Why plant new churches? The book of Acts focuses on Paul as the supreme example of missional living, and everywhere Paul went he planted churches (Acts 14:21-23). So why did Paul plant churches?
He didn’t come right out and tell us. But it’s clear that church-planting was his passion. Paul knew that Jesus promised to “build His church” (Matthew 16:18). And it seems to us that church-planting is a scalable, reproducible, holistic way to pursue evangelism, discipleship, and leadership-training.
Another reason we are passionate about church-planting is because the Bay area could use hundreds more Bible-focused, Christ-centered, doctrinally-grounded, community-based, and biblically–charismatic churches.
And of course, it’s not just the Bay area that needs new church plants – church plants are needed throughout this country and to the ends of the earth.
So what steps are we taking to plant new churches?
Prayer – Paul’s first church plants arose from a time of prayer with church leaders in Antioch (Acts 13:1-3). So we regularly take time to pray for church plants.
Culture – Since church-planting involves risks, we are seeking to develop a church culture where we are emboldened by God’s grace to take risky steps to advance Jesus’ purpose.
Leadership Development – We want to be a church that welcomes and trains and releases new leaders. As we do this, some of these new leaders will be men who are called by Jesus to plant new churches.
Networks – we are part of the Acts 29 network, and look forward to planting dozens of churches with them, as God blesses our efforts.
Multiple Sites – we are anticipating that God will lead us to develop other locations for Mercy Hill worship services. These could have the same or different preaching and worship as the Sunday service at Allen school – and they help us provide additional options for people in terms of where the service is located or what time the service meets. As these services develop, Jesus could lead our elders to have one of these sites become a church plant that would function with it’s own elders.
If you would be interested in being a church planter, of in being on a church-planting team, talk with one of the elders.