The prophetic task of the church


What is the role of the church today? By the church I mean a people that have freely chosen to follow Jesus, in our world.

What would the world reimagined look like if it displayed the beauty, salvation, love, justice, truth and mercy that we see Jesus embodying in the Gospels?

We can see glimpses of that reality in many places in our world and the task has been given to the church to carry out this expansive vision of God.

I love this quote by Brueggemann and it seems to me that we need to be listening to prophetic voices like his that guide and disrupt us in these disturbing times.

Is your church fulfilling its prophetic call to :

-tell truth in a delusional society?

-grieve in a world that often denies life?

-embody hope in a culture of despair ?

Don’t think programmes and events which is where our minds usually move to quickly as leaders, but ask yourself if every person in your church is attempting to embody this call?

Today I have been thinking about some of the contentious topics that surround us to do with sexuality, politics, gender and poverty in our world and I’m wondering how I might approach these issues from the prophetic place that Brueggemann calls us to.

I’m thinking how hard it is to balance truth with love, acceptance with the need for transformation and joy with suffering.

Here’s a great thought to ponder from a very worthwhile article on the prophetic.

“More often, prophecy disrupts the particular audience God has given you, the audience that trusts you, follows you, and considers you an authoritative voice. … . if you are stepping on the toes of your closest followers, then you are probably more in line with the prophetic tradition.”

More than ever, we the church need wisdom, love and discernment to apply Brueggemann’s challenge, but God help us and have mercy on us if we are not even attempting to live this out.

I hope we are attempting to flesh out this prophetic task today in love otherwise what is the point of the church?

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