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Home Churches in the New Testament

The negative command of " not forsaking the assembly" in Hebrews 10:25 has puzzled Christians worldwide during this "pandemic."

Owing to restrictions of public gatherings including worship services in chapels and church buildings, Christians worldwide have resorted to "on line" bible studies and worship services.

Are these "on line" bible studies/ worship services similar to house churches mentioned in the New Testament? Are they therefore scriptural, effective and edifying, not to mention their practicality and relevance to the present situation? Fortunate we are today as the internet technology has made it possible to talk and see fellow saints all over the world.

But the questions remain to be answered: Is house church authorized by the New Testament? Is it pleasing to God? Is it edifying? Is it a way of spreading the gospel and winning souls to Christ?

Can the advantages of a "house church" outweigh its disadvantages?

A house church maybe viewed as "easy, simple, inexpensive, informal and convenient?" There will be no monthly rentals or repairs on "church buildings." Attires can be casual and long periods of fellowships can be done, Every participant can bring his/her own lunch.

  • What are the possible disadvantages/ objections to a house church? Critics will point out that it is a "splinter group" from the main "church group!" Its independence can be subjected to hesitancy or suspicion. Or they label it as another " cult" in the making
  • To dissuade hesitancy and suspicion on the "creation of a house church," the scriptures will be used to prove its existence in the first century or during the life time of the apostles.

The following scriptures will suffice the curiosity and doubt of modern day Christians:

  • Acts 12:12, Romans 16:3-5, I Corinthians 16:9, Colossians 4:15 and Philemon 1:2. 
  • As the early disciples were rapidly multiplying in the first century, there were no statements about their assemblies in big church buildings or cathedrals. But they met in homes separately although they were "one church."

Can "house church" therefore be considered as a strategy for church growth today? A way of " drawing disciples back to the simple form of church life and mission" similar to the first century?

Is the great commission of Jesus in Matthew 28:19-20 being fulfilled today through "established churches" meeting in big edifices or cathedrals? Or is the command being realized through another way?

The world's population today is in billions. How can "established churches" meet the CHALLENGE of " discipling" all nations.. and teaching them all things that I have commanded you?" Jesus is still asking us today.

  • Established churches have full time preachers, evangelists, teachers and ministers. How can they meet the challenge of Jesus to " disciple" all nations?
  • Through social media, tri-media or mass media? Will " house church" be an answer to reach out to billions of people today so that it can be said that " your faith is spoken about in the whole world," Romans 1:8. Can it be spoken to us today that this " gospel has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven," Colossians 1:23?

Today is the right time to ask ourselves: Is house church a good strategy for church growth in the 21st century? DAO



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