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cross-centered mission

Posted by Mike Mckinley on

Posted by Mike McKinley.

My notes from the final message at the Rastock annual conference. Excellent stuff. Audio to follow.

-- Persecution is a common ingredient in church planting movements.

-- The lesson for us is not that we should pursue persecution but that we should live cruciform lives.

-- We take an incremental approach to discipleship. We take new converts and slowly warm them up to the sacrifices of the Christian life (evangelism, church involvement, missions, work with the poor).

-- But this doesn't work in a persecution context, where your first day as a Christian could bring about your martyrdom.

-- If to decide for Christ is to decide to die, then all of the other sacrifices of the Christian life are included. But that's exactly what Jesus calls us to do when he tells us to pick up our cross.

-- This shapes the way that we do mission.

-- A framework for how the cross and resurrection shape Christian life and mission: the practice of the cross and the pattern of the cross.

-- The practice of the cross.

-- We are called to be like Christ.

-- How so? We're not Jewish itinerant preachers. We're not saviors of the world.

-- But when the Bible talks about our similarity to Jesus, it talks about us taking up the cross like he did.

-- 5 ways we practice the cross

-- Sacrifice

-- Submissions

-- Self-denial

-- Service


-- Not "WWJD" but "WITWOTCITS" (What is the way of the cross in this situation?). The cross informs the way we live.

-- Selflessness -- Philippians 2

-- Perseverance in suffering -- I Peter 4

-- Generosity -- II Cor 8, I John 3

-- Patience with other believers -- Romans 1

-- Humble leadership -- Mark 10


-- In a sense, every small act of service is a reparation for martyrdom in that it's a dying to self. Many of us would die for Christ but won't clean up after other Christians joyfully.


-- Application: what would it mean for you to follow the way of the cross in the next 5 hours? Next 5 days? Next 5 months?

-- The way of the cross is a hard ask... death to self in small things and big things. But the kingdom of God is like a treasure in the field.

-- If we have Christ, we have more than enough.

-- We reveal the value we put on Christ by what we are willing to risk or give up for him.

-- The pattern of the cross: suffering followed by glory.

-- Mark 10:35-40. The way to glory is the way to the cross.

-- Mark 10:46-52. Healing of blind Bartimaeus. Jesus asks the same question of Bartimaeus that he asks of James and John in verse 36: what do you want me to do for you?

-- John and James don't see, they need spiritual eyes to see that the way to follow Jesus is to suffer for him. The story ends with Bartimaues following Jesus along the way (to Jerusalem and the cross).


-- I Peter 5:1-11 -- The true grace of God is that after you suffer a while, he will restore you and make you steadfast.


-- I Peter 4:12 -- This was the pattern for Christ, it is the pattern for our ultimate joy.

-- If we are suffering, it is evidence that we are united to the Savior who suffered.

-- If we have union with him in his suffering, we will also have union in his glory.


The power of the resurrection in our lives. That power comes to us to help us suffer and endure with patience and service.

-- Philippians 3:10

-- II Corinthians 13:4

-- Colossians 1:10-11

-- II Timothy 1:7-8


-- Christians have power so that we can be like Christ in his death. God doesn't use superstars, he uses ordianry and fragile and weak people like you and me.

If you set out to follow the way of the cross, it will crush you. You need the power of the cross (Luke 10:20).

Tags: tim chester, conference


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