hat is the
passion and
priority of
your life? Only One
Person is worthy of
your passionate
devotion; only his
mission is worth living
and dying for.
For over thirty years Appalachian
Bible College has summarized
its purpose in a concise yet bold
Because Life is for Service
What reality could support such
a sweeping and consuming
declaration? Simply put, life is for
service because The Servant—the
supreme Servant, Jesus—is our life
(Col. 3:4).
Therefore, a life of loving
enslavement to Christ—God’s lowest
and greatest Servant—will be a life
surrendered to his mission. In other
words, if we are truly passionate for
Christ, then his gospel service will
be our priority (Phil. 1:20–21, 3:8).
The Servant: Our
For God so loved the world...
familiar words from John 3:16
introduce God’s radical rescue
mission into the world—the self-
sacrifice of his beloved Son, Jesus.
Although many in the world reject
God’s Son, those who do receive him
are supernaturally born again by
his Spirit and brought into a loving
relationship with him (John 1:10–13,
3:5–8, 17:26).
Several places in John’s Gospel
describe this personal relationship
to Christ in terms of a relationship
to his word. For example, although
many turned back, Jesus’ followers
confessed their genuine belief: “To
whom shall we go? You have the
words of eternal life” (6:66–69).
True disciples like this “abide in”
Jesus’ word (8:31), and his “words
abide in” them (15:3, 7). These
fruitful branches show their love
for the true Vine by keeping his
commandments, which fills them
with his joy and sets them apart
from the world for Christ’s mission
(14:15, 15:9–14, 17:17–18).
Is Jesus your passion? Perhaps, in
alignment with John’s Gospel, we
should ask: “Do you love and keep
Jesus’ words?” A fervent love for
Christ, demonstrated by abiding
in his word, is the wellspring of
a fruitful passion for his global
His Mission: Our
True disciples, who love Jesus’ word,
will find that his mission is their
priority. So, what is the mission of
Jesus for his Church, as found in the
Christ’s doxological mission for this age
is to build his Church by the advance of
his gospel, realized in the maturation
of converted sinners who are gathered
in reproducing local churches and sent
to make disciples among all nations.
Let’s develop the parts of this
Christ’s doxological mission for this
In this Church age, Christ is
glorifying the Father (doxology) by
giving eternal life to as many as the
Father has given him (John 17:1–5,
Eph. 3:21).
To build his Church
by the advance of his gospel:
Jesus promised to build his Church,
founded on his divine identity,
death, and resurrection, and
proclaimed through the dedicated
cross-bearing of his followers (Matt.
Realized in the maturation of
converted sinners:
The Lord builds his
Church as sinners repent and believe
the gospel and as these saints grow
Our Passion and Priority for Gospel Missions
By Jonathan Rinker
“...if we are truly
passionate for
Christ, then his
gospel service will
be our priority.”