Yesterday – rather, Tuesday, at Mosaic [it’s been a busy week] we continued our discussion about the how and why of being “on mission” for Christ.
We found it necessary to emphasize that we are not trying to build a “church” as churches go. We are not asking people to join us in a new “Ministry”. We are asking people to join us in becoming more like Christ where we/they are. We’re interested in starting a “movement” – a multiplication of people taking kingdom territory where they work, live, and breathe. We aren’t the only ones doing so. Many are attempting the same thing in other venues. Our emphasis is on building up people rather than on building programs and/or events. That means it is difficult to hide. We’re continually rubbing shoulders, encouraging, and yes – challenging each other to listen, hear, and respond to what God is saying to us individually and corporately. For that to work we have to have a shared understanding of why and how we do what we do – thus our current study.
The title of this post is Bible Basics. I chose that because I believe that is where our journey begins. It really is basic. The Bible has two core themes that run throughout; Covenant and Kingdom. You see it discussed and portrayed throughout the Old and New Testament accounts by disciples and patriarchs, prophets, and kings, and yes, priests and Messiah. However, what do they mean?
RELATIONSHIP AND RESPONSIBILITY
Simply put; Covenant is about relationship and Kingdom is about responsibility. Covenant or Relationship—reveals how to be one with God, and Kingdom or Responsibility—tells us how to do something for God.
We talked about the fact that Covenant is the way in which the Bible describes and defines relationship: first our relationship with God and then our relationship with everyone else. In addition, we discussed that there are three essential elements of Covenant: FATHERHOOD – IDENTITY – and OBEDIENCE.
In the same way, the Bible uses Kingdom to describe and define responsibility: first, our responsibility to represent God to the people we know, and then to everyone else. Moreover, just as there are three elements to Covenant, there are three essential elements of Kingdom: KING – AUTHORITY – and POWER.
We don’t have space to fully unpack each of these here, but know this: These Are The Basics, the degree to which we grasp and live out these truths will determine our ability to be effective “little Christs” in the world.
Briefly, the elements break down as follows:
Under Covenant/Relationship there is…
FATHERHOOD – God is our Father, the Creator who loves and cares for us.
IDENTITY– This flows from our relationship with Father God. Our identity and therefore our sense of security and confidence come as God tells us that we are His children.
OBEDIENCE – This one often gets a bad rap. In reality though, all obedience is, is simply acting in a way that is consistent with our identity – acting in a way that jibes with who we are and whose we are.
Under Kingdom/Responsibility there is…
KING – God is the majestic ruler of heaven and earth, and He seeks to extend His loving rule to and through the lives of all people.
AUTHORITY – As King, God clearly has the authority to act, but remarkably, He expresses His authority through people who choose to carry the responsibility of representing Him.
POWER – As the Creator and sustainer of the universe, God holds incredible power. He chooses to use this power to express His love to people and, even more surprisingly, through people who carry His authority as King.
Man – there’s a lot in those few sentences! Again, there is not enough space here to cover it all. The only way to cover it all is through real life shared together on an on-going basis.has stumbled upon the related issues of Identity/Obedience and Authority/Power. We’ll discuss that next round.
In the meantime, where do you stand? How’s your grasp – your living out – the elements of Covenant and Kingdom, Relationship and Responsibility?
We’d love to hear about it… Holla Back!