Derek and Ashley sent several books to our home a few weeks ago, and since I haven’t had much time to read lately, I thought I’d bring one with me.
So I’ll be reading The Disciple-Making Minister for the next few weeks as I travel. I’m only a few chapters/a few hundred miles in, but so far the book deals with the nature, purpose and structure of a “church” or even “the church.”
One thing the author talks about that resonates with me is that the church got along fine with owning a single building for the first 300 years–any time Paul or any other writer mentioned a “church,” it was always a house church that he was talking about. That’s decades longer than our country has been in existence. (And Happy Birthday To You, USA–sorry I’ll miss most of your birthday this year. Next year we’ll do something special, just the two of us.)
The church building isn’t necessary, maybe is even a distraction in most cases. And if the believers met in their homes those first long centuries, the number of people gathered at any given time would have to be numbered in tens of people, not hundreds or thousands of people like in modern churches.