Good Article Review On The Local Church And The Great Commission
Article 1: The Local Church in Mission: Becoming a Missional Congregation in the Twenty-First Century Global Context and the Opportunities Offered Through Tent-making
This article discusses the activities of the local church and missional congregation. It defines a missional congregation as Christian communities that include followers of Christ that are sent on a mission. One of the challenges that have been noted with the local congregation or local church is to be faithful and to discern. On the other hand, a local congregation may be defined as a small group that gathers to engage in prayers and Bible studies or a large group of people that meet for worship. The local congregation is required to be faithful to their exceptional identity as Christ’s body designed and equipped by the Holy Spirit for God’s mission in the world. The article goes on to explain that the main objective of the local congregation is to attract people to go to the physical property of the church. A missional congregation, on the other hand, is set to build relationships, address different cultures around the world, meet the needs of persons who are less fortunate, and also seek to maintain long-term ministry projects, to mention a few.
The article above mainly focuses on Christianity. In the article, I found the author very thorough while discussing the church mission. However, I found it vague that he mentioned the local church, but only went ahead to explain what it is and why it does in comparison to the missional congregation. In fact, the authors stated only one merit associated with the local church, which is the physical attraction of people. The rest of the paper was well informed, but only explained the missional congregation. However, the article was good enough. It still served its purpose of explaining the missional congregation. The authors also organize their ideas, making it easy to go through the paper.
The missional congregation is a group of Christians set to spread the word of God, irrespective of the culture. The missional congregation is considered more beneficial because believers believe that they are called by the Holy Spirit. The authors also state that missional congregations engage in prayer with persons outside the world; an example of this is given when the author gives an example of a patient. Church leaders often visit the patient, and with time, all other patient stat desiring to be prayed for. This way, the church leaders continue spreading the word of God. The authors go on to say that the church requires some form of structure. They also states that the structures of the church may be flat or hierarchical, and that each structure is formed for a specific reason. The author goes on to give an example of the early church from the disciples of Jesus. In the article, the missional congregation is described as one that should create holistic structures. The congregations come up with structures that enable Christians to venture the world to encourage a large crowd to follow Christ. The authors make a conclusion from this and state that the missional congregations build structures that enable the love of neighbors. The authors go on to state that the structures also act as hindrances for people going out and coming in. Each member is required to serve. In the missional congregations, people focus less on the church as a business or institution and look at it more as a fellowship of people who are closely connected. The members are expected to serve in a multicultural, multi-religious, pluralistic and, usually, multi-ethnic societies. The rest of the article makes a detailed discussion of the mission congregation.
Article 2: Spiritual Conflict and the Mission of the Church: Contextualization
The article discusses conflicts that may arise from the church and the spiritual world. Several people share the belief that the world is dynamic with one power pitted against another. In most cases, there is no sharp dividing boundary between secular and sacred because the spiritual and sacred are entangled. The article also discusses the importance of meeting the felt needs on the importance of communication of the Gospel. The message the church passes on should be practical and relevant to the context of the receptors. The author of the article concludes by saying that the shortest bridge to reach the people exposed to the power-oriented societies is by moving from a pagan source of power to the true God as a source of power. The article also states that during this process, there usually is none or little conversion from spiritual to the secular power. However, while at it, the cultural consequences of the change of power have a high probability of being forms of Christianity that have some similarity to those of their non-Christian predecessors, only God is the source of power. In the paper, the author also shows the number of practical daily issues around the globe today that are associated with spiritual powers. The author emphasizes on the church creating a reputation that involves dealing with the spiritual and physical dimensions of these challenges. The solution is supposed to be Christian. On a final note, the author concludes by saying that Christians can only find answers to their needs from the Bible.
The above article was, simply put down. The author had an excellent flow of ideas which he expressed in English that is easy to comprehend. On a general note, it was satisfactory. The author also discusses the spiritual powers in detail; their positives, such as helping people to prosper negatives, such as their causing sicknesses and also possible solutions. He also discusses the role of the church in communicating and educating about the spiritual powers. The final paragraph of the article sums up the article by giving a rough idea of what it entails. In my opinion, the article is well written, very educative and also serves a Christian role of explaining the role of the church in educating people about spiritual powers. This article mainly discusses spiritual powers. According to research, a majority of the Christians in the West has a reduced understanding of spiritual powers. It involves how spirits influence the activities of human beings, the need for harmony with the spiritual forces and the power of curses and blessings. Western Christians normally have disputes and argue that with Christianity, there is no much consideration for the spirit beings. The Western Christians usually fail to perceive a Christian as a spiritual being. To them, spiritual powers in the universe are not accorded much relevance to the day to day lives. The article goes on to state that several societies in the world consider supernaturalism as the center of life, as well as, the integrating factor. Humans are perceived as weak and requiring strength to survive in a world filled with spirit activity. In such societies, spiritual power is considered important for wealth, guidance, success and meeting daily. There are said needs for spiritual power. These needs are such as identity, communication, belonging, food, security and shelter. These needs, as categorized by a number of anthropologists and psychologists are common to all human beings. The needs that are felt are those that prompt an individual to act. Every society has its ways of obtaining spiritual power for occurrences and periods that are full of unknown dangers.
The article above is well-explained. It discusses a topic that has a high potential to attract an audience. The author mainly focuses on the spiritual world in this article as gathered from the above summary. At the conclusion of the article, the author makes a brief sum up of what he is discussing in his paper. His main aim is to prove that even after converting from a believer in spiritual powers to a Christian; the result will still not be satisfactory. The author does a good job on the article of explaining the spiritual world. In addition, he explains the church and its role in educating the people about the spiritual powers. This way, he gives well-justified reasons as to why someone who was a nonbeliever will start seeing the sense in trusting the Bible.
Kraft, Marguerite. “Spiritual Conflict and the Mission of the Church: Contextualization.”
Lausanne Movement. 2015. Web. April 20th 2015.
Lausanne Committee for World Movement. “The Local Church In Mission: Becoming a
Missional Congregation In The Twenty-First Century Global Context and the Opportunities Offered Through Tent-making.” Vol 10 (39). 2005
Rouse, Richard W, and Gelder C. Van. A Field Guide for the Missional Congregation:
Embarking on a Journey of Transformation. Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg Fortress, 2008. Print.
Searcy, Edwin J. Figural Preaching in a Missional Congregation: A Descriptive Case Study
of the Relationship between Figural Preaching and Ecclesial Formation. D. Min. Columbia Theological Seminary, 2002. Print.
Van, Gelder C. The Missional Church in Context: Helping Congregations Develop
Contextual Ministry. Grand Rapids, Mich: William B. Eerdmans Pub. Co, 2007. Print.
Vaughan-Lee, Llewellyn. Spiritual Power: How It Works. Inverness, Calif: Golden Sufi
Center, 2005. Print.
Wagner, C P. Spiritual Warfare Strategy: Confronting Spiritual Powers. Shippensburg:
Destiny Image, Inc, 2011. Internet resource.
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