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On Being "Missional"

September 2nd, 2010 | 1 min read

By Matthew Lee Anderson

Some time ago I went through and made a stab at defining the Gospel. I thought I'd continue plowing through defining terms and throw out these definitions for 'missional':

A “missional” life is a Gospel-centered life in its external dimension. It is a Spirit empowered life lived in conformity to the person of Jesus Christ, who was sent by God to reconcile all things to Himself and to establish peace.  A “missional” life participates in the ongoing work of renewal by the Holy Spirit by establishing a presence within and for the world that is faithful to Gospel, even while remaining distinct from the power structures of the world.

A “missional church” is a Gospel-centered church in its external dimension. As such, a missional church identifies itself as the church of Jesus Christ, who entered the world to reconcile it to God by living and dying for the world.  Our missional activity is a response to the news of this reality, but it is a real participation in the restoration of the created order that was inaugurated by the resurrection of Jesus Christ and that continues through the empowering presence of the Holy Spirit.

Matthew Lee Anderson

Matthew Lee Anderson is an Associate Professor of Ethics and Theology in Baylor University's Honors College. He has a D.Phil. in Christian Ethics from Oxford University, and is a Perpetual Member of Biola University's Torrey Honors College. In 2005, he founded Mere Orthodoxy.