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The Send Network Church Planting Blog

A Sending Gospel

January 21, 2014 by Jeff Christopherson

Have you ever wondered what Jesus pictured when He issued the Great Commission to His eager disciples?

Do you suppose He was imagining an engagement strategy that was exactly opposite of the method He modeled Himself?

So what did Jesus have in mind when he instructed His followers to go and preach the Gospel?

If we think the ministry of proclamation is about pulpits, preaching styles, worship services and sacred assemblies, we fail to understand the redemptive mission of God.

It is far more loving and sacrificial than that.

True proclamation of the Gospel of the Kingdom requires being actual (not theoretical) followers of the original Sent One.

Proclaimers always take the initiative and move into the neighbourhood—they never place the responsibility of going on the object of their Sender's affections.

In other words, they don’t wait for people to come to them to hear the Gospel.

They joyfully and faithfully (though not perfectly) center their lives around proclaiming redemption in the natural yet intentional course of their lives.

And this is one of His gifts to us: that we actually are responsible for proclaiming the Gospel.

It is a privilege that a God who is self-sustaining, self-realizing and all-powerful chooses weak vessels of clay to proclaim His name for the joy of the nations.

While, yes, the Sender Himself is also the One Who calls people to salvation, He uses people like you and me to draw others to Himself.

Like our Saviour and Sender did during His earthly ministry, we are the ones who must adapt. We are the ones who intentionally abandon our comfort zones and 'tabernacle' with lostness.  

When we reduce Gospel proclamation to the places and styles that best suit our “sacred” sensibilities, we eviscerate much of the good news from the Gospel of the Kingdom. 

The good news is never selfish. It never demands its own way but gives itself away. 

This understanding of the Gospel lies at the very heart of Send North America. 

Perhaps for too long we as pastors and Christian leaders have preferred to ask the lost to meet us on our ground. 

With this stubborn assertion of our own rights, we virtually guarantee that we will miss the activity of God. 

I do not want to reach the end only to discover I’ve missed out on the very mission of God in the world.