The reality, however, is that the house church movement is alive and well in America. Researchers have estimated that there are 20 million people meeting in house churches in America and Barna predicts that alternative movements like house churches might reach 30-35 percent of all Christians by 2025.
Houses churches, GracePointe of Sedona see itself as fully the church. And the North American Lutheran Church sees the house church as the church. They derive their meaning squarely from the New Testament Church, not by any modern small-group model.
Those in the house church movement believe that meeting in the home or other small space is the Scriptural way to do church. House churches are not so much focused on programs or property, instead they are lean, their ministry focus is directed towards relationships. Relationships with God and relationships with each other. We have a biological family for sure, and we also have a spiritual family! Fellowship around Word,
sacrament and hospitality.
The early disciples themselves met in homes because it was the strategy Jesus taught them. After all, Jesus met from house to house throughout Galilea and Judea, and then sent his own disciples into homes to evangelize and establish a base for gospel preaching (Luke 9; Matthew 10). House to house ministry is biblical and the best way to make disciples is to make disciples (Matthew 28). We must take our cue from people in the house church movement and let that motivation drive everything we do.
House churches remind us that God doesn't dwell in temples made with hands. He's the God of pilgrimage who favors simple structures, rather than the ornate and permanent ones. It can be positive for small-group ministries to be jolted by the community, evangelism, and natural leadership development we see in today's house churches.
CHRIST-CENTERED. • RELATIONSHIP-FOCUSED. • MISSION-DRIVEN.
GracePointe of Sedona