Small Church Movement Gains Momentum

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by Dr. Bob, Mar 3, 2006.

  1. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2000
    Messages:
    29,402
    Likes Received:
    12
  2. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    I read that article today.. What they are talking about is not really a small church, but home churches without Pators, or anyone in authority. That is not church.. That is small group discussions. Actually it is rebellion against God's mandates on what a church should look like.. They are a growing breed of Christians that don't like traditional church.

    From the article: "Now, however, some experts look at groups like Jeanine Pynes'--spreading in parts of Colorado, Southern California, Texas and probably elsewhere--and muse, What if the cell groups decided to lose the mother church?"

    There is nothing wrong with cell groups as long as they are under the authority of the mother church.. But to willingly want to seperate without a pastor, is like a arm or leg wanting to seperate from the body and say, "I am now a body" No, you are a part of the body..

    This is breeding grounds for cults..

    If you put a group of 8 people together, a leader will emerge.. if it is the wrong type of leader they can lead the group into false doctrine.. That is why we ordain clergy!

    Now I am not against small groups, but small groups that call themselves "churches" and don't have a pastor, or even want one, is just unbiblical.
     
  3. JGrubbs

    JGrubbs
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2004
    Messages:
    4,761
    Likes Received:
    0
    Do you have any Scripture to back up your accusations that these home churches are not churches? Isn't the body of Christ, the Church? Where in the Bible does it say that a group of believers have to be "under the authority of the mother church"? I just finished reading a good book about this topic from George Barna titled Revolution.

    David Alan Black has posted two great new essays on his Web site that deal with this topic, "Reformation, Revival, or Restoration?" and "Church as Meetinghouse".

    On February 8th and 9th Dr. Michael Green spoke at the Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary chapel services. On Feb. 8th he shares a message about "The Church God Uses" from Acts 11, and on Feb. 9th he shares a great message about "The Leaders God Uses" from Acts 20. You can find these messages online here:

    http://www.sebts.edu/chapel/chapelMessages.cfm

    Whatever you call it (house church, home church, simple church, family church, relational church, organic church, micro church, biblical church, etc.), the idea is to be faithful to the intent of the original Apostles in our church life. This can be done with any size congregation, meeting at any location as long as the New Testament model is followed instead of the modern day church model. There are many great resources available online to help us learn more about being the Church like God intended.

    http://www.unleashingthechurch.com/
    http://www.theschoolofchrist.org/
    http://www.homediscipleship.org/
    http://www.house2house.com/
    http://www.lifestream.org/
    http://www.ntrf.org/
     
  4. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    Do these churches have Pastors?
     
  5. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    I believe these verses apply:

    Eph 4:11-14 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; (12) For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ (13) Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: (14) That we [henceforth] be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, [and] cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

    Without pastors, a group will be tossed to and fro, and will not be edified.
     
  6. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2000
    Messages:
    29,402
    Likes Received:
    12
    Good points. The man who desired a new church here in town did not start one for that very reason. No one knew what direction it would take.

    When I volunteered to help lead and organize, it was the two of us but WITH direction and biblical position.

    We ARE a church and not a small group per se, but I've seen MANY that are just like this group in Colorado or as you describe.
     
  7. PastorBrad

    PastorBrad
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2005
    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    0
    NAMB has put out on there website I believe a document that is Ecclesiological in nature that basically gives there definition for what a church is; whatever that is worth.
     
  8. JGrubbs

    JGrubbs
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2004
    Messages:
    4,761
    Likes Received:
    0
    The Bible clearly rejects our clergy-laity divide. All members of the local church are to function in the body according to the grace given unto them (Rom 12:1-8). The church is a temple in which every Christian is a “priest” who offers spiritual “sacrifices” to God (1 Pet 2:5, 9). According to the New Testament, all Christians do the work of ministry through the exercise of spiritual gifts. Whatever legitimate distinction can be made between leaders and led (e.g., 1 Thess 5:12-13) does not negate the fundamental truth of the priesthood of all believers.

    Only the shared leadership model is taught in the New Testament, for only shared leadership promotes the New Covenant priesthood through manifesting Christ as the only true Head of the church (Col 1:18).

    Source: David Alan Black

    I had always assumed that the one-Pastor system, being the pattern followed in the overwhelming majority of churches today, was founded upon Scripture. But as I began to earnestly study the Scriptures on the issue of church leadership, one disturbing question kept intruding itself-a question I present here for the sober consideration of the reader. Where in Scripture is there warrant for one man to be the spiritual leader and authority over the local church?

    Never mind that this is the pattern unquestioningly followed throughout Christendom today. Where is it in Scripture? As I searched the length and breadth of the New Testament, it became obvious to me that such a pattern was nowhere to be found. Rather, I found that the primary role in shepherding the New Testament churches was exercised, not by a solitary Pastor, but by a plurality of men, described as "elders" or overseers

    Source: Mark Frees
     
  9. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    If God didn't want pastors in the church, then why did he place them in it?
     
  10. JGrubbs

    JGrubbs
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2004
    Messages:
    4,761
    Likes Received:
    0
    As one who was raised in the church, attended Christian school most of my life and served as a Youth Pastor for over four years, I understand your argument, I have used it before myself.

    But I also am one who has been involved in "home church", "simple church", "family church", whatever you want to call it for the last two years since the Lord led me away from the youth ministry.

    Just like there are many dangerous and cult like institutional churches, there are also some dangerous and cult like house churches. You can't however toss them all out based on the fact that they don't follow the traditional American model of church. In the last two years that I have been outside of the institutional church I have found that we can be edified through fellowship, Bible study, learning how to "be the Church", even without being a member of a "mother church" or without a senior pastor over us.
     
  11. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    I honestly see the appeal of a home church.. It is truly liberating, and it is easy to accomplish what the group wants, because it is small. But who preaches? Who leads?
     
  12. JGrubbs

    JGrubbs
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2004
    Messages:
    4,761
    Likes Received:
    0
    In my home church I teach, when we meet with other families one of the other fathers may teach. Most of the home church networks that I have come into contact do have "pastors" or "edlers", usually the fathers of the various households, who hold one another accountable. Yes, you will find some bad house churches out there, but not all of them are bad, most that I have found are simply moving away from the modern day commercial American model of church and moving back to the Biblical New Testement model of Church.

    I would encourage you to read the article I linked in my post above from David Alan Black:

    http://www.daveblackonline.com/church_as_meetinghouse.htm

    Dave is not some dangerous cult leader trying to lead people astray, he is currently Professor of New Testament and Greek at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina. He has also taught courses at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, Lancaster Bible College, Fuller Theological Seminary, Talbot School of Theology, Simon Greenleaf University, Criswell College, Freie Hochschule für Mission (Germany), Tyndale Theological Seminary (Holland), Bibelschule Walzenhausen (Switzerland), IEM Bible College (India), Chong Shin Theological Seminary (Korea), Faith Theological Seminary (Korea), Cosin Theological Seminary (Korea), Evangelical Theological College (Ethiopia), and at other institutions. In addition, he has lectured at the Complutensian University in Spain and the Universities of Oxford and Leeds in England.

    http://www.daveblackonline.com/about_bio.htm

    "Every Christian family ought to be, as if it were, a little church." --Jonathan Edwards
     
  13. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    I guess we are just going to have to disagree.. I truly wish you well.
     
  14. JGrubbs

    JGrubbs
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2004
    Messages:
    4,761
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thank you for your kindess and respect!! We can agree to disagree, and still lift one another up in prayer, looking forward to the day when we will all worship togther in Heaven!
     
  15. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree! I guess that is one place that no pastor will be need!!

    (just kidding) lol
     
  16. JGrubbs

    JGrubbs
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2004
    Messages:
    4,761
    Likes Received:
    0
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  17. JGrubbs

    JGrubbs
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2004
    Messages:
    4,761
    Likes Received:
    0
    CHRISTIAN LIBRARY AND RESEARCH CENTER MARKS HOUSE CHURCH IMPACT

    As a non-denominational Christian library and research center, the Christian Heritage Center (CHC) has hosted believers of all stripes: Pentecostals, fundamentalists, orthodox, mainline and everyone in between. Among those utilizing the center’s 25,000 books, videos, DVDs, and CDs, as well as its 2,500-book archive of works dating back to the early 1500s, are Christians who worship in house churches.

    To mark the importance of house churches—which have been a part of Christianity since the earliest days following Pentecost—the center has proclaimed March as House Church Month.

    While many view the house church as a modern day phenomena, in reality it dates back to the days of Peter, Paul, and John.

    “The house church was one of the primary meeting places used by the church for the first few centuries,” says Greg Humphries, founder of the CHC. “They were there at the beginning and they’re here now. We believe it is important to honor their contribution to the advancement of the Gospel over the past two thousand years.”

    Humphries says the New Testament bears out the existence of early house churches.

    “There are four verses in particular that mention the church being in somebody’s home,” according to Humphries. “Solomon’s Porch, the synagogues, and the marketplace were all used for evangelism but the meeting place for the believers was in a home. In fact, the very first meeting of the church took place in a house, in the upper room as told in Acts 1.” The Bible shows that the apostle Paul urged believers to “greet the church that is in (Aquila and Priscilla’s) house” (Romans 16:3-5).

    One of the early church fathers, Clement of Alexandria, speaks in his writings of a house being used as a place of worship. Likewise, a private house in Dura-Europos (near Baghdad) was excavated in the 1930’s and was found to be used as a Christian meeting place in AD 232, with one small room serving as the baptistery.

    Source: ASSIST News Service
     
  18. Paul33

    Paul33
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2004
    Messages:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    0
    Why can't we have house churches (small groups with Bible study, prayer and outreach) and the gathering of these house churches in corporate worship?

    The Book of Acts seems to see both as necessary - small groups and corporate gatherings.
     
  19. blackbird

    blackbird
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2002
    Messages:
    11,898
    Likes Received:
    2
    The majority of what a "house church" is ---can be found in the Mormon church!!

    Be careful, boys!! Its usually the snake that you DON'T see---that injects the poison!!!
     
  20. David Singleton

    David Singleton
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2004
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    Where ever two or more are gathered in my name...
     

Share This Page

Loading...