Rueben & Roxie the clockbots

The New Testament gives the church in every age its missionary identity by plunging it into the midst of the biblical story where the words of the great commission still ring in its ears.” Bible and Mission by Richard Bauckham

Richard Bauckham’s short quote above nails two questions I’ve been wondering a lot about lately: what’s the purpose of scripture? and where does the church find its missionary identity? The purpose of scripture, at least in part, is to give us the redemptive story where the words of Christ’s great commission can remain ringing in our ears as we re-engage the world around afresh each day of our lives. More than just preparing us to be missional with our neighbors this ‘story’ is applied anew to our own hearts and minds, calling us as well to repent and believe.

By subtly leaving the advance of the gospel in Acts unfinished Luke provides you and I with a ready made identity with which to enter our own mission fields here. Just as the Pentateuch which left Israel with the promise of Land out before them but not the experience of it so to does the New Testaments leave us with the promise of eternal rest, presently experienced by us in Christ but not yet experienced in full.

A rest God has planned not for you or I alone, but for all the tribes, tongues, and nations he’s calling to himself.