The Marks of a Missional Church

AntiochSyriaPrintWhat are the Marks of a Missional Church?  As I journeyed through the book of Acts I began to focus on the ancient church in Anitoch in Syria.  I began asking the question what was this church known for?  In this search I discovered thriteen key marks of a missional church.

The Ancient Church of Antioch in Syria is a great example of a Missional Church because…

1.      They experienced God’s approval and His power was with them.   Acts 11:21

“The Lord’s hand was with them…” vs. 21

2.      They experienced great conversion growth.  Acts 11:21

“and a great number of people believed and turned to the Lord.” vs. 21

3.      They embraced help from others.  Acts 11:22-24

News of this reached the ears of the church at Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to Antioch. When he arrived and saw the evidence of the grace of God, he was glad and encouraged them all to remain true to the Lord with all their hearts. He was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and faith, and a great number of people were brought to the Lord.vv. 22-24

4.      They were a place where leaders were developed.  Acts 11:25-26

Then Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul, and when he found him, he brought him to Antioch. So for a whole year Barnabas and Saul met with the church and taught great numbers of people. The disciples were called Christians first at Antioch.”  vv. 25-26

5.      They deeply and broadly penetrated their culture.  Acts 11:26

“The disciples were called Christians first at Antioch.” vs. 26

6.      They were people of great generosity.  Acts 11:27-30

“During this time some prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. One of them, named Agabus, stood up and through the Spirit predicted that a severe famine would spread over the entire Roman world. (This happened during the reign of Claudius.) The disciples, each according to his ability, decided to provide help for the brothers living in Judea. This they did, sending their gift to the elders by Barnabas and Saul.”  vv. 27-30

7.      They were a church led by cross-cultural, multi-ethnic leaders.   Acts 13:1

“In the church at Antioch there were prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen (who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch) and Saul.  vs. 1

8.      They were a church that had leaders who prioritized ministering to the Lord, fasting and prayer.  Acts 13:2

“While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting…” vs. 2

9.      They were a church whose leaders listened to the Holy Spirit and obeyed His call.  Acts 13:2

“…the Holy Spirit said, ‘Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.’”  vs. 2

10.    They were a church who willingly released their top leaders for God’s appointed ministry.  Acts 13:3

So after they had fasted and  prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off.” vs. 3

11.    They were a home base for cross-cultural church planters.  Acts 14:26-28

“From Attalia they sailed back to Antioch, where they had been committed to the grace of God for the work they had now completed. On arriving there, they gathered the church together and reported all that God had done through them and how he had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles. And they stayed there a long time with the disciples.”  vv. 26-28

12.    They were a place where theology was developed and corrected.  Acts 15:1-33

“Some men came down from Judea to Antioch and were teaching the brothers: Unless you are circumcised, according to the custom taught by Moses, you cannot be saved. This brought Paul and Barnabas into sharp dispute and debate with them. So Paul and Barnabas were appointed, along with some other believers, to go up to Jerusalem to see the apostles and elders about this question.”  vv. 1-2

13.    They were key players in seeing a movement of churches started.  Acts 18:22-23

“When he landed at Caesarea, he went up and greeted the church and then went down to Antioch. After spending some time in Antioch, Paul set out from there and traveled from place to place throughout the region of Galatia and Phrygia, strengthening all the disciples.” vv. 22-23

Excerpt from FirstSteps for Planting a Missional Church

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About Gary Rohrmayer

Gary has a unique focus in mobilizing and mentoring leaders into the harvest field. He specializes in equipping leaders in areas of spiritual formation, church multiplication and church health. Gary’s vision is to see that no leader travel their ministry journey alone. He desires to emulate the ministry of Barnabas by becoming a son of encouragement to the next generation of leaders.
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