søndag 11. desember 2016

The goal of the mission defined

It is interesting that Paul so clearly defines the goal of the mission that was entrusted to Timothy:
The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.
1 Tim 1:5
Again love is at the centre, and now love is defined as the goal of the mission. When I was reflecting on this definition yesterday, my first reaction was that it makes the mission too narrow, but it did not take long before I was convinced that this is 100% true - and I like it.

Why is love the goal of the Christian mission?

Because God is love. He is Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. The mission I have received is all about spreading the gospel of Him who is love, and how it is revealed through him who became part of what he had created, and in fact, still is.

It is also interesting that how the love is lived out by the person who has been entrusted the mission, is part of the goal of the mission. Love has to come from:

  • a pure heart
Heart is synonymous with the human spirit. That is where the Holy Spirit dwells when a person receives salvation in Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit is pure, and when he fills the "dwelling", the dwelling becomes clean as well. This means: To reach the goal, God himself has to be the source of the mission.
  • a good conscience
The title “Journey of Renewal” on this series of reflections, is borrowed from the Salvation Army's Accountability movement. On this journey "transparency" is an important goal. A good conscience has nothing to hide. There is no ulterior motive in God's love. Nor should there be any such motives for a person who has God’s love as the goal of his mission.
  • a sincere faith
I cannot pretend to believe. In my everyday life, sincere faith is interpreted to mean obedience to what God asks me to do, not because I am forced to, but out of love. Thus the circle is complete: God's kingdom is about faith, and the goal is love.

‘Manna' for today:

The goal of the mission is love

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