A Return to Simplicity

joel I believe that God is calling His church back to simplicity. We have a tendency to over complicate cell church ministry. Cell church ministry is simple. Paul practiced such simplicity when he planted churches in the first century.   simple

We’ve been talking a lot lately about Roland Allen’s analysis of St. Paul’s missionary methods versus our own. Allen concludes that Paul didn’t leave his newly formed congregations with a whole lot. They had baptism, the Lord’s supper, and mutual edification. Allen says, “And yet is is possible that it was precisely the simplicity and brevity of the teaching which constituted its strength. There is a very grave danger in importing complete systems of worship and theology” Roland Allen, Missionary Methods: St. Paul’s or Ours? (Grand Rapid, MI: Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1962), p. 90.

Have we become too formalized and complicated in the cell church movement? Allen says, “A man does not need to know much to lay hold on Christ. St Paul began with simplicity and brevity. Yet in doing this he ran grave risks. It is characteristic of St. Paul that he had such faith in Christ and the Holy Spirit indwelling in the church that he did not shrink from risks. Even when the Galatians fell prey to the Judaizers legalism, we don’t sense that Paul tried to change his method of church planting” (p. 91)

Can we easily err in the cell church with our complicated systems and structures? I believe that we can. I sense that God is calling us to go back to simplicity and keep the structure workable. Here are the essentials:

  • Cell
  • Celebration (for children as well!)
  • Training
  • Coaching

We can learn loads from St. Paul about organic church planting and keeping it simple.



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