We hear a lot about the missional church these days, which I think is great, but I also fear it is becoming just another slogan that is void of any meaning. Occasional when I think about what it means to be a missional Christian, I stop and think, "is there really any other kind?" Sure, there are plenty of people with would label themselves Christian, but if they are not being missional are they really encompassing what it means to be a Christian. The same goes for the church. If a church is not really missional then isn't it more like a country club than a church?
Scott Thomas wrote an article recently where he gave us 10 Characteristics of a Church Fired Up and on Mission that gives us some inclinations on whether or not a church is truly missional and might I add, being the church. To see his full article check it out here.
TEN CHARACTERISTICS OF A MISSIONAL CHURCH by Scott Thomas
1. The missional church is committed to the authoritative, infallible, inerrant, inspired, Scriptures (2 Timothy 3:14-17; Acts 2:42).
2. Understands the centrality of the Gospel expressed in all aspects of a person's life (1 Corinthians 15:1-4; 2:2; Galatians 6:14).
3. Gatherings are characterized by God-centered worship, preaching of the Gospel, prayer, Lord's Supper by penitent souls, and baptism as a response to the Gospel (John 4:23-24).
4. A missional church understands it has been sent by God as missionaries in their own culture (Matthew 4:19; John 20:21; Acts 16:20; 17:6) to make disciples of all peoples (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8).
5. Boldly and intentionally promotes the Gospel through making disciples and church planting globally through collaborative expressions of mercy and generosity.
6. A missional church is dependent upon the Holy Spirit to empower and lead believers as agents for evangelizing and making disciples (Acts 1:8; Luke 4:1; 14; 18).
7. Missional churches utilize relationships and sacrificial love as the expressions of love to others in their journey toward faith (Matthew 5:13-16; John 15:12-17; 1 John 4:19-21).
8. The goal of a missional church is to walk in community with others as Jesus pursues them in His own way and timing (1 Corinthians 9:20-23).
9. A missional church is a hands-on training ground for missionary training (Acts 4:13; 31-35).
10. Godly, biblically qualified elders lead a missional church (1 Timothy 3; Titus 1; Ephesians 4).