House Churches...Your Opinions

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by Gregory Perry Sr., Jun 27, 2005.

  1. Gregory Perry Sr.

    Gregory Perry Sr.
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    Brothers and Sisters...lately I have seen some rather interesting stuff online about a growing "movement" towards House Churches and people leaving the more "traditional" church setting with its big buildings and programs.The sentiments I have seen and read of seem to be pointing towards folks getting back towards something that more closely resembles the early churchs in practice and polity choosing to assemble in smaller more intimate groups for worship and fellowship.The ones that have gotten my curiousity up are groups that would be considered "baptistic"in their doctrine and practice.I don't have any specific links to share at this time...I'll try to put some together...but for now I was wondering if any of the rest of you had encountered any of this and what your opinions are in that regard.It does seem to me like a lot of the denominational interest of our day revolves around big flashy "programs",big flashy church facilities and questionable denominationalism.I'm a Baptist(and not ashamed of it)in faith and practice but I do question if we haven't gotten too far away from what a New Testament church should really be....in practice and appearance.Share your ideas and opinions and any links or info you have.The big question is.....Have we gotten too steeped in our "traditions" in this generation and departed from being strictly scriptural?For the record...I do believe in the concept and existence of "the LOCAL church"(bodies of believers...NOT buildings)AND the concept of the universal church(regardless of denomination..ALL the saved born again believers ARE a part of it as the FAMILY of God,and the Bride of Christ).I don't believe these two views conflict with each other if viewed in a BALANCED manner.
    Anyway...give us your views on House Churches as opposed to or in addition to traditional denominational "churches"...Baptist or otherwise.

    :rolleyes: [​IMG] Greg Sr. [​IMG]
     
  2. OCC

    OCC
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    Like 'em. [​IMG] Wish I could find one.

    I feel everyone has a better chance of growing in that context. There is no hiding in the pew. And instead of sitting for a half hour while the pastor preaches, I believe the whole group of people are supposed to gather around and share songs, prayers, teaching, etc. I'm all for them.
     
  3. BillyMac

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    Is this the same thing as "cell groups" or "home groups"??? These that I speak of don't take the place of regular services at the local church building but meet one or two nights a week at someone's house for a Bible Study and prayer meeting.

    If that is what you talking about then I think that was first begun by a Korean whose last name was Dr. Cho. He began doing that maybe as early as the mid 70s or so. I was introduced to it in the late 80s. You could go to any number of groups that were sponsored by our church, but mainly you would be assigned a group leader who lived closest to where you lived or whose group needed members. They weren't allowed to get very big and overflowing.

    I really liked this concept and got much out of such a group and on Sunday's then we would all meet at the church for regular morning and evening services.
     
  4. 4His_glory

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    Most of them are not churches but groups of believers who have a problem with God's ordained institution for this age. They do not fulfill the Great Commission, they do not support Missions, they do not have pastors, and they have a poor understanding of Scripture.

    Now there is a differance between a church that meets in a house, and a home church.
     
  5. gb93433

    gb93433
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    I have yet to see one truly function as a church without becoming ingrown.
     
  6. GrannyGumbo

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    Liberty Baptist Church, an independent Independent Baptist assembly, meets in a house. We were given scriptural authority from a church in another state, we have an ordained pastor who does not take a salary, but is self-employed; we support missionaries, preachers and brethren with a need, we have an active street ministry, host a weekly radio broadcast, as well as writing regular newspaper articles and a heavy tract ministry. We also just held our first real Campmeeting, though we've hosted smaller meetings in the past. We are not a 501c3 organization. We do not have a sunday school, but our morning service is solid Bible teaching, with families intact. We sing the old hymns and our children quote Bible verses. We are the smallest, most despised, "yet well-known" church in northeast Louisiana.

    Granny~a member of a Sword-wielding remnant Church instead of a "purpose-driven" mega-church.
     
  7. WallyGator

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    There are as many types of "house" churches as different Baptist denominations.
     
  8. Magnetic Poles

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    I think there is a higher chance of a group becoming cultic in such isolation from other bodies of believers and some accountability.

    The Branch Davidians and the Jonestown, Guyana cults started out as legitimate congregations that operated under some degree of isolation. They were not "house churches", but there is that danger.
     
  9. exscentric

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    "I think there is a higher chance of a group becoming cultic in such isolation from other bodies of believers and some accountability."

    Let's see the small group that meets in a home is more likely to become cultic than the small group that has a church building.

    Interesting at the least, a tad absurd at the other end of the spectrum.

    Hundreds of churches across the nation were started in homes, and when they outgrew the house they moved to meeting halls/auditoriums, then to buildings. Been going on for years.

    The newer movements, some being cultic, but not because of meeting in houses, are as has been stated a move away traditional churches toward a more New Testament concept.

    There is closeness that can't be fostered in the normal church setting.

    There are cell groups, but these are normally churches that split into groups for a service a week to try to develop closeness.

    If a group operates under the principles of the New Testament it is a church whether it meets in the seventh day adventist church, the home of a member, a grange hall, the city park or a church building.
     
  10. JGrubbs

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    I was raised in the institutional church, even served for about four and half years as a youth pastor in a small Southern Baptist church, before the Lord called my wife and I out of the institutional church and back to the basics of the New Testament Church.

    There are lot's of great resources available online:

    http://www.house2house.net/
    http://www.lifestream.org/
    http://www.ntrf.org/
    http://www.watchman.net/
    http://www.therealchurch.com/
    http://www.daveblackonline.com/unleashing.htm

    All of those in house churches that I have met do a great job of fulfilling the Great Commission, they do support missions, recognize the Biblical practice of eldership over singular pastoral leadersip, and have a much better understanding of Scripture than most pew warmers.
     
  11. Gregory Perry Sr.

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    Thanks folks...this is the kind of discussion I was hoping to foster...keep it up! One thing I'd like to throw in here is that a legitimate case could be made that many "traditional churches" have a high percentage of unregenerate people warming pews and many pastors spend far more time preaching the "basics" of the gospel or salvation messages when they maybe ought to be "feeding" the sheep (the SAVED ones).I think it is obvious that the early New Testament churches were "evangelistic"...but they did it more WITHOUT...than WITHIN.And folks...Sunday School,though NOT a bad thing,has no real scriptural precedent.The early churches were for believers...that had been won beyond the walls more often than not.Just my opinion based on my own reading of scripture.With churches it seems sometimes that the bigger they get,the weaker they get...although I'm sure there must be exceptions to that.

    Greg Sr.
     
  12. Rachel

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    Greg Sr.,

    This is a wonderful thread. It's funny but I've been thinking about the same things as you have said in your posts. Last week I was talking to a lady that is in one in another state. Interesting.
     
  13. James_Newman

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    I think there may come a day when all who will serve God may have to do so in a house church.
     
  14. PastorSBC1303

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    Anywhere a church is at...in a home...in a larger building...there is going to be the problem of having unregenerate members.
     
  15. Marcia

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    I would be very wary of any house church or house church movement that denigrates regular churches or christians who meet in regular churches. This is always a sign of spiritiual elitism and is divisive, and is not from the Lord.
     
  16. Rachel

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    Why would that be elitism or divisive? Why would that be different than meeting in a small office building or something like that?
     
  17. exscentric

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    "I would be very wary of any house church or house church movement that denigrates regular churches or christians who meet in regular churches. This is always a sign of spiritiual elitism and is divisive, and is not from the Lord."

    And that goes as well to the traditional church that denigrates house churches :)
     
  18. Aaron

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    I have no opinion. Whether they meet in a house, or whether they fragment and build another building, what's the difference?
     
  19. Gregory Perry Sr.

    Gregory Perry Sr.
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    :rolleyes:

     
  20. Lorelei

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    Many home churches are governed by the principles and examples of the New Testament. The NT church met in homes. The home church can and does focus on missions. While they may not have the financial resources of a large church they also have NO expenses to run the church. Elders lead the teaching and receive no pay for doing it. They are then free to use all of their offerings for the furtherance of the gospel, missions, helping the needy and whatever else their heart feels burdened with.

    We must remember, the "church" building, pews, hymnals, pianos, all the stuff we think as "traditional" was not present in the New Testament. All of that came later. Many home churches more closely resemble the NT church than many of the 'traditional' churches of our day.

    ~Lorelei
     

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