God has chosen mankind as His ambassadors, to reflect His glory, goodness and love in the world. Following God’s call and mandate, we hold the following five ideas to be foundations which, along with prayer, must shape and guide each of us as we serve, and as we inspire and prepare more Jesus followers for God’s mission.
All people were made for the eternal purpose of God. We must seek to engage the whole Body of Christ. – Based on Ephesians 1:4-22
God is on mission. He did not give a mission to His creation but rather created them for His mission. His intent in creation was a people who would have the amazing privilege of having His identity and who then, as His children, would live for His purpose. We believe that every person was created for this. There is no other reason for our existence than to ‘be known by God and make God known.’ No one is excluded or exempt. It is not something we are ‘called to’; we were made for it. When we come to faith in Jesus our created identity is renewed and our mission with God is activated.
Therefore, all strategies, models and systems should inspire, equip and connect the WHOLE BODY OF CHRIST, bringing everyone to participate in God’s purpose and helping them use their time, talent and treasure with extreme generosity.
Everyone is uniquely shaped for the purpose of God. We must embrace the whole masterpiece of how each person has been made. – Based on Ephesians 2:10
God uniquely shaped every person so they can live out their created purpose in a powerful way. He calls this design a masterpiece—His workmanship. The spiritual gifts, passions, abilities, personalities, and experiences He has put in us shape us uniquely and wonderfully to live out His purpose in the world. Our shape is not me-centred but God-centred, and given for His glory to fulfil His mission through us. As Jesus followers, we choose to surrender our desire to use our shape for our own dreams and ambitions, choosing instead to live it all out fully for His glory. As we do this we are the most brilliant reflection of His glory in the Universe.
Therefore, all strategies, models and systems should champion the God-given shape of every believer.
The Lausanne Commitment of 2011 references this idea in multiple places—here it relates to embracing the Arts:
We possess the gift of creativity because we bear the image of God. Art in its many forms is an integral part of what we do as humans and can reflect something of the beauty and truth of God. Artists at their best are truthtellers and so the arts constitute one important way in which we can speak the truth of the gospel. Drama, dance, story, music and visual image can be expressions both of the reality of our brokenness, and of the hope that is centred in the gospel that all things will be made new. In the world of mission, the arts are an untapped resource. We actively encourage greater Christian involvement in the arts (The Cape Town Commitment: 2011 Lausanne Part II / 5).
All people have ALL NATIONS as our goal. We must include the whole world. – Based on Genesis 1:28 and Matthew 28:18
God’s mandate to His new creation, who were made ‘to be known by Him and make Him known’ and uniquely shaped to do this, was to, "Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it” (Gen. 1:28; NLT). Jesus reiterated this when He said, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations…” (Matt. 28:19; NIV). As Jesus followers, created for the purpose of God, we need no other call, we need no other mandate. Our deepest passion should be His glory, that the nations would know and experience His love for themselves. So we commit our lives fully and go, needing no other call.
Therefore, all strategies, models and systems should enable and equip every Jesus follower to wrap all of his or her life—talent, time and treasure—around this purpose of making Him known in every nation.
Live out the whole Gospel. We must inspire, equip and connect people to demonstrate our transformed lives in all we do and say. – Based on Matthew 5:13-16 and 1 Thessalonians 1:4-7
As Jesus followers, we are to live out and speak out the Gospel in the world. It is our transformed lives that bear testimony to the power of Jesus. This restored identity allows our unique shape to shine and fuel our community with hope, pointing people to Jesus. It is our words that speak life, drawing people to Jesus. Where Jesus followers live, the community should see, feel and hear the power of the Gospel.
Therefore, all strategies, models and systems should enable Jesus followers to both live and speak out the whole Gospel in and through every community.
Every sector of society, every corner of the community. We must incorporate the whole life of every Christ follower. – Based on Colossians 3:17
The Gospel speaks to the whole of life. Every sector of society and every corner of a community should have the privilege of seeing and feeling Jesus’ love. It is best viewed, experienced, and most credibly heard when lived and shared from within a community. Whether the workplace, the school, the sports field, the hospital, community centre or wherever people do life, we will seek to have a credible presence where we can live an authentic expression of the Gospel in every aspect of life. To this end, we do not see a sacred-secular divide in different types of work or different sectors of society. Every aspect of life and society is where, and from where, we can live out the Gospel.
Therefore, all strategies, models and systems should equip every believer to participate in His mission in every place, with every person.
You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
Matthew 5:14-16 (NIV)