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Acts 19 How did they do it? Greg Morscher Xenos Christian Fellowship November 27 th, 2005.

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Presentation on theme: "Acts 19 How did they do it? Greg Morscher Xenos Christian Fellowship November 27 th, 2005."— Presentation transcript:

1 Acts 19 How did they do it? Greg Morscher Xenos Christian Fellowship November 27 th, 2005

2 How did the early church take off and sustain the explosive growth? ► They had Paul… ► … but, he was there for no more than a few years in a given city? ► The example of the Ephesian church:  Rented “School of Tyrranus” – Acts 19:9  1000’s of people – Acts 19:19… Huge movement throughout city  Huge movement outward from city…  No mass advertising, no technology, no huge budget, no transfer growth…

3 They had the… and

4 Paul’s letters… Col. 4:15 Greet the brethren who are in Laodicea and also Nympha and the church that is in her house. Philemon 1:1-2 To Philemon … and to the church in your house… (Colosse) 1 Cor. 16:19 The churches of Asia greet you. Aquila and Prisca greet you heartily in the Lord, with the church that is in their house. (Corinth) Romans 16:3-5 Greet Prisca and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus… also greet the church that is in their house… (Rome) Romans 16:23 Gaius, host to me and to the whole church, greets you… (Corinth)

5 Paul’s example… Acts 16:40 They went out of the prison and entered the house of Lydia, and when they saw the brethren, they encouraged them and departed. (Phillipi) Acts 20:20 how I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and teaching you publicly and from house to house, (Ephesus)

6 But, Not Paul’s invention… Acts 1:13-14 When they had entered the city, they went up to the upper room where they were staying... These all with one mind were continually devoting themselves to prayer… (Jerusalem) Acts 2:1-2 When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Acts 2:46 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, Acts 8:3 But Saul began ravaging the church, entering house after house, and dragging off men and women, he would put them in prison.

7 Practical application of a simple truth Acts 17:24 "The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands; 1 Cor. 3:16 Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? Romans 12:4-6 For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, each of us is to exercise them accordingly: …

8 The Way They Were (1 st Cent.) ► No church buildings in 1 st century church ► Large meetings were for outreach and equipping ► House churches were for doing ministry ► House churches were for corporate worship, not large meetings (1 Cor 14)

9 The Way It Changed (Middle Ages onwards) ► Clergy-Laity ► Churches became grand architectural wonders ► Focus of church experience is found in worship experience ► Ministry of church is performed by pastor and staff Discounts: role of “average” Christian need for interactive meetings need for spiritual gifting need for community Fosters Big Meeting point of view

10 We think the early church had it right and is valid today! We need to be the Body of Christ! ► Organic = Living  Relational  Growing in quality and quantity  Self-replicating  Natural leadership ► Underground  No huge mass marketing campaigns  Focus on small communities  Flexibile


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