Sermon Notes: Society – KDSC

KDSC: Society

Genesis 1:26-31 

Genesis 3:14-24

Genesis 3:15

Matthew 28:19-20

Colossians 1:15-20

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Vision: For God’s glory, disciple the nations. 

Mission: Be and produce radical followers of Jesus. 

Strategy: Radical Life – UP/IN/OUT

DNA (values): KDSC

The gospel of the kingdom makes disciples who hear and obey God’s word. Those disciples are committed to the local church and it’s God given mission and they are sent out on mission through their vocational domains of society, and from there Jesus is building his church as we make disciples and send, by God’s help and grace, more people to the nations and to plant churches one day. 

The vision is too big for a few elite special forces Bible rangers. God intends every follower of Jesus to be part of his great work in seeing the nations come to worship Jesus through their personal involvement in making disciples in the missionary field of their vocational domains and following his Psalm 139 plan to it’s end regardless of where it culminates geographically. 

God’s vision is for the whole church. 

The proper way to think about getting after God’s vision is this: Every Christian. Everywhere. All the time.

KDSC is the spiritual DNA that can release every Christian, everywhere, all the time, if we will continue to do it and stay focused on it in staying narrow and going deep with it.

This leads us to our key question:

What if the whole church was the missionary?

This is not a call to do more work. 

This is a call to do less in a more missionary manner. 

God saves people to make them whole, bring them to delight in God, and put them on mission. 

He does not save people to transform them into connoisseurs of spiritual wares.

I’m fully convinced that God’s means of releasing the whole church to be the missionary is the “S” of our DNA/values, which stands for “society”. 

The work of engaging our domains of Society is where the “rubber meets the road”. But, does this have any merit to it? Let’s search it out!

What is society?

Society is composed of groups of people who work and live within their own areas or domains. 

These core structures are part of the created order and have been placed there by the wise Creator, Jesus. 

Examples: Ag & water / social & civil / education / art & media / science & tech / governance / medical / economics

The people who live and work inside these domains meet the basic needs of the world and keep it functioning. 

This is important because these domains of society are crucial in the transformation of a city, a state, a nation and ultimately the world. 

They are crucial because God created them and their wise management is part of the healthy maintainace of creation and a means of accomplishing God’s commands in Genesis 1:26-31. 

The people who assume leadership in these domains have the potential to reshape their city, state, country and the earth’s values, priorities, and practices. 

Human beings, as co-regents who bear God’s image, function with a delegated authority from God, whether they are Christian or not. 

They have built-in gifts and ability to bring order to creation.

God sits sovereign over his creation, and his image-bearers exercise God’s delegated power and influence over creation. 

This is why it matters who sits in authority and oversight in the world. 

Christians have, by the Holy Spirit, a holy capacity to be in the domains of society as ambassadors of Jesus who can govern creation well, influence the way created order functions, and preach the good news of the rule and salvation of Jesus. 

In calling his church to the nations through every disciple everywhere all the time, God is calling us to bless the nations of the world with healing, order, AND the proclamation of the gospel as means of seeing his kingdom come and his will being done on earth as it is in heaven. – Adapted from “Release”, p. 30

Let’s see what the Bible has to say about it.

READ IT: Genesis 1:26-31

What should we observe?

God Creates Man in Love for Mission.

  1. The Triune God creates man in his own image. Genesis 1:26
    1. God creates in mankind the image of his Trinitarian supernatural glory. 
    2. There is a spark of the divine image of God in mankind that every child born to these image bearers will carry with them.
      1. This is just one of the many reasons we value life from conception to grave. 
  2. God makes sure that Adam is not alone. Genesis 2:18-25
    1. Genesis 2:18-25 gives us a glimpse into the first wedding ever performed, and it is performed by God for Adam and Eve, who he creates from the side of Adam.
      1. This is where we see God’s good and tender love for his creatures.
      2. It was not good for man to be alone, so God did good for him and to him in providing a human like him that corresponded to him to be with him on the mission of God. 
  3. God “blessed” the new married couple. Genesis 1:28
    1. Bless (barak) – to kneel.
      1. In a very real sense, by making mankind in his image, God “kneels”.
        1. God kneels in the sense that he has given to mankind the image of himself and knitted that blessing of himself into what it means to be human. 
        2. God does not kneel in the sense that he bows down to man, but in the sense that he has knelt down and given some of his nature to humans. 
      2. The blessing of God in Adam and Eve is like God blowing the embers of his image into a burning flame of powerful effect.
        1. This “blessing” of mankind is the source of mankind’s authority over and co-regency of creation with God.
          1. As a result of this blessing, all of Adam and Eve’s descendants will carry this spark of blessing with them for their work in creation. 
          2. Mankind has a gifting of “blessing” from being made in God’s image that will multiply into all of Adam and Eve’s descendants which is why all humans are precious and full of potential for good. 
  4. God gives mankind 5 commands. Genesis 1:28
    1. Be fruitful: In the labor of co-regency with God in the created order, mankind is to be productive.
      1. We were made to produce, and that is why we get satisfaction from doing a job well. 
      2. Doing work and producing in that work is a massive source of dignity for image bearers.
        1. To remove the mandate for fruitfulness from people by putting them to work is one of the most inhumane things we can do to people.
          1. That is hurting not helping. 
    2. Multiply: We are to increase the productivity of the earth and multiply other image bearers in the earth who participate in increasing the productivity of the earth. 
    3. Fill the earth: Filling the earth is related to “multiply” but it is a distinct command.
      1. “Fill the earth” gives us the scope of our multiplication labor. 
      2. We are to fill the earth up to it’s capacity.
        1. People who tell you the earth is overpopulated have never ridden a motorcycle from Leh to Kargil or trekked in the Himalaya mountains. 
    4. Subdue: We are to bring a taming to the holy and wild nature of this living creation.
    5. Rule (ESV “have dominion”): We are not to dominate creation.
      1. The ESV does not mean “dominate”. 
      2. The Hebrew word “radah” predominately translates as “rule”.
        1. Dominion is a fine translation but can be easily confused with dominion theology, and that’s a different thing altogether. 
      3. Our ruling of creation should encompass the previous 4 commands with the care and concern of God.
        1. Fruitfulness in creation and in people. 
        2. Multiply creation’s resources and people. 
        3. Fill up the earth with resources and people. 
        4. Subdue the wild and living creation.
          1. All of this done with people worshiping God, loving God, hearing God, obeying God, and enjoying God, their Good Creator and Sustainer. 
  5. All that God did here is very good. Genesis 1:30, 31
  6. This rich created purpose precedes sin.
    1. Mankind was to be God’s joyful stewards of creation and rule over it with him while in fellowship with him and with each other.
      1. So, what happened?
      2. Something is clearly wrong. 

Adam and Eve Rebel Against God by Believing the Lies of Satan, And All of Creation Breaks. 

Genesis 3:14-24

  1. As a result of sin, fulfilling God’s mission in the 5 commands was made harder. 
  2. It is harder because man is now relationally separated from God and under God’s condemnation.
    1. NOTE: This result from sin is not because God was taken by surprise or has a co-equal force resisting him. NO. God intends for mankinds to see the full measure of his glory by being redeemed from sin so that having been redeemed we would know the riches of what love really is.
      1. God determined that to be redeemed and know him through the experience of salvation is better than to never need to be saved from sin.
        1. Therefore, we can confidently say that God ordained the fall for his glory and our good. 
      2. Thus we can confidently say that he is able to work all things for the good of those who love him and are called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28). 
      3. God’s good Genesis 1:26-31 purposes will not be ultimately thwarted.
  3. We know we have a real and mostly unseen enemy with whom we must learn to do battle because this enemy wants to impede the kingdom of God. V. 14-15
  4. We have relational strain in the family unit which is the basic building block of every organizational effort in the universe to accomplish God’s mission. V. 16
    1. There is no such thing as organizing effort without the family unit influencing it.
      1. If that family unit is unhealthy, the members who come from that unit tend to affect their organizational family’s (i.e. the church) functioning negatively.
        1. My sin in and with my family affects everyone I’m in fellowship with.
          1. Sin is a toxic and fast spreading cancer that will corrupt all things. 
      2. NOTE: The basic building block of any successful organizing effort is the health, stability, and vitality of our families. 
  5. We have a broken relationship with created order and exponential difficulty in overseeing its fruitfulness. V. 17-19
  6. Relationship with God was broken, and access to life cut off. V. 20-24
    1. Therefore, all humanity was infected with the curse of sin and came under the wrath of God.
    2. Surely God does not want to leave it this way.
      1. What will God do? How is God going to restore order back to the Edenic state of creation before sin?

God himself, the one in whose image we are created, will come, take on flesh, die in our place for our sin, rise from the dead, ascend to his rightful place, and send us on the mission of Genesis 1:26-31 to tell the good news of his kingdom and by his help set all things in order as best as we can as we eagerly await his bodily return to complete the work with us. 

Genesis 3:15; Matthew 28:18-20; Colossians 1:15-20

  1. Jesus’ Great Commission is Jesus restating his glorious mission in Genesis 1:26-31.
    1. Matthew 28:18-20 is not a new command.
      1. It is Genesis 1:26-31 empowered by the resurrected Jesus that was promised in Genesis 3:15.
    2. We obey this mission by being fishers of people from all nations and teaching them to obey all that Jesus has commanded for them to do. 
    3. We see in all of this we’ve presented this moring the unified mission of God from the opening of the Bible to Jesus sending us. 
  2. The command of disciple-making is explicit.
      1. The implied command, coming from God’s stated mission in Eden, is that followers of Jesus are doing his work everywhere all the time over all of God’s created world by properly overseeing the creation, leveraging our co-regency and God-given authority over creation, and making disciples as the missionary people of God. 
      2. This is implied in Matthew 28:19-20 because Jesus intends us to be acquainted with his word that teaches us his means of doing his mission in the first three chapters of the Bible. 
      3. It’s explicit in the book of Acts as we see the whole church sending, going and disciple making before establishing church offices (elders-overseers).
        1. Every disciple. Everywhere. All the time. 
          1. This metanarrative of the gospel is the source of the tactical effort of TRC to release the whole church to be the missionary because it’s what God created us to do. 

Application: So what?

If the whole church is the missionary, then in order to see the whole church operate as the missionary, we have to make, maintain, and strive to keep 4 key shifts. These shifts are intended to move us away from church growth mentality that has had zero net effect on shifting culture and has instead created a spiritual market for spiritual goods and services that get called “Christianity”, and is just a church culture gone wild.

4 Key Shifts

  1. We must shift from needs to assets.
    1. This is a shift to this biblical narrative of who we are and what we are created for. 
    2. This shift causes us to stop looking for more stuff and causes us to evaluate our Holy Spirit gifting for the church and the world. 
    3. This shift causes us to see that Jesus has given us all we need for life and godliness and desire to put it to work. 
    4. This shift changes the question for after church lunch from “what did you get out of the service?” to “what did I contribute to the advance of the gospel?”
    5. This shift causes us to see every member of the local church as missionary ambassadors of the kingdom. 
  2. We must shift from programs to domain engagement.
    1. This shift changes how we organize for work and what work gets done. 
    2. This shift keeps TRC narrow and focused on sending rather than defaulting to doing more work that is not necessary. 
    3. This shift keeps the church focused on releasing equipped saints together on mission and releasing the whole church to care for each other rather than depending on one or two or a few.
    4. This shift is Spirit-led as members of the church take ownership and responsibility for action at home, on the job, and in the community in disciple-making and church multiplication and serving each other. 
  3. We must shift from working for the city to working with the city.
    1. This shift is about relationships in our city and with our city leaders.
      1. This changes how we interact. 
    2. With this shift we become a partner of the city to create solutions for the city’s real challenges rather than a provider of “things” that do not contribute to the health of the whole or are only marketing events to get people to come to our church. 
    3. This shift makes us value added partners in the public square, and we then get to interact in integrity with people of other faiths or worldviews and share the good news from a position of vital public square significance. 
  4. We must shift from managing ministries to leading members.
    1. This shift is about releasing the church body to supply it’s part to care for and serve one another without creating a hieracrchy to be funded and overseen by someone else.
      1. This is why the RL group is the epicenter of ministry. 
      2. It is the church dispersed and on mission together while serving one another. 
    2. This shift exponentially multiplies the Great Commission workforce to EVERY MEMBER. EVERYWHERE. ALL THE TIME.

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