New Testament Church Proliferation Digest


Spreading the Gospel via House Churches


June 24, 2001 Vol 01 : 019

 

[New Testament Church Proliferation] Web pages? Resources?

Re: [New Testament Church Proliferation] Web pages? Resources?

[New Testament Church Proliferation] RE: Low-budget Church Planting

[New Testament Church Proliferation] spontaneous expansion

[New Testament Church Proliferation] Fw: Response

Re: [New Testament Church Proliferation] Web pages? Resources?

Re: [New Testament Church Proliferation] <Admin.> focus of the list

[New Testament Church Proliferation] Missions networking

 

Date: Thu, 21 Jun 2001 18:34:03 +0700 From: "Link"

Subject: [New Testament Church Proliferation] Web pages? Resources?

Hi,

A lot of the people on this list have web pages or other written resources that could be of help to church planters. I know there are several people on this forum who have house church sites with resources.

If you have a web page with church planting or related materials, feel free to post about it on this forum. Please tell us what type of materials are one your site. If you have written a church planting book, let us know about it.

Wouldn't it be great if there were a great website that could serve as a resource for discipleship, church planting, house churches, and Christian education? Think of all the materials out there that could be compiled- church planting training materials, Bible studies with verse references and good discussion questions, Christian education curriculums, etc.

I think a lot of church planters in third world countries could really use a Christian education curriculum that could be accessed for free (without severe copyright restrictions) through the world wide web. Every Christian should have a good grasp of the Christian faith. Every Christian should be given a chance to study the Bible through. If there were simple Christian education materials which helped learn about the Lord on the web, they could be translated into many language. The translations might even be compiled on web pages as well.

What do you think about that- a church planting web library? Does it sound like a good idea? Speaking hypothetically, what materials could we put on the web page? If you have written any such materials of your own, what would _you_ contribute?

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Date: Thu, 21 Jun 2001 09:04:50 -0400 From: "Michael Gastin"

Subject: Re: [New Testament Church Proliferation] Web pages? Resources?

Hi Link,

I think it is a great idea.

I would be willing to help. I can do some web page design and convert documents to Adobe Acrobat format. (PDF). Let me know if you want help like that.

Question: Does David Anderson's site hold the potential to become what you are talking about? Or do you see a separate site devoted to what you list as goals?

Mike - ------ Mike Gastin Moderator home churchmod*rochester.rr.nospam.com http://homechurch.org/newsgroup ICQ# 91065491

- ----- Original Message ----- From: "Link" Sent: Thursday, June 21, 2001 7:34 AM Subject: [New Testament Church Proliferation] Web pages? Resources?

Hi,

A lot of the people on this list have web pages or other written resources that could be of help to church planters. I know there are several people on this forum who have house church sites with resources.

If you have a web page with church planting or related materials, feel free to post about it on this forum. Please tell us what type of materials are one your site. If you have written a church planting book, let us know about it.

Wouldn't it be great if there were a great website that could serve as a resource for discipleship, church planting, house churches, and Christian education? Think of all the materials out there that could be compiled- church planting training materials, Bible studies with verse references and good discussion questions, Christian education curriculums, etc.

I think a lot of church planters in third world countries could really use a Christian education curriculum that could be accessed for free (without severe copyright restrictions) through the world wide web. Every Christian should have a good grasp of the Christian faith. Every Christian should be given a chance to study the Bible through. If there were simple Christian education materials which helped learn about the Lord on the web, they could be translated into many language. The translations might even be compiled on web pages as well.

What do you think about that- a church planting web library? Does it sound like a good idea? Speaking hypothetically, what materials could we put on the web page? If you have written any such materials of your own, what would _you_ contribute?


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Date: Thu, 21 Jun 2001 16:18:21 +0200 From: "Deborah"

Subject: [New Testament Church Proliferation] RE: Low-budget Church Planting

Link wrote in his June 20th post:

If we followed these simple, early-church techniques of church planting, what would we do with all the excess funds we received from our offerings? If we didn't spend a lot of money on church buildings and seminary educations, what could we possibly do with all the money churches would have?

In Acts, we see that early believers took up collections, and gave money to those among them who were in need. There was special attention paid to providing for widows, an area of great financial need at that time. We also see that supporting those who preached the Gospel was a financial priority in the early church. The early Gentile churches sent money back to Jerusalem for the poor saints there.

Link makes many good points in this essay. Though all of his arguments there are worthy of our attention, to a greater or lesser degree, the last part of his post is of special interest to me ... and should be, I think, to you. He wrote:

The early Gentile churches sent money back to Jerusalem for the poor saints there.<<

The question we need to answer is: "why to Jerusalem and not as a priority to other nearby countries' ministry cases?". Yes these congregations took care of their own poor and widows. Plus other domestic needs. Plus other distant congregations. But didn't the early church in lands outside of Israel also feel some degree of obligation to the Jews who had brought them the gospel? Wasn't it the Apostle to the gentiles who wrote: "For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem. It hath pleased them verily; and THEIR DEBTORS THEY ARE. For if the Gentiles have been made partakers of their spiritual things, THEIR DUTY is also to minister unto them in physical things" (Rom. 15:26, 27, emphasis mine). Anyone heard a lesson/sermon on these verses lately?

"Debtors" and "duty" are strong words. Is there any application of these verses for today? Are the non-Jewish churches around the world still "debtors" to the Jewish believers in Jerusalem? Is it still "their duty" to send their "physical" support to Jews in Israel who follow Jesus in appreciation for the non-Jews having received "spiritual things" (the gospel, the Bible, the Messiah, etc.) from them?

Many biblical scholars have drawn a connection between Paul's statement above, his drive to take an offering(s) to Jerusalem (1 Cor. 16:3; Gal. 2:10), his example in the book of Acts (Act 24:17), and those last day prophecies related to gentile nations sending/bringing their wealth to Jerusalem (Isa. 45:14; 60:5-15; 61:6; Mic. 4:4:13; 7:17; Zeph. 2:9; also non-biblical books such as Tobit 13:11; 1 Enoch 90.30; and 1QM 12.10-14 reflect this view) as Israel fulfills her God-given role as a light to the nations (Isa. 2:2; 49:6; 51:4; 56:6-8; 66:18, 19; Mic. 4:1; Zech. 2:11; 8:20-13; and non-biblical books such as Tobit 14:6, 7; 1 Enoch 90.30-33). I think they are on to something.

If, as I propose, we are presently "debtors" to the Jewish believers in Jerusalem, and it still remains our Christian "duty" to help those who are struggling there to make ends meet due to new immigration status, persecution from within the Jewish community, the conflict with some of the Arabs in the land, or other legitimate reasons, then what should we do with the surplus of money with which we may find ourselves since we do not have the overhead that many congregations with buildings have? If some early church examples from the Bible are not enough to grab our attention (Act 24:17; 1 Cor. 16:3; Gal. 2:10), how about a specific and non-time limited exhortation from the Apostle Paul (Rom. 15:26, 27)? If we are gentile Christians (that includes most of us on this list, including me) and there currently is a struggling Church in Jerusalem (I am an eye witness to this fact), and we have the monetary and/or other practical means to help them (this is where your conscience must come into play), then what's to prevent us from fulfilling Paul's oblique command ("debtors" "duty") to non-Jews? It would reflect our obligation to Christ's and Paul's brothers (and sisters) after the flesh (Heb. 2:11; Rom. 9:3) within a prophetic context that is not limited by preterist or futurist labels (see above). But more importantly, it would reflect our love for God (1 Joh. 3:17).

Link asked:

If we followed these simple, early-church techniques of church planting, what would we do with all the excess funds we received from our offerings?<<

Perhaps the answer lies in following the early church in another practical matter, by giving an offering to our struggling Jewish brothers and sisters in Jerusalem.

I can provide a non-denominational list of worthy congregations and ministries in Jerusalem to individuals reading this post who are interested in reinstating this biblical mandate to their churches ... or to their personal lives. These Jerusalem-based groups will in turn distribute your support to poor believers in Jesus throughout the land of Israel, provide job training to those Messianic Jews who are not elderly or infirm, provide housing and comfort to those few who, by taking a stand for their faith are kicked out of their families and hence the non-Messianic community support network. I assure you, I will see none of this money/support; I have nothing personal to gain from your giving. Just the satisfaction of knowing God's children around the world are aiding God's hurting children here in Israel. For information write me at: deborah.millier*juccampus.org

Michael

Jerusalem


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Date: Thu, 21 Jun 2001 11:26:40 -0400 From: David Anderson

Subject: [New Testament Church Proliferation] spontaneous expansion

The spontaneous expansion of the Church reduced to its elements is a very simple thing. It asks for no elaborate organizations, no large finances, no great numbers of paid missionaries. In its beginning it may be the work of one man, and that a man neither learned in the things of this world nor rich in the wealth of the world.

The organization of a little church on the apostolic model is also extremely simple. The most illiterate converts can use it and the poorest are sufficiently wealthy to maintain it. Only as it grows and spreads through large provinces and countries do any complex questions arise and they arise only as a church composed of many little churches is able to produce leaders prepared to handle them by experience learned in the smaller things.

There is no need at the beginning to talk of preparing leaders to face great national issues. By the time the issues have become great and complex the leaders of the little churches of today will have learned their lesson as they cannot possibly be taught it beforehand.

No one then, who feels within himself the call of Christ to embark on such a path as this need say, I am too ignorant, I am too inexperienced, I have too little influence, or I have not sufficient resources. The first apostles of Christ were in the eyes of the world 'unlearned and ignorant' men. It was not until the church had endured a persecution and had grown largely in numbers that Christ called a learned man to be His apostle. The missionaries who spread the Gospel and established the Church throughout the lands round the Mediterranean are not known to us as men of great learning or ability. Most of them are not known by name at all. Only when the Church had been established and had spread widely did Christ call the great doctors whose names are familiar to us by their writings or by their great powers of organization and government.

What is necessary is faith. What is needed is the kind of faith which, uniting a man to Jesus Christ, will be set on fire. Such a man can believe that others finding Christ will be set on fire also. Such a man can see there is no need of money to fill a continent with the knowledge of Christ.

From pages 156-157 of Roland Allen's "Spontaneous Expansion of the Church."

Forwarded by me, David Anderson, for your careful perusal.

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Date: Thu, 21 Jun 2001 19:04:52 -0500 From: "Dan Hubbell"

Subject: [New Testament Church Proliferation] Fw: Response

Link,

Per your request, I am sending our web-site to the ntchurch planter I will be delighted to encourage and help anyone needing information about our web-site which can be located at http://www.churchrestoration.org Everything on our site is available free as a gift from the Lord including, books, tapes, teachings and teaching guides and outlines, etc. We will soon have available for downloading all of our Biblical topical studies concerning the New Testament church (Approximately 1000+ target date is 2002).

We have been ministering among saints "meeting from house to house" since 1969(22 years). We make no claims of having all the answers because we are still on our "journey" with our Lord, discovering His Life and the Life of His Church to be unfathomable.

Love in Him,

Dan Hubbell His servant From "a hired house" in Winnsboro, Texas USA http://www.churchrestoration.org

- ----- Original Message ----- From: Link To: Dan Hubbell <ntc*churchrestoration.org> Sent: Thursday, June 21, 2001 6:12 PM Subject: Re: Response

Hi, brother,

Would you like to post information about your website on the list? That way, the church planters on the list could use the resources there?

Btw, you've got some good resources. Those categorized Bible verses are good for teaching. :)


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Date: Thu, 21 Jun 2001 18:58:56 -0700 From: "George & Denny Patterson"

Subject: Re: [New Testament Church Proliferation] Web pages? Resources?

Dear Link, Dr. Galen Currah, who mentors church planters and is also adjunct faculty at Western Seminary has been working on a similar project. You should be in touch with him: Galen*Currah.com

George Patterson

- ----- Original Message ----- From: "Link" To: <ntchurch planter> Sent: Thursday, June 21, 2001 4:34 AM Subject: [New Testament Church Proliferation] Web pages? Resources?

Hi,

A lot of the people on this list have web pages or other written resources that could be of help to church planters. I know there are several people on this forum who have house church sites with resources.

If you have a web page with church planting or related materials, feel free to post about it on this forum. Please tell us what type of materials are one your site. If you have written a church planting book, let us know about it.

Wouldn't it be great if there were a great website that could serve as a resource for discipleship, church planting, house churches, and Christian education? Think of all the materials out there that could be compiled- church planting training materials, Bible studies with verse references and good discussion questions, Christian education curriculums, etc.

I think a lot of church planters in third world countries could really use a Christian education curriculum that could be accessed for free (without severe copyright restrictions) through the world wide web. Every Christian should have a good grasp of the Christian faith. Every Christian should be given a chance to study the Bible through. If there were simple Christian education materials which helped learn about the Lord on the web, they could be translated into many language. The translations might even be compiled on web pages as well.

What do you think about that- a church planting web library? Does it sound like a good idea? Speaking hypothetically, what materials could we put on the web page? If you have written any such materials of your own, what would _you_ contribute?

------- <><><> -------

Date: Fri, 22 Jun 2001 03:59:45 EDT From: SteveMSpaulding

Subject: Re: [New Testament Church Proliferation] <Admin.> focus of the list

Following on John White's latest helpful pointers to studies of early home church phenomena, one book which might interest a number of you is Rodney Stark's The Rise of Christianity (I've leant it out so don't have publisher info handy). He's a sociologist studying the data from the explosion of the first couple centuries church--some very encouraging and unconventional insight here; mind you none of us will necessarily agree with all of his conclusions or even data, but I believe it's germaine to the contemporary home church development, and he is widely respected for his work.

sms

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Date: Sun, 24 Jun 2001 17:36:00 +0700 From: "Link"

Subject: [New Testament Church Proliferation] Missions networking

Several years ago I read _The Open Church_ which is about having church meetings where all participate and where regular believers can speak. The book really opened up my eyes. After reading it, I began to see other evidence in the Bible for mutually participatory meetings.

The book suggested a strategy to send regular believers to other countries to get jobs and help plant churches.

Later, I began to see on house church lists that there are lots of small house churches in the US that probably have little connection to missions fields. Denominations have missions programs. Some home church's might also have no outlet for missions funds.

I have some missions contacts here in Indonesia. I might be able to help if some 'regular Christians' wanted to come over here as English teachers or exporters.

Does anyone know people who want to serve on missions fields, planting home church's for example, or just helping spread the Gospel by living as a Christian in a foreign country?

There are probably some other people on this list who know of areas where home church people in the US and elsewhere could go to do some missions work.

Link

End of New Testament Church Proliferation Digest V1 #19




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