Sunday, August 9, 2009

Church Building or Home Church?

Church Building or Home Church

The Bible tells us that we are to come together as believers. Hebrews 10:23-25 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful; and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deed, not forsaking our own assembling together (as the habit of some) but encouraging one another; and the more, as you see the day drawing near. We have come to believe that bigger is better.
Matthew 18:20 states: "For where two or three have gathered together in My name, there I am in their midst."
The new testament church met from house to house.

Acts 2:46-47 quotes: "And day by day continuing with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they were taking their meals together with gladness and sincerity of heart, praising God and having favor with all people. And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved.
Acts2:20 reads: "And I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and teaching you publicly and from house to house.

In the large congregation there is no personal contact. There are many hurting and lonely people sitting in pews right now and their needs are not being met. Some have the idea that going to a building where people meet is a church, simply because it hangs a sign outside calling itself a church.

The church is not a building. It is all born again believers.

Christ in you, Jesus with skin on. Not every church that bears the name is the true church. We all know people who attend church regularly, yet the rest of the week we would hardly know that they are even a Christian. All the joy and Bible study and praising God is left behind after the sermon is over.The sermon is delivered by a preacher with an audience. It is all a one way street. There is no interaction.

Can you imagine someone interrupting to ask a question or offer an opinion or to express an immediate need?
Some have even been isolated by the so called church because they differ in their beliefs, or they don't look right or they are poor. This is done in the name of unity.

I was recently asked to attend a prayer meeting with someone and he said they would accept me because I was with him. (I worship on a different day.) I don't believe that I want to be apart of a group where you have to be with someone in order to be accepted. We of the true churchof God are all one body with many members.
Romans 12:5 says: "So we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another."
These same people were even embarrassed to pray at a restaurant before their meal after their meeting. God's people should be welcome anywhere in the church because of who they are, a child of the King. God's true church will keep the commandments of God. In the home church, groups are small and intimate. Everyone knows the others needs, strengths, and gifts. Everyone has a part in the meeting, and Bible study is not just one way. Questions and opinions can be given freely.Searching of the scriptures and use of the concordance is readily available. Prayer is offered by everyone in one accord. Everyone is welcome regardless of how they look or talk or believe.There is no need of a formal preacher in a home church.

I Peter 2:5 states: "You also, a living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable o God through Jesus Christ." I Peter 2:9 proclaims: "But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you of darkness into His marvelously light." Revelation 1:6 says: "And He has made us to be a kingdom, priest to his God and Father; to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever."

The home church is a body of believers who have many gifts. Some to teach, some who have the gift of mercy, some who know how to put our web pages together, some to give out books, some to do outreach and some even send cards of encouragement and visit the sick. Everyone has a gift and it can be utilized in a small group.
I Corinthians 14:26 reads: "What is the outcome then, brethren? When you assemble, each one has a psalm, has a teaching, has a revelation, has a tongue, has an interpretation. Let all things be done for edification."

Within the traditional church there is a need to put most of the finances into the buildings and the maintaining of them. There are also pastors salaries and the rest of the staff as well. In the home church the finances can be spent on outreach as well as helping those in need. In our groups we have a food ministry. We believe in a practical way of reaching people for Christ. We also have a lending library as well as giving free books. There is no building, pastor or utilities to pay. All the money goes for God's work.When we do something for someone else, it is to be in secret so the recipient will be able to thank God. God will reward the giver.

Matthew 6:3-4 states: "But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing that your alms may be in secret; and Your Father who sees in secret will repay you."

I recall a deacon who made a young woman stand before the congregation to show her new false teeth after they footed the bill. In the large traditional church you can get lost if you want, or even if you don't want to. You can feed on milk as a babe in Christ the rest of your life listening to sermon after sermon and never growing. In the small home church you are accountable for your walk with Christ. Everyone is there, willing to help you mature with encouragement. Your faith can't help but grow and you will read the Bible yourself, to see God's truths because everyone participates.

In the traditional church there are many programs from which to choose. There are youth groups, different age groups, couples groups and singles groups. In many churches these programs are geared for their entertainment and very little if any actual ministry goes on. In the home church there is one group. Everything centers around the spiritual growth of the entire group, and learning God's truths and His will for our lives. They can concentrate on projects of outreach and accomplish them. To go, be and do all that Jesus asks. We know there are many fine churches around. There are also many pastors who are teaching truth. I had a pastor in the past in my church who wouldn't accept raises in his salary, a church with no debt. He taught truth even though it was controversial. I am sorry to say that he left after his truths and he is no longer pastoring a church. Our church didn't want the truth so he left after many sessions with the deacons, telling him what he could teach. May God bless pastor's like I had and the church that once was a loving family. The same church is now a place that grew in numbers but, it is now without a pastor for the third time. It is deep in debt with a new large building and is spiritually blind. They wanted a pastor to tickle their ears.

II Timothy 4:3-4 states: "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate or themselves teachers in accordance to their own desire; and they will turn away their ears from the truth, and will turn aside to myths."

Most of the original church that was warm and giving is now gone to other pastures. Each of us must make the decision of where we are to go to church. Do it prayerfully and use keen discernment.

Be with those who keep the commandments of God. Your spiritual maturity depends on it!

No comments:

Post a Comment

How has God spoken to you through this post?