During the month of May we are investigating what the Bible has to say about church planting. Here’s my “working definition” of church planting which provides the skeletal outline for this series:
Church Planting is:
- Planting the SEED of the gospel
- in the SOIL of a culture
- and trusting the SOVEREIGNTY of God
- to bring forth a THRIVING CHURCH.
We like this definition for a number of reasons: it is organic; it sees a visible church as the end rather than the beginning (people living as missionaries in their culture is the beginning); it involves both hard work and patient, prayerful dependence on God. The definition attempts to capture four important elements of any missional endeavor:
- gospel proclamation and demonstration (planting seed)
- contextualization (understanding the soil)
- prayerful dependence (resting in God’s sovereignty)
- gospel renewal (goal is a thriving church – Acts 2:41-47 – not just any church)
What do you like about this definition? Or, what adjustments would you propose?