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20

Apr 2011

Sunday Rhythm | God Sends His People Into the World | Sending on Mission

And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” – Matthew 28:18-20

Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth. – 1 John 3:18

The apex of spiritual experience in the life of a Christian is not simply hearing the Word but living it. This truth also shapes the rhythm of our Sunday gatherings. Our Sunday rhythm begins with God calling his people to worship. We then take time to hear God speak to his people through his Word, followed by a celebration of the union with Christ and his people as God strengthens his people at the table. We then get to respond to God in grateful praise. The close of our Sunday rhythm then ends with God blessing and sending His people on mission to “Go therefore and make disciples.” To bid people to come and die to their old, destructive ways, and to live for Jesus, who loved them and gave himself for them. To carry forward the gospel story of reconciliation to our homes, jobs, neighborhoods and the city we love.

This sending calls us to live the truths we have heard. It reminds us of the goodness of God communicated in the rhythm of our gathering: needed grace that will accompany and enable us to fulfill our mission. Our gospel re-presentation is not complete simply with our present fellowship and obedience. Our ultimate blessings are eschatological, culminating in the consummation of all things in Jesus. The Sending on Mission reminds us that the best days are not behind us, and the present does not contain all the goodness God provides. He blesses beyond our present experience. We respond to God’s sending, moving outward and forward with the faith that he ultimately will accomplish his good will according to his promise to bless us, to keep us, and to give us the peace of his grace.

The sending also reminds us of the promise we have heard throughout the Sunday rhythm so that we go into the world to do God’s will with confidence in his promised care and enabling, knowing that we are a forgiven, instructed, and blessed people. It is also a reminder to God’s people that we start a new week with assurance of his blessing. God will provide for us to accomplish all that he calls us to do. Christ’s grace is not merely for the context of our Sunday morning gathering, but for all of life unfolding before his people, until God’s kingdom is on earth as it is in heaven.

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