What does “living on mission” mean? “Living on mission” are buzz words you might hear in Christian communities. In short, it means to live on purpose to fill the Great Commission. It reflects the heart of evangelism—reflecting Jesus and sharing the Gospel with those around you.
Living on Mission Bible Verses
Most of us think of Matthew 28:18-20—the Great Commission—when we think of living on mission.
- “And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’ Amen.”
Living on mission has been God’s intention for His people throughout history. God’s heart has always been for those in covenant with Him to reflect His goodness and sovereignty to the nations.
- Isaiah 42:6-7
“I, the Lord, have called You in righteousness, and will hold Your hand; I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people, as a light to the Gentiles, to open blind eyes, to bring out prisoners from the prison, those who sit in darkness from the prison house.”
- Isaiah 52:10
“The Lord has made bare His holy arm in the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God.”
- Isaiah 60:2-3
“For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and deep darkness the people; but the Lord will arise over you, and His glory will be seen upon you. The Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.”
Living on Mission Points to Jesus
The verses above reveal God’s vision for humanity to be living on mission. These verses point forward to Jesus.
Now, on the other side of the cross, we point backward to the cross and forward to His second coming.
By living on mission, we open ourselves up as vessels for His good news to flow through us to others. He makes His saving strength and salvation known through us as a witness and testimony to others of Jesus Christ.
We are called to be the light in a dark world, and God said He would not allow us to be hidden.
- “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”
Start Seeing Yourself as the Light in Darkness
Can we agree that darkness seems to be surrounding us in today’s world? Perhaps you feel trepidation about living on mission and seeing yourself as the light. Fixing your eyes on the Light (see John 8:12) so you can be the light is the key to living on mission in the darkness.
Maybe you aren’t a missionary in another country or a pastor at a local church, but you still have a calling, purpose, and mission wherever God has placed you.
Jesus sent out the apostles to make disciples. They had to be intentional, purposeful, and bold. The only way they could have done this was by the power of the Holy Spirit. They had to see themselves on a mission to carry the light of God in a dark world.
What does living on mission and seeing yourself as the light look like?
- Live Outwardly
As Christians, there are times we want to get out of the darkness as quickly as possible. We want to run from anything that doesn’t appear godly. Yes, we need to be careful not to be of the world. However, we must live in the world. We cannot live our Christian lives locked in our prayer closets.
Colossians 4:5 says, “Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time” (emphasis added). We are to walk wisely and outwardly. Our words and actions need to be full of grace and seasoned with salt (Colossians 4:6).
In his letter to the Colossians, Paul wrote, “redeeming the time,” which meant “making the best use of your time.” God may have us in one place for a season and then move us. We must live outwardly and be good stewards of our time, looking for opportunities to share the Gospel wherever we are.
Paul also wrote, “that you may know how you ought to answer each one” (verse 6). There are many worldly explanations and words of advice. As Christians, we must answer and give advice according to the biblical truth. How is this accomplished? Be in the Word so you can know the Word so you might speak the Word.
- Live Worthly
The Bible says that as Christians, we are citizens of heaven. This earth is not our home.
Paul wrote to the Philippians, “Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel…” (Philippians 1:27, emphasis added).
The Greek word for conduct in this passage means “to live as a citizen.” Living on mission means living as a citizen of the kingdom of God, not as a citizen of this world.
The goal of worthy living is not to earn salvation. Your salvation was accomplished through Jesus’ work on the cross. Letting our conduct be worthy reflects the unity God desires. When we are living on mission and reflecting God’s unity the good news of Jesus will be promoted among those who haven’t yet come to know Him.
- Live Gently
The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. When we live gently, we are walking in the Spirit.
Whenever we walk in the fruit of the Spirit, we reflect God to others. Paul highlights gentleness in his letter to the Philippians and ties it to the Lord’s return.
Philippians 4: 5 says, “Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand” (emphasis added). When we are in the darkness of the world, we can get discouraged. We can be passionate about the things of God and, at the same time, leave gentleness by the wayside.
Paul urges us to be gentle to all because Jesus’ return is at hand. When we live on mission with gentleness and awareness of His imminent return, our focus will align with God’s, and we will be light to others.
Living on mission means to live on purpose to fulfill the Great Commission, to share the Gospel of Jesus with others, and to reflect the Light of the world to the world.
We don’t have to be missionaries or pastors to be living on mission. Who has God placed in your path during this season? Ask Him how He wants to use you to reflect Him.