Missionary Churches in a
Non-Christian World
Which Context?
Which Map?
The Post-Church Map
The community around the church is
increasingly unchurched, more and
more reflecting the “pre-churched”
context of ministry.
At the same time, the church continues
to operate with the assumptions of a
“churched” society or context.
The Post-Churched Map
Who’s in Charge?
The unchurched are
Cultural “Insiders”
The churched still think
they are “Insiders”
The Post-Churched Map
Who’s in Charge?
The unchurched are
Cultural “Insiders”
Can we choose to
become outsiders
once again?
The Post-Churched Map
Peter and apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who are elect exiles of the
dispersion . . . according to the
foreknowledge of God the Father, in the
sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to
Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood.
1 Peter 1:1-2
Recalculate for the
Kingdom of God is at
hand. Matthew 4
The Post-Churched Map
Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of
wheat falls into the ground and dies, it
remains alone; but if it dies,
it bears much fruit.
(John 12:24)
To Whom are you a Who?
Where and when do you connect?
What’s the starting place?
Answered by Unchurched
The Post-Church Map
First step in mission work is to
become permeable
Enter their world
Live and serve in the Language
and Culture of the “insiders”
Share life experiences
Get to know and be known
What are the starting places?
First Article Bridges
Bridges go two ways
Ask the Gate Keepers
The Pre-Church Map
Three steps in permeation
• Learner
• Trader
• Story Teller
The Post-Church Map
Note: The pastor might never become
a cultural insider
Get Gospel communication into the
hands of cultural insiders ASAP
Pastors focus on multiplying cultural
insiders who speak the Gospel
The Post-Church Map
Focus on the unchurched
High engagement with the unchurched
Maintain a porous boundary with
Operate with Several Word gifts (Eph. 4)
Unchurched → evangelist
Churched → pastor/teacher
Both → apostle, prophet
Utilize the Priesthood
The Post-Church Map
Utilize the Priesthood
Priests connect other
people with God and
God with other people
Priests: Pray & Proclaim
What contextual conditions are
assumed in your congregation’s
future planning?
– Pre-Churched
– Churched
– Post-Churched
How would your congregation look at itself if
it were a New Testament congregation,
that is, a small church located in a nonChristian community possibly hostile to
the Gospel?
What pastoral roles are assumed by
the members of our congregations?
What lay roles are assumed?
Theological Education In A
Post-Church Era
Life Contexts &
This presentation is shared by permission
of Dr. Robert Newton, President of the
CNH District of the LCMS. If you have any
questions or comments concerning this
presentation, please direct them to Dr.
Newton at [email protected] or call