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God’s Mission and You

Our God is a missional God. Mission is part of God’s very nature. Consider these: When He created the world, He did not create a static paradise, but one that would be fruitful and grow. Ever since mankind disobeyed Him, our God has been on a mission to draw us back to Himself. In that mission, God appointed leaders, prophets, priests and kings to guide His people and show them who He is.

The climax of that mission centres around the work of Jesus Christ – God the Father sending God the Son into the world to live and to die so that all things might be reconciled to Him. After Jesus ascended, the Holy Spirit was sent into the lives of disciples. As Christ-indwelt, Spirit-empowered disciples, we are sent into various spheres of life to bring the message of reconciliation to all. Meanwhile we await the return of King Jesus and the completion of God’s mission which He initiated from ages past.

David Bosch, in his book Transforming Mission (p.390) puts it this way: “Mission is thereby seen as a movement from God to the world; the church is viewed as an instrument for that mission. There is church because there is mission, not vice versa. To participate in mission is to participate in the movement of God’s love toward people, since God is a fountain of sending love.”

How shall we define God’s mission? In a sense, it is the entirety of the Bible – the grand biblical storyline from creation to new creation. That’s big. The gospel is far more radical, more inclusive, more compelling, more relevant, more transformational than we think.

But perhaps we may summarize our part in this way: Mission is our participation in the divine initiative of God to announce the good news of the grand story – the Kingdom of God made possible through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, resulting in the healing and reconciliation of all things in heaven and on earth through Christ, to the praise and glory of God.

Whether you are a pastor or a full-time homemaker, a student or a retiree, living locally or serving cross-culturally, working as a lawyer or artist or engineer or writer or politician or construction worker, you are called to be an ambassador of the Kingdom of God. You are called to bear the gospel to all of creation. You are called to participate in God’s mission.

For some, it may mean serving God in a foreign land. For most of us, it means faithful living wherever we are placed – in the home, amongst friends, in schools and workplaces. For all of us, it means we start right here, right now. To be a Christian, is to be joined to God’s mission, which has now become ours too.

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Daily Devo

Daily Devotional Journal

Scripture:
Jonah 1:4-16; Psalm 86:11
Tue, 25 January 2022

The Fearful Men

Observation:

How did the sailors’ fear change from verse 5 to verse 16?

Deeper Reflection
THE NARRATIVE OF THE STORM AND SAILORS IS FULL OF irony and comedy. Picture the drama. The seasoned mariners were scared out of their wits (v.5). In an utter frenzy, they dumped cargo, desperately trying to save themselves. In contrast, Jonah the rebellious prophet was oblivious to the danger, sleeping in the bowels of the ship. The mariners were frantically calling out to their gods. But the prophet of the LORD was asleep. And so the flabbergasted captain came to Jonah and commanded him, “Arise, call out to your god!” (v.6). This is a parody of the divine command that Jonah rejected: arise,…and call out against Nineveh (Jon 1:2).65 After an exercise of lot-casting to determine who is responsible for the disaster, the sailors discovered that it is Jonah, who then disclosed, “I fear the LORD, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the dry land” (v.9). Jonah’s talk about “fear” must have sounded incredibly hollow to the sailors who knew about his wilful rebellion!66 It was them, and not the LORD’s prophet, who understood the gravity of what Jonah had done (v.10). Another irony of the story is that because of Jonah’s irreverence, the sailors came to genuinely revere his God (v.16). How about us? Are we like Jonah, professing to fear God but treating God flippantly? Pastor Timothy Keller defines the fear of the Lord as being “overwhelmed with wonder before the greatness of God and His love”67. Let us ask the LORD for an undivided heart that truly fears His name (Psa 86:11).
65 D. J. Wiseman, T. D. Alexander, and B. K. Waltke, Obadiah, Jonah, and Micah, Tyndale Old Testament commentaries v. 26 66 Ibid., 116. 67 Timothy Keller and Kathy Keller, The Meaning of Marriage (New York: Dutton, 2011), 68.
Application:

What does the fear of the Lord mean to me and how does it impact the way I live?

Prayer:
Write a prayer to God as your response from your meditation on and application of the Scriptures.
Prayer Pointers:
  • Give thanks and praise
  • Pray for pastors and staff: That they will have an undivided heart that fears the name of the LORD (Psa 86:11)
  • Pray for significant people
  • Pray for those in need
  • Pray for self

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