The Great Omission

willard.jpg“As disciples of Jesus, we today are a part of God’s world project. But realization of that project, it must never be forgotten, is the effect, not the life itself. The mission naturally flows from the life. It is not an afterthought, or something we might overlook or omit as we live the life. The eternal life, from which many profound and glorious effects flow, is interactive relationship with God and with his special Son, Jesus, within the abiding ambience of the Holy Spirit. Eternal life is the Kingdom Walk, where, in seamless unity, we “Do justice, love kindness, and walk carefully with our God” (Micah 6:8). We learn to walkthis way through apprenticeship to Jesus. His school is always in session.

We need to emphasize that the Great Omission from the Great Commission is not obedience to Christ, but discipleship, apprenticeship, to him. Through discipleship, obedience will take care of itself, and we will also excape the snares of judmentalism and legalism, whether directed towards ourselves or towards others.

Now, some might be shocked to hear that what the “church”–the disciples gathered–really needs is not more people, more money, better buildings or programs, more education, or more prestige. Christ’s gathered people, the church, has always been at its best when it had little or none of these. All it needs to fulfill Christ’s purposes on earth is the quality of life he makes real in the life of his disciples. Given that quality, the church will prosper from everything that comes its way as it makes clear and available on earth the “life that is life indeed”.”

–Dallas Willard from his new book “The Great Omission”

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11 thoughts on “The Great Omission

  1. I have just begun to read the book and it is excellent so far! I would also recommend two books by Eugene Peterson (to be a five volume set) on what he calls “spiritual theology” — Christ Plays in Ten Thousand PLaces and Eat This Book. I love this trend of excellent thinkers and theologians really diving into the area of spiritual formation and discipleship.

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