The effectiveness of an organization depends greatly upon the devotion of the members of that organization to its mission. Depending on the organization, there may be a number of external factors that influence success, but a unified membership that is devoted to a specific purpose will have the greatest opportunity to accomplish its reason for existing. This is seen clearly in the effectiveness of the multitudes of local churches around the globe today.
The Apostle Paul wrote to the Galatians that “There is neither Jew nor Greek, neither slave nor free, neither male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” This was stated as a fact, reminding the members of the church that our baptism by the Holy Spirit makes us a part of God’s family, thereby uniting us to the cause of Christ and eliminating any divisions that the world might try to place between us.
In Jesus’ high priestly prayer captured in John 17, Jesus prayed the following in regards to the future church: “I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one – I in them and you in me – so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.”
In Matthew 28:19-20, Jesus then clearly states the mission of His church. “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you.” This clear mission statement is the result of applying the two greatest commandments, that we love God with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength and that we love our neighbors as ourselves, and it is the reason for the existence of the church. We must never attempt to give the church a different mission, because Jesus himself is the head of the church. It is his church. Period.
When you take these pieces and put them together, you see that there is a clear mission statement for the church, and if someone is to be a member of the church, then they must be devoted to this purpose. This devotion to sharing the Gospel is the mark of one who has been united with other believers locally and globally through a love for Jesus and membership in God’s family. The bond that this creates is unbreakable, and the unity of the church around this point will testify to God’s love, for Jesus and for his church.
If you are a church member, then give glory to God by devoting yourself completely to the mission of making disciples of Jesus wherever you are and wherever you may go. Put aside all else, let the petty differences of the world fall away, and be united with the family of God. Jesus prayed this very thing for us, so let us accept it with humility and gratitude.
Peace and blessings – Pastor Aaron