Theology of Mission

Our mission flows from God’s mission — to restore and renew all creation.

God calls all people to be participants in this mission and it is the church’s privilege and responsibility to live out God’s love for the world.

Our theology of mission is grounded in the following seven missional cornerstones.

Mission flows from the heart of God

The biblical revelation, culminating in the person and work of Jesus Christ and the sending of the Spirit, portrays a God who, as creator, will fulfil God’s purposes for everything God has made. So, in love, God perseveres, ruling overall and acting in Christ to reconcile a fallen world. The mission of God’s people in Christ is to work as God’s partners in God’s mission.

The story of the Bible can be understood as the unfolding drama of redemption and as the enunciation of the means by which the purposes of God will be completed.

Mission is centred in Christ​

While God speaks and acts in various ways, it is above all in the Lord Jesus Christ that we see a focus of God’s redemptive work. Only through the life, death and resurrection of the Son of God is there salvation for humankind. It is through a relationship with Christ, in fellowship with God’s people, that reconciliation is found, for it is God’s purpose to unite all things in Christ.

Christ’s life and ministry is the pattern for all Baptist Mission Australia activity. It seeks to embody God’s love, truth, justice and mercy in persons, not only in words. At the same time, we recognise that we are still in the process of being transformed into Christ’s likeness and so live through God’s forgiving grace in our relationships.

Mission is directed and empowered by the Holy Spirit

The mission of God’s people is under the direction of God by the Spirit. Thus Baptist Mission Australia seeks to be sensitive to the Spirit’s guidance as to where and how God is calling Baptist Mission Australia to be involved, alert to ways in which God is already at work. The Spirit provides the power for life and witness, giving victory in spiritual conflict.

Mission is by people to the world

God called Abraham to be “blessed to be a blessing” to the whole Earth. This was to be the life pattern of God’s people through the ages: a people called to a living relationship with God who so live and speak, that in turn others throughout the world enter the same relationship with God, with one another and with the world. 

When people know the work of God in their life and have entered into a reconciled relationship with God, they join the fellowship of Christ followers. They are thereby called to be God’s partner in God’s mission, agents of God’s purpose for the world.

Mission is contextual

Affirming that all peoples, without distinction, have been created in God’s image and are loved by God, and learning from the history of God’s people, Baptist Mission Australia seeks to work in ways that empower communities to search the Bible, following Christ in ways that make sense to them within their own distinctive cultures.

Mission is relational

Following Christ is both personal and corporate. Thus believers seek to discern together how to serve God together in God’s mission within their own community with its own particularities. They do so recognising that the fellowship of the family of believers is worldwide, embracing diversity within our oneness in Christ. Mission that is in partnership with God will also be in partnership with other believers, other churches and people of peace in one’s context.

Mission involves all areas of life

The creative, redemptive, and restorative mission of God is as extensive as the pervasive effect of human sin. As such, it is towards all people, embraces every part of life, is concerned with the whole creation, is both individual and corporate and has to do with both time and eternity. It is no less than the coming of the Kingdom of God.

A concern with the whole creation involves care for the whole environment, both people and places. God’s act of creating is the first missionary act and God’s design for creation ensures the nurture and care of all that lives and breathes within it. Creation first nurtures and cares for us. Caring for God’s creation is therefore, in return, an expression of His kingdom, an act of gratitude and a practical demonstration of loving our neighbours. Programs that focus on environmental issues are a unique opportunity to demonstrate the love of Christ to people and all living things that are inextricably bound up with the created physical environment.

God’s passion for mercy and justice, bringing about what is right, is evident especially in the work of Christ reconciling fallen people to Himself. God’s people replicate this concern by doing unto others that which we want for ourselves.

One implication is that mission is concerned with positive social change as well as individual change. Institutions, authorities, laws and societies that undermine human dignity or that oppose the just and loving rule of God are objects for redemptive transformation. The good news of Christ concerns all relationships, with God, with others and with all creation.