The word of God teaches us in Romans 8:29 that believers were predestined to be conformed to the image of Jesus Christ. Since this was written to the church in Rome, we understand the subject of the verse as the corporate body of Christ. Hence, local congregations are called to become Christ-like in their methodology, mission and essence.
Although there are numerous attributes that can be unpacked, in this article I am narrowing the focus to ten traits every Jesus driven church must have. Of course, there was only one perfect human who ever lived (Jesus Christ) which means that every other person and or community will fall far short of His glory no matter how hard they try. The best we can ever do is to attempt to walk in His grace on our journey, understanding that we will never find a perfect church or entity this side of heaven.
That being said, the following are ten traits every “Jesus driven” church must (attempt to) walk in on their journey:
1- A spirit of joyful service : Jesus taught that the greatest in the Kingdom is the one who serves (Matthew 23:11). He modeled this when He kneeled down and washed the feet of His disciples (John 13). This was totally against the Roman/Greco ethos of His day which taught that humbling oneself before others who were not your superior (in rank) was inappropriate and unacceptable. Consequently, the “Jesus driven” church will celebrate voluntary service for the good of others.
2- An expectation of the miraculous: When the apostle Peter was preaching the gospel to the Gentiles He described Jesus as the One who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed of the devil (Acts 10:38). Thus, Jesus was equated with the miraculous power of God when men were describing Him. Jesus even told His followers that He expected them to do greater works than He did (John 14:12). Consequently, the “Jesus driven” church will have in its culture a corporate faith that expects the miraculous.
3-A sense of divine mission and purpose: When Jesus preached His first sermon He read from the prophet Isaiah the passage that prophesied His mission (Luke 4:18 from Isaiah 61:1-2). He was a man on a mission who had objectives and goals from day to day (Read Luke 13:32). He told Pilate that the purpose He had in His life was to testify to the truth as the King (John 18:37). In light of all this, the “Jesus driven” church will have a compelling vision and ignite a sense of purpose and mission among their congregation.
4-Ample discipleship: As we read the four gospels, it is evident that the main focus Jesus had in His ministry was pouring into His twelve and then His seventy disciples (Read Luke 9:1 and 10:1). Local churches conformed to the image of Christ will also base their whole ministry on making disciples, not merely attracting crowds.
5-Genuine fellowship and community: Jesus did not merely teach His disciples, He lived among them and did life with them. He shared His pain with them, ate with them and prayed with them (Luke 14:14-46). The “Jesus driven” church will also have as a core value the practice of genuine fellowship and community.
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