Missions: A Few Things from #SENT11
This past weekend I attended the SENT Missions Conference with the SBTC in Houston. I was a great time to discuss how we as Christians can spread the Gospel to the ends of the Earth.
I have included some of my notes from the break out sessions, I hope that you can discifer them and get some of the hard-hitting points from the conference.
Workshop 1 – Splashing Your Way to Kingdom Effectiveness – Ken Hemphill
● SPLASH – Show People Love and Share Him
● When people get around someone who is on fire for Jesus, they should be splashed with water of the Holy Spirit
● My Story + His Story + the Holy Spirit
○ There are less than 4% of Christians that share their faith
○ We have made evangelism a program of the church – faith, EE, etc.
○ We have made it a memory game for our church members – tract, program, verses, etc.
○ We have set social barriers up at drive people away – don’t know how to approach people to start the conversation
○ A program is needed to learn how to gossip Jesus in a secular culture
● Wk1 – Show > how Jesus shows the Gospel through drawing people in with strange things and demonstrating the Gospel
● Wk2 – People > how Jesus connected with people on their level
● Wk3 – Love > how Jesus demonstrated His Love with no strings attached
● Wk4 – And > how Jesus made the transition from showing the gospel to share the Gospel
● Wk5 – Share Him > learning how to articulate the meaning of a personal relationship with Christ (personal story + scripture + Holy Spirit)
○ L =Love – Romans 5:8
○ I =Isolated because of sin – Romans 3:23
○ F =Forgiveness of sin – Romans 6:23
○ E =Everlasting Life – abundant life john 10:10
○ A = Acknowledge > B = Believe > C = Confess
● Who do you believe Jesus to be? Who is Jesus personally to you? > let me tell you who Jesus is to me
Opening Session – Landon Reesor
● Being SENT is who we are as Christians. Not what we do.
● John 17:14-18 > the High Priestly Prayer of Jesus
● 14- They are not of the world just as I am not of the world – we are now the people of God and not people of e world
● 14- I have given them the word and the word has hated them – there is a big difference between the world and us
● 15- I don’t want you to take them out of the world but that you keep them from the evil one –
○ Why? Because we realize that the world does not really care for us and so we reject the world by building walls around us for protection
● 16- “In the world but not of the world” > you can never be of the world again! You have been changed!
○ “keep them from the evil one” >
● 17- “Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.” > for protection and preparation to live as missionaries
● 18- ” as you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world” > just as Christ was sent into the world, so we are sent into the world to share the good news of the gospel
● 19- “and for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth” >Think of what Jesus left behind
○ We must be people of grace before we become people of truth = put aside the differences in denominations and focus on the gospel
○ We all have the same call to leave and share the gospel
○ What is God asking you to leave behind in order to share the gospel?
○ the hard part is not the going to share the word but the leaving of those you love
○ God will not show you what is in front of you without you letting go of what is behind you
○ There is joy and peace on the other side of saying yes to God
Workshop 2 – Crisis Moments Response > Knowing how to respond to Crisis – Thomas Brewer
● What will your response be when CRISIS hits your community?
● Our response will either push people closer to God or push them away from God
● Your physical response can do more than any word you could ever speak
● While assisting in a crisis, be aware of your body language and words you speak > you don’t have to speak
● Planning and Discussing our response to certain crisis situations
○ Personal Property Loss – you can show how much you care by your willingness to help
● How you can help others?
● Provide services for others around you – water, electricity, food, laundry
● Standing alongside of them
○ Death –
● Provide services – food, paper goods, toilet paper, long-term food items that can be frozen
● Cleaning the house before their company comes over
● Yard work before their company comes over
○ Grieving –
● Usually hits 5-7 days after the occurrence
● Don’t be afraid to approach them even though you may be feeling – helpless, awkward, etc.
● God calls us to respond to crisis and He will not allow us to slip up
● Don’t NOT use phrases like
○ It was Gods will
○ God needed another angel in heaven
○ Things will get back to normal
○ I know what you are going through
● Large Scale National Disasters
○ Before we do missions far away, we must learn to do missions outside our local church
○ Go through the correct avenues – Do NOT try to get things done on your own!
○ Do NOT make a promise that you cannot keep!
○ Do NOT let anger or language of an individual keep you from showing God’s love and grace!
● How would you want someone to respond to you when you are in crisis?
● When do I share Christ?
○ Look for opportunities but meet their needs first
○ Don’t practice the bait and switch
Workshop3 – Interfaith Evangelism – Bruno Molina
● We need to understand what we understand in order to defend our faith (1Peter 3:15- be ready; 2Peter 2:1- guard against false teachers)
● We are commanded to preach salvation to all other people (Matt 28:19-20; Acts 1:8) > evangelism (Ephesians 4:15)
● Doctrines of Islam
○ Founder: Muhammad AD570-632
○ Authority: Koran
○ God: One person, no trinity
○ Jesus Christ: great prophet who ascended directly into heaven without the work of the cross (followers have corrupted his message)
○ Human Problem: Sin, disobedience to the law of Allah
○ Solution: submission to the law will bring mercy from God (just as we choose to sin against God, we can choose to follow God)
○ Life After Death: Heaven for the good and hell for the bad
● Doctrine of Jehovah’s Witnesses
○ Founder: Charles T. Russell 1879
○ Authority: the NWT bible
○ God: Jehovah, Jesus, Holy Spirit is an impersonal force
○ Jesus Christ: perfect human made by God
○ Human Problem: sin separates you from God
○ Solution: faith and works based on JW rules
○ Life after Death: 144k JW’s to rule with Christ. Others live in paradise on earth. Hell is the grave and an end to existence.
● Doctrines of Mormonism
○ Founder: Joseph Smith 1805-1840
○ Authority: KJV bible with Smith’s changes, the church of LDS, BOM
○ God: heavenly father and mother
○ Jesus Christ: the first heavenly father and mothers billions of spirit children and members of the godhead
○ Basic Human Problem: Adams sin was necessary so that humans could pass through mortality and become a god
○ Solution: faith, baptism, good works, temple ceremonies, etc. are needed to become God’s
○ Life After Death: celestial – faithful will become a god, terrestrial – faithful non LDS, telestial – unfaithful, bad, go to hell
● Doctrines of Subjectivism
○ Everything is subjective to their own lives
○ “There is no truth” – then why would I believe your statement?
○ 7 Fatal Flaws of Objectivism
● You cannot state wrong doing
● You cannot sate evil
● You cannot state praise
● You cannot claim justice
● You cannot improve your morality
● You cannot have a meaningful moral discussion
● You cannot tolerance if there is no moral truth
● Witnessing to People of Other Faiths
○ Be educated, know what you are talking about
○ Develop a relationship
○ See how committed they are to their faith – tell me how that impacts your life?
○ Explain why the Bible is reliable and true
○ Explain terms clearly – ask questions to see what they understand terms to mean
○ Focus on basic issues such as God, Jesus, Salvation, Etc. – don’t get caught up in life’s issues
○ Share your testimony emphasizing God’s grace
○ Explain the plan of salvation
○ Pray sincerely, be patient and trust the Holy Spirit to lead you in your witnessing
Workshop4 – 5 Milestones of Missional Churches – Eric King
● Awaken – Awakening of the leaders and congregation to God’s heart, that all people’s need to know Him. It cannot be manufactured or coerced but must be a heart change made by God through His people. (2Chronicles 7:14)
○ missions are to glorify God, not just evangelistic efforts
○ Genesis 12:1-3 = Abrahamic Covenant was given that all people’s will be blessed
○ Our pastors and leaders must have enough love for the people to hold them to more accountability to live missionaly daily
● Explore – are you being strategic to engage the place where you are to be intentional in the purpose that God had given you?
○ Acts 1:8 – not a command but a model of missional growth > local to international
○ 4 questions
● Who are we called to reach?
● Where are they located?
● How can we reach them?
● With can we partner with to get it done?
● Equip – Develop a strategy to engage the people group you have been called to
● Engage – Engage based on end vision for the ministry. What do you want it to look like at the end of your term with them?
● Multiply – How can we spurn them to move the blessing beyond themselves in order to multiply?
● Roy Mcclung
○ The Napkin Test – show your strategy on a napkin within 3-5 min
● Starts in a relationship with Jesus – loving God
● Go on mission out into the community with a partner – loving others
● Move on mission to live for Him – making disciples
○ Missions is made of all 3 levels of missions and modeled by Jesus
● Oksana Nelson
○ What is holding us back from going on mission?
○ How can we as Americans go about being prepared for sharing the Gospel without ever sharing the Gospel?
○ America is growing dark because we are alienating them with the gospel
○ We are happy as Americans to hide behind the walls of preparation
○ Because we are disobedient in sharing the Gospel, God is moving beyond our ways to share the Gospel
○ 3 Steps of being a missionary
● These people will not come to Christ until we come into their world and contextualize the Gospel for them
● We must stop valuing time and money over people
● We must assimilate with the culture to gain trust and share life with the people
● We must give up our own culture
● Enjoy their culture and give up your own
● Pay the Price
● Just as Christ paid the price on the cross we must pay the price as followers of Him
● Bruno Molina – SBTC APOLOGETICS
○ We must Pray Furverantly – pray for salvation of the lost daily
○ We must Prepare Thoroughly – understand those you are witnessing to or the host culture, memorize scripture and be ready to share the Gospel
○ Promote the Gospel Enthusiastically – if you are not excited / happy about Jesus, neither will they be
○ Live Evangelistically – how can we help and serve the ones who are around you? Be intentional about opportunities to share the word
○ As ambassadors of Christ we must be dedicated to being evangelists
● Caleb Cider
○ Outsourcing – good on short-term because of costs and ease but in the long-term we forget how to do things
○ Are we outsourcing the missions of our churches to missionaries so that we do not have to?
○ We as the church need to rediscover the skills at makes us missional
○ Missionaries feel forgotten on the field, like they are just competing for the churches attention
○ We need to change the way we talk about missions > not as a task or something to be solved > missions is not about solving something that can be outsourced
○ How do we get invested again in the work of missions?
○ Commissioning service right after Baptism > Commission them to teach the Gospel and Reach the Lost
○ This is not a chore but an identity > we are not Christian if we are not missionaries
○ We would not outsource our Worship of Jesus, so why are we outsourcing our Mission work?
Workshop5 – Worship, Discipleship and the Glory of God – Matt Boswell
● God has given us the cause of making disciples for Him
● 1Thessalonians 1:1-10
● 1Thessalonians 1:5 – 4 Marks of Effective Discipleship
○ Not only in word – Root people in the word of God
● Evangelical = proclaim the Word
● We are theologians – we are to know God because we study Him because we love Him
○ But also in power – demonstrate the power of God through prayer
● Prayer is needed for the work in the power of God
● Raise the dead to life – salvation through evangelism
○ in the Holy Spirit – only through the Holy Spirit can people’s lives change
● What does it mean to be lead by the Holy Spirit? Through the New Testament Jesus gives us a helper
● It is the Holy Spirit at gives us the power to bring about the Gospel
○ And with full conviction – do we believe what we say? Do our lives reflect our beliefs?
● Are you bowing before the glory of Christ? Are you focused on the Glory of Christ?
● Passionate about what you believe! About leading people to Christ and making disciples!
● What are you teaching?
● How transparent are you to those around you? – to make disciples, we must stop playing games with sin
● How are we modeling spirituality in our home? – we must show our family that our time with God matters and through that we will pass the torch of faith
● If you can’t lead your family, how will you lead the church?
● If you can’t teach your children, how will you teach Sunday school?
● In isolation the worst decisions are made
● 1Thessalonians 1:6 – the next step
○ Became imitators of us and of the Lord– find a mentor and mentor another person
● Is your walk with Christ worth imitating? Are you modeling a lifestyle for people, that is worth reproducing?
● Who is speaking truth into your life?
○ Received the word in much affliction – our attention should be on the word of God
● What comforts have been given up for your walk with Christ
● 1Thessalonians 9
○ Disciples turn from idols and push toward Jesus
Until there is complete regeneration in a place, there is no reason to leave that place to make disciples.
If making disciples is the focus of God, why would leave when we could work where we are?