church planting

internetchurch2 I read an article yesterday on internet church that was encouraging the use of internet church over attending a real body of believers. That pastors should build a following of Christian who make the online church their church.

This I must say I am greatly opposed to this, not a church putting their church services online, making the sermon mp3’s available for free. But encouraging people to just go to online church instead of being part of a body, telling pastors to encourage the use of the on line church over being part of the body of Christ, that I am very much against, and so is the word of God.

This is what the scriptures say about being part of a body or not:
Heb 10:25  not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.

Being in community is central to Christian identity and the purpose and function of the church, the body of Christ. And Community is central to the mission of the church. with out it the church ceases to exist as it was intended to be.

Online church can be useful to Christians for when they are home sick, or with a sick child. Great to let Christians experience another gathering of the body in other cities and countries. For those uses it is Good. But unfortunately the side effect is we have people getting lazy, and disconnected from the body, by slowly getting addicted to the online church, and just skipping the body altogether and just using the internet church. And that is very Bad.

It can be used as a tool to allow non-followers of Christ to view church, witness the Holy Spirit at work, hear the word of God preached. That is Good! If it is done as a outreach, that is to reach the lost, to draw them to Christ, the gospel, then get them into the body of Christ. That is very Good. But to leave them there, say let this be your church. But to promote it to be someone’s church, for it to replace being physically part of a church body as a way of life. That is very Bad!

My suggestion is STOP promoting internet church as church, promote it only as a tool of evangelism, it should lead, funnel people to become part of the body, to actual GO to the church gathering, not stay on the internet as “your Church”, but to become part of a live fellowship.

manor_043 This is a great story showing what happens when a church planter focuses on getting the gospel out instead of getting in a building. Here is a church planter who sole focus was getting the gospel out and God proved the free building.

But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”

Mat 6:33

Here is the email sent to me:

Dear fellow believer,

Many of you know when my wife and I came to New York five years ago to assume the responsibility of directing the New York Mission to the Jews. Having a facility in Manhattan has furthered our ability to share the gospel not only with New Yorkers but people from all over the world who visit here.

I am writing to you to share an incredible miracle from the Lord. Several months ago the Lord providentially brought me in contact with a corporation which owns one of the oldest, historic church buildings in Manhattan.  That corporation is the American Protestant Defense League, and the building they own is the Manor Community Church located at 350 West 26th street in Manhattan.  This church was started in 1852 and has had quite a history in the City.   Their location is incredible.  They are a few blocks down from Penn Station and Times Square, and 26th street has direct access to the West Side Highway.   A subway stop is just around the corner making travel around the city very convenient.

The leadership of the American Protestant Defense League visited our web site after our first meeting and observed our ministry.  Because of the gospel outreaches which we have had around the City, as well as our desire to share the work of Christ with the Jewish community, they approached us and offered to let us use their facility rent free forever just as long as we remain true to the gospel. They are right in the middle of a very large housing project called Penn South.  That project was built many years ago to aid the garment workers, and the population surrounding the church building was nearly 100% Jewish in the beginning.  Now the surrounding community is still 50% Jewish.  Once our building sells the headquarters for the New York Gospel Ministries and the Jewish Mission will be in Manor Community Church.  Tompkins Square Gospel Fellowship has been offered the use of the facility as well.  The current pastor of Manor is Chris Ascension.  He has been in discussions with me about the possibility of my assuming the Senior pastorate of Manor and perhaps merging our church with theirs.  We are seeking the Lord about these decisions.  I covet your prayers in all these endeavors.  We are in the midst of one of God’s miracle provisions in this great City, and we praise His glorious Name.  The church has a sign inside with God’s name, Jehovah Jireh.  Truly He is the one who provides.   It is our desire to honor the gospel of His dear Son as we take it to the Jewish community and nations of the world, and God’s grace is enabling us to remain in the City to do so. The church building is three times the size of the Angel Memorial House, and we will be able to establish an International Training Center for the gospel which will enable us to continue to bring teams to the City and equip them in Jewish and Ethnic evangelism. There is housing for my family in the residential and office area of the building.  We will have the responsibility to pay the insurance on the building as well as utilities and maintenance.  There is a lot of work that needs to be done, and we will need help.  I will share more with you in the future.

Glorify our God with us for His incredible gift, and share His goodness with the saints!  You have been a part of this miracle as you have prayerfully and financially helped us spread the gospel in this place for many years.  We thank God for you.

We have had many wonderful outreaches in the parks and street corners this summer.  Many churches have come to help us take the message of righteousness to the world.  Knowing that we will have permanent space as we move into the future will allow us to continue to schedule teams and expand the ministry.

For the Sake of His Name,

William R. Jones

The key to the only tool you need to plant a church, the Holy Spirit as I explained in yesterday post is found in Act 11:24  For he was a good man and full of the Holy Spirit and faith. And many people were added to the Lord. It says full of the Holy Spirit and faith, and many where added.

Faith is the key to the Holy Spirit, what is the faith spoken of here? It is Faith that Jesus will give you the Spirit as He promised He would. That the Spirit will empower, equip and lead us, will enable us to be an witness to the world. Give us the words to day, the gifting to do the job, that Jesus will build His church as He said He will.

I believe that is why we have so many conferences and books on church planting, because we have to many people who ether do not have the faith to trust and reality on the Holy Spirit or to many who are not filled with and walking in the spirit. And are doing works of the flesh trying to reproduce the work of the Spirit and plant, start church on their own fleshly power. So they need a fleshly plan, way to make it happen.

I propose that the only real "how to church planting" conferences that should be going on, is prayer meetings, on your face worship, seeking God and wait to hear His voice meetings. Not let me tell you about our man conceived plans and ways to make it happen conferences.

When I was in YWAM, everyone had to do a DTS (Discipleship Training School) a 5 month boot camp if you will, that is focused mainly on finding your unique individual gifts and calling in God. To learn to hear God’s voice and follow His will for your life, a time that you inquire of God as to which of the 800 bases in more than 100 countries in the world are you to go to, His will for you, not your own. And which of the over 3500 ministry opportunities are you to do. They do not tell you where, what and how, but rather lead you into the presents of God, and help you learn to listen to for Gods voice, to hear Him and seek His face. They leave the where, what and how up to God, the Holy Spirit to answer. And that’s the way it should be for every follower of Christ, missionaries, pastors and even for “church planters”.

Part 2 in the series

spirit of God With a multitude of conference a year, and a long list of books published each year on “church planting” with most claiming to give you what you need to know. All the tools you need to plant a church, the schemes and sure fire methods to plant a successful “church planting”.

But the truth is that the only tool we need has already been made available to us and you do not get it in a conference.

Jesus gave us all we need to know and need to do His work here on earth, all we need to assist Him in building His church, the Holy Spirit. (One must also keep in mind a key truth, Jesus said it is His job not ours to build the church.)

And what is the only tool we need to “plant Churches” we find it in Act 1:8  But you shall receive power, the Holy Spirit coming upon you. And you shall be witnesses to Me both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and to the end of the earth., The Holy Spirit, He is all you need! Note Jesus did not tell them to figure out for themselves how to start a church, come up with their own plan of what church was to be like, methods of how to plant a church, own schemes to make it happen.

He told His followers to Be filled with the Holy Spirit, that the Spirit would empower, equip and lead us, would enable us to be an witness to the world, to rely 100% on the Holy Spirit. There it is, every thing we need to “plant a church” the only tool we need, the Holy Spirit, He will equip you with all you need, will give you the words to say, and lead you to where God is working. Then you do as Jesus said, Go, preach, teach, baptize and make disciples and a church has been planted. Yes it is that simple, but with out faith it is impossible to please God, to step out and do, and believe the Holy Spirit will give you all you need.

They way it has been done by the faithful since Acts 1, He equipped and lead the disciples, the apostle Paul and how it’s done everyday in China, India, and many other place today, proving that it is still true.

That’s the way it is for me, I go to the Lord, depend on the Holy Spirit to lead and direct, teach me and equip me for what ever He has for me to do. I do not seek out what other men are doing, seek to imitate the way and work of others. But rather seek God and the Holy Spirit in all things. His calling and plans for me, I seek to build what the Lord wants, not what man thinks God wants. I have direct access to God, why would I go anywhere else, I can hear God’s voice just as clearly as any mans.

Part 1

girls cheering on

I attended some of my nieces softball games the past two weekend, loved watching those girls play (10 to 12 years olds) , they are so amazing, the sills and abilities they posses at such a young age.

One of the things that caught my attention was that when they make an errors, mess up, strike out, drop a ball their teammates still say good job, you’ll get it next time and high five them, the coaches yell out good try, way to try, sake it off. As well as all of us in the stands, cheered for them just as if they hit a home run even when it was a pop fly out, shout out good hit! Not one of those girls is allowed to feel like they failed, no matter how badly they messed up.

That made me think of the verse Heb 12:1  "Therefore let us also, seeing we are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us," And how we have our own cheering section in heaven, but we should have one here to. When we mess up, make mistake, the body of Christ should be like my nieces teammates there to high five us, say good try, you’ll get it next time when we strikeout. But I do not see that happening very much at all in the church today, and that saddens me.

We the church, the body of Christ must, need to learn from girls softball, learn to be a team that supports each other no matter what, how bad we mess up. I saw how much it effected those girls, their spirits, them emotionally, made them what to do better next time. It keep them in the game with high spirits no matter the score, because they new they were winners no matter what the scoreboard said, glad to be on the team and in the game with them, and so should every member of the body of Christ.

streets KidsRescue Streets Kids in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

Figures now reveal that 7 million abandon children live on the streets of Brazilian cities.

The girls are snatched up quickly for sex trafficking or simply turn to prostitution to survive.

And like I said of India, this also is where Jesus would be found if He where on earth today, in fact according to Matt 25, this is where He is right now, waiting for His people to come visit Him, rescue Him, take Him in.

Go spend 3 or 4 weeks here, rescue a child, save them, do what Jesus came to do, Go do what Jesus commission His church, followers to do. This experience will change you, change how you see the world. until you have seen this kind of tragedy you can not understand what so many children have to live like daily.

The first time I saw this atrocity, was face to face with young children living on the streets, doing any thing to eat, my heart was forever changed. I was in the mist of the human litter on the streets along with broken bottles, and discarded newspapers, young children thrown away like trash.

Forty four times God speaks of His people responsibility to take care of the fatherless, and speaks of the penalty for those who do nothing to help them.

So take the time go to Brazil rescue some children, be a father to the fatherless, truly be a follower of Christ, go where He would go, be like Him be found about your fathers business. Can you truly tell me this is not what Jesus wants you to do. Save the life of some children give them a future, show them the gospel is real. Prove your faith is real.

Part 3 in my series

girl IndiaRescue girls from the sex trade, prostitution, in India

This is Asia’s largest sex industry center estimated that over 1.2 million children are believed to be enslaved in prostitution in India.

One truly can not comprehend the depth of this issue from the comfort of your home in the US. Nor can you fulfill Jesus’ commands in Matt 25 with your check book. Everyone should Go spend 3 to 4 weeks in this dark place , look upon the faces of these girls, this is real, one of the greatest human tragedies today.

This experience will change you, change how you see the world and it will show you just how great the need for the Gospel is. It will Change your priorities in life, and what you think is really important. This is what Jesus has sent His followers to change, to take on the cause of the fatherless, the oppressed, the downtrodden. Until you visit a third world county, get out of the wall’s of the America Christian life you can not truly have a world vision of what needs to be done, the depth of suffering and needs in the world today.

This is where Jesus would be found if He where on earth today, in fact according to Matt 25, this is where He is right now, waiting for His people to come visit Him, rescue Him. Jesus said He came to set the captives free, and His followers should be doing just that, if they are truly following Him.

So take the time go to India rescue those in the chains of slavery, children being sold for their bodies. Spend a month putting yourself in harms way to save lives, maybe even staying tell the job is done, tell every child is freed.

Part 2 in my series

Visit The Underground Church in China

Why? To see and experience the biblical church model shown us in the book of Act’s. See the real deal, church like you have never have seen, encounter Christianity as close to the time of Christ you will find on earth.

It will change how you understand and define what church is and what happens when the body meets, taste the church you read about in Act’s and see that it can be done today, need to be done today.

And I do not mean the public government sanctioned church meetings, I mean the underground church, your life is at stake if you get caught church. The one people go to prison for being part of, the one you could be killed for pastoring or hosting one. Every Christian should go and spend 3 to 4 weeks in one , really getting a taste for the life, the church. The one that is changing the face of a nation, creating more true followers of Christ than any other place on earth.

This will give you a new compass for your life, for how to have church, everyone I know who has been, came back a different person, could not return to church the way it is done in America.

house church meeting No money need. Money is not a requrement to have church, ever.

All the free places I have had a gathering of the church at, and that you can find on any given day for free to use. There are so many free places that you can get to meet at, money should never be an excuse for not gathering.

 

 

My house, I can have 30 people with ease in one room (my house church)
The basement of a house
The backyard of a house
A vacant house
Apartment recreation center
Housing development recreation center
On the beach (In Cal weather is hardly ever an issue)
In a park (In many states, weather is hardly ever an issue like Ca, Az, Nv, Nm, Hi, Tx)
A night club / bar (it was closed during the day)
Restaurant banquet room
Hotel banquet room
Warehouse
Vacant retail space (know of someone who used a 35k sq ft building for 3 years tell it sold, yes for free)
Vacant office space
Playhouse (theater)
A Christian High school football stadium

church on the beach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can have Church on the beach, always for free!

church in a park

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Church in a park, no cost at all.