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carters
Member



Joined: 2011/5/24
Posts: 138
Australia

 


_________________
Mrs Carter

 2011/8/10 20:05Profile
passerby
Member



Joined: 2008/8/13
Posts: 617


 Re: Godly advice needed regarding Home Fellowship...

Blessings to you and your family.

No comments yet, but may I ask some questions:

1. Do you meet in the same house all the time.
2. How many times do you meet in a day or in a week.
3. How how many activities do you have, how long do you meet in different activities.
4. Is your group composed of people with different denominational background.
5. Do you allow non-believers to attend to your fellowship or allow those who attend to invite non-believers.
6. What is the composition of your group; families or individuals, youth, children, professionals, women, men, singles, or married? are they consistent with their attendance.
7. How old is your fellowship, what is the level of christian maturity among members.
8. How do you meet financial needs for example in 'Lords'supper', etc., is it ok for many to have a donation box.
9. How did it start, is their someone who consistently volunteers to coordinate the activities, or offers his house.
10. Personally, are you there in that island as missionaries or for other purpose.

 2011/8/10 21:34Profile
carters
Member



Joined: 2011/5/24
Posts: 138
Australia

 


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Mrs Carter

 2011/8/11 0:14Profile









 Re: Godly advice needed regarding Home Fellowship...

Sherid in all the home groups I've gone to in the past 8 years, the pastor/preacher of the home group has desired to be under an authority, but that authority was usually not present at the meeting and sometimes lived hundreds of miles away. There were phone calls and emails to that authority from time to time and occasionally they met face to face.

That Cho guy in Korea who has a membership of like 2 or 3 million and thousands of home churches said that home groups have one problem and that is "venting". Try to discourage it. It usually takes the form of venting towards "big church" where brothers and sister may have been hurt by leadership or other people at "big church". That's all I have to add. I went to big church for 30 years, and I've gone to home groups for the past 8 years. I still go to the big church from time to time.

 2011/8/11 1:05
Areadymind
Member



Joined: 2009/5/15
Posts: 1042
Pacific Ocean

 Re:

I have had a lot of experience in both, and my experience (though subjective) is that home groups can have a bent away from the clear meaning of scripture into a bit more of a "touchy feely" kind of vibe, and you will start to here things like "I think this means..." (Which is not always bad mind you.) Again this has just been my experience. I also have seen a lot of good in home fellowships, a lot of prayer, encouragement and great exhortation. I have observed kind of what endzone said to a degree, and in fact had to cut myself off from a Home Group once that was doing that.

I would strongly encourage structured, Godly leadership. The type we see modeled all over the New Testament. And be just as aware of what Paul told the Ephesian Elders in the book of Acts...beware of men who would make followers after themselves. Since home fellowships can tend to be more discussion oriented, that tends to give me-followers an open platform. If you have Godly leadership, elders for example who oversee the flock, and feed the flock, not by constraint, not for filthy lucre, but of A-Ready-Mind; and neither as being "Lords" over God's heritage, but men who are "examples" (Tupos in the Greek, meaning a "Die, or a shape that is a statue, a resemblance, model, figure, or fashion, -Zhodiates) to the flock. In other words, if God were to take these men, and use them as molds to craft other believers out of them, would they be a mold worth repeating? Secondly, these Elders should be ready at all times for the Appearing of the chief Shepherd. The younger of these men should be in submission to the elders, and all of the Elders should also be in subjection to one another. Completely clothed in humility toward one another, old or young. This humility comes as there is a communal recognition between them all that God resists the proud but lavishes his infinite grace upon their humility. These should be men who "cast their cares" upon God regularly, rather than casting their cares upon the sheep they are to be feeding. They also should be sober, and vigilant men who have resisted the devil steadfast in faith.

This is not my advice, but the advice of the Apostle Peter. I think he is a good source.


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Jeremiah Dusenberry

 2011/8/11 1:57Profile
jimp
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Joined: 2005/6/18
Posts: 1481


 Re:

hi, 40 years ago we formed a home group and it was fabulous. we met in a diferent home every week on a revolving basis whenever possible in order to not burden any one family. the home we met in was responsible for the message and snacks. this gave us a chance to learn and mature in preparing with prayer and study a sermon every other month or so. the older kids (teens) were respnsible for baby sitting. we all grew in the Lord and His word and grew to love one another deeply.len ravenhill came to many of our meetings and shared.it was wonderful.jimp

 2011/8/11 6:51Profile
mguldner
Member



Joined: 2009/12/4
Posts: 1860
Kansas

 Re:

Brother Jim I always enjoy reading your posts, I am blessed by many of them as they encourage me to continue to press in. You have been a mentor to me even though you may not even know it. I am curious did your teens get involved other than babysitting?


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Matthew Guldner

 2011/8/11 6:57Profile
twayneb
Member



Joined: 2009/4/5
Posts: 2002
Joplin, Missouri

 Re: Godly advice needed regarding Home Fellowship...

Carters:

Ha Ha! It just hit me that your question is really a bit like, "If we found ourselves alone on a tiny island, how would we worship God." It is sort of a cliche question. Don't know why I found that so amusing.

To answer the question I would have a few observations.

The basic Biblical unit of the church that is manifest on a local level would be the church in the city. In your case it may be the church on the island. In that respect you are part of a body of true believers who live on your particular island. So when you meet in a home a part of that body on the island is meeting.

I met in a coffee shop yesterday with a man who is serving as a pastor in a local body that meets in a very traditional sense. I currently meet in my home with a small group of people. We fellowshipped, encouraged one another in the Lord, and began setting up a scenario in which I will use his building one night a week in the near future to teach to the body, both his small group and anyone else in the city and surrounding area that wants to come. I am in submission to this brother and he is in submission to me. I am also in submission to the people in my home group as they are in submission to me. It is in those relationships that accountability occurs. We are part of one another's lives and we take seriously the responsibility we have to hold one another to genuine Biblical living. We are called Biblically to be in submission first to Christ and secondly to our brothers and sisters. Never are we called to be in submission to an organization or to an established "ministry". I am not saying it is bad to have those relationships and I am not saying if you submit to a person who, lets say, planted or feeds your particular group that you are wrong, but I have seen a lot of problems with that model.

You do not have to start a "traditional" building based fellowship with all of the trappings in order to have a genuine fellowship. Fellowship is ecclesia, simply the gathering of the believers to seek God and edify the body. The Bible tells us not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together. It does not say don't forsake going to a building on a set schedule.

As to eldership I do not see one elder over a work as a scriptural concept. Paul and the other apostles always appointed a plurality of elders. Interestingly enough he never seemed to do it when he established the church in the location but rather at some later date when he came through. It is as if the leadership that was ready for that responsibility would rise to the top and upon his return Paul would ordain them officially. I suggest choosing out the most mature men among you spiritually and as a group setting them in as elders. This should be preceeded by much soul searching prayer among the whole assembly and any impure motives dealt with in prayer before proceeding.

That being said I would look at the level of spiritual maturity of the people you lead. If there are those who are spiritually immature you may need a weekly teaching meeting that is designed to bring them into doctrinal maturity. This regular meeting might look a lot like a traditional church structure and the regular meetings for prayer, worship, fellowship, and etc. may continue in houses here and there.

Just my two cents. Proceed with MUCH prayer but realize that you are the church regardless of how you choose to organize.


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Travis

 2011/8/11 8:33Profile
Lysa
Member



Joined: 2008/10/25
Posts: 3396
This world is not my home anymore.

 Re: Godly advice needed regarding Home Fellowship...

Quote:
I would like stability. I want to know what God's Word says about running a fellowship.


Here is a link to Zac Poonen's free book, "A Day of Small Beginnings" part 1 and 2; Zac took it all from the Bible:
http://www.cfcindia.com/web/mainpages/book_window.php?book=the_day_of_small_beginnings_volume2

CFC church in India started with and is run by a plurality of elders. I don't even think that Zac is a "head" elder! And they have many churches throughout India fashioned the same way: led by elders who are not paid. Their website is: http://www.cfcindia.com/


Now, has the Lord appointed elders in your small group? Perhaps you all should fast and pray to hear from the Lord on this matter and see who He appoints.

God bless you on this matter,
Lisa


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Lisa

 2011/8/11 9:23Profile
passerby
Member



Joined: 2008/8/13
Posts: 617


 Re:

I do not mean to give you advice on what to do, these are just ideas that came to my mind after reading your posts.

It seems that you can have an eldership of four men. The women can serve as deacons.

If you will consider to do that you might as well count the cost now on what are you willing to commit. Consider
carefully the biblical characteristics and attitudes of elders or deacons and if you can commit with the help of the Lord to abide by them or if there are incumbrances.

Because your group is open to attendance of non-believer friends or acquaintances, your fellowship can be a good flatform for evangelism by formal preaching or through the ordinary course of you interactions. If you will call it a disadvantage, your group can indeed grow fast.

If you are really bend to evangelism or re-evangelism of 'lost christians' the venue which will be a neutral ground for the lord
(I said this because sometimes in a home church the host family has a tendency to have a domineering or unhospitable attitude) could be rented so that the disturbances to the privacy of your own homes is minimal.

But if one of you has means and is willing without reservations to give a neutral ground where you can have your assembly then consider it prayerfully..

There are many other things to consider but let me end for now.

 2011/8/11 10:01Profile





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