"They attacked the House of Jason...they dragged Jason and some brethren to the rulers of the city, crying out, 'These who have turned the world upside down have come here too.'" Acts 17:6
Are we going after the' 'least of these' to the point that they are dragging us through the street?
This is our mission.
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” Luke 4:18-19
This is our mandate.
"Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’
“Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’" Matthew 25:34-40
These are the principles of final judgment. We take these words dead serious.
Is house church better than big church? Not necessarily. The big, more institutionalized churches can cater to family and community needs in great varieties of ways. But now, even big church is realizing it needs a little church.
It needs a little relationship. It needs a little more pushy get-up-and-go out into all the world mentoring motivation. The church planted by Jesus and the Apostles was relationship based, in relationship settings –people’s living rooms and kitchens. Accountability relationship is gone. The praying together, the face to face, the laughing, the conversation, the eating, the sharing, the impartation and stirring up of gifts --the comfort, correction, warnings, warmth and intimacy is going…. going….
When giving ministerial instructions to his disciples, Jesus talked about the activities, duties and responsibilities they would have in houses, not buildings. There was only one church, but in many houses. And there was an urgency to multiply them.
“And into whatsoever house ye enter, first say, Peace be to this house.” Luke 10:5
The original outpouring of the Holy Spirit came into a house where 120 were sitting. It was in the houses where they worshipped, and where Paul made havoc of the church, He persecuted the church from house to house. The Acts church met, not on Saturdays or Sundays –but daily.
When the early church attenders met in the temple, it was to evangelize and display God’s power to the lost, as Peter and John did for the disabled man by the Gate Beautiful. They assembled outside their homes for special conferences –like the one Paul called for all the pastors of Ephesus. He addressed the group of house church leaders,
“I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have showed you, and have taught you publicly, and from house to house,” Acts 20:20
House to house, that is where the daily and routine growth of the church body occurred.…the house of Cornelius, house of Mary, house of Lydia, house of Jason, house of Philip the Evangelist, house of Aquilla and Pricilla, house of Cloe, Stephanas, Nymphas, Philemon, John’s “Elect Lady” — even Paul had his own prison house church in Rome. Prison house churches is where our house churches are multiplying the most.
Mega-church was not the natural outcome of the thriving Acts house church system. Theater-style church was imposed by Roman Emperor Constantine who built the first institutional church for political power, and that, not until the fourth century AD! It was all house church all the time before that. The church would now struggle, no longer as the oppressed, but as the oppressor. Religion feasted in this new atmosphere.
Today, many big churches realize the secret power of house church. Under the guise of cell groups, small groups, life groups, and care groups, churches are back-peddling in an effort to get parishioners back into their homes.
The largest church in the world began in a house --what is so dynamic about that? Many churches began in houses. No, the difference is that Dr Yoggi Cho’s church, which started in his mother-in-law's house, followed the biblical template.
When his house church got big, it did not move to a bigger facility, The church split and the assistant pastor took away half the people. When that half grew, it split again. This cell division continued as cells do when a healthy body is growing. So began the exponential growth of a church in Korea, now over one million strong. Pastor’s should be proud when they have a church split!
I love house church because guests can find friendship, conversation, transparency, personal ministry, food, snacks, coffee, and a safe place to bring friends who would never otherwise darken the door of a traditional church. I love no clicks, no loneliness, no isolation, no separation, and no religion. The seats don’t all face one direction.
Let us help you get started. Use our teachings. Enroll in our donation-based Bible School. Bring us to your conference. Your house church may not even be in your house! It may be in a coffee shop, office, hotel, orphanage, hospital or prison. Let's just all find somewhere to get ready -- and GO!