Religion / The Churches Mission
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Autor: anton 11 October 2010
Words: 978 | Pages: 4
Reign of God
The Churchâ€™s Mission: Extending The Reign of God
The role of the church is to continue the work of Christ. The church bears witness to the reign of God in two ways; by proclamation and by demonstration. Proclamation is the communication of Gods message and the church demonstrates it by illustrating the truth of Gods message.
The church has a duty to proclaim the truth of Jesusâ€™ teaching to the world after a person receives salvation it should impact their lives in such a way as to reorganize it to reflect their new found beliefs in the message and teachings of Christ.
The church in its spread of the word of God must try to bring this message to the world. This is not an easy task due to the decline in Christianity in some areas and the ever increasing population of the world, with this it is extremely difficult to bring the teachings of God to every corner of the world. The only way this can be achieved is through a great spiritual surge as was experienced when the church was first established.
There is evidence that non Christians can be saved without an explicit knowledge of Christ hence salvation is a matter of divine grace, however this does not mean that God has any other means of saving people except through Christ and the acceptance of his teachings.
In the spread of Godâ€™s message one must try to maintain the correct content of the message. The way in which the teachings of Christ by Christians is conveyed is totally dependent on the culture, so it is assumed that the best way to communicate the message is to contextualize or customize said message to the social, economic and educational perspectives of the individuals or groups to which one is evangelizing.
There are said to be two faucets of the church, namely the physical and the spiritual. The physical is said to be a symbolization of spiritual reality meaning it can never embody the spiritual but try to recreate it as closely as possible. The spiritual reality embodies all of Godâ€™s heavenly glory. The spiritual or invisible church is what one should attach themselves to, but it should not overshadow the earthly Christian life, doctrines and social experiences as these are all important to a persons own personal, individual and spiritual growth leading to salvation.
The church must have organization in order to properly utilize the resources and spiritual gifts of its members in its pursuit of salvation for one and all. Although church organization is important one must not elevate the status of any church organizational structure so as to make it eclipse Godâ€™s sovereignty over his people. There are two fundamental types of church organization namely: hierarchical and democratic. In the hierarchical form power is concentrated at the top level of the organization in its leaders, while in the democratic form power resides in the general membership and flows there upward to the upper level of the organization in its elected members. The Seventh Day Adventist Church uses both forms of organization.
The significant distinction in the church is between the clergy and the laity. Whereby the clergy are an integral part in church organization, in the coordination of church activities, in the interpretation of the Bible and its guidelines in everyday life. Though important as the clergy is, it does not elevate it to a higher spiritual status than regular church members or Christians in Godâ€™s work.
The Call to salvation is said to be a part of what it is to be a Christian. However there are others who God imbues with gifts that are better suited in the spread of His message, these members are sometimes called by God to become ministers or other members of the Church organization, these are important tasks but so is all of Godâ€™s work hence it does not mean that they are of a higher spiritual status.
The issue of womenâ€™s ordination in the church is widely debated as there are arguments for and against this. For those who argue for womenâ€™s ordination they use the Bible whereby everyone is created equal hence men are not distinguished from women for both were created in the image of God. In the arguments against ordination it proponents also use the Bible whereby it is said that no example is there in the Bible of a woman being ordained or having power over men. There are also other arguments against ordination, namely cultural whereby this would be unacceptable in some parts of the world where women are seen to be inferior to men.
Christianity is now divided into man denominations and as a result people are asking important questions such as what is the one true church. There are two schools of thought in that there is no one true church but all are members in the spread of Godâ€™s path to salvation meaning that there are different paths to the same destination in God. There is a view that says that one church is closer to Christian ideals, doctrines and teachings and is the primary path through which salvation can be achieved.
The Seventh Day Adventist Church see themselves as very important in Gods plan for salvation, they consider themselves to be the remnant church referred to in the book of Revelation because of the circumstances of their origin and their distinguishing doctrinal features. Adventists also believe that they have an important message to communicate to the world. The messages include a call to worship God and do away with corrupt political and religious practices.
Though Adventists see themselves as the remnant church or as a minority in Christianity with a prophetic purpose, they do not hold themselves to be superior to other Christian groups or excluding themselves from other Christian denominations.
Rice, Richard. Riegn Of God. Andrews University Press, 1997
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