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Salvation Army Agenda For The Future
Prepared by General Eva Burrows (1987)

We need an agenda for the future, to make us aware of what we stand for, to direct our thoughts as to where we are heading, to set out our priorities and the issues we really feel strongly about, and to be a means by which we can evaluate our efforts. I have sought the wisdom of the Lord and the illuminating guidance of the Holy Spirit, and now set down in faith and love what I believe should be the basic agenda for The Salvation Army as we move through these final years of the 20th century and into the 21st.


May this agenda help to define our purposes, shape our mission, guide our planning and activities, and direct our prayers as we venture forth with vision and commitment.


1. To emphasise the supremacy of evangelism in fulfillment of the Lord’s great commission. ‘Go therefore and make all nations my disciples.’ (Matthew 28:19)


To evangelise – to share the good news with an understanding of the social and cultural context in the life of those being reached. The message must be free from racial bias and any national prejudice which detracts from the universal truth of Christ as Saviour of all. The central focus of the gospel is Christ – his cross and resurrection, his grace to redeem and transform. And this leads on to spiritual maturity through the power of the Holy Spirit.


To work to the end that every man and woman and child has the opportunity to hear the good news of the gospel, to make a personal commitment to Christ and become his disciple and a member of the Church of God of which The Salvation Army is a part; this is our commission.


To have a vision for growth, and actively work to bring that vision to reality. We must dedicate ourselves and our resources to encourage growth. Evangelism should lead to growth which the Lord requires – both numerical and spiritual, both quantitative and qualitative. Every soldier a soul-winner.


2. To call the Army to spiritual renewal


To re-emphasise the possibility of holy living and spiritual maturity through the resources of prayer, worship, Bible study, sacrificial giving and Holy Spirit power. To teach holiness not merely as a spiritual ideal but as a positive, wholesome, attainable experience to which God calls His people.


To acknowledge the renewing work of the Holy Spirit in the Christians church today and continually to challenge salvationists to claim the Spirit’s empowering in their own lives. By the Spirit’s fruit we are conformed to the image of Christ, and by the Spirit’s gifts we are equipped for effective service. So salvationists should seek to discover, develop and use their spiritual gifts in building up the body of Christ and in service and ministry in their community.


To create a quickened awareness by salvationists of the power of personal influence and witness in the home and work place, in college and school, in the arena of recreation and leisure.


For The Salvation Army to see itself as part of the family of Christ in the world, and to work in ecumenical fellowship and unity of spirit with other church bodies pursuing Christ’s mission on earth.


3. To reaffirm our basic stance on the authority and validity of the Scriptures, both as the basis of our faith and as a guide for Christian conduct


To persuade salvationists to study the Scriptures more deeply and to apply them more relevantly to daily life, because the Scriptures are profitable for teaching, reproving, correcting and equipping God’s people. We need to love God with our mind as we search and research his word.


To reaffirm the scriptural witness to the Holy Spirit and seek a fresh understanding of his role in the ministry of Christ in the world and in the life and growth of his body, the church.


To deepen our understanding of the truth of our doctrines in experience as well as intellect. To educate our soldiery in the spiritual and experiential basis of our non-sacramental position.


4. To emphasise the Christian ethic as the significant influence in establishing a moral society


To assert the value of marriage and family as God’s plan for society, and to underline the important of the marriage vow. To view marriage as a divinely ordained covenant, and to seek to reverse the increasing trend to divorce and the break up of family life, within and without the Christian community.


To oppose the enthronement of the physical body – the obsession with and glamorisation of human sexuality. To withstand the acceptance of lifestyles postulated as ‘alternative sexual preferences’. Whilst declaring such to be against God’s moral law, we will seek to provide pastoral care and positive help to such people.


To realise the true dignity of a single and celibate life for those from whom God asks this dedication and to whom God has given this gift.


To emphasise Christian standards in issues raised by medical technological developments such as genetic engineering, in vitro fertilisation, euthanasia, abortion. Whilst praising God for all the progress of modern medicine, we must reject those developments which lower the dignity and individuality of man.


To acknowledge Christ’s Lordship in every area of life; in the workplace, the professions, in industry. Where there is lack of integrity, salvationists are encouraged to stand with conviction and with a courage strengthened by biblical standards.


To understand the powerful influence of the media and their impact on social values. To see how The Salvation Army can more effectively utilise the media in its mission, and at the same time alert salvationists to their right to challenge the often misleading and harmful presentations of violence and so-called ‘good life’.


To continue our concern regarding the increase in drug and alcohol abuse, and strengthen our preventative and rehabilitation programmes. To challenge social evils from a Christian conscience.


5. To support efforts for peace in the world, and champion the principles of justice and equity


To stand against the proliferation of weapons of war, and to promote peace on earth and goodwill among men through every possible form of the ‘ministry of reconciliation’.


To oppose all forms of man’s inhumanity to man, and take even more seriously Christ’s call to clothe the naked, feed the hungry and shelter the homeless.


To withstand every form of prejudice – racial, tribal, national, sexist, economic and social.


To encourage salvationists to a new awareness of the interdependence of mankind and of our responsibility for each other. For those privileged to live in affluent communities to accept a simpler lifestyle so that they can contribute more sacrificially to those in need.


To speak out with courage where those in authority deny men and women their basic human rights and exploit the disadvantaged and inarticulate, whilst maintaining our traditional non-partisan political stance.


While mindful that the ultimate solution to these world problems is in God’s hands alone, our social action and compassionate service must be seen to be based in Christian motivation and witness.


6. To reaffirm the importance of our young people


To realise that our young people are a great resource of our movement, and the need to show them how important they are to us and to God.


To give them a priority in our Corps programming that they deserve.


To give them a voice in our advisory forums; to allow them scope to express their aspirations and interests.


To ensure that corps life, both junior and senior, is integrated in a total corps concept.


To provide training and education in the Scriptures and in the principles of Salvation Army life, as a sound basis for Christian experience and salvationist service.


To continue to place earnestly before our young people the challenge of the call to officership as the call of Christ himself to full-time ministry. This is a challenge which no young salvationist should refuse to face up to.








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