 28:20), and equip them to serve the church and community (Eph. 4:11-16), thereby glorifying God. (Mt. 5:16; 1 Peter 4:11)”

As you can see our intention was to simplify the churches mission in one sentence. We were hopeful that this statement could then be memorized and passed on rather easily. Finally it was crafted in a way to show our responsibility and commitment to the mission.

Ok, that aside, here is something for all of you to consider or even respond to. How would you complete the following sentence? The church is… Let me illustrate the question in form of a diagram I came across. Here it is:

The diagram illustrates how the church is perceived through the Reformation Movement (a place where something happens) and then through today’s perspective (a provider of religious goods and services). Finally, the last point of this diagram is that the church is a body of people sent out on a mission.

The conclusion of this diagram suggests that rather than a place or a provider the church has always been about a body of people and a simple mission. This diagram, at least implied, concludes that all other approaches regarding the church is unnecessary and takes away from the simplicity Christ intended for His church.

So, how would you complete the sentence “The church is…?” Also, do you agree with the diagram or with my opinion of what it implies? What do you think?

God Bless,
Bruce Kessler, elder


1 Comment »

  1. Isn’t the difference in the three primarily one of perspective? I mean, don’t we all want our churches to be a Place where the gospel is rightly preached? A provider of the support that comes from God, and a body of People with spiritual purpose?

    Comment by Michael — July 28, 2010 @ 7:47 pm | Reply

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