The primary mission of the church is to invite every person to come to know Christ. The process of becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ begins with an individual responding to Jesus’ call to follow Him. The church is composed of believers tasked with being a “light to the world” and a “city on a hill,” reflecting the light of Christ into the darkness of the world. The end result of the church’s work in reaching the lost is that others would praise their Father in Heaven – not mankind. (Matthew 5:13-16; Matthew 28:18-20; Revelation 22:17)
EQUIPPING the church:
Through the Holy Spirit, every believer has been given spiritual gifts, which must be used to build up the church. While not every believer is called to teach or preach, every believer is meant to contribute to the overall wellbeing of the church through the generous and unselfish use of ones gifts. In addition, every believer is respectively called to grow into spiritual maturity, incorporating spiritual habits and practices into their lifestyle that will enhance their relationship with Christ. (John 15; 1 Corinthians 3, 12; Galatians 5:16-26; Ephesians 5:18; 2 Peter 1:3-8)
SERVING our neighbor:
The call to follow Christ represents a call to take up our cross and willingly follow after Christ in obedience. For believers, “cross bearing” is voluntary, redemptive, sacrificial service for others. Self-denial emphasizes turning from commitment to self to commitment to Him. Taking up your cross involves turning with Christ to a world in need. In service, Christ calls us to love our neighbor as ourselves and to serve other persons who are lost, hurting and in need. Overall, believers are called to present their bodies as “living sacrifices” through denial of self and seeking the needs of ones neighbor. (Matthew 25:40; Luke 9:23; Philippians 2:8; Romans 12:1-2)
CONNECTING to one another:
All believers have a special “familial” connection to one another through saving work of Jesus Christ and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Believers in the early church grew in Christ by spending time with one another and encouraging one another in the faith. As we grow in following Christ, we model our faith for other Christians, encouraging others to follow others as we follow the example of Christ. (John 13:34-35; Acts 2:42-46; 1 Corinthians 11:1; Ephesians 2:11-22; Philippians 2:1-2, 4:9; 1 John 1:6-7)
Any of the activities of the church must work to serve these fourfold purposes, and must be evaluated in their level of success in assisting to achieve these goals.