What if Christians met in each others homes instead of a big expensive building?

  • Christian Chat is a moderated online Christian community allowing Christians around the world to fellowship with each other in real time chat via webcam, voice, and text, with the Christian Chat app. You can also start or participate in a Bible-based discussion here in the Christian Chat Forums, where members can also share with each other their own videos, pictures, or favorite Christian music.

    If you are a Christian and need encouragement and fellowship, we're here for you! If you are not a Christian but interested in knowing more about Jesus our Lord, you're also welcome! Want to know what the Bible says, and how you can apply it to your life? Join us!

    To make new Christian friends now around the world, click here to join Christian Chat.
R

Ralph-

Guest
#81
The early Church would disagree with you! Acts 2v40-47.
They did what they had to. We don't have to. We have more opportunities to meet than they had in the 1st century. Better ones.

The advantages of renting a public space downtown far outweigh meeting in a home.
 
R

Ralph-

Guest
#82
I was once a member of a house group (was not replacing church...just a bonus feature) that I REALLY liked. we would meet in different houses of people who went once a week. we would pray for each other, listen to each other, try to help each other if someone really was looking for advice...there was an atmosphere of real Christian love and support in that group

then...the brother of the man who had started this group came along and established himself as the leader instead because he had a piece of paper to wave.

he decided a proper church was in order ... I mean come on! that was such an opportunity for him...I mean for God

anyway, he took over because the brother was 'just' a counsellor and he, after all, had already proven his pastor credentials somewhere else (that's always a red flag IMO) and so a church began. I could say alot about that.

eventually myself and a few others stopped going where we had been going because you cannot split yourself in half on a Sunday morning. we met in his house.

Reader's Digest version: he never ever one single time that I can recall gave one single message or study. he promised more than once to do so, but it was a non event. his wife seemed to be a big determining factor in his decisions

big history...blah blah yada yada etc...and not ONE single original member of the group is still there last I heard

I moved far away. they moved from the house to an old movie building they bought or rented not sure which

if anyone reads this and it seems familiar, you can get riled up all over again even though I never said a word to you or really anyone else...I moved after all

but a genuine 'ministry' as an aside to church involvement had been started and was just grabbed by someone who ruined it

prob happens all the time :(
This illustrates well what I believe--the church is the pastor's/leader's church. Which is a good thing because if they blow it, or they simply aren't called to the elder/pastoral ministry that church should fail and not exist anymore.
 
R

Ralph-

Guest
#83
I was once a member of a house group (was not replacing church...just a bonus feature) that I REALLY liked. we would meet in different houses of people who went once a week. we would pray for each other, listen to each other, try to help each other if someone really was looking for advice...there was an atmosphere of real Christian love and support in that group
Just imagine a whole church that met and ran like this!

People, you'll never go back to the traditional church model for meeting after you've experienced it. Unless you have no choice. Then after a while of trying to be accommodating in the name of peace you'll realize you're starving to death and you won't do even that anymore.
 
7

7seasrekeyed

Guest
#84
Just imagine a whole church that met and ran like this!

People, you'll never go back to the traditional church model for meeting after you've experienced it. Unless you have no choice. Then after a while of trying to be accommodating in the name of peace you'll realize you're starving to death and you won't do even that anymore.

peace can be an evasive thing and is sadly spelled compromise many times
 
7

7seasrekeyed

Guest
#85
This illustrates well what I believe--the church is the pastor's/leader's church. Which is a good thing because if they blow it, or they simply aren't called to the elder/pastoral ministry that church should fail and not exist anymore.

the 'church' I wrote about filled up with people who were born followers

I'm sure you know what I mean
 

jb

Senior Member
Feb 27, 2010
4,133
229
63
#86
They did what they had to. We don't have to. We have more opportunities to meet than they had in the 1st century. Better ones.

The advantages of renting a public space downtown far outweigh meeting in a home.
The fact that the early Church met in houses for their informal fellowship meetings is off divine origin (Matt 26v17-30, Luke 22v7-13, 1Cor chapters 11-14), it was the pattern laid down by the Lord Jesus in the Upper Room for the Last Supper and which the Church followed for almost 300 years until 313 AD when Constantine issued The Edict of Toleration (Milan). Up until 313AD the Church enjoyed continuous revival, however after that, it tailed off with only intermittent revival over the coming centuries.

There is only 1 mention off any kind off public building being used (by Paul), and that was the school/hall of Tyrannus for the purpose of evangelism, the Christians still met in their homes for their informal fellowship meetings.

The Church in its wisdom has strayed far from the Lord's pattern which He Himself laid down, and has paid a terrible price for such folly, which is a dead form of godliness!

When the Church returns to the Word of God (from men's own worldly wisdom) and the pattern laid down in it, then their will be revival, for the Word of God is His Truth to the Church throughout every generation, and we will certainly get the same results as the early Church IF we follow it!

For those interested you can find a study Here on the government, ministries and practices of the early Church.
 
R

Ralph-

Guest
#87
The fact that the early Church met in houses for their informal fellowship meetings is off divine origin (Matt 26v17-30, Luke 22v7-13, 1Cor chapters 11-14), it was the pattern laid down by the Lord Jesus in the Upper Room for the Last Supper and which the Church followed for almost 300 years until 313 AD when Constantine issued The Edict of Toleration (Milan). Up until 313AD the Church enjoyed continuous revival, however after that, it tailed off with only intermittent revival over the coming centuries.

There is only 1 mention off any kind off public building being used (by Paul), and that was the school/hall of Tyrannus for the purpose of evangelism, the Christians still met in their homes for their informal fellowship meetings.

The Church in its wisdom has strayed far from the Lord's pattern which He Himself laid down, and has paid a terrible price for such folly, which is a dead form of godliness!

When the Church returns to the Word of God (from men's own worldly wisdom) and the pattern laid down in it, then their will be revival, for the Word of God is His Truth to the Church throughout every generation, and we will certainly get the same results as the early Church IF we follow it!

For those interested you can find a study Here on the government, ministries and practices of the early Church.
When you can get the pastors and leaders of the church (the real ones) to lead home meetings I'll be on board. But as it is now, home groups usually have no gifted pastors or elders leading and guiding and controlling them. And there is usually no praise and worship.

Home meetings usually fall short in these ways and end up not fully serving the purpose God wants to accomplish in a meeting of the saints. Not to mention the problem with parking, visibility, accessibility for new comers, etc.
 
R

Ralph-

Guest
#88
peace can be an evasive thing and is sadly spelled compromise many times
I agree, and a good pastor with an anointing for the leadership of the people of God can keep the peace while sticking to the truth. It's truly a gift. And I've only known a handful of pastors and elders out of all that I've known that I thought truly had that gift.
 
Mar 14, 2011
68,766
14,498
113
#89
There are probably more churches meeting in homes that you might think.
Nothing wrong with it. I think it is great.
But why limit the growth?
If a church is doing as Jesus commanded, going out into the community and making disciples, they would soon out grow a home. What are you going to do if 25 show up at the assembly?
Sad but true, some cities will not allow home churches.
What is wrong with renting a room or building where 120 can gather as the church at Jerusalem did.
Its easy, split the church into groups, then when you get enough groups, maybe then you can support a building and expand minstried, while keeping the home church model, thats how my church grew from a college ministry of people meeting for bible study, to a mega following in my city of over 6000 people.
 
Mar 14, 2011
68,766
14,498
113
#90
growth isn't limited at all, rather encouraged. ideally 25 people would be split into two groups that met twice a week in the home,and the whole congregation would meet once a month in a large outdoor area or meeting place.

the idea is NOT to have a big building EVER. eventually moving in to one would defeat the idea.
the idea is to worship and serve the Lord and each other without the pressures of paying staff salaries, mortgages and utilities of a big building.

this is what the Church at Jerusalem did. they met in each others homes in smaller groups, and then in the temple court as an entire congregation periodically.
We have buildings, need a place to conduct business, have advanced bible classes, placed for ministried which encompass quite a few home churches to be held, there is alot that can be done if the church is big enough, now if church is only a few home churches of about 100 people, your right, it is a waste.
 
Mar 14, 2011
68,766
14,498
113
#91
That sounds good, but, you must have qualified leadership, and that is not always the case.
I know we are to raise up those in our own congragation, but sometimes that just does not happen.
I know of several churches now that have searched for leadership for months.
They have to 'borrow" from other churches.
So, it may be necessary to go rent a place.
Don't get me wrong, I am not saying to build big fancy buildings.
But sometimes buying or building a small adequate building is the most effect way to use our money.
We have 4 leaders per home group, and 2 leaders in training, they go through training for quite a few years, if churches split, hey usually take two churches and make 3, where 2 leaders from both churches take over the new one, and the leaders in training have to be approved. By the elders of the main church to take over as true leaders.
 
Mar 14, 2011
68,766
14,498
113
#92
When there is a lack of leadership it becomes more difficult to split a group and form a new church in another home.
It may be necessary to keep that larger group together and that may make it necessary to move to a larger place.
Something is wrong if his should happen. Thats a system issue, spending thousands of dollars on a building can not solve.
 
Mar 14, 2011
68,766
14,498
113
#93
But what if the growth is faster than the developing? Developing leadership, one who can teach and lead others is a long process. You are asking for trouble when you put an unqualified person in the position of teaching others.
You can not just choose who you want. The person developed must be qualified and have a desire.
Thats why you do not put one person in charge, jesus sent them out in two’s, no church should be led by one person.
 
Mar 14, 2011
68,766
14,498
113
#94
A question for you----
Who should make the decision to separate a group, start a new group, and choose the new leader?
There is a lot to consider when we do the Lord's work.
An elder, my church has 5.
 
Mar 14, 2011
68,766
14,498
113
#95
I agree. Now another question---
What if the group grew to 20, 30 or 40 before a new leader is ready?
Very difficult to continue in a home with that number.
What would you do?
If its the only group, pray, (fnd a bigger place to meet until more leaders are qualified) my church rented a place until they could afford to urchase a place.

If there are many things other groups, pull a leader or two who is established from other groups,
 
Mar 14, 2011
68,766
14,498
113
#96
I would not divide just for the sake of dividing.
I think to much is made of the size of a local church.
I see nothing wrong with a church growing to 40, 60, 120 as long as there is fellowship and the church is doing a Christ commanded and the people are being blessed.
There is strength in numbers.
Also, to ask one leader to care for and lead two different groups may be asking to much.
A 120 number group is not good, there is n way to personally know each other in a manner where you can actively be involved in each others lives, especially if there is only one pastor (shepperd)

My church has been doing this since the 80s, they have found any home group over 40 has so many issues, and they usually do not last long, and if they do, growth is limited,
 

calibob

Sinner saved by grace
May 29, 2018
7,165
4,846
113
66
lawton ok
#97
somewhere a line gets crossed where small more independent groups become too large to survive as the were intended too. They will require more infrastructure, financial planning, a mission statement. Soon it becomes a corperation with board members and tax consultants and massive expenses. Just what many of us felt was so insinsincere about the larger churches that caused us to start this all to begin with. It's called being a victim of success. It is the point where we could either start over or follow the crowd.

The Question is was it a success, can we start over as victors in Christ?