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Microchurches Emerge from Gospel Planting
March 22, 2022 @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm EDTFree
THIS WEEK’S EPISODE
Why would Jesus tell someone who desperately wants to leave his network to follow him, “No”? Because Jesus is smart. He’s strategic. In fact, if you take a step back and look at the whole story, you see that this was the entire point of going across the lake in the first place! Who saw that coming? Who would have figured that the best dude to reach this whole other group of unreached people would be the brother filled with demons who lives in a cemetery and cuts himself with stones?
That only makes sense in the Kingdom. But that’s Jesus’ strategy of multiplication: He infected this dude, and next, he tells him to go infect others (It’s awesome because this is different from what he tells a lot of Jews that he healed. He often told Jews not to tell anyone about him, because it will be revealed later, but to the unreached he says to go and infect…).
THE RETURN OF THE MICROCHURCH
The missional conversation in the West has been snowballing for decades. Leslie Newbigin, who is considered by many to be the instigator of this conversation, posed the question in his book Foolishness to the Greeks, “What would be involved in a missionary encounter between the gospel and this whole way of perceiving, thinking, and living that we call ‘modern Western culture?’” We’ve been wrestling with that question for 40 years. Over the last two decades, pioneering efforts in the missional movement have been made with the mixed results expected of early experimentation. Now, mature forms of microchurch movements are emerging. COVID-19 has demonstrated the fragility of the predominant forms of Church, which has created a surging interest in simpler forms of the Church led by ordinary people.
Of course, microchurch is not a new form of the Church, but the most ancient one. A compelling case can be made that the microchurch is the original design within the pages of the New Testament. In addition, it is also the primary expression of the Church in the most significant disciple-making movements on the planet today, in places like India and China. Now is the time for us in the West to return to the microchurch for biblical, cultural, and missiological reasons.
Join Leadership Network this year for a series of catalytic conversations with leading practitioners. And follow this move of the Spirit that is bringing about the return of the microchurch.