The church needs to be described in what purpose it serves in the world.
Describe churches in terms of community and witness.
Fitch then asked us to decide on an essential practice of the church, one that we felt passionate about and could write our paper on.
(This was my first major panic attack in the class. Already? I am just getting started? What if I don't choose the right thing? Oh no! Oh no! I am not ready for this)
Here were the examples of essential practices from different ministry practicioners throughout history.
Here they were:
What are the Non-Negotiables for your Church?
Biblical Appellations of the Church
Pick one (that best describes your sense of your church)
o People of God Acts 15:14 1 Pet 2:9
o Body of Christ 1 Cor 12:13
o Ekklesia (the called out gathering) 1 Cor 1:2
o None of the above
Creedal Marks of the Church
Pick One (that drives the values of your church)
o None of the above
The Marks (Lutheran/Anapbaptist)
Which one do your start with and why?
Luther’s 7 ‘notes’ On the Councils and Churches 1539
o the preaching of the true Word
o The proper administration of baptism
o The correct form of the Lord's supper
o The power of the keys Matt 18 .. binding and loosing … discipline …
o The lawful vocation and ordination of ministers
o Prayer and the singing of psalms in the vernavular
o Persecutions … sufferings …
Menno Simons .. added the following marks to preaching of the word/sacrament
o Holy living - moral non conformity is indispensible to their witness…
o Brotherly love - moves locus from administration of eucharist ..to meaning of it ..
o Unreserved testimony - witness …
o Suffering - cross… discipleship
o Community/fellowship/brotherly love
o Worship gathering
o Evangelism (mission?)
o The ministry to the poor (justice)
o Expositional preaching
o Biblical theology
o Biblical understanding of the Gospel
o Biblical understanding of conversion
o Biblical understanding of evangelism
o Biblical understanding of membership
o Biblical church discipline
o Promotion of Christian discipleship and growth
o Biblical understanding of church leadership
Defensive v. Accomodative:
Two ways people engage culture in unhelpful ways
Defensive approach to culture results:
Accomodating approach to culture results:
A missional ecclesiology avoids both of these extremes.