Recent Posts from the Mumena Team

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Davis Missionary Journey: The Biblical Center

Did you ever ride an "antique car ride" at an amusement park while growing up? If you didn't steer to the center, your car would bounce back and forth from one side rail to the other for the entire way. Mission work is often a study in extremes… especially regarding beliefs. The missionary endeavor brings together at least three (if not more) cultures: the host culture, the missionary culture, and the Heavenly culture. The host culture and the missionary culture often find themselves on opposite extremes; but the Heavenly culture (Biblical truth) often is somewhere in between requiring both the missionary and the host to move from our pre-conceptions to the Biblical center.

In a recent seminar for church leaders from Southern Congo, we were studying the principle of Biblical unity. Taking a note from Dr. Everett Ferguson's "The Church of Christ: A Biblical Ecclesiology for Today", we explored the two extremes of uniformity and union. "Uniformity" denies the kaleidoscope of cultural expressions possible within the obedient application of Christianity; while "Union" denies the doctrinal requirements of revealed truth. Thus uniformity leading to legalism and union leading to license define the extremes. Biblical unity, seen in the oneness yet triune nature of the Godhead itself, meets the standard of doctrinal truth while having room for all nations within the Kingdom of Christ.

"… just as the Father knows me and I know the Father - and I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd."
John 10:15-17 NIV

On a more personal note, while our team was dealing with an alleged demon possession in one of our new church plants, the different nationalities represented on our team had to struggle with the extremes of "Satanic power only being the influence of psychological suggestion" (in other words, "If I don't believe it, it can't hurt me.") and "Satanic power has unlimited range in the world today" (in other words, "Even if I am IN CHRIST, Satan can still destroy me."). As an international team, we had to struggle towards the Biblical center of Satanic power being real, yet total safety being assured in Christ.

"My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand. I and the Father are one."
John 10:27-30 NIV


Isn't that Good News!
Brian, Sondra, Noah, & Bryson

Pictured: church leaders from Southern Congo.

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