At our monthly Global Connections’ Staff meeting we are working our way through Tim Chester’s excellent book Mission Matters. While preparing for this week’s discussion, I came across this excellent quote:
Much of our evangelism takes an individual you-and-God approach: you have sinned, your sin cuts you off from God, but Jesus removes the consequences of sin so you can know God again. There is nothing incorrect about this story. But the Bible tells a much bigger, fuller story. It is the story of God creating a new humanity, reasserting his life-giving, liberating rule over the world, and bringing it to a climax in the triumph of his Son and the renewal of creation. The danger of the you-and-God message is that I remain at the centre. I am the almighty consumer, shopping around for what suits me best, with God providing the best option for my religious life. God serves my spiritual needs, while Tesco serves my grocery needs. And the customer is always right. The Bible story, by contrast, puts God firmly at the centre. The Gospel tells the story of the Kingdom of God. The goal of the story is the glory of God, and the climax of the story is: ‘God… all in all’ (1 Corinthians 15:28).