For close to 20 years, the Body of Christ has made great advances regarding the call of believers to influence every mountain of culture for Christ for societal reformation (cultural mountains such as religion, family, education, politics, media, arts/entertainment, economics and more).
For too long the local church has functioned as a straight-jacket, limiting the expression of Christ to merely spiritual things and the life to come. The results have been catastrophic as the church abandoned culture, which has led to propitious moral decay in every cultural mountain!
There is a seismic shift taking place today in the marketplace and the church. We need to understand how to respond if we are going to bring systemic transformation. This article deals with how the church should apply the gospel in response to cultural shifts.
Jesus, John the Baptist, and the apostles went about proclaiming the kingdom–not the church (read Matthew 3:2, 4:17, 10:7; Acts 28:30-31). Although the church is in the kingdom, it is not the entire kingdom.
“Kingdom” denotes the rule of God over the whole cosmos, not just a single entity on the earth, like the church. In spite of this, most preaching today has as its goal to get people to make a weekly two-hour commitment to come to a building on Sundays and to give tithes to support that building! This is because a spirit of religion has captivated the church and blinded the minds of church leaders, so that we now have a very limiting church mindset instead of a kingdom perspective. The negative results of this cannot be overstated.
Some erroneous views have been articulated by some in the Marketplace Movement in regards to their relationship with the local church. Their teachings have either dismissed the proper role and function of the local church in regards to the marketplace or replaced it with a “mobile church” mentality in which a “church” or “congregation” exists “whenever two or three are gathered in His name,” thus legitimizing “church gatherings” in their offices and ministry or association meetings that are disconnected from typical local church congregations.
A very important conversation occurred between an earthly governor and the Governor of the Universe that saliently disclosed the main purpose for the coming of the Messiah. In John 18:37 we find:
Pilate therefore said to Him, “Are you a king then?”
Jesus answered, “You say rightly that I am a king. For this cause I was born and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.”
As someone who has been involved in teaching and implementing principles of the Kingdom of God since the mid-1990’s I have observed many ways Christian leaders do not expand the kingdom! The following are some of the most common ways we work without kingdom effectiveness.
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