The Threefold Mission of the Church

Sermon delivered on January 2nd, 2022
Sunday Morning Service

By: Pastor Greg Hocson

Scripture Text: Matthew 28:18-20

 

Matthew 28:18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. 19: Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

 

Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16: He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

 

Introduction

As we begin 2022, I believe it is only appropriate to think again about: What we are about as a local church? As we enter this new year, it is a good time to rethink and revisit our mission as a church. Why do we exist? Why are we here? What is our purpose? If you go through life never asking why you are in trouble. If you set your target low enough you will hit your mark every time. If you aim at nothing, you will hit nothing. As individuals and as a local church we need to ask who we are and what we should be doing? Why are we doing what we are doing? But more importantly—why did God place us here in this community? 

 

God has called the Church into being for a reason. He has given us a mission and a purpose. It is vitally important for us as the body of Christ to have a sense of mission and a sense of purpose. Our Lord Jesus had a very clear sense of His own mission and purpose in His earthly life and ministry.

 

John 6:38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own willbut the will of him that sent me.

Thats a very clear sense of purpose, clear mission.

 

Luke 19:10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.

 

John 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

 

Our Lord had a clear sense of why He came and what He was to do. This sense of mission and purpose is what drove Him and directed Him. So much so that Jesus could say in John 4:34, “… My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.”

 

Thats what He lived for – to accomplish God the Fathers purpose for His life. Jesus maintained focus throughout His life and ministry. The Fathers purpose is His purpose. There are no two conflicting or disjointed purposes. Its not the Father has a purpose, the Holy Spirit has another purpose, and the Son has another different purpose. No, they all agreed in their purpose.

 

Amos 3:3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed?

That is self-evident, isnt it? How can two walk together and arrive at the same destination unless they agreed on what that destination is? We cant walk together unless we agree upon destination. The churchs purpose must be in line with the purpose of God; that is, Gods mission must be our mission. 

 

Just like any other organization the church can sometimes lose its focus. All of us can at times miss seeing the forest for all the trees. In the midst of many activities, we can miss the overarching purpose. We can get busy in our own little area serving faithful in our ministry and yet fail to see the bigger picture of what we are working toward together as a local church. 

 

And so, this morning, let us ask ourselves of this question of purpose and seek to answer them, I pray that it will remind those who have been here since day one and those who just arrived. We have a threefold mission as a church, namely, to Exalt the Saviour, to Evangelize the Sinners, and to Edify and Equip the Saints.

 

I - To Exalt the Saviour

First and foremost, our mission here at Grace & Truth Bible Baptist Church is to exalt the Saviour. We exist to magnify and to glorify our great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ. The church does not assemble together to entertain people. The church come together for the purpose of magnifying the person and work of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

 

The exaltation of God will be demonstrated through an active and living relationship with God through Jesus Christ His Son. Too many people have this idea that the only place we really exalt God or bring glory to God is at church. That is wrong, the exaltation God can be accomplished anywhere, in any way, by any Christian

 

1 Corinthians 10:31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. 

These words embrace all life. Whatsoever you do, whether you are preaching, hearing, praying, fasting, giving of alms, listening to music, watching television, working, washing the dishes, doing the laundry, cleaning the house, playing basketball, driving, it matters not, they all must be done to the glory of God. No matter what you do; no matter where you are, you must begin and end it with the glory of God in mind.

 

Listen to what Johann Sebastian Bach the great composer who live 1685-1750, said the following about his music: “All music should have no other end and aim than the glory of God and the souls refreshment; where this is not remembered there is no real music but only a devilish hub-bub.” He began and ended every composition with the glory of God. We can do the same thing in our life.

Colossians 3:17 And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.

 

This is our first and foremost mission. Actually, this is what drives our other missions as a church.

 

II - To Evangelize the Sinners

The second aspect of our threefold mission is to go into all the world and evangelize the sinners.

John 17:18 As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.

Here we are told that as God the Father has sent His Son into the world, so the Son is sending us also into the world to evangelize the lost.

 

Matthew 28:18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. 19: Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

 

Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16: He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

We are entrusted to prayerfully reach and boldly evangelize those who are lost in darkness of sin and death with the marvelous light and life of the gospel of Christ to all peoples and cultures.  Our primary center of opportunity will be within Murrieta and its surrounding communities.

 

The Bible clearly teaches that all men are at enmity with God and need to be reconciled to Him through Jesus Christ. The only way sinful man may be saved from the penalty of sin is through repentance and faith in the Gospel message. We desire to be faithful to Gods command to reach our world for Jesus Christ with the Gospel. Therefore, as a church we are committed to evangelism and missions.

 

III - To Edify the Saints

The last aspect of our threefold mission is to edify the saints. By the word saints” Im referring simply to the believers in Christ among us. Those who have been set apart having put their faith in Christ and His finished work on the cross of Calvary. And our mission as a body of believers is to edify each other. When we edify someone, we are building them up. Here at Grace & Truth we must, and we are committed to edify and build up each other and there are a number of ways we can do this.

 

1. By speaking truth in love

Ephesians 4:15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: 16: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

We build up one another by speaking the truth in love. It is speaking truth about God, Jesus Christ, sin, righteousness, repentance, salvation, holiness, heaven and hell, warnings and promises; speaking Bible truths to one another with an attitude of love.

 

2. By the proper use of spiritual gifts

1 Corinthians 14:12 Even so ye, forasmuch as ye are zealous of spiritual gifts, seek that ye may excel to the edifying of the church.

Encouraging others is one way to edify. And some people have the spiritual gift of encouragement which makes them wonderful at edifying others in this way.

 

Paul is still talking about how to use spiritual gifts; he tells us over and over that all the gifts must be used for the purpose of edifying one another. Whether you have speaking gifts or serving gifts, they must be used in a way that brings edification to other people.

 

3. By faithful church attendance

Unless providentially hindered be resolved to be in every meeting and gathering of the saints …

Hebrews 10:24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: 25: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

 

Encouraging others is a wonderful thing we can do to build them up. I dont think you can ever encourage somebody too much. You cannot over encourage.” We all need to be encouraging one another to press on and persevere and live up to the standards God has laid out for us. The writer of Hebrews tells us to encourage one another, and all the more as we see the day approaching.

 

4. By faithful teaching ministry

Ephesians 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12: For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: 13: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: 14: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; 

Here we are told that God gave pastors, evangelists, and teachers to His church for the purpose of equipping the saints to do the work of the ministry. That equipping process comes through a systematic, life-changing exposition of the Scriptures. We believe that only through the study and application of Gods Word can mans life be changed. Therefore, Grace & Truth Bible Baptist Church is committed to the teaching and preaching of the Word of God and to making disciples.

2 Timothy 4:1 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; 2: Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

 

By the way, this is why we have Sunday School. Sunday School is means where we can edify each other. It is means where we can grow in grace and in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. So if you want to grow and mature, I encourage each and every one to come to Sunday School.

 

Our Lord said in John 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. It is the truth of God that will sanctify us. As Gods people are sanctified by living and applying the truth of Gods Word, then they will be equipped to build up and edify the body of Christ.

 

Closing Thoughts

Why does the church exist? To exalt the living and true God, to evangelize a lost and dying world, and to edify and equip one another in the body of Christ. I pray this year as we have been reminded of our God-given mission, we would take this three-fold mission seriously and ask ourselves, which area can I improve in my own life. Is it in the exalting the Saviour? Is in in the area of evangelizing the sinners? Is it in the area of edifying the saints? I pray that you would join me in fulfilling our threefold God-given mission. When we as a local church seek to work together and fulfill this mission, we can joyfully and confidently rest in the promise of Jesus Christ, the Head of the Church: “I will build My church” (Matthew 16:18).

 

Now, you may be here today, but you are not yet saved. You may be here, but you do not know Jesus Christ as you own personal Saviour. You have not come to Him and ask Him to save you from your sin. The invitation to you is not join this church”, no, at least not yet. But the invitation to you is to come to Jesus Christ who is the Head of the Church. Come to Him acknowledging your sin and sinfulness, acknowledging your inability to save yourself. Not only that, but also come to Jesus Christ acknowledging Him as the only One who is able to forgive and save you from your sins. Would you do that this morning? Would you come to Him, calling upon His Name for salvation? I pray that you would. And when you come to Him in humility and with faith, you have His promise—thou shalt be saved!

 

AMEN!