Are fresh expressions trying to build church or kingdom?

Jesus asks us all to pray daily for God's kingdom to come and his will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. The kingdom of God is the shorthand phrase in the Gospels for the reign of God or the rule of God on earth. All Christians are called to work and pray for the kingdom: that involves working for justice and integrity in our own lives, in the whole of society and in the whole of God's creation.

The call to engage in God's mission is the call to engage in building the kingdom of God in its entirety. Helping people find faith and form fresh expressions of church is part of that work:  we are doing what Jesus did and what he commands his disciples to do. However growing fresh expressions of church is not simply about increasing church attendance for its own sake or even an end in itself; the aim must be that God's will is done and the kingdom comes in individual lives, in families and in the whole of society.

Further reading

Mission-Shaped Church: A Theological Response
John M. Hull, SCM Press, 2005, 978-0334040576.

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