Friday, April 08, 2005

Lessons in church growth from 1 Thessalonians

Mark Dever examines 1 Thess. 3:12-4:12 and finds valuable lessons about church growth:
This is the apostle Paul's example to us for what to do in order to help a church grow. Did you take note of what Paul did, when he wanted to see this church grow? He did what you should do if you want to see your church grow, or any other church, for that matter--He interceded for them to be holy and loving, he implored them to be holy and loving, and he instructed them in how to be holy and loving.

It's no accident that Paul was so concerned for these Christians to be holy and loving. Because God has called the church together, in order to be a picture, a reflection of His character. So in being holy and loving, these Christians would reflect the character of their Father, who has shown Himself to be, perhaps more than anything else, holy and loving.

The way to be a growing church then, is by reflecting the character of the one who called us to be a church in the first place. After all, if we're not going to do that, we're not growing anyway, however many people may be coming along.
Amen. Thanks to Peter at Stronger Church for bringing Dr. Dever's article to my attention.


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