Scott Thomas: 10 Characteristics of a Missional Church

Scott Thomas, president of the Acts 29 church planting network, has a great post about what the marks are of a missional church. Go Check it out.

This opening paragraph sums up the missional movement, and much of what drives Acts 29 in its passion to plant churches.

Since we are in Christ, we have a missionary identity. We are adopted into a missionary family. We serve a missionary God. Mission becomes part of our identity, because our Father is a missionary God and we resemble Him as a child of God. So the church is a missionary church, with missionary people, that do missionary things. It is who we are, and it is also what we do. Mission is not something we tack on to the list of options as a Christian. To be Christian is to be on mission. It’s who we are,and it is what we do.

Here are his 10 marks:

1.  The missional church is committed to the authoritative, infallible, inerrant, inspired Scriptures (2 Tim. 3:14-17; Acts 2:42).

2.  Understands the centrality of the Gospel expressed in all aspects of a person’s life (1 Cor. 15:1-4; 2:2; Gal. 6:14)

3.  Gatherings are characterized by God-centered worship, preaching of the Gospel, prayer, Lord’s Supper by penitent souls, and baptism as a response to the Gospel (John 4:23-24).

4.  A missional church understands it has been sent by God as missionaries in their own culture (Matt. 4:19; John 20:21; Acts 16:20; 17:6) to make disciples of all peoples (Matt. 28:18-20; Acts 1:8).

5.  Boldly & intentionally promotes the Gospel through making disciples and church planting globally through collaborative expressions of mercy and generosity.

6.  A missional church is dependent upon the Holy Spirit to empower and lead believers as agents for evangelizing and making disciples (Acts 1:8; Luke 4:1, 14, 18).

7.  Missional churches utilize relationships and sacrificial love as the expressions of love to others in their journey toward faith (Matt. 5:13-16, John 15:12-17, 1 John 4:19-21).

8.  The goal of a missional church is to walk in community with others as Jesus pursues them in His own way and timing (1 Cor. 9:20-23).

9.  A missional church is a hands-on training ground for missionary training (Acts 4:13, 31-35).

10.  Godly, biblically qualified elders lead a missional church (1 Timothy 3; Titus 1; Eph. 4).

Read his elaboration one each of these marks here.


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