Index by Subject

Doing the First Works: The Mission of Christ and His Church

What Exactly IS the Mission of Christ and His Church? This seems like such an obvious question, yet there is so much confusion about such a simple and straight forward question. Is it possible to quickly walk through the clear steps listed in scripture, the book, chapter and verse, so to speak, to make easy understanding of this subject? I believe it is easy to do, if we give it even a few minutes of thought. Remember, every Christian is supposed to be able to describe this (1 Peter 3:15). Have you felt guilty because you never gave this even a little time to work this out?

Remove the guilt right now! Here is the solution: Let us attempt to clear the cobwebs of misunderstanding brought on by the practices of the religious world and focus right now only on what the word of God actually says. Go with me step by step so that you can follow what God has told us is the truth about this subject. About 15 minutes of your time is really all you need. If you want to avoid any confusion DO NOT Google this subject! Your New Testament is the only source you will need to establish the truth of God’s word in your understanding.

A. It all starts with Jesus and His original purpose in coming in the way He did, born as a human being (declared by God – Matthew 17:5, Jesus is to be heard – remember, Jesus is the “Word” – John 1:1-5; 1 John 1:1-7, He came into this world to save mankind from being lost in sin. He is also the Creator who spoke all things into existence in Genesis 1, and amazingly, at the judgment He is to be our judge as well – John 5:22). Enduring the same temptations as any man, yet without sinning (Hebrews 4:15), He was to be the perfect sacrifice, ending the old law which required animal sacrifices every year to put away the sins of the Jews under the old law (the law of Moses which was for the Jews only but is “nailed to the cross” and a new law is now in effect – Colossians 2:11-14). This is also why the New Testament is THE ONLY LAW to which all of mankind is now responsible. The old law, i.e. the Old Testament is only for our learning and is not applicable for law or prophecy in our age.

B. By His death, burial and resurrection from the dead, Christ had accomplished His goal to save the souls of all of mankind by the means of hearing the word of God, having faith in Christ, to turn from sins, confessing the name of Christ and be baptized for the remission of sins. – Acts 2:36-41; 8:35-39; 1 Peter 3:21. In this way the mission of Christ has been achieved: the only way for the souls of man to be saved from eternal damnation – Acts 4:12; 14:27

C. The beginning of the Church of Christ – Acts 2:42-46.  Once we have met the conditions to receive salvation we are added by the Lord Himself – Acts 2:47; 1 Peter 2:5.

D. Membership in a local church is required, following the example of Saul of Tarsus – Acts 9:27-29. We are to worship every first day of the week with the local church – Acts 20:7, and we are to submit to the leadership of the local church we are members of and help in this way to maintain the discipline of the church – Acts 20:28; 1 Peter 5:2-3

E. Many of us are constantly amazed at the way religion in the name of Christ is shown all around us. The religious world of our time evidently does not know what the mission of the New Testament Church is to be. What is now the established order and what we see everywhere we look are denominational groups enthusiastically being involved in and funding literally everything they can imagine and doing these things in the name of God without ever seeming to worry about whether their efforts are actually of God or not. Without the authorized will of God from His word, such religions (invented at the whims of men), still claim that “their God” would endorse them – Colossians 2:20-23.

F. But what IS the mission of the church of Christ? Flying in the face of contemporary denominational religions is that the Lord wants the work of the local church to be limited and focused on just three things. The apostle Paul set out to inform the congregations of God’s people what the mission or work of the Lord’s church was to be.
The Mission of the Church is:

  1. Preach the Gospel – Ephesians 3:10-12
  2. Perfecting the Saints – Ephesians 4:11-16; Hebrews 10
  3. Caring for the Needy – 2 Corinthians 8:4

G. How Long Do We Continue This? This might be the simplest of all of these points: Jesus said, “..occupy till I come” (Luke 19:13)! Christians have been doing this since the church was established in Acts 2. Christ will return someday in the same manner as He departed – Acts 1:9-11, “Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. 10 And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, 11 who also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.”