home churches --- is it what God prefers?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by jprieto, Jul 28, 2011.

  1. jprieto

    jprieto
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    i just got a free ebook from amazon.com about home churches

    it's flooded with verses proving that God prefers small home churches with elders ... rather than a one-leader-based gathering at a local building, or mega building as it is popular these days

    its teaches that the weekly sabath day meeting was for a whole meal to be shared by a small group in the home of one of the believers

    that such created warmth and real support, and real "getting to know each other" than in a large setting

    so i was thinking of starting my own home church

    however, im smart enough to know to seek counsel on this first

    so i come to you all for biblical advise on the subject

    thanks
    :praying: on this
     
  2. beameup

    beameup
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    Give it a try. I'm sure that the Holy Spirit will guide you.

    A thought "popped into my head" a few days ago. I'll be moving into a new neighborhood on the 1st.
    The "idea" is to mail letters to all the neighbors on the block stating that I'm starting a small group.
    I've never done this before, I'm just following the "inspiration".
     
  3. ktn4eg

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    I'm not sure that God necessarily "prefers" home churches, but many churches have started out that way.

    We have a corporate Sunday meeting, but then we also have many small groups that usually meet in homes during the week. This seems to work for us since it affords us a means of not only getting to know each other on a more personal level, but also as a way to invite "outsiders" that may not want to attend a "formal" church service.

    I'm inclined to believe that the way that a congregation "does church" is up to that particular congregation. What may work for some may not work for others.

    In your case, why don't you try it first to see if it works?
     
  4. TCGreek

    TCGreek
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    If your desire to start your own church is based on the reading of this book, then you better be careful.

    Check in with God first through prayer and the study of his Word, then come back to BB.
     
  5. jprieto

    jprieto
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    this is the way to go

    yes ... this isthe way to go
     
  6. David Lamb

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    Just an initial thought:

    Whether a church is large or small, one-leader-based or not, warm and supportive or not, doesn't depend on whether it is what you call a home church or not, though clearly unless the home is a vast mansion, there will be limits on size. (In the UK, we would probably say "house church"; missionaries, students, and other Christians temporarily away from home use the phrase "home church" to mean the church in which they are members).
     
  7. matt wade

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    First, you read a book and decide that you want to start your own home church. Then ktn4eg posts that they have a regular corporate church meeting and then home meetings and you say "yes ... this isthe way to go". You've started threads such as "When we die, where we go? Confused again!" and "Where we go when we die?".

    You are blowing in the wind my friend. I suggest you get a firm handle on what you believe and why you believe it before you start anything.
     
  8. glfredrick

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    Couple of thoughts...

    Are those passages "description" or "prescription." In other words, is God saying "This is EXACTLY how to do church?" or is God saying, "This is how the early church got started?"

    Also, it should be noted, that while individual sections of the congregation often met in homes, they also met corporately when possible, and the ENTIRE city was considered ONE church (or congregation). It was the "church in Jerusalem," the "church in Antioch," or the "church in Ephesus," not Joe Schmo and Jane Doe's house church.

    Third, research has shown that the church was indeed a "mega-church" very early on in its history, with Jerusalem congregation exceeding 15,000 and Antioch exceeding 20,000 members. One can only wonder how many were in Rome, Ephesus, Corinth, etc., but I (and others who have studied church history) would expect the numbers to be much higher than what might be realized from mere house churches.

    And, fourth, in our current church, we meet in homes during the week and gather corporately on Sunday. We have home groups (called Community Groups) that have between 6 and 20+ individuals meeting all over the metro area of Louisville and Southern Indiana. When any one area grows enough groups to support another worship gathering, we will either start another service or plant another church. That is, in large part, how our 10-year-old church plant has grown to an average attendance of 2500+.

    Each member gets individual attention from a pastoral staff, including counseling (I just did some marriage counseling work with a couple last night in the group that I lead), discipline, fellowship, ministry opportunities, prayer, and worship. Our very large church is also very small and very connected!
     
  9. JesusFan

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    Sounds like author of that book just might hold to the olcal "local assembly of believers" only "true Church!"

    My understanding is that the Church is really the saints of God who are already in Body of Christ, so local gathering like cells fine, it just that God has no "favored" way, as wether in a Building, house, basements, eyc whereevr a group of Christian meet is NOT the issue, as God still in their midst, as already part of the "Church!"

    Would say that we should gather together with a pastor, praise and worship/elders present though!
     
  10. Alive in Christ

    Alive in Christ
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    There can be excellant, and also not so excellant, home churchs, just like there can be both excellent and not so excellant "normal" churches.

    In my experience the one house church I was involved with was absolutely WONDERFULL! One of the richest spiritual experiences of my life.
     
  11. JesusFan

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    Just curious...

    Who handles "Pastoral" duties in Home Church?
     
  12. Earth Wind and Fire

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    Id like to start one.... how do you go about it?
     
  13. David Lamb

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    I imagine the same person/people who would handle them if the church hired a meeting-place (as my church does, in a local primary school) or owns a chapel of its own.
     
  14. glfredrick

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    There are two ways to start (well, there are as many ways as there are churches...), one of which is to find the group to whom you wish to associate, then contact them and begin working with their church planting division (or in the case of a non-associative body, a local church will fill this role).

    A second way is to simply start by inviting some people to a Bible study, begin working through the Scriptures, especially regarding the starting of a new congregation (Acts is a great place to start) and as you go, ask those attending the study to think of others whom might be invited. As the group grows, in both spiritual knowledge and also in loving relationship, pose the question, "What if we constituted as a local congregation?" You can be more or less up front about the idea -- there is much room for movement in either direction -- so you could invite people to a Bible study and let them know that you have a new church start in mind, or you could invite them, then later pose the question.

    In either case, you would be doing much of the work of starting the new church, and you might also end up as the pastor of that church. God will make that abundantly clear as time goes on -- He will either provide a man or He will equip you. Should be no real fear in any of this -- what's the worst that could happen -- nothing? :laugh:

    IF one choses the second route, after making the decision to constitute as a local congregation, find some existing church or body with which to join, partner, associate with, etc., for the sake of joint fellowship, aid in accomplishing some of the larger tasks of a church start, such as legal requirements, and for the expertise that any give group has (or should have if they've every started a new congregation).

    It really is that simple.

    There are also a myriad of informational sources out there to help with the process. Since I've been working with Ed Stetzer for over a decade, I'll post his most excellent church planting website and also the North American Mission Board (NAMB) of the SBC's website as a couple places to begin. You do not have to be SBC to use these resources, and they are most pleased to share with others. Since I've known Ed, he has presented church planting material to almost every denomination and sect under the sun.

    http://www.newchurches.com/
    http://edstetzer.com/
    http://www.churchplantingvillage.net/church-planters/
     
  15. Earth Wind and Fire

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    In either case, you would be doing much of the work of starting the new church, and you might also end up as the pastor of that church. God will make that abundantly clear as time goes on -- He will either provide a man or He will equip you. Should be no real fear in any of this -- what's the worst that could happen -- nothing?

    God forbid.... Cheat, liar, murderer, crude. obscene, thief drunk,fornicator, NO NO NO. I dont even like grits.:(
     
  16. Alive in Christ

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    There are home churchs that are excellent, and others that are not as good, just like with "normal" churches.

    The only home church I have been a part of was absolutely wonderfull.

    One of the spiritual highlights of my christian experience.
     
  17. DHK

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    The early church was a persecuted church. They met wherever they could: homes, fields, and even cemeteries (the Catacombs). It was not until about 250 years after the death of the apostles that buildings were erected solely for the use of churches to meet in, and for their use.

    Also their are some cults who use the "house-church" method of spreading their poisonous doctrine rapidly throughout a specific area, like a city, and then go on to do the same in another city. They end up having man "house-churches throughout cities usually listening to tapes of one leader.

    Be sure you know what you are getting into. Our church was started in a house. But within a short time it grew. We then met in a community center, and now we have our own building which will seat up to 300. Growth is a good thing. "The Lord added to the church (at Jerusalem) daily such as should be saved. He didn't confine it the area of one house.
     
  18. JesusFan

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    Amen!
    make sure its NOT a "just us no more"{ group, that they have a leader who has "peculiar" doctrines, and think they are the "true believers!"
     
  19. glfredrick

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    Yeah, so what... Perhaps the first Bible study should be on forgiveness and repentance, plus the new creation that we are in Christ:

    9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate , nor homosexuals, 10 nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.
    1 Cor 6:9-11 (NASB)


    When God washes, sanctifies, and justifies in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the power of the Holy Spirit, we are BRAND NEW and capable of becoming pastors and teachers!

    Ask me how I know... :saint:
     
  20. glfredrick

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    3000 on one day, 5000 on another, plus all the women and children who were not (typically) counted in that culture. :jesus::jesus:
     

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