Wednesday, June 20

Basic Principles For Church Planting

With the current "church planting" focus of so many churches and organizations these days, my head spins with the myriad approaches, theories, methodologies, strategies, etc. The Thin Edge Of The Wedge recently shared some basic principles for church planting. Grasping these six principles is pretty much all one really needs to know about church planting -- if we would actually put them into practice!
  1. Recognize that every Christian is “called” to communicate the Gospel message wherever they currently live and work. That’s the “Great Commission,” so why look for a lesser one? You don’t need anyone else’s permission, since God trumps everyone, and you certainly don’t need an assessment to share the Gospel.

  2. Continue in your present occupation (1 Corinthians 7:17-23), so you can meet your obligations, particularly the one that requires YOU to take care of your family (1 Timothy 5:8) and share with those in need (Romans 12:13; Ephesians 4:28). Ministry is not a career path for those seeking a comfortable salary, benefits, and a retirement plan!

  3. Act on principle number one and begin sharing the Gospel with your neighbors, friends, co-workers, and family members. There is usually no need to go anywhere else, because your world is already full of people who don’t know Jesus! Yes, it’s okay to relocate, as long as you remember principle number two OR a group of believers voluntarily agrees to support you as a missionary in another culture where it is unlikely that you would be allowed to take jobs away from the indigenous people group to whom you are being sent.

  4. Since God has promised to provide a harvest for those who labor like this in His vineyard, begin to disciple/teach those who express an interest in spiritual things, expecting the power of the Gospel and the work of the Holy Spirit to bring them to repentance and faith.

  5. Meet together with these new believers on a regular basis (Hebrews 10:24-25), thinking of creative ways in which you can stimulate one another to love and minister to others, as well as encouraging each other in the Christian journey.

  6. Teach every new believer how to follow the above principles!

2 comments:

WTJeff said...

Guy,

I really love the simplicity of all you do and how the focus is on God, His word, and what He has been doing in the lives of His own. With the help of a furloughed IMB missionary, I hope to start some organic churches right here in the bible belt this fall. I have no idea how to make this work in our context, but I look forward to trying to figure it out!! What you are doing there will be our starting place here.

Grace and peace,

Jeff Parsons
Amarillo, TX

GuyMuse said...

Jeff,

That is great about your wanting to start some organic/simple/house churches there in Amarillo. My advise would be to focus on reaching the lost for the new church start, and not existing believers. There is just too much baggage with believers coming out of existing churches. The other piece of advise is to keep it simple. Neil Cole says, "
"Simple is transferable; complex breaks down." Any believer should be able to start a church by heeding to the above list of simple principles.