Church Plant Memo...
Geoff's Blogg Church Plant Memorandum 2
WHY PLANT A CHURCH WHEN....?
...there are lots of churches already?
..... we could help other churches?
..... we are stretched already in what we do?
.... finance could be a problem?
We have a Biblical mandate to plant churches. It is not the churches call to just make converts. Modern evangelism has gone out to get people to make decisions for Christ. But most “decisions for Christ” are not conversions. The church's evangelism is in creating communities with boundaries made up of baptised, learning, fellowshipping, worshipping people.
Paul was primarily a church planter. He had a simple strategy: Preach the gospel in a large city then let that radiate out into the surrounding districts where churches would come to light. Elders were to be appointed. That meant a church.
Why do we need more churches in the UK? Well, are the existing ones all preaching the gospel? Are they all serious about the infallibility of Scripture? Do they all preach repentance and faith in Jesus Christ? Many church buildings house the dead and dying.
New churches are good at finding new people, particularly younger ones. This also has an effect on the sending church. It can revitalise it when it sees the new church growing.
Where the older church might be getting hung up in traditions, the younger church can help break the chains of those idols.
To plant a church means that others have room to rise to leadership both in the new church and the parent church. Often, established leaderships have a way of stifling the enthusiasm of the rising generation.
The parent church can become too concerned with the members and not so interested in reaching outside its walls.
But aren't there churches that need help? The truth is, the best way to renew a church is to plant another one. There are new approaches, new methods. New churches say, “Let's try it”, where older ones say “It will never work”. There's a new cutting edge with a new project.
New churches make older churches examine themselves and usually have a simpler and clearer vision.
Church planting means losing people. Which ought to cause the sending church to renew its evangelistic thrust.